Unique Value Proposition P.1 Where do I start?

UVP  – That’s probably the most common combination of 3 letters in almost every conversion optimisation publication. It’s also one of the strongest influencers in any CRO framework or formula.

In the Marketing Experiments’ “Conversion Sequence heuristic” value proposition is considered the second most important factor:

Alternatively, the “L.I.F.T.” model by WiderFunnel would value the UVP to be the strongest factor:


Despite billions of people discussing UVP, I’m quite surprised to have never seen a solid framework or  guide explaining how to actually develop and express your UVP! That is exactly why i decided to share one of our UVP development framework with you.

Sounds good, so where do I start?

The most optimal way to start is to brainstorm a list of value statements or propositions. It’s important to understand that at this stage we don’t need to bother about the value or exclusivity – just list all the possible benefits your potential client would find lucrative.

Do it properly

If you are serious about developing a really strong UVP you can go one step further. What’s the best way to find out what benefits or values attract your potential ideal customers? Well, pretty logically, ask those who already converted. Simply create a survey with around 3-5 questions and send it to all of your customers who’ve already purchased/used your service.

So what do we ask?

All right, it should be pretty obvious but just to ensure we all are at the same page here are some example questions that you should ask:

Please give 3 reasons why you chose INSERT_YOUR_BRAND_HERE as your supplier?

This is probably the most important question as it will provide you with an abundance of reasons! We usually ask for at least three reasons to ensure our customers will always include all of the appealing benefits without the need to choose the most valuable and leave out others. At the same time, asking for several reasons is a great way to increase the amount of data to work with without increasing the amount of participants.

Can you name any other suppliers you were considering before choosing INSERT_YOUR_BRAND_HERE?

What was it that made you choose INSERT_YOUR_BRAND_HERE over these other providers ?

With these questions we want to investigate the exclusivity of our statements. It’s essential to understand that your UVPs should be never analysed or developed in the information vacuum. It’s not about how strong are the benefits you provide, more how they compare to the rest of the market. And before we will dive there you want to find out who to actually compare to.

This question quite often produces a completely surprised outcome – your actual customer will probably compare you to a completely different bunch of competitors than you originally thought (usually much lower league which hurts the ego). Your competitors are companies considered by your clients together with you rather than a firm your boss likes to compare himself to.

Can you think of 3 reasons why someone would NOT choose INSERT_YOUR_BRAND_HERE as their supplier?

The last question is the optional one. I strongly believe that in spite of having the strongest value propositions in the market, some potential customers would not purchase based on something I call ‘anti-UVP’ (I know it sounds bad but what do you want from a term I made up while writing this paragraph).

Here’s some examples of ‘anti-UVP’:

  • PR scandals – Remember the Levi’s scandal with “slavelike” conditions for workers in 90’s?
  • Religion – Arabic brands are ignored by Israeli customers and vice versa no matter on the UVPs.
  • Hipsters (Hello Jane!) – That’s perhaps the most commonly spotted case of anti-UVPs. Where an entire subculture not just going to ignore your value propositions but will consider them as the negative factor while making the purchase decision.

That’s pretty much all for the first part. At this stage you should have a list of:

  • Potential value propositions
  • List of real competitors
  • Exclusive value propositions compared to your competitors
  • Anti-UVPs or any reasons why somebody would not buy from you (optional)
Image from sphericalnotions.com
Stay tuned for the second part where I’ll describe how to use the data we’ve just collected to develop and express appealing and exclusive Unique Value Proposition.


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