How to Develop Your Company's Unique Selling Proposition - TAB Corporate

How to Develop Your Company’s Unique Selling Proposition

Unique Selling Proposition
The most basic element of every successful company’s marketing message is their Unique Selling Proposition, or USP.

In running any successful business, it’s important to clearly differentiate the business in the eyes of potential customers and to continually focus on the unique need that is provided by the business’s products or services. A well-defined USP constructs a memorable message of these unique qualities and very clearly answers the question, “Why should I do business with you instead of one of your many direct competitors?

Many business owners, including a significant portion of the hundreds I have personally interviewed for TAB membership, answer the above question with “good customer service.” Unfortunately, there is nothing unique about good customer service—all of your competitors probably feel that they offer good customer service as well!

Good customer service is the implementation of a USP and is a key strategy in keeping your customers—a well-written USP defines how you get customers! If you cannot clearly define the uniqueness of your product or service (and create some enthusiasm for customers to buy), you probably don’t have the basic foundation for a successful company.

A great example of one company’s USP is “fresh, hot pizza delivered in 30 minutes or less, guaranteed.” Domino’s significantly changed the pizza delivery market with the implementation of this USP, and they didn’t even promise that the pizza tasted good.

Here’s another… “positively, absolutely delivered the next morning by 10:30 am.” Federal Express literally created a market for overnight document delivery and became so good at it that the word FedEx was added to our daily lexicon as a generic term for all overnight document deliveries.

One of the quickest ways to go out of business is to attempt to market a product or service that hardly anyone wants, needs or understands. When developing your USP, focus on the factors that are most important to the buyers and end users of your product or service, especially the ones that are not easily duplicated by competitors. Be sure to develop adequate marketing tools to communicate your USP, including media advertising, direct mail, packaging and sales personnel.

The simple test of determining whether you’ve developed an effective USP is whether it sells for you. If it sells your products or services, your USP is meaningfully different.



  1. Arshad says:

    No doubt, USP is the need of today’s business world, it is perhaps the only thing that can differentiate your brand from others, but the question is “Do you have what it takes to identify your USP ?”. That’s the big question.

    Now USP is something that can be identified, its like “identify what your target market prefers, desires, like when it comes to your product/service or your competitors product/service”. Its easier to say, but honestly doing that whole research (qualitative and quantitative), that whole target customers behavior analysis, that big comprehensive competitors SWOT, its a whole different story.

    It takes pros, the gurus to do that, and that’s why majority of the businesses are just “another business”, because it costs massively, it demands effort to identify the USP, I wonder how many times they get it wrong before getting it right, and the cost of all that… just imagine..but again, there are businesses with USP and they are doing great, so yes you can do it, nothing is impossible 😉

  2. tabboards says:

    Great comments Arshad! While everyone agrees that having a USP is critical, creating one that differentiates and resonates with your target market is easier said than done. One thing that I think folks lose track of sometimes is that the USP needs to be something spectacular. In a way it does. But the spectacular part can be providing the same service that other companies provide – but in a way that is truly superior. I like to use Zappos as a good example of this. You can buy shoes all over the Internet. But you’re very hard-pressed to find service like Zappos anywhere else. They’ve defined their USP not by what they do but in the truly unique way in which they deliver it. -Dave

Post a Comment