How to Differentiate Your Business in Your Market – 3: Your Competitive Distinction Cheatsheet

How do you start creating your Unique Selling Propositions, or Definitive Positioning Statements?

Here’s a list of things to consider when you create your own list…

What You Do

You can assume your products and services are not unique.
You can assume high quality and creativity are widely available.
Even so, do you offer any unusual capabilities in your market?
What are the real benefits you deliver?
What problems do you solve that no one else does?
What do you “get done” for your customers?
What work do you take off their list of to dos?
What’s different or unusual about your workflow?
What’s unique about your company culture?

The Experience You Deliver

What do you do to make the experience of working with you more pleasant?
Less stressful?
More predictable?
More certain?
What’s unique to your place of business?
What’s unique to your people?
What do you do to make people glad they do business with you?
What personalities/animals/environments are part of your customers’ experience?

What You Prevent

What unpleasant or unexpected issues do you help your customers avoid?
Consequences, costs, outcomes, processes, headaches?

Quantifiable Details

Time Frame:
Do you deliver any benefit within or over a specific time frame?
Does your offering have a minimum lifespan, favorable guarantee period, payback horizon?
Do you save your customers quantifiable time?
Economic Value:
Do you deliver any benefit with a specific economic value?
Cost avoidance?
What do you guarantee to your customers? Stepping up and making it clear what level of service you guarantee to perform, and what you do for a customer should anything go wrong can be a very strong differentiating idea.

I’ve worked with plenty of printers who graciously correct printer’s errors, or make a job right if there is a problem, but not many make a bold statement about that. That’s an opportunity to be different that could be worth far more than it would ever cost.

Bear in mind

As you think about this, look in particular for things that no one else in your market does, or you do differently, and things that are valued, enjoyed, or are meaningful for your customers. Any ideas that you can connect with an economic value or time savings are especially useful.

Ask your existing customers why they choose you – this can be very informative and sometimes surprising.

One more thought – you can use as many differentiating statements as you like, and test them in your marketplace. It’s a good idea to use different USPs for distinct customer groups with different priorities or needs. If you do this it will be important to separate your messaging to the different groups through segmentation of some kind, either by sending separate marketing campaigns or using variable data, for example.

Download a PDF Cheatsheet version of these ideas here.

Best of luck creating your list of USPs, PODs &DPSs!

Let me know your comments and questions.

Next Step: For a great way to let print buyers in your area know what makes you their best choice for printing, check out these powerful marketing resources.

The Ultimate Marketing Newsletter For Printers.

Marketing Services For Printers.

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