One of the most important attributes you can come up with for your business is your unique selling proposition or USP. This is what differentiates you from your competitors, telling the marketplace what your brand does better than anyone else in your industry.
To optimize your sales efforts, you need to define your USP.
While there are numerous steps involved in determining your USP, it’s well worth it to run a business that keeps attracting more customers.
Here are 6 Steps to Determine your USP
Perform competitive research
Understand your target audience
Research your own product’s or service’s strengths and weaknesses
Analyze the info you collected
Your starting point for finding out your USP is competitive research. Look at other brands (not just in your own industry) to get clues about how they define and use their USPs to outclass competitors.
When you take a look at what they sell and their product or service traits, you start to understand how a USP takes shape.
Take Domino’s Pizza and their famous guarantee that you’ll get your pizza within 30 minutes. While that USP has since been updated to only be a guideline, it’s a USP that no other pizza chain made. Whether it was always realistic or not, it still demonstrates how the company offered something high-value (fast pizza delivery) to customers.
In the Domino’s Pizza example, it’s clear that the target audience is people who enjoy pizza and want it delivered while it’s still hot. Armed with this knowledge, it was possible for Domino’s to successfully appeal to their ideal customer. There’s a reason, after all, that Domino’s today is the biggest pizza company on Earth, based on sales.
This shows how targeting your ideal customer, because you understand them so well, is a recipe for great growth. When you understand your audience, you know what problem they have that they want a brand to solve.
Just because you sell a product or service doesn’t automatically mean you thoroughly know its strengths or weaknesses, especially relative to your competitor’s product or service. You may think you do, but until you actually ask the only people who matter (read: your customers), you won’t know 100%.
That’s why you should ask your customers what they think of your product or service. Ask them what they believe its biggest pros and cons are.
Have them take surveys about your product or service, so that you can glean all-important insight into these issues.
Want an even more in-depth way to collect this information? Put together a focus group from your customers to find these answers.
Now that you’ve taken the time to research your competitors, figure out your target audience, and poll your own customers to really determine your brand’s strengths and weaknesses, you have to shape this data into your USP.
Carefully look through the data that you’ve collected. Ask yourself:
- What do my competitors’ products or services have that mine doesn’t (or vice versa)?
- Does my product or service fill a real niche in the marketplace?
- Is there a common theme to the survey responses from my own customers?
These answers go a long way toward you expressing this data in your USP.
Display your USP as part of your branding
Once you’ve distilled your USP into a coherent phrase or sentence, you’re ready to showcase this. The best way to do this is to include your USP directly in your branding.
- On your website, put your USP in the headline or at least above the fold.
- On your social channels, place your USP in the covers of your profiles.
- On your business cards, position the USP right in the middle of the card.
Attract positive attention to your business by creating an impactful USP! By doing competitor research, getting to know your target audience, and analyzing your own customers’ opinions about your brand, you will unearth the ingredients to a winning USP.
Do you know your USP? Have you tried to determine it? Tell us in the comments below!