On the surface level, you would think that in selling software solutions to a company, the most important aspects would be the features of the product – and you’d be wrong. What goes into a software solution are just details of how things work and how awesomely they were made. The most important aspect is the value of what you’re selling.
Value is where “perceived benefit” and “total cost” meet.
Even with the world being pushed to grow by technology alone, there are still some companies which don’t see the need of it; they are hesitant to engage in a technological world because for them, there is no value. Why wouldn’t they see the value? There could be a lot of reasons. It may be because it costs too much for them, or maybe they find it too complicated to manage. Or perhaps they’re just good old-fashioned company that detests the hassle of technology. They need to see the value of it, and if you’re an IT or software vendor, it’s your job to make that happen.
It’s in the eye of the beholder, and the beholder is not the vendor.
If you like chicken wings, then “two pieces of chicken wings for the price of one” would be of great value to you. The cost is cheap, and the benefit is that you have two pieces. But if you’re a vegetarian, that deal would be of bad value to you – as a matter of fact, for you it doesn’t have any value at all. In that same spirit, what would be the value of purchasing a cheap portal solution if your company only has 5 computers and 20 employees? Remember, value is all about what the buyer perceives.
The more unique the need is, the greater the value.
A $25 branded medicine loses its value if there are other generic medicines that can deliver the exact same effect but only cost $5. If you’re product doesn’t provide a more or less unique benefit, the buyer will not see any reason to choose it over a less expensive option. It’s a common decisive factor in software marketing. For a solution to capture the interest of a buyer, it must offer a unique benefit – so unique that the only alternative to buying your product is to hire actual human beings to do the job (which is more costly).
When new options emerge, a product value evolves.
During the pre-online marketing era, the popular channels of advertising are print, TV and radio. When the internet entered the scene, the value of each channel shifted. Internet is faster, more dynamic, and it produces the same if not better results. Same with software marketing – the marketer must make the buyer see the benefit of a product amidst all the other choices in the market. Once they are able to assess the comparison, it will help them decide and see the value of one product over another.