Unique Selling Proposition

January 5, 2012

In order to stand out in the ocean of e-marketing currently rolling over consumers and to not get pushed out by the ‘big fish’ you need to find an element to your business which is unique.  By finding your business’ unique selling proposition or USP you can stand out from the crowd and attract customers.  What makes your product, service, message or business special and preferable to the competition?  Small businesses in particular need to find a niche and exploit it in order to avoid getting lost in the global, internet-powered market.

To find your unique selling proposition you need to consider the culture, ethos and character of your product and business.  By taking time to think about these elements you may be able to find your niche.  If there is not an obvious answer from the basic elements of your business maybe you could combine two elements to create a new niche?  For example a surfboard shop in California is not unusual but if you combine the sale of surfboards with a gallery for a local artist who creates surfboard designs you could have a unique combination.  Another good option for small businesses is specialization.  If you have a specific target customer set and offer a product that is tailored to their requirements in a way no other business has managed or with a degree of specialization no one else offers you have found your USP.

For the USP to be most effective there has to be a strategy behind it to support it and ensure the product is great, the marketing is effective and the delivery is slick. You have to have the right product for the market you are trying to reach with your USP.  If you want to target a quality customer your product and services will need to be of high quality and the branding, promotion and buying environment must reflect that quality.  It is therefore important to have a branding and marketing strategy to most effectively exploit the USP.  Sometimes there is enough space in the market that you don’t have to be “unique” just a little different.  The best approach to finding your USP is not to get too hung up on it but to try out things then review them and as you refine the combination of product, place, promotion and price you may well find the USP naturally emerges.

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