In this highly transformative time for businesses, the value proposition is a concept that’s firmly on many minds. It’s the way you tell potential customers who you are and what you’re about. You can use a value proposition as a way to teach others important details—how your company operates, what it stands for, and most importantly, why they should choose your business over similar competitors. Enter the Value Proposition Canvas and CVP Map.
Your Value Proposition Canvas is a unique tool that can help you determine if and ensure that your products and services are meeting the expectations of your customer segments. It was developed by Dr. Alexander Osterwalder, a way to create a fit between new products and the markets those products were to serve. To do that, the Value Proposition Canvas takes a close look at your value proposition, visually juxtaposing it with your customer profiles in a circle and square. Here’s what these simple shapes contain, and what they can reveal…
Within The Circle
The circle of the Value Proposition Canvas is where you’ll find the information relating to your customer. You might also hear this referred to as the “customer profile”. It shows the experiences and expectations of your customer, and consists of three elements:
This isn’t referring to your potential customers’ occupations. Customer jobs encompass the things that your customers are trying to get done in their lives (and that your product or service might address). From these, you can narrow customer segments down based on various aspects and factors, which will help you better address their needs as a group.
From customer jobs, you can also get a sense of customer pains, which is the second segment of the circle. These are the negative and frustrating bits that are associated with completing the jobs in question. It’s important to note that “pains” can be subjective, so you’ll have to cast a wide net to determine what’s irking your potential customers.
You might be tempted to think of gains as the opposite of pains, which they are to some degree, but it’s not as if they are diametrically opposed. It might be better to think of gains as “things that would make customers pleased” rather than the exact counter of a pain point.
Within The Square
Like the circle, the square on the Value Proposition Canvas consists of three parts. Here, however, you’re going to find information related to the product or service that’s supposed to be helping customers solve those sticking points and meet their expectations.
This one’s pretty straightforward. The product or service in question is listed here, along with variations of said product or service and the features that they possess.
Pain relievers, as the name suggests, are the things that the product or service does to alleviate those customer pain points. No need to go into great detail here, as it’s just a matter of fact statement of X product answers Y pain point.
This too correlates to the Gain component of the VPC circle. Gain creators are those bits of value that bring the customer joy.