Hungry for Quality

Using Thanksgiving Turkey as a Metaphor for Creating a Quality Unique Selling Proposition.

I had Thanksgiving dinner over this last weekend (I know it was early, but hey, more room for pie on the big day). All of my family was here and so we decided to throw together a quick version of this American holiday. I spent hours crafting Pecan, Pumpkin, Coconut pies, kneading 10 dozen rolls, peeling 8 pounds of Yams, and basting a 36 pound turkey over the course of 4 hours with butter and rosemary and ginger and kosher salt and allspice and sage and sugar and utter deliciousness (I don’t just make fruit smoothies…). As we cut into the juicy bird, it struck me: I had spent the entire day building on what I know makes quality content; I had combined different tastes and techniques to create something I knew my audience would enjoy.

And thus was this crazy idea that Thanksgiving turkey is the perfect example of what it takes to make a Unique Selling Proposition (USP) that will excite your visitor’s taste buds, so to speak.

The turkey is the backbone of Thanksgiving dinner. And just like your USP, the turkey must undergo extensive work to become something that will make mouths water.

Step 1: Buy the Turkey

You must have something to work your magic on. Defining your USP is the single most important item in creating quality content. Why? Because it is what makes you, you. It’s unique. (Hence the name…). And, like a good turkey, you want your USP to be fresh. Sure you could steal a USP from any number of larger companies, but that would be tantamount to buying a 75-pound turkey when your family only needs a 20 pounder. Nope it’s best to get your own raw, fresh USP to create the centerpiece of your campaign.

We recently decided to try a completely different tactic with one of our personal injury attorneys. Now, this space is known for extremely “unique” selling propositions. Just drive down the freeway and you’ll see at least 5 different USPs for Personal Injury. My favorite is one located on the freeway to Salt Lake, which states, “I’d call me.” (I laugh a lot when I’m driving on the freeway). So I knew I needed to come up with something different. I finally came up with “We’re different because we care”. It definitely needed some work. That’s where step two came in.

Step 2: Brine the Turkey.

turkey brine

Once you’ve decided on a USP, it needs some love to become a thing of beauty. And while this step is completely optional (just like brining), it imparts so much flavor and depth that I don’t suggest skipping it. Take your USP out and let it soak in a mixture of revisions, edits, stewing, fretting, adding a dash of criticism to really refine its flavor.

I let our personal injury attorney’s USP soak in my own mix of harsh revisions and edits. I spent hours trying different versions, different words, and different thoughts. What came out of that mix was “Here’s How We’re Different:”. I like it for a couple of reasons (the main one being it’s not corny or gimmicky): 1. It invites customers to read more. 2. I can use it on any page and adapt it to my needs. But it still gets across the point, “We’re different”.

I know we, as content marketers, don’t have a huge amount of time to devote to each word; however, this stage is where your USP really comes alive. As brining a turkey imparts notes of sweet and savory, develops a body of flavor, and transforms the bird from plain old turkey to Thanksgiving Feast, so will soaking your USP in a brine of revisions.

Step 3: Cook the Turkey.

cooking turkey

There are as many ways to cook a turkey as there are ways to write a sentence. So, which do you choose? You choose the way best suited for your audience. What is going to make them drool when they sit down to the table? What is going to make them moan with pleasure when they eat your turkey? What is going to make them demand seconds? That is the way you cook your turkey.
So, if you find that your audience prefers lots of examples and pictures, implement your USP with lots of examples and pictures. If your audience seems to share and comment more on videos, put your USP in video format. Look at what has been done well in the past and make that the focus of your content.

So how did we cook the USP for our personal injury attorney? In a nice base of client stories. We realized that his most visited page was his success stories page. Over 30% of his form fills were coming from that page. So we changed his home page to feature more client stories, and every page on his website will have a client story on it (we’re still in the middle of rewriting all his content). The effect? A 77% increase in conversions. Not bad for just cooking a turkey.

Where do you go from here? Put these steps into action for your USP and see if you can improve it. Then check out my series of content lessons or my much longer blog post on Unique Selling Propositions.

Share this post on twitter with the hashtag #content for a 17% boost in Niftiness.

I want to wish all of you a Happy Thanksgiving from us here at Nifty Marketing. And I hope, while you’re eating your delicious turkey, that your USP isn’t too far from your mind.

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