Do you have a USP? No, not do you use UPS. That is not a typo. If you’ve had a business for awhile and have worked with any marketers, you likely already know that a USP is your “unique selling proposition.” It’s what distinguishes you from your competitors and makes your potential clients bang your door down seeking your services rather than your competitors. A unique selling position is essential for all companies, especially if you are in a highly competitive field.
What makes a good USP?
One of the questions business owners struggle with most is writing a good USP. Understandable, because if you are in the same business as a million others, such as roofers in Texas, it’s challenging to set yourself apart.
· Your USP should be unique
It’s right there in the acronym. Being unique is easier if you are in a small niche and most people have trouble finding your services. But, for highly competitive niches, it can be more difficult. As a marketer, I cringe when someone tells me what makes them unique is “best customer service.” Part of the reason I cringe is that I am told this by 90% of all highly competitive niche businesses. Thus, your USP isn’t unique. If you choose something along the best customer service line, you need to dig deeper. What specifically do you do that makes your customer service better than everyone else’s? Your uniqueness should be something demonstrable. Back to that example of the roofer in Texas (and there are a million of them, all competing for the same hail damaged roofs), some of the better unique selling propositions I have seen include:
- We’re so confident in our work that we offer a lifetime warranty on workmanship.
- We are certified in this (needs to be something that very few roofers are certified in.)
- We have multiple certifications, including… (easier to be unique with multiple certifications.)
- Our business is multi-generational, and we have been in business for 50-years. We will still be here if you have problems.
- Our owner has more than 40 years-experience in the roofing industry, or even better:
- Our owner has more than 40 years-experience in the roofing industry without even one leak.
· Your USP should be demonstrable
Your customers should be able to identify how you demonstrate your USP. If you say you have a lifetime warranty on workmanship, present a certificate of evidence. If you must use customer service, be able to show excellent reviews and a lot of them. Be prepared to show you have no bad reviews over several years. Then your USP becomes 15 years, no bad reviews. See my reviews on yelp, Facebook, or wherever you have reviews. Showing that you are a BBB accredited business is helpful for this strategy, but you should have an A+ rating with zero complaints. For this USP to work, you do have to have been in business for several years. I’ll admit, the last one on our unique list doesn’t quite fit the mold on demonstrable. That is another one that is helpful to have quite a few reviews, many testimonials and zero complaints with the Better Business Bureau.
· Your USP should be truthful
Word of mouth and reviews are the lifeblood of new business. If your business looks like you aren’t honest and ethical, it will show up in reviews and referrals. Remember, people are ten times as likely to leave a bad review than a good one. Best customer service fails in this department as well. If 90% of all businesses claim they have the best customer service, a lot of them are lying. You could get away with “old-fashioned customer service,” but again, you should be able to add, as evidenced by… I’d also avoid “honest and ethical” as a USP, as wouldn’t an unscrupulous liar say the same thing?
Your USP is essential to your branding, and to get your potential customers to choose you rather than your competitors. At Christy’s Marketing Solutions, our marketing strategist will help you identify and develop your USP as part of your branding. So, if you are a new business and are having difficulty figuring out a good USP, or if you are a long-term business that is struggling with getting your leads to convert, call Christy’s Marketing Solutions, today. We can help.