Marketing Secret #59 Developing a USP

Your USP is not supposed to be a sales pitch. It’s not supposed to sound like you’re selling somebody something. It’s supposed to sound and create the impression that you have an offer that’s irresistible.

It’s very different, and it creates a situation where the people feel very comfortable in following through and coming to do business with you. When you are talking to people, are you swearing that you’re not going to try to sell them anything? When you’re following up with your leads, are you swearing that you are going to interview them and not try to shove anything down their throat?

Are you either directly, overtly, or covertly communicating that message that you aren’t going to try and sell them anything…and that you’re a consultant, a trusted advisor? These are all things that you need to do. Now let me give you a template of a bunch of ideas, any number of which can be Unique Selling Propositions.

This little speech is a sample of putting together a way to communicate that he or she is not a product or service peddler, but an objective advisor. No matter what business you’re in, or what you sell, you can plug in your own words and services where appropriate. The point is that this model will allow you to use any number of the statements in here as part of your ad headlines, your message at seminars, copy in your ads or flyers or free reports, etc. just read, and see if it doesn’t get your juice flowing:

“Listen, Mr (Ms) Prospect, I understand that there are lots of people who will be glad to give you so-called stories of their size or experience, but let me explain a couple of things to you. One, I have a great deal of professional responsibility that I have to manage if you do business with me. I will be ethically required to review your situation as it relates to my product/service – to help you look at all the related areas in your life, and to help you work out a plan that will lead you to the best chance of achieving your goals (or buying the right…for you). Both now, and on an ongoing basis, so that we are working together to make sure we’re on target regarding your desires and needs.

See, Mr (Ms) Prospect, if I just simply look at one issue, all by itself,..my response is this. If I just talk to you about part of your situation here, I could be committing a great sin for both you and me. See, it could, and often does turn out, that the issue cannot be dealt with in a vacuum. There may be other areas that could be affected and even made a problem if you move too quickly or in the wrong direction.

Another thing I’ve asked members to do is to come up with a list of things that they’re doing to go the extra mile. Let me tell you what some members had on their lists and see how many of these items are on yours:

  1. Monthly newsletter (Best idea to increase your exposure to clients/customers/patients! Just got two responses in the same day.)
  2. Concern calls (Yes, they really work!)
  3. Client/Customer/Patient Dinner (Nobody does this – Nobody! But it works! See Secret #75.)
  4. Client/Customer/Patient of the Month
  5. Recommendation award
  6. New client/customer/patient welcome kit (I just sent out 3 kits last week. Each person called to thank me for it. By the time they had hung up on the phone, each person had referred me to at least one other person and had agreed to write an endorsement note that I am going to attach onto the report that I’m sending to each recommendation. And, they agreed to call the recommendation in advance of the mailing to tell them to watch their mailbox. Don’t wait too long to do this!)
  7. DON’T PUSH! (Not pushing will be the number one reason people will think you’re the only one who does what you do.)
  8. Sending out birthday cards with a “present” of a free offer. (Last week, two people took me up on the offer!)

Establish a team of other people to network with to increase business. You might do some joint marketing!

  1. Put a list together for all responsible parties saying what each person should be doing once you have helped them do whatever it is you’re helping them with.
  2. Use prepaid mortgage as a selling tool for people needing to sell a home. Offer to enrol them in the program for free. Or use it with buyers, or if someone would be better off not selling their home now, sign them up in the AAA and increase their principal to pay off the loan quicker.
  3. One of our member offers to make up a brochure for other pros in exchange for putting an ad for clients/customers/patients on the back of the brochure. The fellow has had 53 calls from those!

Pretty interesting stuff – Are you doing all of those things? Are you doing any of those things? If not, why are you waiting so long?

See, going the extra mile is not something you can necessarily quantify, but you can definitely identify it!

For example, all of the things members are doing, are not what we’ve all been taught that people recognise as service.” We’re taught like our friend, Mr Professional, that having the “best” company somehow equates with having the best service. (How did that bridge get crossed?)

Or, that by doing what the clients/customers/patients expect, we’re going the extra mile. NOT!

See, going the extra mile consists of doing things that shock, surprise and amaze people! Things like:

I hope you can see how a USP is not just a sales pitch. And that the speech above is not just a USP. It’s also the truth!

People (and businesses) should have a total look at their situation before making decisions about investing money or buying products, etc.

By explaining the truth and combining it with a candid, straightforward theme of evaluating, ethics, moral obligation, and professional duty, you’ll come up with the best kind of USP you can. Why?

Because it sounds so DIFFERENT (which it really is), and because it conveys such a feeling of COMPETENCE and CONFIDENCE that people are compelled to do business with you.

Do you really think that after that sort of presentation and explanation, they’ll be thinking about the analysis that every other business with some lame sales pitch about their being the “best”?

Do you see how all these USP’s talk about the client/customer/patient only, not about you? You will be dealing with people based on their emotional needs, not your issues and interests!

I hope that gives you some idea and some structure and some things you can use for your own USP. Drop “our company has the best of everything.”

Another quick example. A travel agent member of ours has two USP’s that are so simple, so basic, and so powerful. She promotes herself in either of these ways:

  1. If you are not happy with any part of your trip, I’ll give you my full commission back!
  2. I’ll call you before you leave, confirm all of your trip’s details, and make sure nothing goes wrong!

See, she actually calls her customers and tells them the limo guy is confirmed for their pickup at whatever time, that the flight has been confirmed, and the hotel has the reservation guaranteed. Nothing fancy. But, it’s stuff that NO other travel agent does! She OWNS the market she’s in. She guarantees the satisfaction of her clients, and she makes sure nothing goes wrong. Sounds like what everyone would expect from a travel agent. True. But, no travel agent does any of this! So, by virtue of the fact that no one in America does anything remotely close to what people should get as a basic delivery of any product or service…

You Will OWN your market, and be very rich…just by doing what you should be doing…since none of your competitors will do it! That makes you UNIQUE…and thus…rich!

You see I won’t take that kind of risk as a professional. You need to have an entire picture of what you’ve got, what you’re doing, and where you want to go, before I can sell you a product or give you any practical advice at all. If you think that is too much, or overkill, I can understand that, and that’s fine. But, just so you understand, I, like a medical doctor, would never, ever give you an idea of what you should do concerning prescriptions or procedures or treatments…without having a diagnosis completed.

Now I know that was a long winded speech, but I’ll tell you what. From my point of view, a simple, straightforward explanation contains many USP’s that when marketed, generates more clients/customers/patients in a month for some of our members than the rest of their office gets in a year!

I hope you can see how a USP is not just a sales pitch. And that the speech above is not just a USP. It’s also the truth!

People (and businesses) should have a total look at their situation before making decisions about investing money or buying products, etc . (As I said, don’t worry if you aren’t ready to do this yet. We’ll talk much more about working with associates. For now, I wanted you to see what a killer USP can do wipe your competition off the face of the planet!)

By explaining the truth, and combining it with a candid, straightforward theme of evaluating, ethics, moral obligation, and professional duty, you’ll come up with the best kind of USP you can. Why?

Because it sounds so DIFFERENT (which it really is), and because it conveys such a feeling of COMPETENCE and CONFIDENCE that people are compelled to do business with you.

Do you see how all these USP’s talk about the client/customer/patient only, not about you? You will be the only advisor dealing with people based on their emotional needs, not your issues and interests!

I hope that gives you some idea and some structure and some things you can use for your own USP. Drop “our company has the best of everything.”

See, going the extra mile is not something you can necessarily quantify, but you can sure as hell identify it!

For example, all of the things members are doing, are not what we’ve all been taught that people recognise as “service”. We’re taught, like our friend, Mr Professional, that having the “best” company somehow equates with having the best service. (How did that bridge get crossed?)

Or, that by doing what the clients/customers/patients expect, we’re going the extra mile. NOT!

See, going the extra mile consists of doing things that shock, surprise and amaze people! Things like:

  1. Filling out any and all paperwork for clients/customers/patients, even if you don’t get paid for such transactions.
  2. Cutting out articles that pertain to a clients/customers/patients’ situations, or jobs, or businesses, or whatever, and sending with a simple, “FYI” on a sticky note stuck to the article.
  3. Referring one client/customer/patient to another client/customer/patient. (One time I sent a recently fired mining engineer to see a recruitment guy in that industry who was a client of mine. Another time I sent a client with a horrible back to a woman chiropractic client. And so on.)
  4. Providing “motivational” support for clients/customers/patients who are going through a rough time in their lives. Offering to meet with them on the side, not to discuss your line of work or whatever, but to act as a sounding board, and be an objective friend. (If the situation was serious, I would always refer clients to a professional counsellor. Sometimes, people just want to vent, and I’m glad to help if the situation doesn’t require professional counselling services. If ever in doubt, by the way, always err on the side of caution.)
  5. Going to watch a client/customer/patient’s play in a sports game.
  6. Taking calls at my own child’s game on a Saturday morning from clients who need immediate advice on situation affecting their purchase or use of my service. They’re always grateful.
  7. The bottom line is do something personal for your customer that really shows you are interested in them and not just their money.

See what I mean?

None of this is in Mr Professional’s rulebook, but I think you get the idea. Go the extra mile, and watch your business soar with the eagles!

Now, another thing I tell my members is why satisfied clients/customers/patients won’t refer or make recommendations.

Usually, it’s because of things like:

  1. They don’t feel that they are part of the family (yet).
  2. You never ask them in the right way (with a reward attached).
  3. You are not the centre of their life.
  4. You forgot to thank them for previous recommendations.

One member went back and checked his numbers and found that in 1994, he averaged three recommendations for every four clients. Now, he also said he had a bunch of people with no recommendations next to their names, but four clients were in double digits. Another member says, “One guy gave me thirteen so far, and I’ve done business with nine of them!” That’s great, and those are all good points!

The last point, one that’s most important, is what Dan Kennedy stresses in everything he teaches. Dan says the reason that satisfied clients/customers/patients don’t refer is that a satisfied client/customer/patient isn’t impressed enough to create an unsolicited recommendation.

The key is having enthusiastic clients/customers/patients who are so overwhelmed with the service they got, that you went so far down the road past the extra mile, they feel compelled, by a psychic obligation, to refer people to you!

That is why satisfied clients/customers/patients don’t refer. You will never create that WOW experience by just selling people products, or offering just “okay” or “adequate” service.

So the real bottom line here is that, if you go the extra mile and beyond to find a compelling and irresistible USP, people CANNOT HELP wanting to know more about it. You must leave people wanting to do business with you. And, when they find that your service is so overwhelming, and so fantastic, so far and above anything they ever expected, you will get unbelievable numbers of wildly enthusiastic unsolicited recommendations! But, you’ll never get to the heights that you can get to in this business without generating this unbridled enthusiasm from clients/customers/patients.

I hope this has helped you, and I want you to think about this a lot. Please feel free to send your USP ideas to us and keep in contact with us. If you are having trouble, we’ll be glad to help you. We can’t do it for you, but we’d like to make it as easy as possible for you to have your own Unique Selling Proposition and to make it effective and powerful.

When you do, you’ll find that your prospects will go up, and the number of people that will agree to become your clients/customers/patients will be more than you ever could imagine – which, if course, will lead to sales numbers you’ve never seen before.

If you are uncomfortable with this idea, be sure to team up with other professionals, study courses that teach about anything unique and different!

A real estate agent member uses the following USP.

He tells his target audience that…“We guarantee your home will be sold in 45 days. We call this our Love it or Leave it 45-Day Guarantee!” And, he has more. For example, Our staff will take care of everything involved in your transaction, including getting the carpets cleaned, all the way through to the final inspection!” but wait! He’s not done yet!

Is this going to be work? YES.

Will it pay off big time? YES!

Like I said before, “Not too shabby, huh?”

Though he’s in real estate, would those USP’s work for your market? They sure will!

Just think of the guarantees and services you can offer that will be effective for your prospects.

So, the next time someone asks you what you do, you’ll have the answer that makes them drop their jaw, stare at you, and ask you, “Really, how do you do that?”

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