Why You Need a Unique Selling Proposition (USP)

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your unique sellling propositionLet’s take a closer look at what a Unique Selling Proposition (USP) is, why you need one, and what are the essential elements of a USP.

What is a Unique Selling Proposition?

A Unique Selling Proposition (USP) is a statement that explains clearly to your target audience what makes your business unique; and how it’s different from everyone else in the marketplace. It tells your customers how you can better meet their needs and what makes you special. 

Is it easy to do?  No, it is not always easy to do because you have to take time to analyze your business and yourself.  You may have been doing the same thing for quite some time and been successful at it, but never stopped to consider what specifically is contributing to your success.

In addition you have to take time to analyze the people whom you serve in order to identify who your target audience is.

In Reality in Advertising, television advertising pioneer Rosser Reeves defined the unique selling proposition.  Two of the three parts of that definition are:

  1. The proposition must be one the competition cannot or does not offer. It must be unique—either in the brand or in a claim the rest of that particular advertising area does not make.
  2. The proposition must be strong enough to move the masses, i.e., attract new customers.

Why Have a USP

  • Having a unique selling proposition is important to your success.  By taking the time to do some analysis you’ll be identifying your strengths as well as any weaknesses that could affect your position in the marketplace.
  • Why are people buying from you, or using your services rather than someone else?  What do you do for your customers that create loyalty so that they buy from you again and again, and refer their friends and family to you?  What is it you do that’s different from anyone else who is doing the same thing?
  • Identifying what you do that’s different from others in the market will take time to measure as it will likely involve studying whomever is considered your competition, analyze what they’re doing, and determine what you do differently.
  •  It must also be of strong benefit to the customer so that current customers can readily recognize this, and prospective customers will be able to determine what you do that others do not.
  • Your USP helps to establish your brand in the minds of your customers and creates top-of-mind-awareness.

unique selling proposition

Once you’re able to clearly identify what makes you different, you can continue to build on that as the business owner, but you can clearly bring it to the fore so your customers and clients think of you first when they need your products or services

Two Essential Elements of a USP

  1. A good USP is memorable. To be effective it has to stick in people’s minds so that you’re the one they think of when they need your products or services.  This means that your USP has to be condensed to convey your uniqueness without being too wordy. It must say a little but convey a lot. It’s important to recognize, however, that you USP is not the same as your tagline.

  2. It must connect with your buyers emotionally. Good USPs speak to the fears, worries, desires, and frustrations of your target market.  It also tells them how you can solve these concerns.

Final Words

Creating your USP through careful analysis and research is essential to your business success.  At the same time being able to articulate an amazing USP is not enough to ensure success in the marketplace—and a crowded one at that.  Your products and services must live up to the promise(s) you made in your USP as failure to do so will have a decidedly negative impact on your business causing you to lose customers and clients, and damage your reputation.

Contact Me

If you’d like to receive help with creating your Unique Selling Proposition (USP), you’re invited to schedule a complimentary Business Breakthrough Session with me via http://YvonneAJones.com /contact-me when we will focus on just one area of concern in your business, like developing your USP.


Why You Need a Unique Selling Proposition (USP) — 12 Comments

    • Yvonne A Jones on said:

      Thanks for coming over and leaving your comments, Edward. I’ve found this to be one of the most challenging part for entrepreneurs. It was for me for a long time, but once I became clear on my USP, my message also became clearer.

  1. Hey Yvonne!

    Great post…it is about being unique amongst all the noise on the internet!

    • Yvonne A Jones on said:

      Hi Deb,

      Thanks for stopping by. 🙂 You’re so right about the Need to be unique in order to stand out from all the noise on the Internet.
      And it’s not very easy to do, is it? Standing out becomes more challenging every day as more and more new online businesses are started.
      Discovering and fine-tuning ther USP will definitely help.

    • Yvonne A Jones on said:

      I’m very happy that you benefited from the points, Tasleem. Remember that I offer a FREE 30 minute Ignite Your Business Breakthrough Session, so if you’d like
      to use that time to do some brainstorming with me regarding your USP, just go to the Contact Me tab and send me a message. I love empowering others and providing
      the space for people to empower themselves.

  2. Hi Yvonne

    A USP is something I heard of a long time back and forgot about. I got lost in the Internet Clutter, or noise as @Deb mentioned for a long time and only now finding my way back onto the right track. A USP is something I probably need to focus on soon

    • Yvonne A Jones on said:

      That Internet Clutter and noise can be overwhelming. And in the quest for success we often forget fundamentals. I did too, and am so glad I had a mentor who kept reminding me of the importance of having a USP as one of the foundational pieces in place. Whenever you’re ready just contact me and I’ll help to get you started in a 30-minute strategy session. Thank you for your comments.

    • Yvonne A Jones on said:

      You’re welcome, Joy. I’m truly glad they served as reminders for you; something we often overlook.

    • Yvonne A Jones on said:

      Personal branding is definitely a must, Mike, and I believe you’re readily recognized as the Time Doctor. Your USP should therefore not be hard to identify. Thanks for the comments.

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