Singing from the same Hymn Sheet

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How can you continue to find a USP in a marketplace that’s saturated and highly competitive? And actually, it may be more accurate to talk about a Unique Marketing Proposition…

1. Acknowledge what you are

Consider what you offer in a positive vein rather than comparing what you may not have. You are what you are and that will appeal to your market – which in turn, means you need to identify who your market is…

2. Own particular facets of your offering

It may not be unique, but it can be yours. If you promote or feature a benefit before your competitors it can become yours regardless of the fact that others do have it. Publically, it is seen as belonging to you simply because you have highlighted it.

3. Accentuate and differentiate

Use different features and benefits in different circumstances or to different markets. Choose your image in direct relation to your audience; create points of differentiation to give breadth and depth to your marketing.

4. Develop various products

Take various ingredients and blend in alternative ways and you can produce a variety of cakes, biscuits and pastries – do the same with your store cupboard of features and you can create various profiles.

5. Play your best team to meet the circumstances

I love football analogies – you play your squad dependant on your opposition or whether you are home or away or whether it’s a two leg game or cup knockout – so you may not play your star striker but shore up defence. Play to your strengths when talking to the market by understanding what the objectives are for a campaign or project.

6. Take a seasonal view

Retailers always take advantage of not only the seasons, but also any (and every) event, both national and local – we should all be doing the same. Be topical and you will find the impact of your activity compounded by the general interest around the calendar or event.

7. Take comfort in the well known

We should not always believe our own publicity, but we can be guilty of becoming bored with our own marketing way before our market has. If your monitoring and reviews are positive, stick with it.

8. Seeing the wood for the trees

Don’t play a game you cannot win, change the game. Explore an intersection of ideas, consider what you could add to the mix by combining two things – they don’t need to be new, but never previously paired together. Take a wider view to look from the outside in rather than the inside out.


You are not alone – talk with your colleagues; your counterparts and most importantly, of course your agency – CKD for example, have a wealth of experience and expertise in taking propositions to the marketplace. With your knowledge of your business and their knowledge of the marketplace, collaboration will inevitably identify innovative and effective strategies to pursue.