Value Proposition Meaning in Inbound Marketing [and How to Write One]

Discover how to write a value proposition that captures your unique value and resonates with the people your business needs to grow.

Digital is a crowded room full of noise. All your prospects are here, and you want to join in the conversation — but how to introduce yourself and what to say?

A technology reseller sidles up to chat about software solutions. Everyone nods, smiles, pops olives like Tic Tacs, fiddles with their empties, but nobody’s listening. His competitors have been touting the exact same pitch all evening.

Outside, a group forms around a well-known enterprise. He draws a crowd but the conversation dries. His proposition is outdated. No one can see the value in what he says he does anymore.

Near the bar, an SME excitedly relates the story around her rapid growth. She’s engaging, magnetic, so passionate her bubbly’s almost flat (the waiter’s hovering), but for all her success, she's having trouble explaining how she got there.

In each scenario, these businesses find themselves faced with one of two key challenges:

  1. They don’t know how to define their value.
  2. They don’t know how to communicate it in a way that's aligned with their target buyers.

Like many organisations, it’s a problem they don't even realise they have, and it’s all too common today when the pressure is on to take products to market and start promotions without having thought about what the real value is that you're delivering.

If this sounds familiar, don't worry — you can quickly and easily solve this challenge by defining (or refining) a value proposition that really sings. In this article, you'll discover how.

For a deeper dive into value propositions and how they fit into your wider inbound marketing strategy, download our guide to setting up your inbound marketing strategy now


  • What is a value proposition in inbound marketing?
  • Why is a value proposition important?
  • Value proposition example
  • Using your value proposition to drive business growth
  • How to write a value proposition for inbound marketing [+ template]
  • Tips for writing your value proposition
  • What's your unique value proposition?

value proposition meaning in inbound marketing

What is a value proposition in inbound marketing?

A value proposition's meaning in inbound marketing can be thought of as a boiler-plate statement that clearly communicates the value your business delivers to its target buyers.

This doesn't just mean what products or services you offer but how you deliver them and how they really benefit your customers. 

While they're often used by sales and marketing teams, value propositions aren't just for your customer-facing people. They're a part of your company's core messaging, with applications that extend across the business. From internal comms and finance to customer service and administration, everyone will benefit from understanding what makes your business special.

So what are those benefits and how can you use them to your advantage?

Why is a value proposition important?

To really understand what makes a value proposition important, let's rewind to that dinner party. (Top up?)

Guest 1

Our first guest, the technology company, went straight in talking about the software solutions he offers. This is a common issue in the reseller space, where it's crowded and everyone is shouting to sell what are essentially the same products. As you might have guessed, it's unlikely he has a value proposition behind him. If he did, he'd have been able to capture his audience with talk not of technology but how he — the expert partner — helps them to unlock its full value

Guest 2

Guest number two defined a value proposition many years ago. At the time, it struck a chord with his prospects, and the company grew very large and successful by effectively communicating that value. But the market has changed, as markets do, and the value proposition hasn't changed with it. To refresh his messaging and create a value proposition that resonates today, it's vital that he revisits what value his customers get from his offerings

Guest 3

The third guest has nailed her product or service and she's growing fast. There's a real buzz around her company — but she doesn't seem capable of communicating that to an audience. If she wants to keep building momentum once the hype bubble bursts, she's going to need to figure out her core business messaging and how to clearly express it.

With all this in mind, how exactly does a value proposition help your business to grow?

Using your value proposition to drive business growth

What do all our guests have in common? They're trying to engage an audience. Value propositions aren't just for your customer-facing people, but they have real business applications there, where they can help you and your teams to drive tangible business growth.

By articulating why someone would buy from you over a competitor, your value proposition captures what makes you different. That unique approach, particular blend of values or extra mile you go to that keeps your customers coming back, time and time again? It's all there. Suddenly, you're not just attracting people from across the room. They want to talk to you.

With this knowledge in their pocket, your marketing team will be better equipped to

  • target the right audiences
  • create more relevant, engaging workflows
  • make better use of their budgets
  • deliver greater ROI

Your copywriters will be able to

  • speak to your audience's pain points
  • create more concise, impactful content
  • write more consistently on the value your products or services deliver

And your sales team

  • will be more confident about what it is your company offers your prospects
  • will find they can highlight how your products or service deliver real value to its customers
  • will be able to hold the engaging kinds of conversations salespeople dream of 

By contrast, an inability to communicate why your customers should buy from you could be seriously limiting your business' growth. Today more than ever, you need to stand out. 

Read on for a helpful template and a step-by-step process for creating a value proposition of your own.

Guests mingling at a party, talking to each other about their value

How to write a value proposition for inbound marketing [+ example]

By now, you might have realised that you actually have everything you already need to communicate an effective value proposition in your inbound marketing. But, as you probably also know, communicating anything is rarely as simple as it sounds.

When creating your value proposition, approach the exercise with two key questions in mind:

  1. What does your company do?
  2. Why should your prospects buy from you and not one of your competitors?

Let's look at each of these questions in turn and how you can best go about answering them:

1. What does your company do?

When thinking about what your company does, keep it top-level. Your value proposition shouldn't list all your individual products or services, but it will clearly explain what your offer is, so anyone who reads it is in no doubt of what products you offer, which services you provide, or the space you occupy in the market.

For example, here at BabelQuest, we partner with B2B organisations to unlock the potential of their marketing, sales and services software.

Think about how we've phrased this for a moment. We haven't run through every service we offer, but we have

  • called out our focus on B2B
  • emphasised partnership, which is important to us and how we work
  • broadly described what we do — unlocking the potential of marketing, sales and services software

TO DO: Think about your target audience, your market space, and the real value your customers get from working with or buying from you. Can you bring those things together into a single, concise sentence?

2. Why should your prospects buy from you?

This is where you focus on the value you deliver. For your value proposition to sing, that value should differentiate you from your competitors. Consider

  • how you offer your services — do you operate differently to your competitors? 
  • your company values — these can hold big clues in terms of what makes you different and how you are able to help or provide value to your buyers
  • customer feedback and testimonials — if you still can't put your finger on what makes you stand out, you might find that your customers themselves are telling you when they leave reviews

At BabelQuest, we've always believed in asking the right questions, challenging our customers' status quo, and caring about the impact we make. Sure, this might sound fluffy and, in theory, any one of our competitors could make a similar claim. But the truth of it is, this isn't fluff to us.

We live and breathe these values, and every one of our clients experiences that when they come onboard. Because of that, you can't fake it. It's there in the results we generate for them, it's there in the positive words they share about how they find working with us, and it's there in our client retention rate — one of the highest out of all HubSpot's Solution Partners. (150%)

TO DO: Think about the approach your company takes, your core values, and what your existing customers tell you that they find most helpful/valuable about your services and how you operate. Can you pick three standout points that neatly summarise these?

"BabelQuest has been absolutely fantastic to work with. Our marketing strategy and the content we are now putting out has gone from 0 to 100. And the resulting new business speaks for itself! In the past year of working together, we have built a great relationship with the BabelQuest team, excellently led by Gemma and Bridget and backed up by fantastic resources in the shape of Gem, Tom and Chris. I look forward to continue working with BabelQuest and continuing to grow the VFE brand!" Slater Jinkinson, Head of Sales, VFE

Tips for writing your value proposition

Be succinct. Value propositions should be short and impactful. Ask yourself: why use two words when you can use one?

Be meaningful. The proposition needs to resonate with your target audience. Ask yourself: if you were in your buyer persona's shoes, would you understand the language and terminology used?

Be human. Business messaging doesn't need to be dry and corporate. An informal tone is your friend. Ask yourself: does the value proposition sound conversational? 

Be benefits-led. Remember: most customers don't care about your brand. All they want to know is how you can help them. Whenever you find yourself writing about your products or your services, ask yourself: how does this benefit my target buyer? 

Be emotional. While you probably shouldn't aim to make your reader cry, you should shoot to elicit an emotional response of some kind. Most people buy based on emotion, then rationalise (or discredit — buyer's remorse, anyone?) that decision afterwards. Ask yourself: does the value proposition feature emotive language or address the buyer's pain points?

What's your unique value proposition?

Once defined, your value proposition can be threaded throughout the organisation, from the tone of voice guidelines used in your editorial to the conversations your salespeople are having.

When he have helped our marketing retainer clients to define their value propositions, this is one of the ways we immediately put the messaging to use, helping their wider business to understand what value they really offer their customers and improving the consistency of their communications — customer-facing and internal — with every post.

The digital scene is in full swing. Before marching inside and loudly announcing yourself, stop to rethink the value you are promising and whether or not this will resonate with your target prospects. Better yet, invite your customers to the table with a unique value proposition statement and start the conversations your business needs to grow. Cheers!

For a deeper dive into value propositions and how they fit into your wider inbound marketing strategy, download our guide to setting up your inbound marketing strategy now.

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