When people ask me “what I do,” I can respond in two ways:
1. I can say “I have an online training program” and watch their eyes glaze over with boredom.
2. I can say “I help entrepreneurs make money using the Internet!” and watch their faces light up with interest and excitement.
Obviously, I choose option #2. And when you identify a Unique Selling Proposition (USP) that makes your prospects sit up and take notice, you’ll generate the same positive response.
Creating your USP
The key to creating a Unique Selling Proposition (a.k.a. an Elevator Pitch) is to look at what you offer from your target audience’s point of view, and speaking to their needs. How can you BENEFIT them? How will you make THEIR lives better? What are THEY concerned about? And just as importantly: WHY are you a better choice than the competition?
Here’s an example using a fictitious dog training company. The company could say “we train dogs” and watch their potential customers yawn. Or, they can say “we help young families keep their sanity by turning problem dogs into family animals with my mobile training and exercise program” and make a positive, immediate impact.
See the difference? Your aim is to WOW people with your USP!
Where Your Opportunity Lies
A market that is not being adequately serviced existing businesses is where your opportunity lies.
To carve out a niche for, you can generally compete with other businesses on any two of these elements: Price, Quality, Delivery.
Competing on price is usually a bad idea, as you have to sell huge volumes in order to make a profit – and you’re vulnerable to getting undercut by a competitor who is willing to sell for less. What’s more, your customers won’t have any loyalty towards you, because you’re providing the cheapest price; not the best solution.
If you can find something in the delivery of your product or service that people will really value, and it isn’t being provided by your competitors, then you’ve got it made!
For example, my clients love that we don’t give them homework! We understand that they’re busy. So while our competitors find new ways to make life complicated and tedious, we pride ourselves on making the entire web design and Internet marketing process extremely EASY. Without a doubt, our ability to make our customers’ lives simple and easy is a major reason why they choose us vs. our competitors.
What’s more, although our prices are reasonable, we aren’t the cheapest – and we don’t try to be. Our customers are more than willing to pay for the value that we provide them. And delivering VALUE is what business is really all about! Can you give customers what they really want, at a price that they’re willing to pay?
During your USP development, you need to find out what it is that you do differently – and better – than your competitors.
Remember: this has to be something that addresses a customer concern that goes beyond the obvious (or else your competitors would already be doing it!). If you’ve done any prospect or customer surveys, this information can usually be found in the answer to this question:
Why haven’t you purchased X yet?
A Simple and Powerful Formula for Creating Your USP
You don’t need to be a marketing expert to create your USP. Here’s a simple and powerful formula to get you moving forward:
“I solve TARGET MARKET’S PROBLEM with my UNIQUE SERVICE to deliver a BENEFIT.”
“I deliver BENEFIT to TARGET MARKET by SOLVING THEIR PROBLEM with my UNIQUE SERVICE.”
My company helps ____________________ (Target Market A)
Who ___________________________________(Target Market B)
To _______________________________________(Differentiation B)
I ______________________________( Differentiation B)
To ______________________________ (Target Market A)
By _______________________________(Target Market B)
With my ___________________________(differentiation A)
I’d love to hear your questions or challenges – Tell me in the comments below.
And, if you enjoyed this post, please share it!
Laurel Lindsay is a Calgary Internet Marking Consultant & President of The New Media Group Inc. She has over 8 years hands-on Internet Marketing experience.
Laurel is enthusiastic and passionate about helping people live better lives by leveraging the power of the internet.