Anyone want to critique my USP statement

40 replies
I've been working on my business plan and came up with the following strategic positioning statement. Would appreciate any constructive criticism.

Unlike most so-called “marketing consultants” who approach business tactically, offering various quick-fix marketing services, Business Growth Strategists will put our 17+ years of experience helping grow small businesses to work, brainstorming with you and helping you identify and prioritize your biggest growth opportunities to maximize your marketing ROI. And then we'll oversee the implementation of your fundamental marketing strategies to take full advantage of those opportunities so you have a rock-solid foundation upon which to build a sustainable business.


We also offer a comprehensive selection of professional marketing services such as website design & hosting, search engine marketing, copywriting & ad creation, direct and e-mail marketing, etc. to create an arsenal of tools to be employed once your strategic sales & marketing plan has been formulated to put your plan into action.
#critique #statement #usp
  • Profile picture of the author TheBigBee
    Originally Posted by PaulintheSticks View Post

    I've been working on my business plan and came up with the following strategic positioning statement. Would appreciate any constructive criticism.

    Unlike most so-called "marketing consultants" who approach business tactically, offering various quick-fix marketing services like website design or Facebook ads, Business Growth Strategists will put our 17+ years experience helping small business owners grow their business to work, brainstorming with you and helping you identify and prioritize your biggest growth opportunities to maximize your marketing ROI. And then we'll oversee the implementation of your fundamental marketing strategies to take full advantage of those opportunities so you have a rock-solid foundation upon which to build a sustainable business.

    We also offer a comprehensive selection of professional marketing services such as website design & hosting, search engine marketing, copywriting & ad creation, direct and e-mail marketing, etc. to create an arsenal of tools to be employed once your strategic sales & marketing plan has been formulated to put your plan into action.
    Hi Paul,

    It's interesting you bring up this question... WF can be a gold mine of ideas, and the problems that this creates is a lack of maniacal focus on any one thing. Have you considered just selling ONE of those services and ONE only, and have that be your USP? Ex; "other companies do everything, and they can be good at nothing. We however, focus on this one thing [insert here], and because of this, we are the best in the world."

    Recently, I completely stopped marketing every service I was offering in favor of one I'm yet to find anyone better than me at executing. We've taken to saying it in our marketing materials; "we are the best at X in the world." This allows us to charge 2x more than our competitors and still get paid, because people believe (and judging from our work) that we are the best.

    So... of that list of services, which service can you be really be great at?
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    • Profile picture of the author PaulintheSticks
      Originally Posted by TheBigBee View Post

      Hi Paul,

      It's interesting you bring up this question... WF can be a gold mine of ideas, and the problems that this creates is a lack of maniacal focus on any one thing. Have you considered just selling ONE of those services and ONE only, and have that be your USP? Ex; "other companies do everything, and they can be good at nothing. We however, focus on this one thing [insert here], and because of this, we are the best in the world."

      Recently, I completely stopped marketing every service I was offering in favor of one I'm yet to find anyone better than me at executing. We've taken to saying it in our marketing materials; "we are the best at X in the world." This allows us to charge 2x more than our competitors and still get paid, because people believe (and judging from our work) that we are the best.

      So... of that list of services, which service can you be really be great at?
      Its a good point and one I've considered. If I was going to offer one service it would be consulting because thats what I enjoy and am good at. But I really think using the consulting as sort of a loss leader and making money on the backend is a viable strategy.

      So far I've been doing everything else myself and I admit, its not been top notch but my prices have reflected the quality. But now I'm going to focus on consulting and outsource everything else to professionals and price the services accordingly.

      It would be a lot less complicated and less headaches if I just focused on consulting and if I can make a good living doing just that, I may do that in the future.
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    • Profile picture of the author SkyeFWP
      Originally Posted by TheBigBee View Post

      Hi Paul,

      It's interesting you bring up this question... WF can be a gold mine of ideas, and the problems that this creates is a lack of maniacal focus on any one thing. Have you considered just selling ONE of those services and ONE only, and have that be your USP? Ex; "other companies do everything, and they can be good at nothing. We however, focus on this one thing [insert here], and because of this, we are the best in the world."

      Recently, I completely stopped marketing every service I was offering in favor of one I'm yet to find anyone better than me at executing. We've taken to saying it in our marketing materials; "we are the best at X in the world." This allows us to charge 2x more than our competitors and still get paid, because people believe (and judging from our work) that we are the best.

      So... of that list of services, which service can you be really be great at?
      What a great point - One that I've recently stumbled upon and am implementing right now.
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  • Profile picture of the author maxrezn
    Where's the USP? It seems like you have 2 paragraphs for your About Us page.

    Ideally....the customer should read 1 sentence about you and forget about working with the competition. Doing webdesign, I used "A website you'll love, or 110% of your money back."

    You better have full confidence in your product and stand behind it though.
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    • Profile picture of the author PaulintheSticks
      Originally Posted by maxrezn View Post

      Where's the USP? It seems like you have 2 paragraphs for your About Us page.

      Ideally....the customer should read 1 sentence about you and forget about working with the competition. Doing webdesign, I used "A website you'll love, or 110% of your money back."

      You better have full confidence in your product and stand behind it though.
      Admittedly, the 2nd paragraph isn't part of the USP but I'll use it in my marketing materials any way so I included it.

      But there really are no rules when creating a USP, only principles. You're basically just communicating your competitive advantage.

      I agree that shorter is better but I think it really depends on how you are positioning yourself and the nature of the product/service. Sometimes its easy to say it in one sentence and sometimes not.

      I could say "We create marketing strategies prioritized to give you the best ROI" but then a lot of the important distinctions are lost. I think its much more powerful when its elaborated on.

      Check out Getting Everything You Can Out of All You've Got by Jay Abraham and you'll see several very powerful USP's that are as long as mine and some one-liners.
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      • Profile picture of the author serryjw
        RECORD a vid of your UPS..people don't read
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        • Originally Posted by serryjw View Post

          RECORD a vid of your UPS..people don't read
          Not true it's still a 50/50. You need both vid/audio and written.
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    • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
      Originally Posted by maxrezn View Post

      Where's the USP? It seems like you have 2 paragraphs for your About Us page.

      Ideally....the customer should read 1 sentence about you and forget about working with the competition. Doing webdesign, I used "A website you'll love, or 110% of your money back."

      You better have full confidence in your product and stand behind it though.
      That is not necessarily true. One sentence is almost a slogan. A USP is best when it is 60-90 words. It is NOT just for customers. It is statement which drives the owner. It is for employees too. Once you have a USP, it is your guide. One sentence cannot do that effectively.

      You can shorten it down for different materials but, the full USP is a powerful guiding statement.

      Paul, my main criticism is that you mention your competitors in your USP. Pretend they don't exist. This is about you and your company ONLY. Bringing up the competition only makes people think about THEM instead of making them focus on only you.
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      • Profile picture of the author PaulintheSticks
        Originally Posted by Dan McCoy View Post

        That is not necessarily true. One sentence is almost a slogan. A USP is best when it is 60-90 words. It is NOT just for customers. It is statement which drives the owner. It is for employees too. Once you have a USP, it is your guide. One sentence cannot do that effectively.

        You can shorten it down for different materials but, the full USP is a powerful guiding statement.

        Paul, my main criticism is that you mention your competitors in your USP. Pretend they don't exist. This is about you and your company ONLY. Bringing up the competition only makes people think about THEM instead of making them focus on only you.
        That's an interesting point Dan. I just went back to Jay Abraham's book and noticed that a number of the ones he quoted directly talked about the competition.

        But I'm sure I can get the point across without mentioning other consultants using something like "don't settle for a haphazard marketing approach".
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  • Profile picture of the author misterme
    Originally Posted by PaulintheSticks View Post

    Unlike most so-called "marketing consultants" who approach business tactically
    Don't slam the competition quite like that. Any intelligent person knows there must be some good people out there. Plus how do they know you're not yet another so called marketing consultant calling the kettle black?

    If you're going to mention others (which I don't see why you need to at this point if your USP's purpose is to distinguish you from the competition. It's like saying, "I'm gonna have a sandwich and it's gonna be made with two slices of bread"), why not say "there are a few good consultants out there but hey, I'm the only one who... [and insert your USP here]"

    Or better yet, insert your UVP (Unique Value Proposition).

    Your USP is kind of general, not unique at all. And it reads like corporate speak. I'd turn it into plain talk. Make it punchy. That's all about copy writing.

    I think your USP is that you ran your own business for a bunch of years. You were in the trenches. You know first hand the agonies and the ecstasies of being a sole proprietor. You know what it's like to have to pay the bills and not have any money left for yourself. You know what it's like to wake up in the middle of the night and wonder how the hell you're gonna pay the mortgage. But you made it work. You figured it out. Lots of trial and error. You built your business to where it was worth a thousand gazillion dollars. And now you're going to do the same for them. And it pays for itself.

    Something like that.
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    • Profile picture of the author HypnoticTonic
      Really could reply so far, don't know if I can ad dmuch to it. What you wrote was like a big bed sheet, yeah, there was a lot there, and everyone can wear it, but who would really want to?
      From the book the irresistible offer by Mark Joyner

      What are you selling?
      How much?
      Why should I believe you?
      What's in it for me?
      He points out that not all the questions need to be addressed right away, he uses the example of Domino's "30 minutes or it's free"
      Adding to what was said above my post I came up with this short version.

      Business building from a business owner who's been there.
      This needs work, but it's pretty clear that I am or was a business owner and I help build businesses up.
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      • Profile picture of the author Marta K
        I agree, it reads like corporate mumbo jumbo. It doesn't feel like targeted to small business owners. You lost me before 2nd paragraph and I have masters degree in writing and editing scientific publications for universities.

        Try writing something that flows naturaly, the way you speak. Better yet, record yourself talking about your company and than edit the transcription. You would bebe suprised how convincing it is, when you 'just talk'
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  • Profile picture of the author max5ty
    Originally Posted by PaulintheSticks View Post

    I've been working on my business plan and came up with the following strategic positioning statement. Would appreciate any constructive criticism.

    Unlike most so-called “marketing consultants” who approach business tactically, offering various quick-fix marketing services, Business Growth Strategists will put our 17+ years of experience helping grow small businesses to work, brainstorming with you and helping you identify and prioritize your biggest growth opportunities to maximize your marketing ROI. And then we'll oversee the implementation of your fundamental marketing strategies to take full advantage of those opportunities so you have a rock-solid foundation upon which to build a sustainable business.


    We also offer a comprehensive selection of professional marketing services such as website design & hosting, search engine marketing, copywriting & ad creation, direct and e-mail marketing, etc. to create an arsenal of tools to be employed once your strategic sales & marketing plan has been formulated to put your plan into action.
    I read your OP twice and couldn't find your USP. Did you forget to add it?
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  • Profile picture of the author BrianMcLeod
    Reduction sauce from your copy...
    • Unlike most "marketing consultants"
    • 17+ years of experience helping grow small businesses
    • brainstorming with you
    • helping you identify and prioritize your biggest growth opportunities
    • maximize your marketing ROI.
    • oversee implementation of fundamental marketing strategies

    comprehensive selection of professional marketing services:
    • website design & hosting,
    • search engine marketing,
    • copywriting & ad creation,
    • direct and e-mail marketing

    Valuable? Definitely.

    Unique? Not yet.

    Keep digging...
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    • Profile picture of the author PaulintheSticks
      Originally Posted by bob ross View Post

      these big words hurt my head
      Bob,

      There's a simple cure for that. Its called reading beyond the 5th grade level.

      You might start out with some of Jay Abraham's books. Keep the aspirin handy though.
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      • Profile picture of the author Eddie Spangler
        Originally Posted by PaulintheSticks View Post

        Bob,

        There's a simple cure for that. Its called reading beyond the 5th grade level.

        You might start out with some of Jay Abraham's books. Keep the aspirin handy though.
        Well according to the Flesch-Kincaid model this is written for an average 18.9 grade level.
        Are you trying to help out scientists or everyday small biz owners?

        Love how new people who read books always like to tell you who they read and
        then suggest it with an air of superiority as if no one else in the game knows who these people are.

        You are going to be a bad man once your street smarts catch up to your book smarts.
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        • Profile picture of the author PaulintheSticks
          Originally Posted by Eddie Spangler View Post

          Well according to the Flesch-Kincaid model this is written for an average 18.9 grade level.
          Are you trying to help out scientists or everyday small biz owners?
          I agree. Its verbose (another big word) and over the top. But the fact is that, IN GENERAL, the more successful the person is, the better their vocabulary and communication skills and those are really the business owners I want to work with any way so my message needs to communicate only with them.

          Love how new people who read books always like to tell you who they read and then suggest it with an air of superiority as if no one else in the game knows who these people are.
          The point of the Jay Abraham comment was only that he uses very similar language as me as do a lot of other very successful business people. I like to model the most successful people.

          And since Bob was being a smart ass, I couldn't resist.

          You are going to be a bad man once your street smarts catch up to your book smarts.
          And actually I'm only new to consulting. I've got lots of business experience. I built my own successful retail business from scratch in the 2000's and used the marketing strategies I teach to do it and then sold it for a profit so I don't think my street smarts are that far behind but I'll take that as a compliment.
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          • Profile picture of the author misterme
            Originally Posted by PaulintheSticks View Post

            I've got lots of business experience. I built my own successful retail business from scratch in the 2000's and used the marketing strategies I teach to do it and then sold it for a profit
            Like I wrote, there's your USP.

            But I have to agree that the comment to Bob Ross was uncalled for.
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            • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
              Originally Posted by misterme View Post

              Like I wrote, there's your USP.
              I agree! Your past business experience should definitely be in there.
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          • Profile picture of the author misterme
            Originally Posted by John Durham View Post

            I like this part best:

            We also offer a comprehensive selection of professional marketing services such as website design & hosting, search engine marketing, copywriting & ad creation, direct and e-mail marketing,

            It has "clarity".
            Those are features, though.

            Originally Posted by PaulintheSticks View Post

            I agree. Its verbose (another big word) and over the top. But the fact is that, IN GENERAL, the more successful the person is, the better their vocabulary and communication skills and those are really the business owners I want to work with any way so my message needs to communicate only with them.

            The point of the Jay Abraham comment was only that he uses very similar language as me as do a lot of other very successful business people. I like to model the most successful people.
            Yeah and I find it very annoying, extremely perturbing, problematic and puzzling, how he, his students and disciples, all together in unison, harmony and cohesiveness, use verbose terms, wordy statements and multi-syllabic terminology, language and terms, to deal with, speak of and communicate every fricking thing three times, in three different ways, with a minimum, a standard, a touchstone, of three different words. Annoying!

            I know DK says to use "educated" language (my quotes) when communicating with the more affluent as well. Although I gotta say you can't go wrong speaking in easy-for-all-to-digest terms. Because after all, as I always say, why preclude elucidation?
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            • Profile picture of the author PaulintheSticks
              Originally Posted by misterme View Post

              Yeah and I find it very annoying, extremely perturbing, problematic and puzzling, how he, his students and disciples, all together in unison, harmony and cohesiveness, use verbose terms, wordy statements and multi-syllabic terminology, language and terms, to deal with, speak of and communicate every fricking thing three times, in three different ways, with a minimum, a standard, a touchstone, of three different words. Annoying!

              I know DK says to use "educated" language (my quotes) when communicating with the more affluent as well. Although I gotta say you can't go wrong speaking in easy-for-all-to-digest terms. Because after all, as I always say, why preclude elucidation?
              lol That's a conundrum for sure. Hard to argue with the results though.
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      • Profile picture of the author PaulintheSticks
        Originally Posted by PaulintheSticks View Post

        Bob,

        There's a simple cure for that. Its called reading beyond the 5th grade level.

        You might start out with some of Jay Abraham's books. Keep the aspirin handy though.
        Mister me is right and Bob, I apologize for that comment. It was demeaning and totally disrespectful and I shouldn't have said it. I still love ya like a brother.
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  • Profile picture of the author Shrugg
    Originally Posted by PaulintheSticks View Post

    I've been working on my business plan and came up with the following strategic positioning statement. Would appreciate any constructive criticism.

    Unlike most so-called "marketing consultants" who approach business tactically, offering various quick-fix marketing services, Business Growth Strategists will put our 17+ years of experience helping grow small businesses to work, brainstorming with you and helping you identify and prioritize your biggest growth opportunities to maximize your marketing ROI. And then we'll oversee the implementation of your fundamental marketing strategies to take full advantage of those opportunities so you have a rock-solid foundation upon which to build a sustainable business.
    .
    I understand in your position that this passionately describes your capabilities and how your prospects will benefit. My only suggestion would be to get this into "elevator pitch" format that screams benefit in a manner that grabs them by the collar.
    "We partner with ______ (specific to their industry) to double their revenues, etc"
    ROI, implementation,sustainable=eyes glazing over.

    GOOD LUCK!!!
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  • Profile picture of the author John Durham
    I like this part best:

    We also offer a comprehensive selection of professional marketing services such as website design & hosting, search engine marketing, copywriting & ad creation, direct and e-mail marketing,


    It has "clarity".

    Note:
    Everytime your customer has to stop for a millisecond to catch up with what you are trying to say, it causes an annoying "jerk" in in the flow.

    Try to flow like a conversation would, so they can keep up with you in real time and they arent always having to lag behind trying to catch up with your statements.

    That other stuff is good for college text books, but not much good for selling someone.
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  • Profile picture of the author Eddie Spangler
    Heres the thing, the vast majority of people here are not going to be dealing with the caliber of clients that these Heavy Hitters are dealing with.

    No doubt it works for them but if you are trying to communicate with the average small biz owner they just wont respond as well. Sometimes it will be because they just dont freaking understand what you are trying to say and dont want to embarrass themselves or be intimidated.

    Not to mention that it might make them feel that your services are going to cost them too much and they get turned off before you even get the chance to speak with them.
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    • Profile picture of the author PaulintheSticks
      Originally Posted by Eddie Spangler View Post

      Heres the thing, the vast majority of people here
      That's true but its my USP.

      but if you are trying to communicate with the average small biz owner
      As I said, Once I get this business rolling, I'm going to focus on mostly college educated, successful professionals. Its still too verbose regardless so I'm going to tone it down but I agree with you and as Dan Kennedy says, the message has to match the market.
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      • Profile picture of the author MRomeo09
        Where you trying to do a USP or a strategic positioning statement? I think you accomplished one, but definitely not the other.

        Sorry I realized that I wasn't very helpful in my comment.

        You have to go with something Unique, remember it's a unique selling proposition. But you also have to make it less corporate speaky. I mean if I can go into it and replace your name with any of your competitors then what's the point.

        I like to hit their pain, and then explain why we are different.

        Example: In a world where marketing costs more and more to get less and less. We scientifically create proven marketing plans that are guaranteed to provide double or greater returns on investment for any size business.

        Or niche driven: We let plumbers concentrate on the plumbing while we take care of the marketing. We provide a 17 point comprehensive marketing plan that has been proven to bring in more customers, increase profits and grow long term.

        Just my humble 2 cents.
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        Your opinion of yourself becomes your reality. If you have all these doubts, then no one will believe in you and everything will go wrong. If you think the opposite, the opposite will happen. It’s that simple.-Curtis Jackson- 50 Cent
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  • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
    In my humble opinion, there is confusion between a mission statement and
    statement of USP. I mean, you can have several, one liner USPs.
    Such as how you're web design and service is unique and superior...

    The mission statement would be the paragraphs(s) that define your company
    and beliefs to remind you, your employees, clients and contractors who you are.
    Could include your major USP of finding the best solution(s) first.

    Agree with using the simpler language. Less annoying to people who
    have to make a lot of decisions in a short day.
    "Why use a dollar word when a nickel one will do."

    Dan
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    "If you think you're the smartest person in the room, then you're probably in the wrong room."

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    • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
      Great USP's are 1 big promise.

      Fedex: "When it absolutely positively got to get there overnight"

      Domino's: "Fresh hot pizza within 20 minutes or it's free"

      And both answered an existing problem...
      slow nationwide delivery
      and having to drive to pick up a pizza

      Can you use this as a guide?

      Best,
      Ewen
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  • Profile picture of the author PaulintheSticks
    The goal was to create what Chet Holmes called an Ultimate Strategic Position statement not a Unique Selling Proposition.
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  • Profile picture of the author PanteraIM
    These are all great responses so far.

    Typically I'd suggest to focus on one area in your business and let that become your competitive advantage.

    If I'm selling to a prospect and discover they need 'x', then I'll hammer my businesses' expertise in dealing with that particular product, which was sold to these SIMILAR BUSINESSES in the past, with these amazing results, over and over.
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  • Profile picture of the author PaulintheSticks
    Been working on this for the last hour or so. I think its a lot better and communicates my advantage much more clearly. Maybe it needs to be more concise for a strategic positioning statement since its pretty long. Its probably closer to a sales letter. Plus I'm noticing that its pretty much all logic and no emotion. Any way, constructive criticism is greatly appreciated as always. Smart ass comments - not so much.

    Most small business owners aren't aware that the best opportunities to grow their business usually aren't in creating another social media campaign, website or other marketing service you've been led to believe you need to buy. Instead they're almost always hidden within their current sales & marketing program.

    So instead of trying to sell you another "off the cuff" marketing service, I'll work closely with you and together we'll analyze every detail of your current sales and marketing program to find the areas that can be improved upon to get you the best return from every penny you're already spending.

    Then we'll put together a plan to make it happen and I'll be there every step of the way to make sure it does. And if that's not enough to meet your profit goals, we'll adjust your sales & marketing plan to focus on the most cost effective strategy until you do.

    In fact, we'll use the same sales and marketing principles I used to build my own profitable retail business (Health Connections, Yorkville) in the late '90's to the mid 2000's.

    So with a 17+ year track record helping grow small businesses and building my own profitable business, you know you're getting a professional who knows what he's doing but more importantly has done it before and can help you do it too.
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    • I don't know if this would be helpful, but I took 15 minutes and hammered out some contrasting copy for you. See if any of it fits or strikes a chord. I won't be offended if it doesn't. I'd call this style: Direct and Edgy, but not Inflammatory. We could go a notch or two up. Or you could go down to a more elegant and finesse style from this.

      CR

      You: Most small business owners aren't aware that the best opportunities to grow their business usually aren't in creating another social media campaign, website or other marketing service you've been led to believe you need to buy. Instead they're almost always hidden within their current sales & marketing program.

      Me: [STOP reinventing the wheel in your business in order to create a profitable lead flow. And, DON'T spend another DIME on a "new" Social Media or "johnny-come-lately" marketing campaign. Instead, let me show you--free of charge--where your future profits lay hidden in your current sales and marketing program!]

      You: So instead of trying to sell you another "off the cuff" marketing service, I'll work closely with you and together we'll analyze every detail of your current sales and marketing program to find the areas that can be improved upon to get you the best return from every marketing dollar you're already spending.

      Me: [Every business owner I've worked with in my 17+ year told me they HATED to spend more money without FIRST squeezing every last ROI dime out of their current marketing and sales spend! So, here's what I propose: DON'T SPEND ANOTHER DANG DIME! Instead, let me loan you my EYES, BRAIN and KEEN ROI sniffing expertise and we'll hunt down together the many hidden opportunities you've somehow missed and didn't exploit in your current marketing. I believe so strongly that this is the right thing to do that I'll pay you $500 if we don't find at least three things you can do immediately that will... MAKE. YOU. MONEY!]

      You: Then we'll put together a plan to make it happen and I'll be there every step of the way to make sure it does. And if that's not enough to meet your profit goals, we'll adjust your sales & marketing plan to focus on the most cost effective strategy until you do.

      Me: [The upshot of this inquisition to create a higher ROI from what you've already spent is that you'll have a bullet-proof plan you can pull the trigger on immediately! YES, you'll know exactly what to do to fix it. And, if you want me to hand-hold or look over your shoulder to insure the process works and that you get the desired outcome--just say so!]

      You: In fact, we'll use the same sales and marketing principles I used to build my own profitable retail business (Health Connections, Yorkville) in the late '90's to the mid 2000's.

      Me: [You see this isn't our first rodeo, as they say. I built several VERY profitable retail businesses myself. All you really need is a good business peer who has already done it help you see clearly what you should and shouldn't do! So, let's stop wasting money and time--and get down to it. I am at your service!

      PS If you're still not sure my ROI-Squeezing approach will work maybe these three ROI-Squeezing case studies (where we STOPPED three well-intended business owners from literally throwing away millions of dollars in hidden opportunities because they just didn't know where to find them in their own "backyard!") will convince you!]
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      • Profile picture of the author PaulintheSticks
        I like your version a lot better. Very well done. Thanks so much for taking the time.

        Now if I only had 3 roi squeezing case studies.

        Originally Posted by Curtis Mitchell Rasmussen View Post

        I don't know if this would be helpful, but I took 15 minutes and hammered out some contrasting copy for you. See if any of it fits or strikes a chord. I won't be offended if it doesn't. I'd call this style: Direct and Edgy, but not Inflammatory. We could go a notch or two up. Or you could go down to a more elegant and finesse style from this.

        CR

        You: Most small business owners aren't aware that the best opportunities to grow their business usually aren't in creating another social media campaign, website or other marketing service you've been led to believe you need to buy. Instead they're almost always hidden within their current sales & marketing program.

        Me: [STOP reinventing the wheel in your business in order to create a profitable lead flow. And, DON'T spend another DIME on a "new" Social Media or "johnny-come-lately" marketing campaign. Instead, let me show you--free of charge--where your future profits lay hidden in your current sales and marketing program!]

        You: So instead of trying to sell you another "off the cuff" marketing service, I'll work closely with you and together we'll analyze every detail of your current sales and marketing program to find the areas that can be improved upon to get you the best return from every marketing dollar you're already spending.

        Me: [Every business owner I've worked with in my 17+ year told me they HATED to spend more money without FIRST squeezing every last ROI dime out of their current marketing and sales spend! So, here's what I propose: DON'T SPEND ANOTHER DANG DIME! Instead, let me loan you my EYES, BRAIN and KEEN ROI sniffing expertise and we'll hunt down together the many hidden opportunities you've somehow missed and didn't exploit in your current marketing. I believe so strongly that this is the right thing to do that I'll pay you $500 if we don't find at least three things you can do immediately that will... MAKE. YOU. MONEY!]

        You: Then we'll put together a plan to make it happen and I'll be there every step of the way to make sure it does. And if that's not enough to meet your profit goals, we'll adjust your sales & marketing plan to focus on the most cost effective strategy until you do.

        Me: [The upshot of this inquisition to create a higher ROI from what you've already spent is that you'll have a bullet-proof plan you can pull the trigger on immediately! YES, you'll know exactly what to do to fix it. And, if you want me to hand-hold or look over your shoulder to insure the process works and that you get the desired outcome--just say so!]

        You: In fact, we'll use the same sales and marketing principles I used to build my own profitable retail business (Health Connections, Yorkville) in the late '90's to the mid 2000's.

        Me: [You see this isn't our first rodeo, as they say. I built several VERY profitable retail businesses myself. All you really need is a good business peer who has already done it help you see clearly what you should and shouldn't do! So, let's stop wasting money and time--and get down to it. I am at your service!

        PS If you're still not sure my ROI-Squeezing approach will work maybe these three ROI-Squeezing case studies (where we STOPPED three well-intended business owners from literally throwing away millions of dollars in hidden opportunities because they just didn't know where to find them in their own "backyard!") will convince you!]
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    • Profile picture of the author shane_k
      Originally Posted by PaulintheSticks View Post


      In fact, we'll use the same sales and marketing principles I used to build my own profitable retail business (Health Connections, Yorkville) in the late '90's to the mid 2000's.

      out of everything you wrote, this is probably the only thing that made me sit up and think, "wait, what was that? tell me abit more about that?"

      Everything else I read was like, this is the same stuff I hear from everyone else.
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      • Profile picture of the author sethczerepak
        This is a common mistake, trying to make the MESSAGE your USP. The message just describes your USP. If you don't have the USP in the first place, the message will come out sounding like your "about us" page, which is what you've got here.

        Someone on this thread said that the "USP IS the business," which is very true. It's the undergirding process or set of principles which guides EVERY part of your business. It should be "elastic" enough to be hinted at or summarized in a tagline OR expanded into an entire book, white paper or spin off products.

        The ultimate test is that if your competitor can copy it without landing in court with an intellectual property lawsuit, you've still got work to do.

        A great examples is Stephen Covey's 7 Habits, that's the USP

        The messages and products spun off from that have been

        7 Habit of Highly Effective Families
        7 Habit of Highly Effective Leaders
        The 8th Habit
        The 4 Disciplines of Execution (a microcosm of the USP)
        7 Habit of Highly Effective Teens

        Other examples:

        Robert Kiyosaki's Cashflow Quadrant
        Bob Proctor's 11 Laws
        Tim Ferriss and the "4 Hour ___" + his D.E.A.L. strategy
        Crossfit
        NLP
        EFT
        WTF (just kidding)
        Peter Bowerman's "Well Fed Writer" brand
        Butterfly Marketing by Mike Filsiame
        VDT (my company brand)

        It's a lot of work to create a USP, but once you have one, there's no limit to what you can do with it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tracy411
    Hi Paul,

    I agree with everyone who has said that you need to highlight your experience and all that you've accomplished as a result. If your approach is the result of years of testing & tweaking which brought you to success, use that. If you have numbers to back that up, include that.

    Off the top of my head, something to the effect of: "I spent the last 17 years applying my strategies to my own business & tripled my profits. I know that I can help you increase your business too."

    You want to look at what will jump out at a prospect and resonate with him or her. A list of services mean only so much. If you can speak in terms of results (you have them) and can lend credibility, you stand out. Your USP should hook them at wanting to know more, picking up the phone. You can elaborate later, or as someone suggested, on the 'About Us' page of your website.

    Tracy
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