Finding Your Unique Selling Proposition
So here are the four steps to outlining your unique selling proposition so first you have to define your target market now we're not I couldn't spend a whole three days on how to find your target market but that's not what this course is about so I really want you to think about who is your target market who is buying from you and who do you want to buy from you? I know when I first started my t shirt business I thought all right this is going to be a huge business because everyone we're see shirts right everyone has a t shirt if they have more than one t shirt so I thought all right I'll be marketing to everyone who are see shirts right? It seems pretty you know pretty wide but everyone we're see shirts so I had my t shirts made and I sat down and I write I thought all right it's time to market my t shirts so when you're marketing when everyone is your market how do you really do that? You know which magazines am I going to write to so they can write about my t shirt what partners am ...
I going to partner up with what stores are going to be buying my t shirts and it's if running a small business isn't overwhelming already if you're selling to everyone it's going to become even that much more overwhelming so it's really important to know who your target market is and who exactly you are reaching and I know a lot about a lot of people talk about you know demographic and that cycle graphics and what did they read and we know where did they eat and where did they live and those might seem like really trivial questions and it's like well how am I supposed to know that especially when I'm just first starting out and I don't have customers but you might not necessarily know that right away but if you don't know that start thinking about who would be your ideal client who do you really want to work with? You know I know with my t shirt business when I sat down to markets to everyone I realized I was going to be impossible and I didn't have customers at that point because I just lunch so I thought about all right who do I enjoy working with you know who do I want my business to market to and who do I want my ideal customer to be so I never down to you know, people who do yoga and yoga studios and women who go to high and spas and I know it's a really specific but my t shirts were they had a higher price range and you couldn't find them just in any store so I really got really specific about who my target market is so guess what happened after I did that it was really easy when I would sit down to write an email to someone I knew exactly who I was going to be reaching out to. So I started reaching out to all of the yoga studios that I knew about because that's, who I decided I was going to buy my t shirts and yes, obviously a lot of other people that are not your target market are probably going to be buying your products to, you know, maybe it's a guy who's buying it for his girlfriend or something like that and he's, not necessarily your target market, but she is, but you're not. You're not cutting anyone out, you're not saying, you know, you can buy this because you're not in my target market, you're just focusing your marketing efforts to speak directly to who your customer is so that's really important to know when you are coming up with your unique selling proposition so enough about target markets, but I hope you guys understand the importance of that exercise that seems really daunting at first, but if you just really think about who do you enjoy working with and who can you see your product on? If you don't already have customers, then that's where you can start and if you already have customers, you can just email them and take a quick survey and asked them a bunch of things and if you give them a nice incentive like a discount on your products or maybe free shipping on their next order or something like that they're probably going to right back to you and tell you about who they are and this is a great way to know who your target market is so once you found that you couldn't decide what problem you can solve for them so I know a lot of your products might not seem like resolving the problem for someone like if you have a jewelry or home decor or a parallel or something like that right they don't people don't really have a problem that your product is trying to solve unlike maybe your business where you know they do have a problem right yeah a lot of problems that you're trying to solve so um it doesn't necessarily have to be a problem but a lot of people do you think about all right if I'm going to buy this is they're going to make me look good is it going to make me feel good? Is that going to save me time is they're going to save me money you know, those are all problems that people have so if you sell this nice outfit you're going to save people you know you're going to save people time maybe from buying other things or you're going to make them feel good and then they're gonna look good so it's just those are problems too that your product that solving whether or not you think it might and those are all of the benefits that we're going to talk about in a couple of minutes and next after that you want to outline your biggest benefits so for every feature that your product have and I'll give you a really specific examples but for every feature that your product has there has or there is a benefit to that feature and I'll give you guys plenty of examples so you know exactly what I mean by that and then lastly delivered to them so if you say that um you're unique because you deliver your products within twenty four hours and you don't then you haven't delivered on your unique selling proposition and then you can't really position yourself as someone who delivers products in twenty four hours or less so you have to not only say you're going to do it but you actually have to do it to what I know with my t shirt business and with myself business part of the promise that I made was that I was going to plant a tree for every shirt or every soap that I sold and then each quarter you know, I delivered on the promise I would partner with my tree planting organization and donate money to them so they complained a certain number of trees to reflect how many t shirts or so it's that I sold so you have to follow through and this then age so many things are so transparent and if you don't follow through, people are going to see through that and they're not going to trust you and if they don't trust you, they're not going to buy for me, so you have to really keep your promise to your customers and to your brand and company as well. So now let's talk about some questions you can ask yourself as you're coming up with your unique selling proposition. So why should your customers buy from you? You know what? Why you and not your competitors? Is it because your products use a certain type of ingredient that no one else has? Is it because you deliver really quickly? You know when you provide personal service, which is why you as your brand is really important, especially if that's part of your unique selling proposition and then one day my customers want, you know, do they want fast delivery or do they want slow delivery? Do they want mass produced items or today one hand made or one of a kind items? And again you have to know your customers in order to be able to answer your unique selling proposition off? The other questions you can ask is how is my product or service different and how is it better s o I know for me with my soap business, it was definitely different because I had a word stamped on it, so I planted a tree everything is handmade and poured hand cut and we ship really quickly, so those are all things that make my company stand out, you know, there's other soap companies out there that maybe they have handmade, so but then maybe takes them a week to ship their products, but because I couldn't ship them quicker, that's one thing that makes me different and that people are going to appreciate from me or from me if they're going to be buying for my company. And lastly, how does your business benefit your customers better than anyone can? And I know a lot of these questions might be a little tough to answer, but a few just set aside, maybe after the session or when you go back to work and you start working again on your business, if you could just set aside an hour or so and really think about all of these different things that I'm asking you here and just write them down, you know, it doesn't have to be perfect, you could just write down whatever comes to you at the time, you know, just brainstorm, and you're going to get a really great idea about why you're doing what you're doing and how what you're doing is going to be benefiting people that are buying from you so is that making sense to everyone I know it's sort of a lot of different things to think about, but if you don't know these things when you contact the media and they say, well what's different about this they're not gonna have anything to point to that's different and they're not going to write about you because you're not different and you're not unique um, so these are all really important things to you know, so now let's talk a little bit about what are some things that could make you different on these are just, for example, there's a lot of other ones out there but first it's price and I don't recommend to any small business owner to focus on price as the thing that differentiates them because if you're competing with someone like wal mart whose you know whose unique selling proposition is, we always sell for less you're probably going to be out of business pretty soon, so I definitely would not recommend that you guys compete on price or have that as your differentiation, but another thing that you can focus on is a specific niche, so for me with my cell business, my specific niche was yoga studios and people who do yoga now it's super specific you know I and you can have more than one a customer segment or target market but if you start out with one that's definitely going to help you to figure out how once you narrow that went down, you could markets to the other one a lot easier because you already have all your systems in place for that s o this is a niche for for base camp. I don't know if any of you use their software, but their specific niche is entrepreneurs freelance so small businesses and groups within organizations you see that they're not trying to get everyone to use their software. They have a really specific niche to who they are marketing tio and this is so important again your target market is important and it's going to help you to come up with your differentiation. Another thing you can do is that talk about how your products are different on what makes them different, you know, and the beers there a diamond company and their motto is a diamond is forever so they position their product as you know, not just a diamond or ring that you could get its something that lasts forever or it's something. If you have maybe a handmade item it's something that's, one of a kind that no one else could have and no one else can get ever again and these are all things that matter to people that are buying your products so think about that too, and lastly you khun differentiate yourself by providing extra value so this is actually domino's I think they got rid of this extra value that they were providing a while ago, but I just wanted tio use it as an example because their promises that we deliver hot fresh beets I'm thirty minutes or it's free and at that time no one else was doing this you know, if you were thinking about or should I get pizza tonight from and you knew was going to come in thirty minutes or less and it was free, you probably would pick them over some of their other competitors, but again they made sure that everyone you that fact it was all over their marketing materials it was all over, you know their website if they had one of the time everyone knew what they stood for, um and it's really important to know what others perceive you as and what your company stands for. So I wanted to give you guys a couple of examples of what I think are really great unique selling proposition. So the first one is from a company called man crates on dh I don't know if you're familiar with them, but they deliver gift boxes with a really unique gift for men on dh there I'm sure there's a ton of other companies that do this out there especially now but what's different about them is that they package their gift boxes in a wooden box that you need a crowbar to open it. S o right. And it says that up there it says we seal them up tight and ship them with a crowbar. Have you ever opened a present with a crowbar? So you can see how this is so unique and it's such a great thing? And if you were a magazine writing about give boxes for men and you have three to choose from which one order to probably pick, it would probably this one because it's unique and it stands out and no one's done this before, and it makes them different. So I thought that it was just, you know, a fun, unique selling proposition for them to have. This is another gift box, and the thing that sets them apart is that for every gift box that they sell, they deliver a meal to a hungry child it's sort of similar to my planting a tree for every shirt or soap that I sell. But again, if you're a magazine editor and you were looking at two different gift boxes and this one plans a meal for a child and the other one is just a regular gift box, even though they both have great products. Which one would you be more likely to write about? You would write about this one because it has a story behind it there's a story that goes along with it and if you remember, everyone loves stories and people buy because of stories and magazines write stories so this is a great way to share stories there on lastly, one of my favorite unique selling propositions a zappos, and I'm sure all of you are familiar with them, but they're eunice unique selling proposition is that they have amazing customer service than no one else has, and if you've bought anything from there, you know that they upgrade your shipping so you get here your shoes the next day they take free returns, and when they first started, no one else was really doing this, so it made them really establish themselves and their field as someone who provides awesome customer service and they go above and beyond. So think about your business, you know, what do you do? Do you give back to the community? Do you have awesome customer service? You ship really quickly? Do you make your products in a unique way? You know, do use ingredients that no one else is using, and all of those things are going to help you to come up with your unique selling proposition, and one makes your company and your products different from the other hundreds of pitch is that the media gets on a daily basis, and in this day and age, I have to say you have to be different from what everyone else is doing it's really the only way to stand out so and I'm sure you guys have other examples of companies that you can automatically think of like, oh, yeah, you know, I know this company because of that specific thing that they do so think about those and think about what you love from other companies on dh, not to copy them, but just you get inspired to see what other people are doing and to see how you can incorporate that into your own unique selling proposition, so make sure to keep in mind that you're not trying to compete with everyone, and you're not trying to serve everyone. You have to be really specific about who it is that you're trying to serve. And in one of the slides that I'll share with you tomorrow, one of the editors that I pulled before the course and I asked them, you know, what's your pet peeve? And she said, one of my pet peeves is people who tell me about their products, and she works at a woman woman's magazine, I said it's, when people think that just because I write about women's products, then and this is a woman's product that I'm going to be interested in you know? But my audience is an older demographic they live in because it was ah magazine in austin so it has to be specific to that audience so even magazines have a unique selling proposition you know, do they cater to people that are on a budget? Do they cater to women who want high end products and knowing your unique selling proposition and there's is going to be really key to getting in that magazine because there's automatically going to be a great fit for you and them to be featured in the magazine so the more specific you can get the better I know I've given you this example before with my yoga customers and my yoga studios, but I was really, really specific and once you could get really specific you can definitely grow on dh start to reach a new audience, but you're definitely should start out just with one get that down really get to know those people really, really well and then you could expand to reach other markets as well and I know aa lot of the larger companies they have tons of different target markets that they try to reach out to in different ways and then a couple more things a usb is going to focus on your customers wants and desires not there needs so think about it um why do people really want you know they might say ok, yeah I need a skirt or I need someone to help me with my technology but why don't they really want you know they want to save time they want to save money they wanna look great they want to feel good they want to lose weight you know, all of these things are things that people want and they buy the products because they need two photos they need to fulfill this want and yes, they still need it but that's not the reason they buy they buy it because they really wanted and that's how you can justify, you know, selling a two hundred dollars piece of jewelry or for me selling on a dollar bar off soap right that's a lot of money first soap but I have plenty of customers who are buying myself and it's because they really wanted and we all need soap but they can by a fifty cent bar of soap or they could buy in a dollar bar of soap and some of them are choosing to buy mind so but that's because I in a way made the monitored by telling them how myself is khun benefit them and what the benefits are. So are you guys saying the difference there and really the importance of this on how you can stand out among everyone else who is trying to sell jewelry or baby apparel or you know, accessories for for for their brand so and lastly, your unique selling proposition translates the features into benefits and we're going to talk about features and benefits and what they are in just a minute but again the benefits are the ones and desires and the features are the needs and wants somebody decides to take out the credit card or take out their wallet and buy from you it's because they're having a want or a desire mutt um and also any too but the one and the desire takes over the need and that's how they could justify spending more money on your product or buying your product as opposed to a mass marketed product. And lastly, this is another one that's really important your unique selling proposition could change over time so when you first start out your business and you have one goal in mind you I have a certain way that you've your business that can definitely change two years down the line or four years down the line I know with my t shirt business my market expanded a little bit I started to reach out to people that were interested in buying equal friendly products and more specifically women who are interested in that so it's a different market than people who are doing yoga although there are some similarities there too but this could change over time, you know, and if you feel like maybe, I'm not excited about working with this kind of person, and I want to work with that kind of person or markets to that kind of person. That's. Okay, you can change your mind. You could sort of start over, you could do it again on dh. I have a different, unique selling proposition, it's, something that's evolving, and I think if you're doing things right, it should be evolving, so don't be afraid, tio. Change what, you know what you thought you were going to be doing.