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  • Six Principles of Small Business Advertising

    Game Plan

    In-Depth

    2. Craft a Single Message

    Before you begin creating great advertising, it’s important to take this first critical step: craft the single, central message that that is to be conveyed to your profile customer. In advertising parlance, this is known as the USP, or Unique Selling Proposition. And it is the most important piece of copy to be written—copy that, by the way, the public will never see, because it is an internal strategy document.

    The USP is a one- or two-sentence statement that articulates the core idea that your ad must convey. It is the foundation upon which your ad will be built. Tack it on the wall for the creative team to constantly reference as they develop concepts for an ad. Every creative idea should track back to the USP. (If you have ever heard an ad criticized for being “off brand” or “off strategy,” the reference is to ad creative that does not align with the USP.)

    In short, developing a USP ensures that the ad you create will be saying exactly the right thing to exactly the right customer.