It’s so easy to just decide to go into business. Pick a topic, find some keywords and go. Right? Wrong. Well, technically it is that easy, but if you want long term success, conversion and sales there’s a little more that goes into it.
I’ve noticed a lot of people choose a blog title based on just keywords, or on themselves… and this is a mistake.
At every step of the process you want to have in the forefront of your mind “what’s in it for them”… them being your reader. The problem comes in when you don’t even know who your reader is because you don’t know who YOU are… and what makes you unique from the other sites out there. Your uniqueness is what makes you speak to some people and not others.
To be able to really speak to the people you want to speak to you have to have some clarity on who you are, and who they are as well. I’m not talking about whether they’re 30 and female… although that stuff can certainly be important, I’m talking about your unique selling proposition.
Sometimes it’s easier to get clarity on how this stuff really effects us by looking at some examples.
If you were looking for a copy writer, let’s say. Who would you go with?
Ashley Ambirge ~ who’s website is called “The Middle Finger Project” and her tagline is: because entrepreneurs do it better and vulgar titles are funny. ~ She cusses, talks a lot about sex, and hookers, drinks and dancing and incorporates that energy into her writing.
Joe Vitale ~ who’s site is called “Joe Vitale is… Mr. Fire” and he talks about hypnotic copy and marketing. Very upstanding, claims to be a guru in marketing etc.
Two VERY different people… and very different people will be drawn to them both.
Let’s take the internet marketing arena…
Tiffany Dow ~ straight forward, honest, at times call you out and in your face… self professed honey badger.
Darren Rouse ~ seems very laid back, professional, non controversial, has lots of guest bloggers on his site.
Who do you connect to? Because they are very unique ~ and yet have quite a bit of overlap.
or how about in the food arena:
There’s 100 Days of Real Food ~ a whole family eating completely unprocessed foods.
Cupcake Project ~ an experimental cupcake project
Both delicious ~ but if you like one you probably aren’t “in to” the other.
How about in the parenting niche? There are soooo many mom blogs out there ~ but the difference between getting lost in the crowd and creating a crowded community is your USP.
Let’s take Scary Mommy as an example. The tagline is “An honest look at motherhood. Where less than perfect moms can connect and commiserate… join the club” This site is a serious “reality check”… where people confess their “bad parenting” moments, they talk about things like “cussing at your kids”, a completely “non sugar coated” view of parenting.
Simple Kids ~ which is part of the Simplemom media network. Where the tagline is “Uncomplicated Childhood”. A TOTALLY different take on parenting, and raising our children, and my guess is the people who read one, don’t read the other.
This is what your USP is all about… finding your calling, and then calling out the people who are like you and are interested in what you have to offer.
The things is once you find your USP it will spill into EVERYTHING!
Your blog title, your tagline, your post titles, your content, the products you promote, the products you create, the emails you send.
The emails I get from Tiffany Dow are completely different than the ones I get from Darren… because they are different, their sites are different, and their USPs are different! The articles I might read on Scary Mom are almost the exact opposite of the ones I would read on Simplekids… that’s the difference between their USPs.
If you’re thinking I don’t need a USP I’m just doing a niche site, or a product review site, then you’re sadly mistaken. It’s even MORE important for you!
Let’s say you’re writing a book review site. That’s an awesome idea but what makes you different from all the other book review sites on the web? What makes you different than the reviews I can find for any book on Amazon? Why should I come to YOUR site?
Here’s a site I’ve recently found that’s knocked her USP out of the park.
Packabook.com ~ where she combines travel with books… but even better than that… she combines travelling to visit the places she reads about IN THE BOOKS!! OMG. It was a book readers heaven when I stopped by.
Now THAT made me subscribe to her updates and I’m eagerly waiting for her next review.
That’s a USP. (She could make her USP a little more clear within the first 5 seconds of being on the site… but once you get it you’re sold)
or how about…
Best Cookware ~ where they “provide unbiased opinions on what we think is the best cookware for you” They’re real people, who do the research for you… how much do people love that!
or how about this one..
Party Supply Kits ~ “your complete party in a box”. If you’re a parent who hates planning parties, and finding all the stuff you need for a party (like I am) how awesome would it be if someone just did it all for you?!
As you can see… being just a little bit different/unique than every one else goes a long way.
What if you’ve already started your site but didn’t think about your USP (or didn’t know you needed one). Don’t freak out and start over!
You can create and refine your USP as you move forward… that’s definitely what has happened on this site! It’s gone through a variety of incarnations… but if you can do it before you get started your growth can be all that much faster.
Here’s some tips for identifying your USP. I’ve borrowed them from the interview Corbett did with Derek Halpern because Derek just made it so simple, and it made such perfect sense. (if you haven’t watched/listened to that interview you really SHOULD!)
1. write down the top 10 blogs in your niche (topic area)
2. Identify their “secret sauce” or what makes them unique.
3. Figure out how YOUR site can fit in this group.
4. Identify what you can do to be “different” than the top 10.
(and I love #5)
5. Get on a box and preach it with a megaphone!
It’s really a simple process, but understanding what makes you and your site different and unique is huge, and makes the rest of everything… much easier.
If you’re Scary Mom ~ you know you’re probably NOT going to write about organic laundry soap. Therefore you’re not going to look for affiliate opportunities for organic laundry soap ~ you wouldn’t look for organic PLR. You see how that works?
Having clarity on your USP allows you to have clarity on everything throughout your business.
So before you start writing, or getting clients, or build a community ~ figure out your USP! That way you’ll know exactly what to write, who to talk to and who to connect with!
If you’d like to work on your USP join me in the KISS Club ~ you and I will work together and we’ll figure it out.
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