Most business executives understand the importance of offering good value for money to their customers. But sometimes they do not put enough thought into how customers perceive value. This is particularly true in today's recessionary environment. Executives need to communicate clearly how and why their offerings are good value for customers. In doing so, they can help customers overcome resistance to discretionary spending and improve perceptions of value versus alternatives.
In this article, Jackson considers a number of case examples of businesses that have improved their price‐value perceptions by adjusting their product offerings in subtle ways that help communicate value. Examples industries cited in the article include food service, retailing and the auto industry. The author then draws lessons that can be applied broadly across any business considering strategies to communicate the value of their offering.
Companies should proactively communicate the value of their products or services, particularly during recessionary periods when customers are more wary of discretionary spending. This involves developing innovative programs change how the purchase occasion is perceived, providing rational arguments for why the purchase makes sense and addressing customer concerns. The companies that do the best job of communicating the value of their offering will be rewarded by retaining customers during downturns and will reap the benefits of even higher spending when the economy recovers.
Business managers have always recognized how price and value are critical considerations in purchasing behavior. This article extends that thinking to reinforce how small changes in how a product is configured or positioned to consumers can lead to big differences in value perception. Executives who recognize this can manage effectively through recessionary periods and help build long‐term shareholder value.
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