Differentiation Through Unique Value
ago, when choosing a business to start up, you would have never
started a printing company or a Mexican restaurant. However these
types of companies did start up. Some of them in that span of time
have been super successful. They were successful because they did
something different than the businesses that were saturating the
market then. As a printer, maybe they offered marketing advice that no
other printer offered. As a Mexican restaurant, maybe they offered 21
flavors of margaritas and giant-size fajitas, something no other
Mexican restaurant offered. The point here is regardless of the
competition, regardless of market saturation, if you offer something
of value that is unique, you will succeed. In other words if you have
a unique value proposition or a unique selling proposition your
business will outpace the competition and be a larger barrier to
competition than the barriers that were in place when you started.
these businesses and all of their competition offer benefits in their
today's products and services are so similar to each other that the
only difference, sometimes is in a company's marketing. They try to
woo new customers with jingles, special effects, gimmicks, freebies,
sales and fancy production. One area that is fertile for creating a
new competitive advantage is service. Take dry cleaners for example.
There are drycleaners on many street corners, in airports, train
stations, high rise office buildings, etc. All of them charge about
the same price, do about the same job. But why would someone pick one
over the other? I chose mine because they have a drive through window
and will deliver on demand with a simple phone call. This, to me, the
customer, is unique value; a unique selling proposition.
you find your best unique proposition? Many times a customer
questionnaire will turn up many nifty areas upon which you may
concentrate. Ask why people do business with the businesses they
frequent. Ask what the ideal business would offer to me that would be
unique and valuable. Ask what they like best about your company. Close
attention to the answers might be pointing directly at unique
competitive advantages that you and your company can offer. To begin
to find your competitive advantage or your unique position, make a
list of the benefits you offer to your customers and prospects. Of
those benefits, how many are being offered by your competition also.
Which ones do you offer and which do they do not offer? That is the
Unique Selling Proposition sometimes referred to, as a Unique Value
Proposition is what you and your company do that is different than
anyone else in the business and the single most important reason you
are different than any other company. Your Unique Selling Proposition
is how you will differentiate yourself from your competition and why
customers should buy from you. . It's the one reason consumers will
buy a product even though it may seem no different from many others
just like it. It may be that the product has a lower price or more
convenient packaging, or it may taste or smell better, or last longer;
any strong competitive edge. Other edges might be quality, status,
innovative image, product features, selling strategies or in today's
technical world, support.
printing companies differentiate themselves by being easy to do
business with, on line ordering, being totally digital, in house
design, marketing, etc.
company usually positions itself to fully leverage their product or
service and their market. Examples of where you see this might be the
"Lowest Prices Everyday," or "The Best for the Best." The company's
positioning and unique value determines marketing strategy, pricing,
how the organization goes to market and selling. Only by properly
positioning your company can you effectively differentiate yourself
from the competition and maximize your sales.
how some companies achieve a true marketing advantage through a Unique
1. Lowest Prices Everyday
Many businesses attempt to be successful by being the "Low Price
Leader". How many businesses do you know that "quote" for their
customers; that only have "bid" strategies? This can be a unique
proposition for your customers but for you to succeed you also have to
have the lowest costs. The probability of success with this one is
considered low unless you are Sam Walton.
2. The Best Quality
Having the best quality is a great competitive position from which to
market, especially as this is actually demonstrated for a customer and
leaves no doubt in their mind. Better quality usually wins out over
low price strategies.
3. The Only Place to Get It
Being the exclusive source of something that people want and need is
certainly a great marketing position. It is however a very difficult
position to achieve.
4. Customer Friendliness
As stated earlier, service is the one area where you can build a
unique position quick and stay out front. This includes customer
5. Broadest Selection
Variety is the spice of life. Just look at Amazon.com. It is usually
tough however for the smaller businesses to achieve this.
6. "Satisfaction guaranteed or your money back"
If your competitor gives a 30 day guarantee, can you offer a one year
or unconditional or unlimited guarantee; something unique and
are just a few ideas to build upon for your unique selling
proposition. Some are single statements like above and others are
truly combinations of many of the attributes described. Remember yours
has to fit your company and offer unique value to your market.
best USP is one that obviously addresses something in the marketplace
that truly doesn't exist. Most businesses don't have a USP. What you
normally here is that we provide price, quality and service. Guess
what? In today's world those famous "three" are almost givens anymore.
Offering those three generic items is nothing unique if everyone is
out selling that. , They promise no greater value, benefit, or service
-- just "buy from me too" for no special reason.
businesses, lacking a USP, merely get by and sometimes fail. Their
failure rate is higher, their owners don't care, and their
corresponding market share is small. The point is to focus on the one
niche, need or gap that is most sorely lacking, and that you keep the
promise you make.
Remember, the USP is the nucleus around which you will build your
success. Clearly conveying the USP through both your marketing
communication and your actual business performance will make your
business great, successful and truly one that offers unique value to
marketing requires that customers see the rational reasons to satisfy
their emotional and impulse buying. The USP is truly an integral part
of the formula for business and marketing success.
E-Mail the Author
Return to Free