Steve Kaplan's Blog

August 2, 2011

What makes you so special?

Filed under: Tips — stevekaplan @ 10:31 am

Throughout my career, I’ve always strived to find out exactly why people purchased or rejected my products and services. I’ve learned a lot.  I recognize that sometimes I made a sale because the buyer felt there was little risk. At other times, it was because my product seemed innovative and different from those offered by our competitors. Sometimes it was because the buyer liked the salesperson. Whatever the reason, I always tried to have my sales force tailor its presentations to fit my understanding of what my potential customers were looking for.

Your task now is to help your customers come to this value conclusion by creating one or more unique selling Propositions (USPs).  Then, through branding, you can communicate the value to your customers in order to entice them to buy your product. USPs and branding give your sales force ways to objectify and quantify value. There are no better sales tools available.

What’s a USP?

The unique selling proposition is the quality that makes your product or service rise above the rest. It can be something tangible- higher-quality ingredients, lower pricing, overnight delivery- or an abstraction, like a promise to make your life more fulfilling or your face younger-looking.

The perception of your USP is your reality. That’s right- the way it’s perceived is the reality. What matters is that your USP motivates customers to put their hands in their wallets by appealing deeply, even unconsciously, to one or more of their needs.  It is likely that within your products or services you need in order to develop and communicate effective USPs.  What you have to do is uncover these hidden USPs, package them, and use branding to present them to the prospect. The more creatively you can do  this, the better your chances of making the sale and growing your business. USPs are all around you.

For example:

Nike’s USP is inner strength and motivation. How does Nike use their USP? “Just do it.” Burget King’s USP is customer choice, and it’s presented as “Have it your way.”

What company’s USP do you find impacttful?

Tune in for five reasons to create a USP.


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