Let’s start with being clear about what a UVP actually means. Here’s my take on it.
What does your business do to make your clients feel utter relief and joy because you helped them fix the problem they had by doing what you’re good at in your own way which shows you truly understand them and delivers a ton of value at the same time?
I know, a bit long-winded but bear with me on this.
OR if you want the Wikipedia version:
A value proposition is a promise of value to be delivered, communicated, and acknowledged. It is also a belief from the customer about how value (benefit) will be delivered, experienced and acquired.
What makes you different from the pack?
What value can you give your clients so they will never want to leave you?
Why should a client want to work with you over your competitors?
What gap do you bridge which your competitors do not?
What difference can you make to your clients’ lives so they love you forever?
In this article, I am going to:
- Explain what a UVP actually is and its purpose
- How to create your UVP
- Where to put your UVP on your website
Putting together your UVP can be a challenging process. It can be difficult for us to see our business from an external perspective as we are ‘inside’ it.
Your UVP gives a snapshot of the experience, outcome or result your clients get from working with you.
What is a Unique Value Proposition (UVP) and What Does it Mean?
In a nutshell, your UVP is made up of a simple statement which encapsulates what you do, who you do it for and how your business can make clients’ lives better and what the outcomes will be for them.
Once you have put your UVP together, your business will take it everywhere it goes. It will become your business’s identity, summing up the core of what your business does and what makes you unique from other businesses who offer similar services.
The UVP is different from a mission statement. A mission statement focuses on the aims and values of a business or organisation from their own perspective; why they do what they do. By contrast, a UVP is focused on what a business does for their client, so it is more client-focused. Let’s break this down a little more:
1. The Problems Clients Have
Ultimately this is why we are all in business. Your business exists to meet the needs of your clients and to solve the problems they have.
“What does your business do to make your clients feel utter relief and joy because you helped them fix the problem they had…”
What is the actual problem the client has? They do not necessarily know what it is they actually need, but they certainly know the problem they have.
A business is seeing income fall because online sales have gone down through their website.
Problem: fall in online sales
They might not know how to fix this but they know they might need someone to take a look at their website to see if anything can be done.
In this scenario, the client:
Has the problem of > falling sales income.
The client wonders if there is anything that can be done to the website to help with this > they know they need to find someone who works with websites.
What they won’t know > what aspects of the website can be improved to increase conversions and find out why sales conversions have gone down. They need a website audit to discover improvements which could be made to the site.
2. What Does Your Business Do?
“…by doing what you’re good at…”
The first hurdle to overcome is to avoid concentrating on the ‘how’. What I mean by this is not going into detail about the technical processes your business undertakes to deliver the services to your clients.
An accountant prepares and submits tax returns for their clients as their process, but to their clients, they are reducing their liability which means they have more capital to help grow the firm and expand.
A newborn photographer may take photographs as their process, but to their clients, they are capturing memories of newborn babies for families to be treasured forever.
A psychotherapist may offer counselling as their process, but for their clients, they are helping someone to live a happier and more fulfilled life.
A web designer may build websites as their process, but for their clients, they are helping a business get clients and generate an income for that business.
Can you begin to see how it’s not the ‘process’ of your business which should be included in your UVP but what it is your business creates for clients, by solving the problem they have with your know-how and expertise?
3. What is the Result and Outcome for the Client?
“…in your own way which shows you truly understand them and delivers a ton of value at the same time.”
What is it about your business which makes you different to others in your industry? Remember though, uniqueness is subjective. Different people will be attracted to different companies. You are not wanting to attract ‘everyone’ to work with your business, you want the ‘right’ client to work with.
This is where you need to ‘show’ who your business is and what makes you different to anyone else.
In his book, They Ask You Answer, Marcus Sheridan writes about the claims businesses use to try and set themselves apart from the competition. Claims such as:
“We are the best ___________.”
“We have the most ___________.”
“No one does _________like we do.”
In fact, if businesses research their competition, they will see others doing typically the same thing and making similar claims. In order to stand out, we have to show who we are, how we present ourselves and the actions our business takes, and how we treat our clients and prospects.
How can you make your business stand out?
- Be specific and talk to your ideal client on your website and show you truly understand their problem. Make them feel your content is written just for them
- Help your prospects through the process of making the right buying decision; whether that means they work with you or not, the right ones will filter through
- Bring your company’s personality into play. Be genuine and let the website reflect the true personality of your business. The size of your company doesn’t matter, each company starts small.
In his book, Start With Why, Simon Sinek sums this up well:
When a company is small, it revolves around the personality of the founder. There is no debate that the founder’s personality is the personality of the company. Why then do we think things change just because a company is successful? What’s the difference between Steve Jobs the man and Apple the company? Nothing. What’s the difference between Sir Richard Branson’s personality and Virgin’s personality? Nothing. As a company grows, the CEO’s job is to personify the WHY. To ooze of it. To talk about it. To preach it. To be a symbol of what the company believes. They are the intention and WHAT the company says and does is their voice.
How to Create Your UVP?
To begin the process of creating your UVP, you need to start brainstorming and answer the following questions.
You could have multiple answers to these questions to start with so write everything down which comes to mind.
When you review your answers, put them in order of priority and see what seems the most important to your prospects, rather than what is important to your business. Put yourself in your client’s shoes and think about the answers to the questions from their perspective.
Here are the questions:
✎ Write down the biggest problems your clients face on a regular basis?
✎ Write everything down you can think of and then narrow it down to one or two problems to focus on.
✎ Now narrow it down to the biggest struggle your clients have.
✎ Based on the answer to the above problem section, now write down how you solve the problem you highlighted above.
✎ Make sure your solution is connected to the actual problem.
✎ Write down the solution in terms of what your business actually does (the process) in solving the problem.
✎ Now write down the solution in terms of what your client would understand in lay man’s terms how their problem is solved.
✎ Based on the answers to 1 and 2, write down the result or outcome your client will feel after working with you.
✎ How will they feel when their problem is sorted?
✎ How will they feel in 3 or 6 months or longer now the problem they have is being managed or has been solved.
✎ How have their lives improved?
Are you struggling with this?
If you are struggling with this, then there’s nothing better than asking your existing or past clients what difference working with you made to them.
Getting regular reviews and testimonials will really help you with this too, so never be afraid to ask for constructive feedback once a project has finished.
Create Your UVP
With the information you have prepared above, now complete the following sentence:
We help [IDEAL CLIENT] to [SOLVE THE PROBLEM THEY HAVE] so that they will [THE RESULT] and [HOW THEIR LIVES WILL BE BETTER]
Write your UVP in plain language which is easy to understand. Don’t try and be clever and make prospects try and work it out.
Where Should Your UVP Appear on Your Website?
Your UVP is normally found in the hero section of your website which is the top section under the navigation and above the fold.
In the infographic below you can see where this is positioned. It needs to be displayed where it will be seen in the first few seconds of a visitor’s arrival on the website to get their fullest attention.
- The purpose of your UVP should assure a prospect they are in the right place and your business could possibly help them. Not everyone will want to work with you and that is a good thing because not everyone is a good fit.
- Make sure you are super clear about what you do and who you do it for and why someone would want to work with you rather than any other business.
- Make it easy for your prospect’s brain to absorb the information easily and not waste their precious time trying to work out what it is you do. They will simply move on if they have to think too hard.
- Show personality on your website, show who you are and how your business solves your client’s problems. Show them what makes you different and how you stand out from the crowd.
- Remember – problem > service > result.
I hope this has helped you with your own UVP. I would love to know how you get on.
If you are struggling with creating your UVP then The Website Identity Framework (WIF®) will help you explore, decide and refine what it is that you do and how you, uniquely, help others. Take a look here.