Unless your company has absolutely no competition now or in the forseeable future, you're well advised to find and develop a unique selling proposition (USP) that differentiates your business from all of your competitors.
For you to succeed, you have to identify and understand what you or your business does or can start doing for your prospects and customers that provides them with a result that is superior to the competition's. This is called your unique selling proposition (USP). Your unique selling proposition is the distinct advantage or benefit that sets your business apart from the competition.
Your unique selling proposition can be quality, service, speed, convenience, experience, low prices, selection, or any other attribute you want your company to be known for. The important thing to remember is that before you can get a greater share of the market, you first have to get a greater share of your prospect's mind. And you can do this by selecting and developing a unique selling proposition.
Your unique selling proposition should be one that is a natural benefit offered by your business. Never offer a USP that is false. For example, if you are a high-priced consultant or run a high-line retail store, you shouldn't consider lower prices as your unique selling proposition.
Here are a few examples of possible USPs:
1. A broader selection.
2. Bigger discounts.
3. Better advice and assistance.
4. More convenience (location, quick service, immediate delivery, Web site).
5. Top-of-the-line products.
6. Faster service.
7. Service above and beyond the basics.
8. A longer and more comprehensive warranty or guarantee than the norm.
9. Providing superior quality.
10. Any other distinct advantage or benefit you can give that the competition doesn't.
The possibilities for building a USP are unlimited. The important point, is to focus on one niche, need, or gap that is most sorely lacking in the marketplace. It's best, however, to adopt a USP that dynamically addresses an obvious void in the marketplace that you can fill. Above all, never adopt a USP that you cannot fulfill the promise for.
In choosing a unique selling proposition, keep three factors in mind, your competition, your target audience, and your operation. Make sure you pick a unique selling propostion that fits well with all three.
All of your marketing should create a deeper connection between your company and your unique selling proposition. For example, you can choose quality as your USP, while still promoting your service and location. But you've got to communicate the idea of quality in all your marketing, from your sales presentations to your direct mail letters, from your advertising to your Web site. When your prospects think of your company, they should think of quality. And make sure you consistently deliver quality in everything you sell and do.
If you don't offer a clear and meaningful unique selling proposition, you're business will stand for nothing. For example, if a business just offers a convenient location, why should they get much patronage if they fail to offer any appealing promise, unique benefit, or special service? Customers expect to be treated with special regard in exchange for their business.
Successful companies study their market looking for unoccupied niches. That's why they own a large part of the respective market. These companies realize that many products and service categories are vulnerable in areas that no one has filled. So they fill and claim the niche for themselves. And they do whatever is necessary to live up to their unique selling propostion.
The small number of businesses that actually develop and incorporate a unique selling proposition always own a larger share of the market then those without one. By developing a unique selling proposition and incorporating it into every aspect of your business you'll have a major advantage over your competition.
All contents Copyright(c) 2004 by Joe Love and JLM & Associates, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide.
Joe Love draws on his 25 years of experience helping both individuals and companies build their businesses, increase profits, and achieve total success. A former ad agency executive and marketing consultant, Joe's work in personal development focuses on helping his clients identify hidden marketable assets that create windfall opportunities and profits, as well as sound personal happiness and peace.
Reach Joe at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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