Unless you’re first to market with a product or idea, one of the biggest challenges for any business owner is figuring out how to grab the attention of customers in a crowded marketplace.
Business Coach Roland Hankeroot explains: “You can’t be all things to all people, so it’s critical that you know who your ideal customer is and what’s different about your product or service that will win them over from your competition.”
This is where a Unique Value Proposition (UVP) statement comes in handy.
UVP strategies for new and existing businesses
A UVP statement is your public communication to the market of what makes you different and better than your competition.
Its message should be clear, brief and convey to potential customers the following key points:
- What product/ service you’re offering and who you’re targeting (your ideal customer)
- How your product/ service solves a problem or want for that customer
- What benefits customers can expect
- How your business is unique
For example: “Hot, fresh, pizza delivered to your door in 30 minutes or less guaranteed… or it’s free!”
This famous UVP from Domino’s Pizza in the 90s worked so well because it highlighted the product, the want/ problem solved, the benefit and a quantifiable measure of that benefit that made them unique.
Think outside the box
If yours is an existing brand that isn’t hitting the conversion rates you want, your best approach might be to test drive new UVPs to see which one produces better results.
Roland encourages owners to think outside the box:
“Avoid the temptation to focus your UVP on just being better, cheaper, quicker, or smarter than your competition".
"You need to find a way to be unique to set yourself apart,” he says.
- Try carving a niche out of your market and target that
- Adjust how you’re offering your product/ service - come at it from a different angle
- Ask customers what objections and concerns they have and work to overcome them
Julianne Wargen, co-owner of W.W. Technology, a company that offers computer hardware/software support, shared with us how she adapted when her approach wasn’t working:
“At first we developed a flyer that sold features, not benefits; for example our years of expertise and the brands we serviced.
The results were limited.
We then switched gears and highlighted benefits that other companies didn’t, like being locally based and 24/7 free customer support - then it went gang busters.”
The various benefits of your product will hold different weight with different people, so you’ll need to determine which one is the most valuable to your customers, the one that will turn window shoppers into buyers.
Finding the gap
Roland’s final advice to small business owners:
“When looking for what makes you different to your competitors, ask yourself, on which factors are none of us competing?”
Finding that gap in the market can be the breakthrough your business needs.