Innovation Inspiration: Re-defining Customer Value

09 May 2009|Added Value

CEO Added Value FranceThe 2009 annual WPP survey of the world’s most valuable global brands (which you can find at www.brandz.com) identified value as one of the key drivers of brand equity during 2008. But what do customers mean by ‘value’ nowadays and what effect has the crisis had on attitudes and behaviours?

Writing in the Harvard Business Review, Peter J. Williamson and Ming Zeng argue that much of the advice offered during the crisis is the same as in the 2000 recession. But what we’re facing today is different. Western businesses have to learn from emerging market enterprises and use value-for-money as a strategic imperative.

Read More: Value-for-Money Strategies for Recessionary Times

Value-for-money is undeniably key, but isn’t there more to it? At Added Value, we strongly believe there is. Peter Drinkwater and Bart Michels of our Australian and UK offices challenge the notion that value = value-for-money alone. Companies need to be clear about 3 building blocks: value ethos, propositions and communications.

Read More: How to Communicate Value without Destroying your Brand

Jonathan Birchall and Jenny Wiggins of the Financial Times agree. They identify organisations focusing on “telling their customers that their products work better, even if they do cost more”. Joan Lewis, Head of Consumer & Market Research at P&G, believes that consumer engagement will grow in importance, echoing Added Value’s emphasis on the need for greater transparency – turning the traditional concept of value on its head.

Read More: Retail Suppliers Chase the Value

And recent research from Added Value France’s Sustainable Marketing practice among clients in a range of sectors suggests that the crisis and Sustainable Development are first cousins: they are both leading us to re-assess the real cost and value of products and services. Traditional definitions of ‘cost’ and ‘value’ have to be re-invented, bringing with them the creation of new business opportunities.

Read More: Le Développement Durable a-t-il Transformé la Fonction Marketing?

By Jonathan Hall, CEO Added Value France

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