One of the most effective strategies for communicating value to your contacts is a strategy called “value in advance.” Ever since we began consulting our clients in 1985, value in advance has proven to be the most significant concept for professionals to promote their services both safely and effectively.
Value in advance is the strategy of offering something for free as a way of allowing your targets to experience a sample of the benefits that you offer. If you were selling a product, then value in advance might be a sample of the product.
When Gillette Mach III came out, the company sent out free razors and blades. Grocery stores regularly give away sample foods they want you to try. Giving free samples is a common retail marketing strategy. As a professional service provider, you should provide something of value that allows you to interact with your targets and paint a picture of what it is like to work with you.
We divide value in advance into five main categories:
Your goal is to give value to prospects and other targets as a way of demonstrating to them what it is like to work with you. Giving value in advance helps you sell in your comfort zone because it increases your expectations of safety and effectiveness.
For more marketing tips, check out our book Selling in Your Comfort Zone.