With the marketing landscape being so competitive today…

How do you as a small business owner, get your marketing message to cut through all the noise and stand out?

ANSWER: Develop a GREAT – Unique Selling Proposition (USP)

What exactly is a USP?

A USP or Unique Selling Proposition. Is a phrase or sentence that can clarify what you do and what the benefit is for your prospect.

Often referred to as your Competitive Advantage…

Your USP is something you can build your brand around. It can define what you stand for as a business. And, it will tell your prospects why they should choose you over your competition.

…a strong USP, will also help you write persuasive sales copy.


Your unique selling proposition should do – one of three things…

1) Position your business in your prospects minds

“We’re Number Two. We Try Harder.” Avis

Avis has used their USP to position themselves as the underdog. Who will work harder for you than their competitor.

2) Solve your prospects problems

“The milk chocolate melts in your mouth, not in your hand” M&Ms

M&Ms highlight a problem in their USP you’ll have if you eat their competitors chocolate. You won’t have when eating theirs.

3) Make your prospects a promise

“You get fresh, hot pizza delivered to your door in 30 minutes or less — or it’s free.” Domino’s Pizza

Domino’s made this promise in their USP. It’s so bold and specific their prospects have no choice but to trust them over their competitors.


This all sounds great if you’re a huge business like Avis, M&Ms or Domino’s.

But, what if you’re a small business no one has heard of before?

How do you develop your own powerful Unique Selling Proposition?

There are two ways for you to create a USP for your small business.


1) Use a benefit you offer – that your competition can’t match

“When your package absolutely, positively has to get there overnight” FedEx

In this USP FedEx focuses on the big advantage they have their competitors can’t match.

2) Use a benefit both you and your competitor offer – yet, no one has claimed.

“The World’s Favourite Airline” British Airways

See, British Airways were the first to make this claim – by claiming this USP first, they now own it.


Their competitors would sound silly if they now came out and tried to say – NO, we are the world’s favourite airline!

…see what I mean?

When you claim something in the market first – it’s then yours to own.


So, how do you start to create your businesses USP?


Here is the process I use when creating a USP from scratch…


STEP 1) Identify which buyer’s persona you’re talking to.

Think from your prospects point of view –

…what’s in it for them?

…what do they gain from your product?

…what pain point does your service solve?

Now, you’re clear on who you’re creating your USP for…


STEP 2) Imagine someone asking you this question – What does your business do?

Answer this question…

By filling in the blanks below:

You Know when (insert their problem) __________________________________


Well what we do is (insert your solution) ________________________________


And we even (insert your big benefit) ___________________________________


OK, let me give you an example…


This is what I would say if someone asked me – what my business does?

You know when you’re running a small business but you’re stressed about cash flow. and not sure where your next sale is coming from?

Well, what I do is I put all my 15 years of marketing experience to work for you. To teach you how to create reliable and profitable marketing funnel. that will double your sales.

And I’ll even do this at no charge for the first 30 days


Now, this is too long to use as my USP – so now I need to break it down into shorter phases…

For example, from the above statement, I could try the following –

  • Australia’s leading marketing coach for small business owners
  • Double your sales in the next 30 days for FREE
  • Marketing Coaching for Small Business owners wanting to double their sales
  • Discover How to double your sales in the next 30 days for FREE
  • Marketing Coaching that actually works
  • Your cash flow worries gone in 30 days for FREE


You, get the idea…


Don’t worry if the perfect USP doesn’t come to you right away. Most businesses don’t get it perfect first time out.

Even FedEx got it wrong with their first USP –

“we have our own planes”

Which they realised wasn’t working and changed to –

“When your package absolutely, positively has to get there overnight”



A strong USP will help your prospects understand why they should do business with you. It will also help you to get clear on what your business stands for. What are some of the best Unique Selling Propositions you’ve seen and why?

Marcus Jovanovich
Marcus Jovanovich

Marcus Jovanovich is a Marketing Coach and expert when it comes to online conversion and lead generation. Having run several successful traditional ‘bricks & mortar’ and e-Commerce businesses over the past 15 years, Marcus is now a sought after marketing coach and mentor for those wanting to grow their businesses by focus targeting all aspects of business marketing.

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