Rosser Reeves was an American advertising executive and early pioneer of television advertising. He was committed to making ads that were simple, direct, and often annoying. His most typical ad is probably that for Anacin, a headache medicine. The ad was considered annoying by almost all viewers but it was remarkably successful, tripling the product’s sales. Reeves didn’t believe ads should reassure, entertain, or educate, he argued they should exist only to communicate the slogan. In several works of advertising theory that he wrote he advocated a rigidly scientific approach shunning artistry and creativity. He’s also notable for creating Eisenhower’s presidential ads for the 1952 election.
Rosser Reeves is the person who coined the word ‘USP’; he defined the word in two parts.
1. Each advertisement must make a proposition to the consumer. Not just words, not just product puffery, not just show-window advertising. Each advertisement must say to each target customer: “Buy this product, and you’ll get this specific benefit.”
2. The proposition must be one that the competition either can’t, or doesn’t offer. It must be unique……either a uniqueness of the brand or a claim not otherwise made in that particular field of advertising.
USPs are differentiators
USPs are the differentiators. They differentiate BMW from cars on the roads; Rolex from the wrist watches; you from run-of-the- mill mediocrity. USPs make you a garden variety rather than a wild weed.
When I was writing The Craft of Selling “YOURSELF”, I started thinking that in what way this book will be different from thousands of books written on this topic. Various USPs came to mind but the one that really created stir was that of Money Back Guarantee. I’m so confident and proud of my work that it’ll create a paradigm shift in the arena of job search. I’ve googled the internet; I don’t see any author courageous or creative enough to give money back guarantee in Pakistan. All over the world, I’m one of the few authors who dare to give money back guarantee. Therefore, this is the Unique Selling Proposition of The Craft of Selling “YOURSELF”.
As a corporate trainer, my USPs make me stand out. First, I’m Pakistan’s 1st sales trainer with hands-on sales experience. Second, I’m Pakistan’s 1st sales trainer who gives money back guarantee and probably one of the few trainers worldwide who give money back guarantees. Don’t you think, my striking USPs differentiate me from other trainers?
Mobilink doesn’t sell cell phone connections by sending a flyer to millions of Pakistanis and having employees call contacts. Telenor also does not just carpet-bomb the market with flyers and leaflets and wait for miracles to happen. Standard Chartered Bank does not sell credit cards that way. In fact, the successful companies invest in product development and create differentiated products, tailor the products to fulfill specific needs of customers and promote the products with conviction.
Your buyers (employers) choose the best candidate from available pool. Choosing among multiple options is always based on differences, implicit or explicit. Psychologists point out that vividly differentiated differences that are anchored to a product can enhance memory because they can be appreciated intellectually. In other words, if you’re advertising a product, you ought to give the consumer a reason to choose that product.