USP – What is it and discovering yours

When any company launches a new product or service they are going to want to brag about it, as this is how you get customers in and buying it. However most of the time it isn’t just as simple as shouting “We have a new product! Look here” as more often than not, customers will look at go “but it’s just the same as all of these other ones?”. This is where your USP comes in. Within this article we are going to look at exactly what a USP is, and how you can go out finding your own, which will be especially helpful if you are a new up and coming business owner, but doesn’t have to be just for that. If you are an established business owner, it will also help you find your new USP for your new product launch.

What is a USP?

USP – Unique Selling Proposition or Unique Selling Point. It is something that comes from your product or even your business as a whole, that sets it out from the rest. It’s your something to brag about when it comes to attracting customers, both old and new and say “We’re better than them because we have……”. Examples of common USP’s are as follows: Lowest Cost, Highest Quality and being the first product (or business) of its kind.

The thing about a USP however, is firstly that it needs to be true. You can’t go around saying you have something, only for people to find out that you don’t. This would be a lot more damaging that having no USP at all, as customers could begin to boycott you because you lied to them, in turn damaging your reputation and making it incredibly difficult to build it back up again with the next product that you launch. As well as this however, the USP for your product needs to make sure it actually does what it’s supposed to, and that is giving a benefit to the customers purchasing it. You will want to make sure that it can offer them something no other company/competitor can offer them, making it truly unique in a world where a lot of similar products and services exist. It also needs to be compelling enough that it is going to attract new customers.

Finding your own USP

When companies create a new product and in the process of launching it, they sometimes tend to have a set or rose tinted glasses on during that time. They may think that their product is perfect in everyway. However, to find your USP you need to make sure that you don’t do this. You need to be harsh and honest with yourself, taking a step back and thinking about why your customers would want your product, compared to that of your competitors, especially when your product is similar to theirs.

Another good thing to look at when it comes to your customers is what drives them. What is their motivation for buying your product? For example, think about all the clothing shops that are available for people to choose from and perhaps take Hollister and H&M as examples. What is the reason that customers might choose to shop at H&M over Hollister? Maybe the fact that it is cheaper? They could get two t-shirts that look very similar for the price of one Hollister t-shirt. This is what you need to be thinking about when you are figuring out your USP. It also requires a small amount of psychology, as you have to get into the mindset of your customers.

If your business is just starting out, this might not apply to you much, but as your continue to grow and grow, releasing more products as you go along, a good idea is to ask your customers about what you can do to improve, and what it is they are looking for from your business. They are your largest source of information and as such will be more than happy to let you know what you can do to begin improving and tweaking your business. After All the more you improve the happier they will be, as they are getting what they want from your business.

Aside from your customers however, it is also a good idea to look at your competitors and study them. Analyze them when they launch new products to see what it is they are selling and how they are selling it. How do they use their USP? Not just in general terms, but playing around with it when it comes to marketing campaigns. Do they have more than one? It is a good idea to look at everything your competitors do when it comes to products, especially the ones that are similar to yours. That way, you can use this to your advantage, making sure that yours betters theirs, or provides a different advantage that your customers will find more appealing. For example, going back to the clothing brands, if people buy H&M because it is cheaper, why would people decide to buy Hollister? Because it is usually considered better quality, hence the higher price and the idea that you get what you pay for. If this the market you are trying to enter, take a look at both of these companies and you will have an idea of why customers buy from them. This should give you a good indication of what your USP should be, perhaps trying to aim for the highest quality but also the lowest price? That way customers are getting both of what they want from the same brand, causing you to rise up and make a statement in the clothing and retail industry.

We certainly hope that by reading this article today, you have a clearer idea of just what a USP is, and also how you can go about finding yours