What Is a Unique Selling Point?

A unique selling point (USP) is a marketing strategy that implies making unique propositions to customers in order to persuade them to switch brands.

It implies offering unparalleled benefits through a service, product, or brand, and should be relevant enough in order to attract and retain customers. Common USPs are:

  • Lowest Cost
  • Highest Quality
  • Trailblazing Products

How to determine the USP

Define what the company stands for:

  • What’s the target audience?
  • What pain points do they have?
  • What product fits their need?

Outline what makes the company distinct:

  • What makes the product stand out?
  • How is it different from the competition?

Identify assets that make the proposition exciting:

  • What’s the promise of the product?
  • How does it deliver on that promise?

USPs can also be explicitly outlined in a positioning statement that informs decisions about strategy, marketing campaigns, or product design.

Unlike USPs, positioning statements are more focused and are identified only after the USP has been properly developed.

Herb Kelleher, founder of Southwest Airlines says that “It is hard to make ideas stick in a noisy, unpredictable, chaotic environment. If you are to succeed, the first step is this: be simple. What we mean by ‘simple’ is finding the core of the idea.”.

Tips & Tricks to deliver on your USP

✅ Ask existing customers why they chose your services over the competition.
✅ Leverage relevant feedback into future marketing campaigns and selling strategies.
✅ Assess capabilities and make sure you have the resources to deliver on your promise.
✅ Infuse your USP throughout the organization and include it in the mission, vision, tagline, banners, and all promotional messaging.

Inspiring USP examples

ClassPass: Sweat in good company.
It highlights the company’s unique approach to the way users participate in group fitness by partnering with small businesses and studios.

SheaMoisture: A better way to beautiful.
It highlights the company’s commitment to avoid harmful ingredients and support minority business owners.

Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast.
It highlights the company’s mission to democratize audio and provide easy-to-use hosting and publishing software that allows users to create, distribute, and monetize their podcasts for free.

Spotify: Music for everyone.
It highlights the company’s freemium business model that allows users to listen to music for free or pay a monthly subscription in exchange for ad-free access to the platform.

Canva: Design anything. Publish anywhere.
It highlights the company’s commitment to making design as easy as “drag and drop” and including sharable images for relevant visual content.

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