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It's Time To Redefine Your USP

In the last week I have heard the term USP mentioned a lot. A lot. But worryingly, it was used incorrectly.

But I have been hearing the same misuse of USP for decades now, mainly by people outside of marketing to be fair. When others talk about the USP, they tend to talk about a long list of points that are never unique. That is not a USP.

So it is time to change the narrative about USPs.

In a market that has changed so much in a short space of time, you need to redefine your own USP - and let others know what this really means.

So in this short article, I will briefly:

  • Define what USP really is

  • Give an example

  • Share thoughts on how to redefine your USP

What Is A USP?

USP stands for unique selling proposition.

Sometimes it is talked about as a value proposition.

Your USP is what sets you apart from the competition. It is the reason why your brand should be chosen over another. But being unique is not always easy in an over competitive market. Therefore, it is more appropriate to think about what makes you better than the competition (rather than unique) — something that helps you stand out in a crowded market and makes you memorable.

Because success begins by standing out.

With a good USP, it will determine your branding and messaging that in turn helps you stand out. It should answer that question – what makes you stand out?

It should be based on your brand strengths. Being simply unique may not be enough – it has to resonate and connect with your audience. It must be memorable.


An Example

Many years ago, I worked at a lender and the value proposition (or USP if you like) was:

“We offer mortgages for everyone through a fast, easy, automated process”

It was simple. And it worked. It helped create the foundations for all marketing and sales activities and was understood across the business.


How To Redefine Your USP

In a changing market, it is worth taking time to create a compelling new USP that is fit for today.


It is also time to change the narrative, so that your business really does understand what a USP is.


To recreate your USP, follow these principles:

  • Be Customer Centric Really know and identify the challenges of your audience. Now think about how you solve these – better than anyone else. And of course, make it human and helpful.

  • Be Genuine It can’t be just words or a desire – it has to be something you do and can deliver.

  • Be Company Wide A USP isn’t a marketing and sales thing. It has to be delivered across the business. The example statement above was applied to the whole business – everyone had to find ways to be fast and easy to deal with.

  • Add Value As well as solving problems, think about how you will add value to your audience. The more you know about your audience, the easier this becomes.


Go And Redefine Your USP

A strong USP is more than a simple statement that gets quoted internally at meetings. It is a defining characteristic that differentiates your brand from the rest of the market.

Your products are not truly unique. You know that, so look for that position to claim for yours brand and start redefining that USP. And that time, is now.


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