Your USP or your Unique Selling Point (Proposition) is the key factor that sets you apart from your competitors. It is what you do better than everyone else and what others see in you, that is missing from all others.

It’s important because it is the cornerstone of every marketing strategy. It’s the message you tell people to let them know why they cannot live without your product or service. Why your product or service is going to make their lives so much better and why it will add value and without it, their lives would be complete chaos.

Let’s look at some examples of robust USP’s which speak volumes to their customers

  • FedEx – When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight.
  • KFC – It’s finger-lickin’ good
  • M&M’s – Melts in your mouth, not in your hand

These are examples of how each of the above corporations has positioned themself to stand out from their competitors. The FedEx slogan is a favourite of mine, since watching Castaway, when Chuck Noland demonstrates in the movie, the close attention to customer satisfaction and dedication to their USP.

Knowing your perfect customer

I read somewhere that selling to everyone is like to selling to no-one. The point here is that your product or service is designed for your niche market. Your focus customer.

  • Who are they?
  • Where do they spend their time?
  • Where do they spend their spare cash?
  • What are their interests?
  • What are their fears and pains?

Perfect product for the perfect customer

  • How can your service or your product change their lives for the better?
  • How can you alleviate the problems, or bring joy to their lives?
  • Having faith in your business is entrenched in giving a promise to your customer. Like FedEx who guarantees overnight delivery of parcels, it says volumes about their mission statement.

A USP Template

Let’s try using the following template to clarify and solidify a USP example. For this exercise, we will use a business known as “Alien Language Courses”. It is designed around Martians learning an earthling language, and earthlings teaching Martians.

  • For (earthlings teaching Martians to speak an earthling language)
  • Who needs (dedicated equipment to translate the earthling language to martian and martian back to the earthling language)
  • Alien Language Courses
  • Is (the only product/service with a full refund guarantee, if in 30 days your Martian is still unable to speak earthling)
  • That (offers all translating equipment, along with templates for written exercises and digital practice partners to quickly and effectively communicate with earth’s new arrivals)
  • Unlike (other alien language courses)
  • Alien Language Course is (the only service provider to offer this full refund since the system of learning has been fully investigated and tested)

An out of this world example, but a thought-provoking way to focus on what is most important in your business – your customer and how you are placed to help your customer. It’s not about selling when you get down to the nuts and bolts, but about the value you provide.