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September 5, 2018
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How to determine your company’s USP

First, take look at these of UPSs.

“The milk chocolate melts in your mouth, not in your hand.” MMs
“Delivered to your door in 30 minutes or less—or it’s free.” Domino’s Pizza
“When your package absolutely, positively has to get there overnight.” Fedex
“The World’s Favourite Airline.” British Airways
“Diamonds are forever…” DeBeers
“The ultimate driving machine.” BMW
“To our members, we’re the fourth emergency service.” Automobile Association
“Save money. Live better.” Wallmart
“15 minutes could save you 15 percent or more on car insurance.” Geico
“Pick Enterprise. We’ll pick you up.” Enterprise
“Modern basics. Radical transparency.” Everlane
“100% organic menswear made in Portugal.” ISTO
“One for One.” (With every pair you purchase TOMS will give a new pair of shoes to a child in need)
“Effortlessly stylish road, city & gravel cycling shoes.” Quoc
“The one and only shoe meticulously designed for the everyday.” Atoms
“Better everything. For everyone.” Brandless

All these companies have a clear market positioning and clear offering. All it takes is to read these statemets and you will understand what these companies sell, how they sell it and even to whom they are selling.

The role of a USP

‘USP’ stands for unique selling proposition. It’s something oriented towards the customer. A USP is different to a slogan in the sense that a slogan can be a USP, as long as it does the work of a USP.
It is also different since the USP is the center piece of the marketing strategy.
A slogan can connect customers with brand, but doesn’t say much on how the company actually does business. Or details regarding the product, price and positioning.

A USP is unique to each business and focuses on what differentiates the business from its competitors.
A USP is the answer to the question – why should a client pick my business?
A USP highlights the company’s postition on the market.
A USP makes things easier for everyone. It brings clarity both to customers and to the sales and marketing team. It pinpoints where the marketing efforts should focus.

It’s best to determine your USP before the beginning of a new business, it will help you see if there is room in the market for such a product, if there’s a real demand for it therefore if it’s something worth investing time and money in.

If you can’t find reasonable differentiation, there is a serious chance the product or service won’t grow into a successful business. Of course, that is not the only factor that determines the success of a business, but the team behind it, the financing available and the situation of the market are factors that come before.

Still, later is better than never.

Determining your USP

We used the word ‘determine’ because the USP originates in the business itself. Any company with a certain degree of success has a way of doing things that brought it where it is in the market and also a way its clients perceive it.

That’s why choosing a USP is mostly an introspective process, based on information regarding your business and clients.

Steps to take:
1. analize your offer – look at the benefits offered by your products.
2. analize your customers – look at what they care for, what they need, reasons for purchasing
3. focus on a single category of features – price, quality, delivery times, convenience, guarantee or whatever else is it where your product stands out and your business can deliver better than competitors.
4. make a list of possible USPs. Apply the following filters:
– is it clear, concise and understandable?
– does it identifies with our offer?
– does it serve our business (sometimes an USP can sound good but actually undermine the company in other ways)
– is it something a customer would care for?
– does it have a good chance to stand the test of time? Meaning that it can’t be easily replicated by a competitor and you’re not likely to change it anytime soon.

How to use it once you have it

Your USP is a tool. Your sales and marketing teams will use your USP every day. It should come as an addition to your brand and be present in most places along with the logo. It is the center of your marketing strategy.

In some cases a USP will reveal a new way to tackle your market segment and then the product or service needs to be tweaked.

Make sure your company delivers on that USP. Analize the performance and maintain the balance between the UPS and what clients receive. Inconsistencies in your product or service are easily detected by regular clients.

Got a USP idea? Feel free to send it to us and we’ll tell you what we think.
We hope this challenged you towards finding the best USP for your business.

The team

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