"Misconceptions About The USP"
By Joe Robson of the Newbie Club
I've written about this subject on
more than one occasion, and I'm writing about it yet again. Why?
Because in my discussions with clients I have found that the most
misunderstood concept in Copywriting is the Unique Selling
USP for short.
Your USP is without any doubt whatsoever, the most valuable business
asset you will ever possess! And once you discover it, your business
will improve dramatically.
I've lost count of the number of people who tell me they don't know
how to find their USP. And there are even more people who THINK they
know what it is, yet have it all wrong.
This is the point that most people never realize ....
Your USP is NOT just a big benefit that your competitors can't
offer. Your USP is NOT just something about you, your business, or
your product that is different to your competitors ....
Your USP is something which your
customers' PERCEIVE to be unique
and which will benefit them!
The uniqueness is totally dependent on your customers' PERCEPTION
of your product's 'difference'.
For instance .... Let's assume you have the only mousetrap in the
world that scares mice to death by showing a hologram of Sylvester
the cat. If your reader is an Eskimo who has never seen or read
anything about mousetraps .... so what? It ain't unique! So your
mousetrap's uniqueness isn't a USP in THE EYES OF THE ESKIMO.
Ok,Ok, you may think that's a simplistic and rather silly example.
But if your mousetrap was repackaged as a unique Polar Bear
frightener ... boy that's a USP in THE EYES OF YOUR ESKIMO!
Not many products are totally unique. Yet there are still companies
who manage to present an *apparent* uniqueness to their potential
customers. They think outside of the box.
And many savvy Copywriters have found ways to present a perfectly
mundane feature as a PERCEIVED major benefit.
On UK TV at the time of writing, is an ad for a national chain of
'overnight stop-overs'. Motels.
They're modern, comfortable etc etc. But they lack the
'extras' offered by conventional hotels. Now many Copywriters
would probably justify this with copy such as:
"We have no swimming pool but you will enjoy the very best cuisine."
Or .... "Our Motels are much less expensive than a Hotel yet ..."
Here's how the TV Ad goes ....
Open with picture of a guy blissfully sound asleep in bed.
Superimposed dissolving text reads ....
"No swimming pool"
Female voice over softly says ...
● "Just everything you need for a good nights
XYZ Travel Inns".
Now in the eyes of the 'targeted' audience, THAT'S a USP!
Joe Robson is
co-author of 'Make Your Words SELL' with Ken Evoy.
Joe and Tom Glander own The Newbie Club which is bulging with
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