Your Unique Selling Proposition

Jan 7, 2013

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By: Mike Green

Your Unique Selling Propostion

A term you’re probably familiar with in the business world is USP or Unique Selling Proposition. If written correctly, it establishes the areas of your company, brand, product or service, that sets you apart from your competition. Understanding this concept is key to developing a lasting company who will find success regardless of market conditions.

Discovering Your USP

If you are struggling to sell to your share of the market, or you are losing market share to another company in your industry, likely you need to do some work refining your USP. Either it’s not established well enough internally so that your sales team can communicate it simply, or you have not communicated your position clearly enough (or at least not as clear as your competition) to your customers.

Discovering your USP should be as rudimentary as starting a working document for that express purpose. The key word here is “working”. Most companies, especially new companies, are testing new directions and products in order to discover what they’ll specialize in. It all goes back to establishing your niche and learning who your customer is, their needs and wants. Start by clearing your mind and just let the words flow onto paper. Answer questions like, “Why did I start this business in the first place?”, and “What problem does my product or service solve?”. The answer to these all important questions will lead you to your USP rough draft.

When Was It Modified?

If you established your USP in the late eighties and you have haven’t evolved it since, you’re likely heading for some rough water. Even great companies like General Electric have evolved their USP over the years. Why? Because they are in touch with their customers well enough to know when and where they like to spend their money. Your company, large or small, should take a similar stance. I’m not talking about reinvention every year (although sometimes that’s necessary), but more small course corrections along the way. This will help you keep your USP in line with your strengths and in tune with your customer.

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