What is a USP in Marketing? Most People Have This 100% Wrong
What is a USP in marketing? Don’t be fooled by phony marketing myths. A real USP (Unique Selling Proposition) is something your competitor can’t duplicate without landing themselves in court. Most people confuse USPs with limited time offers, benefit statements, or even vague claims like “we really care about our customers…” or “we pride ourselves on quality and service…” or “we put the customer first.” But, if your competitors could say the same thing without you having grounds to sue them, you don’t have a USP.
In an earlier podcast, I talk about the best ways to set yourself apart from (and above) the Self-Proclaimed Experts in your niche. I said that one common trait of Self-Proclaimed Experts is that they’re almost always too lazy to generate any original ideas. In other words, Self-Proclaimed Experts almost never have a USP. In fact, in my experience, they’re the reason so many myths are floating around out there about what a USP is.
A self-proclaimed expert is the person most likely to accept limited time offers, benefit statements, and vague claims as genuine USPs. Just do a Google Search for the term “what is a USP in marketing…” and my guess is you’ll find a lot of these phony “experts,” talking about USPs, and getting it 100% wrong. Again, a true USP has to be UNIQUE enough to where none of your competitors can say it without giving you a legitimate claim to legal action against them for a trademark, copyright, or patent infringement.
So, what is your USP? If you think you have one, honestly ask yourself what you could legally do to a competitor if they used the same claim in their marketing. If you couldn’t take legal action against them for doing so, you don’t have a USP. Yes, it will take a lot of mental effort to come up with a USP which fits this strict definition. But, that’s what makes a USP so powerful in marketing.
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