Perceived Value Drivers

Perceived Value Drivers

One of the key points about perceived value is that it is unique to each of us.  Someone might value a product feature highly, while another person wouldn't care if it wasn't part of the product at all.  However, fundamentally, we all intrinsically look for certain families of value.  The following list is my view of these families.

Increase Revenue - Products or features that make an individual or a company money.  This is usually one of the highest impact value families.  Keep in mind that this is actual revenue when using the product, not a chance at making revenue.  So it is fine if you are buying a piece of machinery that you can now sell an additional service for.  However, buying a subscription to a stock shares market tool is usually not considered revenue making.

Reduce Costs - If you are clearly able to demonstrate that a product will reduce costs for a business or individual, it will likely be valued highly.  Similar to increasing revenue, this needs to be pretty much "guaranteed" with proper use of the product or feature as opposed to a chance of reducing costs (though that still has a bit of value).

Increase Efficiency - If you can obtain something that makes you take less time to do a task, then that is typically valued.  Note, sometimes increasing efficiency reduces costs (especially for B2B), but this is not always the case.  It could be as simple as having a microwave to cook things faster than the oven.

Improve Effectiveness - Does a product make you better at something, but doesn't actually increase revenue or decrease costs?  For example, let's say you took a course on how to hit a baseball better.  It (hopefully!) makes you more effective at hitting a baseball and might have an impact on some other softer value families, but has no hard benefit, unless it gets you a scholarship or you become a professional baseball player because of it.

Improve Brand Equity - Brand is not just about B2B.  Each of us has our own brand as well.  If a product makes other people attach a higher value to your company or you as a person, then it has likely increased your brand.  For example, someone who dresses ordinarily, might go out and buy an entirely new wardrobe.  Although clearly superficial, this could improve others perception of that person (and might lower it as well!).  For B2B, it could be something like a product or feature that makes them perceived as more environmentally friendly.

Improve Pleasure - These are sometimes hard to quantify, but that are products or features that give you some pleasure, but no hard benefits.  For example, lets say a hotel VIP feature lets you pick what floor you stay on when staying there.  That really doesn't help any of the other value families, but some will attach a fair amount of value to that, as they might be scared of heights for example.

Reduce Risks - You shouldn't under-estimate how much value can be attached to reducing risks, particularly for B2B.  Corporations generally like stability and are usually quite willing to pay for things that increase this.  Consumers also appreciate this, especially when it comes to certain aspects such as home security.

Of course the are plenty of other things that a business or person could value, but I believe this is a fairly comprehensive list.  It's worth noting that it is usually perceived higher to be deeper into one value family than to be light touch, but spread across many of them.  

I hope this has helped with your understanding of what can drive perceived value for both business and consumers.