No matter what type of business you are running (or plan to build) you will likely have competition. Most people think competition is a bad thing – and if you try to take on your competition “head on” it probably is.
On the other hand, you can use your competition to learn how to service customers in a different way – a “unique” way – that can make you very successful!
How Can You Make Your Business Unique”
For example, selling home videos. DVD’s, and electronic games is nothing new. And unfortunately for most “mom-and-pop” video stores, Blockbuster came along, and put most of them out of business.
So why bother even trying to sell videos and DVD’s, right? Well, it depends.
Opening another video store would probably be difficult – having the ability to order 20-30 copies of all the popular videos would probably be too costly for most people.
But NetFlix didn’t look at competing directly with Blockbuster. The owners decided to rent the same products, but in a completely different way – online and through the mail.
That’s an example of a Unique Selling Proposition!
How can you create a USP (Unique Selling Proposition) for your business?
Answer the following 5 questions:
1. What does your business sell, and who do you sell it to?
2. What benefits (not products or services) does your business offer to your customers?
3. What does your business do best?
4. What part of your business needs the most improvement?
5. What do you offer that you do better –or different – than your competitors?
If you need help coming up with ideas for the last one – which is the most important question to answer – go out and “shop” your competition:
• read their ads
• check the yellow pages
• do a search online and compare websites
• buy a product (or ask a friend or family member, if possible)
• join a small business association
Then, narrow down your USP into one or two sentences, and do it – with every letter you write, every ad you place, every customer you serve, every plan you make – and include your Unique Selling Proposition.
If you can make your business different from the rest – and stand out above the competition – you’ll be well on your way to success!