The term, Unique Selling Proposition, or USP, freaks a lot of people out because it sounds so official and formal, but it’s really not that scary.
A USP is a brief statement that sums up how you are different to the competition and why your ideal clients should choose you over the competition.
It’s the story of your business, it’s the message you put out to the world to help build and reinforce your brand. It’s how your clients know if you’re the right fit for them.
A USP doesn’t have to be complex or long. It simply needs to sum up why you’re different and the best choice for your ideal clients.
Your USP needs to be specific because you can’t be everything to everyone (nor should you want to be as that only leads to burnout).
Follow these simple steps to create your own USP:
1. Outline specifically what you do and who you do it for
First, understand what it is you do and why.
If you’re not sure, hold off on moving forward until you know because this is the key to getting the right message out
2. What problem do you solve for your client?
As a photographer, you help capture special memories. But what makes you different from all of the options available to your clients?
What problem do you solve that goes beyond photographic services i.e., you provide specific props or a particular type of setting or out of hours operation or a certain style of photography.
For example, I provide pet photography, but I also provide a judgement free zone for people whose pets are their kids.
3. Identify what makes you different from the competition
In my case, I say I am a photographer for babies with and without fur. This speaks to my clientele because their pets are their children.
They connect with me because I understand how important their pets are to them, and I don’t judge them or think their relationship with their pet is weird or over the top – because I love my pets too!
A lot of my newborn clientele also come from previous clients whose pets I have photographed because I have already built that trust with them from previous sessions.
4. Combine steps 1-3 to create a value added statement that speaks to your ideal client
The hard part is putting it all together in a way that’s succinct and speaks to the right people.
You may want to come up with a few versions so sleep on it, ask for feedback and make sure it’s the right message before you commit.
Most crucially, it has to be tailored to your ideal client so make sure you know who your ideal client is!
Next Steps: This doesn’t happen overnight. You need time to craft a good USP. Create one, ask for feedback, test it and tweak it as needed. Most of all don’t get discouraged – a killer USP takes time, but it’s worth it!
Creating a brand that’s memorable and profitable is no easy feat. That’s why I’ve put together a workbook that breaks it all down for you and helps you build a brand that is both brilliant & profitable. You can grab your free workbook HERE!
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