Your USP is Your Unique Selling Proposition
Last month we focused on building a vision for your business. Part of this was creating uniqueness about your business that sets you company apart from the competition, supports strong pricing and helps create customer loyalty. Called your Unique Selling Point (or Proposition or Unique Value Proposition), or USP, it is the essence of differentiating your business from a similar one.
Let’s look at the great American icon of speed cuisine, McDonald’s. What was the USP of McDonald’s for years? My opinion is that it was consistent food (Note: not great food!), at a reasonable price, served fast in a clean environment. When I eat at McDonald’s it is not because I am looking for fine dining, but a Number 1 meal served hot, fast and tasting the same as it has for years.
Number Two Tweaks Number One
Fearing Burger King’s position of “have it your way”, McDonald’s abandoned their USP and tried mimicking number two! The result was a kitchen that required more people and slowed service. They also defied a major tenant of Ray Kroch by adding self serve condiment bars. So now I get the same number 1, but it takes longer and I deal with a sloppy self-serve bar.
The result of wandering away from their established USP is the first quarterly loss ever! You have to wonder what form of testing McDonald’s did before implementing such grandiose changes? Why did they look at who was chasing them in the burger business? If they looked at the trends in speed cuisine, not just fast food cooked their way; they might have decided to produce a line of heart healthy foods that would appeal to their older audience. Or maybe added a Blimpie’s to the restaurant.
Work Hard On Your USP
The point is work hard to develop your USP then stick with it. People who do business with you expect your version of fine quality product and service without fail. Consistency and reliability in delivery should be one of your key operating strategies. Your USP must also be reflected in your advertising.
How to Build Your USP
Here are some tips.
- Start by reviewing last year’s results. What do your employess think?
- Talk to your best customers. Find out why they buy from you.
- Sometimes its your location or it might be your delivery service.
- Maybe your product is made better, lasts longer, takes less maintenance, is more efficient, etc.
- Your service people might always leave the home spotless.
- If you provide a professional service, maybe its doing something outside your normal service…for free.
Once you narrow it down, you will start to see something consistent. Now take that, hone it down to marketing lingo, and promote it to your target market. Don’t zig zag, stay with your new USP theme!
If you would like help becoming a sales and marketing genius, call us for a free business consultation.