How to consider the concept of ‘ value-added ’ in your marketing — and does it work?


“ Value-added ” has become one of those terms that has grown in ambiguity in recent years. The term has been overused, improperly used in some cases and often misunderstood by marketers.

At the 2012 Columbus Presidents’ Forum hosted by The Entrepreneurship Institute, the question of how to use the concept of “value-added” was asked in a breakout session I was facilitating. It occurred to me that if one CEO was curious about this, there are probably others out there with the same question.

The term was defined and popularized in 2000 by renown marketing professor Peter Doyle defined and popularized in his last book, “Value-based Marketing.” He labeled the “differential advantage” as giving customers a reason to choose your products. According to Doyle, it has four important components: value to the customer, uniqueness, sustainability and profitable delivery. All four components must be present.