The aim should be to make your product or service as unique as possible, to have a feature or benefit that seperates you from your competition. To stand out in your market place you need to know and understand the ‘real’ reasons why your customers will buy your product or service rather than those of a competitor.
Even if you have entered a mass market such as selling biscuits in a supermarket, then you need to know why customers will pick up your specific packet of biscuits.
Identifying your USP will help you target your sales and marketing efforts and ensure you are sold on your own product or service before you try to sell it to others.
We would suggest that you think about your product or service and make a list of all the features and benefits your product or service can offer the customer.
You should consider areas such as the physical characteristics, the service proposition, your team, the price, the design, the suppliers you use (for example ethical or environmentally friendly benefits), your strengths, the perception, but importantly put yourself in the shoes of your ideal customer to understand what you are really selling and why they are actually going to buy from you.
For example, you may be selling shoes, but are you really selling style, fashion, comfort, convenience, quality or value for money?
So you need to really understand what motivates your customers buying behaviour and decisions.
Then from your list, identify what you offer that your competitors do not or where your offer exceeds the competitors offering. Whilst reviewing your competition, then also understand what they offer that you do not. It may be that you missed this in your planning or did not think to include this in your list.
It is great to have a long list of unique propositions for your customer, but in reality they will only engage with a few at any one time. So from your list of unique selling points identity your strongest proposition, the messages you will give if you only have one minute to sell your product, the strong message you will use in your marketing.
ü You need a distinctive identity
ü You need a customer-centric proposition
ü You need to communicate consistently
ü Your business needs to ooze credibility
ü And remember you control your customer’s perception