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YOU ARE HERE: Home > Marketing Tips > Unique Selling Proposition (USP)

How to Create Your "Unique Selling Proposition" (USP)
That Makes Your Marketing Generate More Results

Boost Your Sales And Profits By Positioning Your
Company As The Best Choice In The Market

What makes you more unique, more valuable, and more visible in the market?  You've heard the old saying "Differentiate or Die" right? In our highly competitive world, you have to be unique and fill a special niche to be successful in the marketplace. Yet one of the most harmful mistakes small businesses make is not being unique and positioning themselves as the best choice in the market. How do you show that your product or service is the best?

Use a Unique Selling Proposition or "USP". Having a USP will dramatically improve the positioning and marketability of your company and products by accomplishing 3 things for you:

  1. Unique - It clearly sets you apart from your competition, positioning you the more logical choice.

  2. Selling - It persuades another to exchange money for a product or service.

  3. Proposition - It is a proposal or offer suggested for acceptance.

The Force That Drives Your Business And Sales Success

Your USP is the force that drives your business and success. It can also be used as a "branding" tool that deploys strategy with every tactical marketing effort you use such as an ad, a postcard, or web site. This allows you to build a lasting reputation while you're making sales. The ultimate goal of your USP and marketing is to have people say to you... "Oh, yes I've heard of you. You're the company who..." - And then respond by requesting more information or purchasing.

The Federal Express Example: 

Federal Express

Federal Express (FedEx) dominated the package shipping market with the following USP: "Federal Express: When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight." The deployment of this USP allowed Federal Express to emerge as the dominant leader in the industry, taking market share rapidly, and also increasing its sales and profits.

In today's competitive market, your business cannot thrive if you are using the same old "me too" marketing that everyone else is using.  Your small business absolutely positively has to have a USP that "cuts through the clutter", separates you from the competition, and positions you as the best choice... the ONLY choice. 

Building your USP takes some effort, but it is absolutely worth it because of the added advantage you'll have in the market. Using a powerful USP will make your job of marketing and selling much easier, enabling you to more easily increase your sales and profits for the same budget.

Winning USP Examples

The following are 6 powerful USPs that alleviate the "pain" experienced by the consumers in their industries..

Example #1 - Package Shipping Industry

Pain - I have to get this package delivered quick!

USP - "When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight." (Federal Express)

Example #2 - Food Industry

Pain - The kids are starving, but Mom and Dad are too tired to cook!

USP - "Pizza delivered in 30 minutes or it's free." (Dominos Pizza)
(This USP is worth $1 BILLION to Dominos Pizza)

Example #3 - Real Estate Industry

Pain - People want to sell their house fast without loosing money on the deal.

USP - "Our 20 Step Marketing System Will Sell Your House In Less Than 45 Days At Full Market Value"

Example #4 - Dental Industry

Pain - Many people don't like to go to the dentist because of the pain and long wait.

USP - "We guarantee that you will have a comfortable experience and never have to wait more than 15 minutes"

Example #5 - Cold Medicine Industry

Pain - You are sick, feel terrible, and can't sleep.

USP - "The nighttime, coughing, achy, sniffling, stuffy head, fever, so you can rest medicine." (Nyquil)

Example #6 - Jewelry Industry

Pain - The market hates paying huge 300% mark-ups for jewelry.

USP - "Don't pay 300% markups to a traditional jeweler for inferior diamonds! We guarantee that your loose diamond will appraise for at least 200% of the purchase price, or we'll buy it back."

How To Develop Your Unique Selling Proposition (USP)

Your USP is the very essence of what you are offering. Your USP needs to be so compelling that it can be used as a headline that sells your product or service. Therefore, since you want to optimize all your marketing materials for maximum results, create it before anything else (such as advertisements and marketing copy).

Print this article and jot down your ideas to construct a "Unique Selling Proposition" (USP) for your business.  Follow this easy 7-step process:

Step 1: Use Your Biggest Benefits:

Clearly describe the 3 biggest benefits of owning your product or service. Let me be blunt. Your prospect doesn't care if you offer the best quality, service, or price.  You have to explain exactly WHY that is important to them. Think in terms of what your business does for your customer and the end-result they desire from a product or service like yours.  So, what are the 3 biggest benefits you offer? Write them down on a piece of paper...




Step 2: Be Unique:

The key here is to be unique. Basically, your USP separates you from the competition, sets up a "buying criteria" that illustrates your company is the most logical choice, and makes your product or service the "gotta have" item. (Not your competitor's.) 

Write your USP so it creates desire and urgency. Your USP can be stated in your product itself, in your offer, or in your guarantee: 

  • PRODUCT: "A unique baseball swing that will instantly force you to hit like a pro." 

  • OFFER: "You can learn this simple technique that makes you hit like a pro in just 10 minutes of batting practice." 

  • GUARANTEE: "If you don't hit like a pro baseball player the first time you use this new swing, we'll refund your money."

Write your ideas on paper now...



Step 3: Solve An Industry "Pain Point" Or "Performance Gap":

Identify which needs are going unfulfilled within either your industry or your local market. The need or "gap" that exists between the current situation and the desired objectives is sometimes termed a "performance gap". Many businesses that base their USP on industry performance gaps are successful.

For example, Dominos Pizza used the "Pizza delivered in 30 minutes or it's free" USP to become wildly successful. This worked because of the need or "gap" in the market - After a long day at work Mom and Dad are too tired to cook. But the kids are starving and don't want to wait an hour! They want pizza NOW. Call Domino's.

So, what are the most frustrating things your customer experiences when working with you or your industry in general? Alleviate that "PAIN" in your USP and make sure you deliver on your promises. Write your ideas on paper now...



Step 4: Be Specific And Offer Proof:

Consumers are skeptical of advertising claims companies make. So alleviate their skepticism by being specific and offering proof when possible. Write your ideas on paper now...



Step 5: Condense Into One Clear And Concise Sentence: 

The most powerful USPs are so perfectly written, you cannot change or move even a single word. Each word earns you money by selling your product or service. After you get your USP written, your advertising and marketing copy will practically write itself! 

Now take all the details about your product/service/offer from the steps above and sculpt them into one clear and concise sentence with compelling salesmanship fused into every single word. Write your ideas on paper now...  


Step 6: Integrate Your USP Into ALL Marketing Materials: 

Variations of your USP will be included in the ALL your marketing materials such as your...

  • Advertising and sales copy headlines;

  • Business cards, brochures, flyers, & signs;

  • Your "elevator pitch", phone, and sales scripts;

  • Letterhead, letters, & postcards;

  • Website & Internet marketing.

Step 7: Deliver On Your USP's Promise 

Be bold when developing your USP but be careful to ensure that you can deliver. Your USP should have promises and guarantees that capture your audience's attention and compels them to respond to you. Having a strong USP can make your business a big success, or a big failure if you don't deliver on it thereby ruining your reputation. In the beginning, it was a challenge for Federal Express to absolutely, positively deliver overnight, but they developed the system that allowed them to deliver the promise consistently. 


Using a powerful USP is the driving force that builds your business success.  Build your USP and use it to optimize your marketing materials for maximum results.

Contact us now for a free price quote on our marketing optimization services by calling Matt Hockin at 541.280.3363 or by clicking here.

Other Related Resources:

  • 10 Step Checklist to a Website that Sells
    Only a small percentage of Websites on the Internet sell... about 1%. This means that 99% do not sell effectively. Is your Website in the 99% category that don't sell? This article and gives you a checklist of how to build a Website That Sells. Click Here
  • Make Your Website Copy Sell
    Why don't more people buy online? From what I've seen on the Web it is painfully obvious. The reason that more people do not buy online is because most Websites are not designed to sell correctly. You need words that sell. Click Here

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