What is it about your business that sets you apart from your competitors?
Unique Selling Proposition
What is your Unique Selling Proposition (USP)? Your USP identifies what makes your business unique and what makes it distinct from other businesses of its type. Your USP is your competitive edge; it is the reason people should deal with you rather than someone else.
Coming up with the perfect USP
The possibilities are endless! The best thing to do is to adopt a USP that fills an obvious need in the marketplace. Focus on a gap in the market or create your own niche.
Creating Your USP
Write down all the positive aspects of your business, such as good service, quality products, reasonably priced. Also list the benefits your business could bring to customers. These could be things like family friendly, free delivery, after-hours service, fast turnaround time, locally produced, convenient location. Make sure that the benefits you list are things you can achieve and deliver.
Check out your competition. If a competitor is offering one or more of the benefits that you have written down, cross it off the list. Narrow down your list until you find a benefit that is truly exclusive.
It’s not always easy to come up with a new concept. So take your time, look closely at your business and think about:
what it is you really want to offer
who you want to target
why you want people to come to you
how you propose to help them
Here’s a good example
Josie wants to open a hair salon in an inner city suburb where there are already several other well-established salons. Why should people go to Josie’s salon instead of the others?
Josie lists her business strengths as being welcoming, competitively priced, excellent service by stylists with years of experience. However, Josie soon learns that not only do all of the other salons have experienced stylists charging competitive rates, most of them offer beauty services too. Josie knows she needs something unique.
Based on her market research, Josie discovers an untapped niche in the market – she decides to ‘go organic’. Josie sources organic hair products and colour treatments. She even decides to serve organic coffee, tea and chocolates!
Josie’s USP is that her salon is totally organic. Therefore, she can focus her marketing towards people who are sensitive to harsh chemicals or people who are environmentally conscious. She can then advertise in places such as health food shops or pharmacists where she is likely to find interested customers.