Ready? Here we go! Let’s write out your Unique Value Proposition
Welcome back to the blog series, “Change Your Message,” and getting to work with Tip 2, “Write Out Your Unique Value Proposition.” (If you missed our last post or simply need a refresher click here!), now on to today’s post! Have you downloaded Olga Mizrahi’s UVP Worksheet? You’ll need it for this exercise!
There are countless books out there that will assist you in writing a mission statement. This is not one of them. the organization, but does little to establish your company in the minds of consumers.
Rather than examining your mission statement, I urge you to take a look instead at your unique value proposition (UVP). Contrary to popular belief, the two are not synonymous. Your UVP may be in line with your mission statement, but they are not one in the same. Perhaps it would help to explain the differences between the two.
It’s not just about being valuable; it’s about being unique. A UVP “sells” a product or service because it differentiates it from other products or services that are available.
- What do you bring to the table that others do not (or cannot)?
- How does someone know that you’re good at what you do?
- Where do you specialize?
At this point it may be helpful to reiterate our definitions, A Value Proposition is an inherent promise of benefit that a company gives its customers, employees, or business partners. That value is usually measured in terms of “benefit minus cost.” A large part of determining value lies in comparing alternatives. A Unique Value Proposition (sometimes called Unique Selling Proposition or USP) communicates the unique contribution your cause, company, products, and/or services are able to provide to the market in a way that is markedly different from your competitors.
You really do have to understand your competition and be able to recognize where you stand in the marketplace. You can’t come up with a UVP unless you understand that you’re competing!
A company dealing with a smaller market may not have to dig as deep. It may simply need to clearly communicate what it is that it does. For instance, if you’re the only shoe repair service in town, your point of differentiation may be as simple as stating that you are, indeed, a shoe repairer.
If there are 15 shoe repair shops, however, you need to be the one that stands out in some way. Perhaps you’ve been in business the longest, or you’re the least expensive, or you’re the most experienced with certain types of shoes, etc. In more complex or saturated markets, a company has to answer less about the “how” and more about “how uniquely.”
When a marketplace is extremely crowded and competitive (as is the case for realtors and insurance agents), the UVP often boils down to relationship—it’s about the personalization (or personalities) in the business. In other words, as a realtor, you might be the “go to” person for a particular street, city, or zip code…or you might just be the friendly, likeable agent that people prefer to do business with.
Keep in mind that your UVP doesn’t have to appeal to everyone—but, rather, it must resonate with your target market. You are truly honing in on a small percentage of the population. If you’re appealing to them well, then you’re going to be remembered. Unfortunately, there will always be a portion of the population that ignores you because they just don’t need what your company has to offer right now…and that’s okay.
Still stumped? It may be easier to look at your UVP from an outsider’s perspective. What are other people’s perceptions of your business…and how it differs from other businesses? You’re looking for a statement that is powerful enough so that someone describes you in that very same way that you do. In other words, when someone passes along your business card, what do they say to go along with it?
Go ahead and ask a trusted business partner what he or she says about you to others when referring business to you. Naturally, this exercise has to do with what people say when they’re not with you. In that regard, it’s different than asking for a testimonial, but it’s in the same vein.
Where there’s a UVP, there’s a: point of differentiation, communicated clearly, in a way that someone can personally identify with.
Once you’ve identified your UVP, everyone in your organization needs to know what it is and understand it—so that they can communicate it to everyone they come in contact with.
A great UVP is the complete answer to the “Why choose you?” question.
Watch for the next post of this blog series where we get into Tip 3 and “Carry Your Message Throughout Your Business.” And if you haven’t downloaded Olga Mizrahi’s UVP Worksheet now is the time to do it and review this post so get busy! Click on this link, other goodies or visit ChunkofChange.com and get started on becoming “unique”!