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Value-First Marketing and Why It’s Important

What is value-first marketing, and how to get started?

First coined in 2020, Value-First Marketing or Value-First Approach avoids the on-the-nose selling tactics and instead initiates a relationship with its (potential) customers by giving something of value to them. It could be as simple as content.

For example, Grammarly Blog. While you might not be wholly convinced to invest in this editing software, its free content gives you immense knowledge about the English language and writing skills. It immediately adds value and builds Grammarly’s authority in its field. The more you read, the more trustworthy it becomes.

Another brilliant example of a value-first approach is promoting others. While some marketers traditionally stick to promoting their services and products, others are taking a much more modern, unconventional route. They are either promoting small, local businesses for goodwill or recommending products that create a need for their products.

An excellent example of the latter is this blog by myUKmailbox. It interests people from far-flung countries to buy the products and then serve as the carrier for them. In short, creating a demand for their service. This principle can be applied to any niche.

Why is value-first marketing important?

Because traditional advertising is no longer sustainable!

With marketing campaigns getting more invasive, buyers are getting tired of companies being too salesy. Audiences are getting smarter and better at catching empty claims and manipulation tactics in advertising. Sixty-four per cent of customers describe ads as annoying or intrusive, and over 615 million devices currently have an ad blocker installed. So much so that consumers are now consciously or unconsciously practising Advertisement Blindness, ignoring ad messages.

Where does that leave us if customers are not ready to engage with ads and are actively avoiding them? How are companies and brands supposed to attract, engage, and retain customers? The answer is simple – Value-First Marketing.

What Do Customers Look for In Value-Based Marketing?

Essential traits, characteristics, and solutions people look for in the companies they purchase from include:

  • Value systems they can align with
  • A follow-up on pre-sale promises
  • Authenticity instead of PR-based personas
  • A solid set of values reflected in company actions
  • Meaningful interactions instead of salesy, manipulative pitches
  • Congruent company representatives

How Does Value-First Marketing Make a Difference?

Value-add marketing equals customer-centric marketing that puts customers first. It aims at exceeding their expectations by delivering more than promised.

When people are looking to engage with brands that offer them experiences beyond making a purchase; brands that are more emotional than transactional, value-add marketing comes to the rescue. It turns marketing content into a product on its own.

Value-focus marketing can take many forms, from expert advice, blog content, VIP awards, priority service and shipping to educational how-to guides and surprise freebies. Either way, it captures and holds customer attention, inspires brand advocacy, and is affordable for the retailer.

Pivoting Your Business to Value Marketing

Perhaps, offer something intangibly-worthy to make your business feel more human, emotionally conscious, easy to connect with, and relatable. Use marketing that allows customers to interact with the company.

  • Generate helpful content
  • Include customers in the corporate story (think testimonials, reviews, case studies)
  • Ever-present, reliable customer service
  • Focus on what comes after the product/service is sold
  • Tell a story
  • Implement interactive digital experiences
  • Use an end-to-end customer value management platform
  • Use marketing value metrics from customers

There is no pretending here; genuinely caring about the customers is the key to hacking value-first marketing.