Creative juices not flowing as you wished they would, huh? They'll thaw by the end of this post.
A unique selling proposition (USP) or Unique Selling Point is what makes your product or service different from the competition. It is what sets your business apart and provides value to customers. There are many reasons to have a USP, but it primarily allows customers to differentiate you from other businesses out there. It doesn't take long for potential customers to decide whether they want you or not.
To help you capture them in those fleeting seconds, we’ve put together the best unique selling proposition examples from various industries for your inspiration. Let’s roll!
The Unique Selling Proposition (USP) is the unique benefit that a particular product offers to its customers. It was first coined by E. Jerome McCarthy in his 1960 book Basic Marketing: A Managerial Approach as a way for businesses to set themselves apart from their competitors.
It is often considered as the cornerstone of a marketing strategy and is used as a differentiator from other products within the same category.
In order to make your USP stand out, you need to ask yourself two questions:
1) What can I offer that my competitors cannot?
2) What do my customers already want that they don't know they want yet?
To have more success, it's important to have your USP be clear and concise so that it sticks with the customer. This is an important concept to remember when marketing a product because it helps to set you apart from the competition.
A USP has five basic components:
The benefit of a product or service is what draws people in, while the key selling point tells people what makes them better than other similar products. The emotive component attracts people on an emotional level and highlights why they should buy it.
The key difference states what makes your company stand out among its competitors, while the competitive advantage speaks to your track record or experience in this field.
What is an example of an effective Unique Selling Proposition?
An example of an effective Unique Selling Proposition would be using phrases like “new and improved” or “more advanced” to emphasize the newness, superiority, or advancement in some aspect of your product over one or more competitors' products.
"Empowering the world to design"
The online graphic design platform Canva has one of the best Unique Selling Proposition examples among the SaaS industry. Its service primarily focuses on streamlining the graphic design process to let anyone design beautifully without getting stuck at the limitation bar of high-price and difficult design software programs like Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator.
“Empowering the world to design” conveys what makes the service unique and better without using too many words to explain. So what else does it signify?
"Bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world. If you have a body, you are an athlete."
Another successful USP example is from Nike, the sports and footwear industry leader. As you might know, Nike sponsors top athletes in many sports branches to promote their products, technology, and design. In fact, you can track that down to the brand’s unique selling point.
By saying that its mission is to bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world, it targets an audience. But what takes it dozens of steps ahead is the “*” sign and its explanation below— ”if you have a body, you’re an athlete.” By saying that Nike;
"Refresh the world. Make a difference."
Remember how we said ideally, USPs should be one sentence, but two is also okay? No? Now we did. The second one goes for Coca-Cola’s example.
The world-renown beverage corporation Coca-Cola diverts the focus on “refreshment” for their Unique Selling Point. Taking the simplicity of “refreshments and beverages” and connecting them to a more valuable meaning, it emphasizes the product and company difference by;
Stating the company's vision as sustainability for our planet, which is hinted at “Refresh the world.” Focusing on the “Make a difference” part to draw in the customers to consume the products to make a difference by joining the sustainability.
"Payments infrastructure for the internet"
Continuing with SaaS Unique Selling Proposition examples, the online payment processing service Stripe emphasizes the high volume of companies that trust it. If you’re not a worldwide SaaS brand, this example might be far-fetched for you. However, Stripe’s USP also underlines that the software is suitable for all online businesses by saying it’s for “the internet.”
"The platform commerce is built on."
Shopify is by far the most popular e-commerce platform, allowing anyone to create an online store without any coding or designing knowledge. It would be a shame if they couldn’t promote this value in their USP. Luckily, they successfully convey their Unique Selling Point by defining the SaaS as “the platform commerce is built on.”
What does it draw attention to?
How Shopify allows many e-commerce businesses to launch and thrive
How the platform combines everything needed to run an online store
"Melts in your mouth, not in your hand."
Let’s continue our list of the best Unique Selling Proposition examples from a sweeter point—but not a sticky situation. The famous candy brand M&Ms stands out among other similar candies by highlighting its hard sugar coating that preserves the chocolate inside and prevents melting in one’s hand. I told you there was no sticky business.
"When it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight."
What would you expect from an ideal delivery and shipping service? To deliver your item fast, right? That’s precisely what FedEx uses for its Unique Selling Proposition. So what makes this a successful example?
It focuses on the customer instead of the brand. The boldness of the promise makes you remember it. It’s simply a tactile promise because FedEx has the infrastructure and network to deliver overnight.
"Expect more than a coffee."
Can’t start your day without a good old Starbucks coffee? Same, that’s precisely how genius marketing works. Starbucks is not only good at customer loyalty, but it also excels in Unique Selling Proposition.
The real success behind Starbucks is going beyond coffee. It’s getting people to connect various positive things in daily life with “Starbucks” coffee. For some people, it’s a good chat and tasty coffee with friends; for others, it means the right way to start a busy workday.
The USP “Expect more than coffee” conveys the company mission, which is “connection.”
"Shaping the future of human/nature."
The famous outdoor recreation products company The North Face has a deeper connection with hiking as its founders were also two hiking enthusiasts. That is why the brand highlights its connection with nature in its Unique Selling Proposition.
The slash between human and nature says more than it seems. It signifies the company’s stand by hinting at sustainability as well as outdoor wear innovation.
"You get fresh, hot pizza delivered to your door in 30 minutes or less—or it's free."
Differentiating a pizza company from others might be a challenging task. However, years ago, Domino’s came up with the famous USP that made them known to many people. Typically, pizza deliveries take long, but Domino’s made a bold promise of free pizza if the delivery exceeds 30 minutes.
“When you're only No. 2, you try harder. Or else.”
Unique Selling Propositions are all about embracing the difference—even if that seems like a weakness. That’s exactly what Avis Car Rental did in the year 1962. Avis struggled to get to the top in competition with the market leader Hertz for years.
Eventually, the company embraced its second place and turned it into a USP. This means that USPs don’t have to be bold promises; they should point at the unique company identity.
"The right one is worth waiting for."
Among many famous jewelry brands, Tiffany & Co. is specifically known for its timeless and elegant engagement rings. That being said, the brand found a creative way to communicate this uniqueness by making an analogy about love and how the right engagement rings from Tiffany’s.
“We live to rebel against blah beans—and a boring lackluster life.”
The coffee brand Death Wish Coffee is, in fact, a successful underdog that stood apart from industry giants with clever marketing. Its Unique Selling Proposition example stems from the brand’s specialty—the dark roast, in an amusing way.
"Craft a more perfect digital experience."
Fullstory is a SaaS product that focuses on user/data tracking to help websites or apps improve user experience. You can understand it from one look at its USP, which is “Craft a more perfect digital experience.” It is not only simple and promising, but it also focuses on the value customers will receive by using it.
"To create a better everyday life for the many people."
The famous Swedish-origin Dutch-headquartered furniture and homeware company, IKEA, focuses on the utmost benefit they bring to customers—offering high-quality furniture at low prices.
As the company explains as their brand vision, their service goes beyond home furnishing. Their aim is to contribute to making a better everyday life for many people.
Step 1: Identify your target audience.
Step 2: Jot down the problem your product solves.
Step 3: List what benefits set you apart.
Step 4: Clearly define your promise.
Step 5: Combine all in one paragraph.
Step 6: Condense it in one sentence.
The purpose of a Unique Selling Proposition or USP is to explain what unique benefit sets a product or service apart or what makes your business a better choice among competitors.
An ideal Unique Selling Proposition (USP) should be no longer than one or two sentences. Keep it short and sweet. Don’t beat around the bush.
The Value Proposition is what you are offering to customers for what they are paying. The Unique Selling Proposition, on the other hand, is why customers should buy from you instead of someone else. It's more about creating that emotional connection with your customers.
You might think that a USP is all about marketing. While this is true to some point, Unique Selling Propositions are also sales presentations because they create a connection with customers as well.
Simply put, it’s a powerful tool when crafted right. However, it’s easy to fall into common pitfalls and create a USP that just doesn’t ring the bells. It might be;
A killer USP captures a lot of meanings in fewer words. It is meant to be inspirational for your target audience.
It’s nice to get inspired by USP examples but keep in mind that yours need to be “unique” and different from others. It’s your promise, not another company.
Don’t make bold promises if you can’t stand up for them. If your sales team uses a catchy USP line but the product team can’t back it up, it’s sadly dishonesty.
If people see your fancy Unique Selling Proposition only in the headline, they aren't likely to remember it. You need to let that statement melt into your company identity and reflect on every platform.
🎬 That’s a wrap. Which one of the USP examples in this post stuck with you? Share with us in the comments below!
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