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Victoria Munro of Make-it-FlyCreate and State Your USP to Increase Revenue
By Victoria Munro

Printable version

Why would someone choose to do business with you over your competition? After all, your competitors claim to do what you do, and with an increasing array of products and services to choose from, your customers are on advertising overload.

Defining and deploying your USP (unique selling proposition) is the solution. A USP is a distinct and engaging statement that sets you and your business or practice apart from all the rest by describing the unique value you offer, and that generates excitement in your potential new customers. It tells your prospects, “This is why you should do business with us.” It builds your brand and helps would-be clients think of your company when they realize a need for your product or services. There may be very little difference between your service or product and your competitors', but if you intend to succeed in business, you need find a way to communicate your uniqueness and connect it to a felt need of your target customer – your USP.

Before You Create Your USP
Before you begin to craft your USP, it’s essential that you know exactly who your target clients are, what their specific problems, needs and wants are, how they make decisions, where they hang out and what they spend money on. The more clearly you can describe your ideal client and the narrower your target niche is, the more effective your marketing will be.

Understand what truly differentiates you, your company or practice from the competition. Position yourself as an expert in a specific area. You may offer many really outstanding services, or sell a wide variety of excellent products, but to get your message across in a clear and memorable way, you must focus on only one thing!

Creating Your USP Statement
You’re going to craft a strong, appealing and memorable statement that causes you to stand out in the crowd, which paints a clear picture of what you want people to think and visualize when they hear about your company. Your USP must make your service or products extra special and more valuable than those of your competitors.

Remember: A USP is all about the customer or the client. It is not about you. It presents your solution to their need in a way that clearly answers all of their questions and makes them jump at the chance to buy from you.

Effective, Fun Exercises to Help You Establish Your USP
Gather everyone together who is involved in your business. As a group, brainstorm and make a list of every value that your company offers and why someone would want to do business with you. Make it a really long list! Then, put a line through everything that is also true about your competitors. What remains is unique about your company. Use this as a starting place to create your USP.

If you’re in business on your own
, take pen and paper and write a one or two paragraph description of what sets you, your company or your practice apart. Then, ruthlessly edit away the generalities, until you’re left with a clean, succinct, specific promise. From there, rework it, deleting all the excess verbiage and vague statements until you have a clearly defined Unique Selling Proposition that your client can immediately seize upon.

You could answer the following questions to get you started:

What does my business do really well?
What is my most important benefit to the client?
How can I substantiate this claim – to what do I attribute this benefit?
How will my clients understand this benefit, relative to those of the competition?

Allow this information to inspire you as you create your USP.

Also, discuss this with your best clients, your raving fans. See yourself from their perspective and find out why they choose to do business with you, rather than someone else.

Warning: Be absolutely sure that you are able to deliver on any promise you make. If your USP tells clients that you have “A complete range of widgets in stock at all times,” and a customer calls to find that their preferred widget must be ordered and won’t be shipped for a week, your USP has created a negative relationship.

Deploying Your USP
Use your USP everywhere, on everything: Marketing tools, print materials, website, voice greeting, ad copy, in the signature line of emails, everywhere. Make sure that everyone who works with you – sales force, customer-service personnel, office staff and delivery people – understands and regularly uses your company USP in all their contacts with clients.

Most business owners don't have a USP – just a “me too” message. Their advertising sounds the same as everyone else’s. Use your Unique Selling Proposition at every opportunity to let prospective clients know why they should choose to do business with you!

(801 words)
© 2005-2007 Victoria Munro.

Click here for printable version.

About the Author: Victoria Munro is co-founder (along with husband Dave Block) of Make-it-Fly® LLC, a company dedicated to creating success for small-business owners through creatively designed programs and tools. Victoria has started and run nine different businesses. To receive FREE business success articles with tips to help you with your business, sign up for their award-winning ezine, “In-Flight Refueling,” at:, and receive a free copy of the eBook, Get More Done in Less Time: 101 Quick and Easy Time Tactics & Tips.

You’re welcome to “reprint” this article in your ezine, print publication or on your website, as long as it remains complete and unaltered (including the “about the author” info at the end). Please send a copy of your reprint to

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