A unique selling proposition (USP) is a characteristic of your product or service which differentiates you from your competitors. USPs must communicate clearly as to what your company offers, and why it is better than what your competitors offer. By emphasising USPs, companies can attract customers who resonate with what it offers.
Most USPs are often divided in three categories; products, prices or support oriented:
- When a company differentiates itself by claiming they offer a superior product their USP is product quality motivated,
- When a company claims their product is cheaper than its competitors, the USP is affordability oriented, or
- When a company emphasises its after sales support, in the form of warranties, technical support or online resources they are focused on social connections with their customers.
Each of these USPs hold tremendous value but it is not, however, compatible with all companies.
Of course, many companies can have more than one USP but communicating more than one can be difficult and creates less impact. By identifying one, the company can leverage its USP to clearly articulate a specific benefit – one that other competitors do not offer – that makes it stand out from the crowd.
Standing out from the Crowd
Listen to the needs of your target audience
Your USP must appeal to your target audience and your product must provide a suitable solution for their problem. If you have determined that your audience belongs to a lower income bracket, the target audience will most likely support a brand which stresses affordability and value above excessive emphasis on product quality. Should your target audience consist of higher income individuals, the opposite is true.