Men can’t help falling for the sexy of the actress Marilyn Monroe. Talking about her career, guys may suppose that “John Kennedy’s lover” actually was not so talented but she’d got a “unique proposition” – gracefully gorgeous.
Even after his retirement, the former football player David Beckham has earned as much as 2 contemporary super stars Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. In terms of his performance, guys say that Becks is nothing special but his special proposition.
So many men, so many minds!
Why did Marilyn Monroe need to act very well? Most people really went to the cinema just to contemplate her beauty.
Beckham could not play as well as Messi or Ronaldo. So, what? These days, it’s hard to find any player having such incredibly accurate pass like that of this handsome player.
Monroe or Beckham is “better” than others for their only unique proposition: Monroe is incredibly beautiful and Beckham’s shots are extraordinarily accurate.
Brands are like humans. No matter a brand is small or big, it appeals to us due to its only a most outstanding grace.
Piaggio motorbike is criticised for its iron-like weight and noisy engine. Piaggio’s buyers, however, do not care. They buy the “noisy iron” due of its appeal of fashionable Italian style. Those who only cares about quality, please come to Honda’s showrooms. We are not sure that whether Honda’s motorbike is really better than Piaggio’s or not but Honda is actually perceived to have better quality. That is an invaluable “trick” of Honda.
Why does toothpaste Colgate keep telling us about the message of “strong teeth, no decay”? Similarly, Close-up is always loyal to its message “Fresh breath” while Sensodyne constantly communicates that is’s “only for sensitive teeth”.
An unique proposition of human is a little bit different from that of the brand.
The beauty of Monroe and the ball passes of Beckham are naturally gifted. The perception of their special “beauty” may vary but no one can refuse it. And nearly no one can avoid to be tempted with it.
An unique proposition of human is mostly “real”.
Does Colgate not bring you a fresh breath? Is Close-up unable to prevent teeth decay? And is Sensodyne not for insensitive teeth? Certainly no. The issue is in the perception of customers. But in order to “stick” such perception in customer’s minds, brands need to do a lot: from a right brand positioning strategy to a right communication strategy.
An unique proposition of a brand is “perceived” differently by customers.
It’s not easy at all to “book” a place in the the customer’s mind which is pretty cramped. Once you’ve got an unique selling point, it’s stupid to be self-caught in the trap of extension. In the book “Focus to differentiate”, the talented marketing expert Al Ries showed failures of world famous companies due to their out-of-focus business strategy. He assumed: Only focusing on the core business can create sustainable competitive advantage for the brand. In reality, when facing business opportunity and growth pressure, not all companies are conscious and persistent enough to pursuit the initial strategic objectives. It is a common knowledge of focus rule but many people do not insist on implementing that rule.
In Vietnam, we also have an old proverb “Master your profession, master your destiny“ which means that no one can be good at everything, and you can only be successful when utilizing your advantage.
Every brand should find one, only one, most appealing selling point.
John Kennedy was passionate for the beauty of Marilyn Monroe.
Millions soccer fans was astounded by gorgeous shooting masterpieces of David Beckham.
Despite the noisy engine, many are still loyal to fashionable Piaggio.
Those who think “comfort is better than pride” specially favor the durability of Honda.
Even your brand has several USPs, you should only focus on your most appealing point. One and only one so that competitors will fail while customers will “fall in love” with you.
Nguyễn Đức Sơn
Giám đốc Chiến lược Thương hiệu, Richard Moore Associates