Unique Selling Proposition: Find Your Differentiating Idea

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To create a powerful unique selling proposition you must identify what differentiates you from everyone else.  Jack Trout and Steve Rivkin, in their excellent book Differentiate or Die, call this your differentiating idea.

Without a differentiating idea, your unique selling proposition is not unique!

I’ve already talked about what will NOT differentiate you – things like customer service and quality.  These things are expected!  And I do not recommend that small businesses try to compete on price.  That’s typically a loosing proposition!

So what’s going to make your unique selling proposition unique?

Trout and Rivkin give at least 9 differentiating ideas.  For example, being first is a differentiating idea.  Google was the first popular search engine so we say we're "googling" a search term.  Xerox was the first copier so people referred to copying as “Xeroxing.”  Hertz was the first rent-a-car company and is still the leader at airports.  Coca Cola was “the real thing,” and people generically refer to any soft drink as a "Coke."  No reflection on these examples, but sometimes it’s better to be first than best!

Leadership may be the most powerful differentiating idea.  Your company may be the leader because of its size, its sales, its technology, or its innovation.  If you have the credentials to back it up, leadership is an excellent differentiator.

There are many other differentiators that you may want to consider.  Whatever you identify as yours, be sure to incorporate it into your unique selling proposition.

My Unique Selling Proposition –

There are 3 ways that I differentiate myself as a business coach in the Sugar Land, Katy TX, and Houston area.  First is experience.

I have been mentoring and developing business and organizational leaders for more than 30 years.  I work with over 50 business leaders every year in a personal, coaching relationship.  They come from practically every industry you can imagine.  Most of them work with me for 2 years or more.  My experience is a differentiator.

Second is leadership, particularly, I’m a business education leader.  My first university degree was in education, and I’ve been educating myself and others ever since.  I’ve taught leaders on 5 continents and am a fervent writer.  I frequently lead seminars, workshops, and educational events for business leaders.  Google reviews and local business reviews have affirmed me as a business education leader.

Third is generosity.  For my entire adult life I have served non-profit organizations and have volunteered extensively to serve others both locally and globally.  I was honored this year by the Fort Bend Chamber of Commerce by being awarded the Ursala Coates Memorial Chairman’s award for service in the Fort Bend County business community.

This final differentiator is most important to me.  It tells my clients, prospects, and referral sources that I am genuinely concerned for their welfare and success, not just my own.

Let me encourage you to identify YOUR differentiating idea(s).  Make sure you can back it up, and then communicate it in a hundred different ways.  You can start right here - leave me a comment and tell us what your differentiator is.  Thanks.


2 Responses to “Unique Selling Proposition: Find Your Differentiating Idea”

  1. Glenn—I find it interesting why certain people choose their career. After reading your blog this morning, I completely understand why you do what you do. Your client’s are fortunate to have a person with your why be their coach and mentor.

    • Glenn says:

      Thank you Sid for those kind words. I appreciate your friendship and your encouragement. You are certainly a coach’s coach! All the best!