If you’ve been marketing your business for any period of time, you’ve probably heard someone mention the term “Unique Selling Proposition” or USP.
Entrepreneur.com defines “USP” as: “The factor or consideration presented by a seller as the reason that one product or service is different from and better than that of the competition.”
Sounds important, right? And, it is.
Look, friend, the market is a crowded place, so we have to uncover what sets you apart. I say that not to scare you, but to encourage you to dig a little deeper so you can become your ideal client’s first and obvious choice. There is plenty of room for us all to succeed, however, a crowded marketplace is even more of a reason to establish and know your biz’s USP.
So, today, we’re going to dive in and make sure you have your USP nailed down. Grab your coffee and let’s get started!
HOW TO ESTABLISH YOUR UNIQUE SELLING PROPOSITION
Unless you have a one-of-a-kind, never-seen-before product or service on the market, all business owners should take time to develop their business’s USP. It’s important for your business to stand out and apart from the competition so your target marketing can easily identify and choose you. So, you’re not alone in doing this exercise, in fact, you might even be ahead of the game!
When developing your business’s USP, you need to do 3 things:
1) Think like your ideal customer or client (we’ll refer to them as our IC from here on out).
2) Nail down what motivates your IC to make a purchasing decision/
3) Identify what really causes your IC to choose you over your competitors.
THINKING LIKE YOUR IC
Tell me if this is you:
– You can immediately jot down a list of 10 reasons why your product/service is the best in the marketplace and why you’d buy it.
– You know exactly why you (and others) need what you have to offer, after all, that’s what prompted you to start your biz.
While this makes total sense, we need to adjust our thinking here. While it’s great to be in love with your offer (you totally should be), it doesn’t help us because we’re not our IC.
Now, if you’re like, “but Jess, I really am my ideal client…”, I feel you, and that’s great – you have some killer insight, but it’s important to not just rely on your own insight. Relying on your own insight could cause you to miss a huge pain point that only you can solve or USP opportunities in the future.
So, let’s practice shifting our thinking by using our photography businesses as an example:
You might have started your photography biz because you believe couples deserve to have their memories captured.
BUT, the reason they keep choosing you over other photographers in the area is that you make them feel comfortable, confident, and more in love than they were when they first arrived.
Do you see what just happened? We developed a USP. This photography biz isn’t just selling couple’s sessions – they’re selling comfort, confidence, and love.
“Leave feeling more in love than when you first arrived.”
Who wouldn’t want that kind of experience over and over again?
Your turn. What kind of experience do you provide for your ICs besides the service aspect of photography?
Brainstorming questions to help you better identify your unique selling proposition:
Do you help families feel more connected to one another?
Do you preserve lifelong memories?
Do you help brides have a seamless day because you help keep them on schedule?
KNOW YOUR IC’s BUYING MOTIVATIONS
When it comes to your IC’s motivations to purchase, think about their desires and feelings more than their “need”.
For instance, people don’t buy Kylie Jenner’s make up because it’s “better” than any other product in the marketplace. They buy it because they desire to look or feel like Kylie Jenner. She’s selling a sense of status and glam.
What do your ICs desire? Do they want to display a beautiful frame gallery on their wall so when people walk in they gush over how beautiful their family is?
Do they desire to show off their bump all over social media like the glowy pregnant goddess they are?
Think deeper than demographics like age, occupation, gender, etc, and get inside their minds.
A great book on this, especially if women are your IC, is Why She Buys by Bridget Brennan.
WHY THEY REALLY CHOOSE YOU OVER THE COMPETITION
The best way to uncover why your IC is choosing you over the competition is through a survey. I always recommend that my clients survey their target audience so that they can better serve and understand their needs.
And, it’s so simple to do! Just create a Google Form (you can also use SurveyMonkey), and create questions around your service to collect better client feedback such as:
1. Why is hiring a photographer important to you?
2. Have you hired a photographer before me? What was your experience?
3. Do you enjoy the booking process? What are some things I could improve on?
You get the picture (see what I did there).
Surveys are incredibly helpful when it comes to marketing your offer and specifically being able to meet the needs of your IC. Plus, you’d be surprised by how willing people are to give you their opinions.
Now you have everything you need to thoroughly determine what your business’s unique selling proposition is. This is the fun part of business, friend. Sitting down with a cup of hot coffee or tea and really getting into the mind of your IC so you stand out like a fine wine in the marketplace – and you’ll be glad you did!
Wanna work with me 1:1 to get my eyes on your photography business, and help you fuse your faith into your biz?
You got it, friend! Click the link below to schedule a discovery call to see if we’d be a good fit to work together! I’ll start prepping your strategy in a Google doc now! 😉🥂
Looking for more helpful photography tips? Feel free to binge on these blog posts, or pin ’em on Pinterest for later! 👇🏼
If you’re short on time, follow me on Pinterest – and you’ll get these kinda tips delivered straight to your feed! You know… when you’re scrollin’ through Pinterest with coffee in hand, ready to take on the day… or, procrastinate.
Whatevs. Pinterest biz sesh, anybody!? 😎🥂