Why your product needs a USP | All By Mama
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Why your product needs a USP

A USP, you probably know, stands for Unique Selling Point.  It’s what makes your product different to other (perhaps similar) products on the market.  (Let’s face it - there isn’t much that’s truly new or unique nowadays!)

Why Do You Need One?

If your product isn’t a 100% original idea (and don’t worry if that’s the case) you’ll likely already have some competitors.  And, even if you don’t, we can assume that if you have a great product, you might have competitors at some point in the future. 

That means you need to ensure your product stands out, amongst everything else. 

How Can You Create (Or Figure Out) Your USP?

If your product is a brand new and unique idea then you have it already.

If not, then you should be thinking about this while designing your product - not when it comes to market it!

I suggest doing two things during the product creation process:

  1. Research your competition. Look at their products, packaging and price. Read their reviews and see what their customers say.  Is there anything they really like (or don’t like?)  Is there an opportunity for you to improve?
  2. Talk to your customers, during the design stage.  You don’t necessarily have to come out and share all the details of your product if you don’t want to - although, there is something to be said for getting them to buy in early - and you can always ask people general questions about what they’d like a product like yours to look like, feature, do, etc, to help you come up with some ideas.

A quick note that if you handmake your products, then this, plus the materials you use and where you get your inspiration likely is your USP - as they’re almost certainly unique! 

The Dangers Of Making Price Your USP

I sometimes see people selling a very similar product to others on the market, but pricing themselves lower (or sometimes, even higher) as a way to stand out.

This is a problem if the product doesn’t justify the price.

If your price is low and your competitors also lower their prices to compete with you, then you may have to lower yours again to keep up and before you know it you might not actually be profitable.

If too high, there has to be a reason for it.  Why would you by a more expensive version, without a good reason?

There are two ways you can make this work. 

  1. If your product is designed to be cheaper.  I.e. it’s a simpler version, with less features and you’ve sourced or created it with that in mind.
  2. If your product is designed to be more expensive.  I.e. you’re using higher quality materials, or you have additional features that your competitors don’t.

Do note that in both of these examples the price isn’t what makes the products unique - it’s the decision, in the design stage, to differentiate the product either by making it a simpler or more premium version of an already existing product.

Some Examples Using My Own Products

My bamboo dining sets are designed to be simple and chic, with no visible branding.  At the time, my competitor’s products were all quite child-focused (i.e. in the shape of animals), or had very visible branding on the side, identifying them as ‘baby products’. From reading the reviews, I could see that parents wanted these products to last longer than those early weaning stages - so I saw that as an opportunity to differentiate!

When I launched my bamboo hooded towels they were the biggest and softest available (at the time - I’m certain they won’t be now!)  I also ensured they were chemical free and had very simple, clean, unisex designs.  This gave me lots to talk about!

Hopefully this gives you an idea!  If you can’t describe your product in a way that clearly demonstrates the benefits and what makes it unique, you might need to go back and give it some thought, as that will almost certainly help you when it comes to marketing and selling your product.

Vicki Weinberg, Tiny Chipmunk

Tiny Chipmunk

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