Here we are… into the second and last part of the “Digging Deeper” section of the USP. Normally, this consulting is only offered in the front end of our marketing campaigns – and I’m sure you’ll see how invaluable it becomes…
So – a few loose ends. We’ve already done some quick competitive analysis (we’d spend much more time if this were a paying gig) and we understand the competitive landscape.
If this were a real business – we’d grab the existing customer list and do a little trick called demographic “enhancement” and add in other information available from publically available lists. Then, we’d sift through that list and find ALL the common features.
That would then provide us the triggers, locations, media outlets, and other critical information we’d need to make our campaigns uber-sucessful…
But – for the sake of this topic and your time – we’ll simply work through the typical USP and then you can do the same for your business!
** A Typical USP **
It has the following form…
“We are serving (call out your customer). We’ll help you (primary benefit). With our unique process, (unique way of doing things).”
So, what we’re after is a focused message to our customers first…
In this first part of the statement, I might suggest we remove the commodity nature of the auto repair business because it only makes us battle for low price offers and low price customers. We want highly qualified customers that appreciate the work we do.
So… maybe “discerning BMW owners” or “sophisticated european car drivers” or “executives looking looking stay productive while having their cars serviced” or… you name it… but make it specific.
And – we’d know who they are if we went through the current customer list. If we’re just starting out.. then we define whom we want as customers and simply call it out.
For the sake of argument… let’s use the first one that was suggested above.
The first part of our phrase is “We are serving discerning BMW owners.”
— that was simple —
Now… onto the primary benefit. We’d steer anyone to the low frequency offers that were discovered in yesterday’s email or an “anti” offer of the most popular items in that same research. But, because I’m a luxury car owner, I know a little more about what might work here. So… the primary benefit I’m going to pick is “first class service you deserve”.
And, the unique mechanism that seems to be missing for most of the competitors is a convenient way to be productive while your car is being serviced. This to me means a lounge area with a place to plug in and internet during quick oil changes or brakes. And, it means a shuttle, pick up and drop off, or loaner car for larger jobs.
So the USP turns into something like this…
“We are serving discerning BMW owners. We help you stay productive while you get the first class service you deserve. We do this by giving you access to our executive lounge and high speed wifi so you can make the deal of the century while we’re changing your oil. Need more than an oil change? Then you’ll love our exclusive pick up and drop off service!”
That’s a bit long – but it does the job.
I know – some of you may want to dive into other benefits (safety, reliabillity, etc), but remember, if you have an auto shop… that’s the stuff you’re supposed to be offering anyway! And, that’s the biggest mistake in business… being an also-ran or just another apples to apples comparison. If that happens you’ll be racing to low prices and that kind of business bites!
Imagine what kind of clientele you would attract if your USP was the one above? You’d have loyal clients that were willing to pay a little extra to be treated like a high-end car owner? Knowing maintenance costs more for a luxury car isn’t a new concept…it simply doesn’t matter to most people. And, if my neighbor is any indication, that guy’s got two Porches and one BMW. He just keeps buying them!
And – does this USP really cost the auto shop more even though he can charge a premium? Let’s take a quick look:
+ How much does a wireless router really cost?
+ How much would it take to clean up the waiting area and put in a nice sofa and electric outlet? IKEA might have something you could put in today.
+ For personal pick up and drop off, you could use your smart phone and get an Uber when you really need it. You don’t have to be strapped to an extra employee.
+ Coffee, water, a small snack… cost very little for the loyalty of great customers!
So- as you can see… it would take VERY LITTLE to carve out your very own niche. And, in Alpharetta Georgia you’d make a killing with simple things like a clean shop, clean and slightly upscale waiting area, and maybe some bottled water a Keurig and nice music in the background.
Then, you’d have something to celebrate and EVERYONE would share their experience!
The marketing campaign for this would right itself! The email offers in everyday messages would be simple, gracious and effective. The direct mail offers would draw huge crowds and would put some dignity back in the business!
Just my two cents…
Now… I’m headed into farm country to cut down almond trees with my 70-something uncle. Pray we don’t cut off our own limbs and I’m guessing you’ll end up with a story or two in the coming days.
Have a great Saturday!
You won’t be able to get the current offer for Mystic Mailer after the timer goes to zero…
PPS: I’ve already created the new landing page that you’ll see if you wait until after the timer goes to zero and there isn’t a single “buy now” button on it. To get access to Mystic Mailer, you’ll have to be one of our marketing customer (it’s super exclusive). I’m not sure if we’ll ever offer it as a stand alone membership again.