I worked for B. Dalton Booksellers when they were the largest bookseller in the USA (and before founding Change Masters). At the time, B. Dalton could easily make or break the success of any book; that was of course before Amazon. We frequently had authors meet with us to promote their books. Terry Mackin was a co-worker and continues to be a friend. He is also a master networker and historian. He sent me a picture of Barbara Bush in a group photo that included me.
Prices for books have always had a wide range. As a bookseller it was common to have discussions about the price of books. What is the true cost of a book? What is the value proposition? Sales studies have found the top 25% group of buyers quickly see total value. The bottom 25% do not see value; they only see price. The middle 50% are able to see value when it is pointed out to them. That is the group where persuasion is important.
Value proposition is the total investment relative to the total return. The total cost of a book is both what you paid for it and the time you spend reading the book. So the real cost for a book is based much more on your time than the acquisition price. Furthermore, some books provide much more total return than others. The worst value proposition are the books I have purchased and are still sitting on my bookshelf … doing me no good.
When writing “Seeing Yourself as Others Do” we worked very hard to provide as much value in as few pages as we could. Many people have told us we accomplished that objective. When people use the book with the study guide for teams, they find it even more valuable … that’s the way we like it.
Other High Value Propositions
How does total value proposition apply to other forms of learning? When I go to a five-day workshop, I am delighted if I get one usable idea per day. I seldom get that much return for my time and money. The tuition cost is often low, but the cost of my time is high and so the value of the return is low. It’s not a good value proposition.
We now provide one-day, high intensity workshops for ten participants as a part of a three phase process that uses people’s time effectively and creates maximum impact. The workshop is called Persuasion, Perception and Executive Presence (PPEP). We find this maximizes the total value for participants.
When we look at our individual coaching product, our fees tend to be higher than a five-day workshop. However, we are very efficient and effective with our client’s time; and provide a life changing experience. The result is a much higher value proposition.
The Change Masters Academy provides valuable insights at a low cost and minimal amount of time expenditure using online learning. Some of our customers incorporate our videos into their internal training programs, and others use the videos for individual development. We receive very positive feedback on the value provided.