November 18, 2009
What is a USP? Well it’s not a UFO, or anything weird or outside your experience. In fact you probably come across a USP every single time you read or write an ad because it is the single factor that sets you and your business apart from every other competitor in your marketplace. Put simply, USP stands for your Unique Selling Point or Proposition, and the key word here is single.
If you have an information product or traditional business and are wondering how you can increase sales, rather than merely just getting by, then I invite you to consider whether that’s because you don’t have a USP or, if you do, you’re not making the most of it.
Before I went into Internet Marketing, I was a sales training manager in the Financial Services industry and a lot of my time was spent with the sales executives helping them to build their presentations and sales pitches to help them identify what made them and our company different.
Why did we spend so much time on it? Because money is money, and that’s what someone is borrowing, which may seem obvious. Yes, and that’s what all Financial Services companies are selling so we positioned our service as something more than just getting a loan for a piece of capital equipment. We needed to distinguish ourselves from the others in our market, and to do that you need to build your business marketing and operational success around your USP.
So what’s unique about your product or service? There are a number of USP’s that might work in your business so have a look at these options:
- Back Up Service
- Biggest Discounts
- Customer Help, Assistance & Advice
- Done For Them
- Ease of Use
- Fast, immediate & speedy delivery
- Hassle Free
- Tailored Product
- Wide Choice
These are just some ways you and your service could be different from your competitors, and you may have a few more ideas of your own.
Defining the Difference:
You may think you don’t know where to start, and it’s too difficult, but you’ve just got to find an angle. After all, you know your product better than anyone, so start thinking about that and your market in depth and you’ll soon find there are endless possibilities.
One key task is to first analyse what your competitor are doing, and nothing could be simpler. Just grab paper and pen and look at what you competitors offer, and wWhat are they selling on.
Write it down, and you will quickly notice that most of the marketing that’s going on out there follows the same “me too” formula – and that’s a good thing for your product!
Your USP Needs To Be Something You Can Deliver On:
When deciding on what your USP is going to be, it’s vital that you can actually deliver on it. For example, if your USP is exclusivity, that won’t work if the customer can find your product in two or three other places for sale.
Be Clear About Your USP:
If you are not clear about your USP, then your customer won’t be either. It’s essential that any reader will get the point immediately about what you offer and why you are unique in the marketplace. To do that, your message must be articulated clearly and simply.
Use simple, crystal clear language that is compelling and informative because clearly articulating your USP will make your business more successful. However, you must be able to communicate your USP in the same time as an elevator pitch and that’s means that within one short paragraph or about thirty seconds you should be able to sell your unique position.
Try this now:
Think now about your USP and how you can position your product or business. Write a short paragraph about why your product or business is unique in its marketplace.
You don’t need to over think this process, just get going and jot down your main points and edit them into a clear and short message.
Now, look at it again and if it needs editing remove anything that is not essential and doesn’t do anything for your message. No ‘fluffy’ language, just a short, clear statement that promises something to your customer that they can’t get anywhere else.
When you have your USP you must integrate it into all your marketing efforts including Adwords, Direct Mail, Landing Pages, Classified Ads and everything else.
Remember, the basic point to your USP is to clearly communicate with your prospects and customers so that they understand your unique positioning in the marketplace.
Use your USP in all your marketing efforts to gain new customers, remind existing customers and win back old customers. Marketing that pulls in customers and gets them to buy gives them rational reasons for their emotional purchase from you.
Your USP is how you can deliver that to them, and produce more sales for you.
Neil Stafford is Editor and Publisher of the Internet Marketing Review the UK’s longest running PRINTED Internet Marketing Newsletter. ‘Test drive’ the Newsletter for FREE – Visit this special web page for more information: Internet Marketing Review Newsletter