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1. What’s your problem?
Who are our core audiences? Roughly:
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Usup strategy

I'm working on a one-page version of my strategy process. It's called USUP which stands for Unique Solutions to Unique Problems. In order to solve a company's problem you first have to solve your customer's problem. These are usually found outside of your category, and identifying a unique problem doesn't just enable unique solutions, but ensure genuine differentiation. The goal of this process is to find a cultural position for the brand to champion and connect with people based on a shared set of values.

This is very much a work in progress so I'd appreciate any feedback.

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Usup strategy

  1. 1. 1. What’s your problem? 1.2 PEOPLE Who are our core audiences? Roughly: __________________________________________________________ What do they have in common? No lowest common denominator. __________________________________________________________ What are their values and beliefs? Political. Moral. Social. __________________________________________________________ What are their problems related to status, identity and belonging? __________________________________________________________ What are their goals, dreams, hopes and fears? __________________________________________________________ What is their behaviour and attitudes towards the category? __________________________________________________________ What is their perception of our brand and product? 2. What’s their problem? 3. So, how the hell do we solve it? A statement of current affairs. What is our problem? _____________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________ COMMUNICATIONS (OR: HOW WE BRING THE BRAND TO LIFE?) STATEMENTS OF STRATEGIC INTENT Price Product Promotion Distribution People Media-mix (the medium is the message) What else? How can we use new channels to deliver products and services and have comms and product merge? The U.S.U.P. Strategy. We will solve (Unique Problem) for (group of people) by (Unique Solution). _____________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________ 1.3 CATEGORY CATEGORY MAP PERCEPTUAL MAP OUR POSITION IN SHORT. GENERAL AND CATEGORY SPECIFIC: __________________________________________________________ What are the most dominant cliches and conventions in the category? No 1:______________________________________________________ No 2:______________________________________________________ No 3: 1.4 CULTURE What is the cultural context. Right here. Right now. P_________________________________________________________ E_________________________________________________________ S_________________________________________________________ T_________________________________________________________ How is the category culturally relevant? ___________________________________________________________ What are the related topics (of controversy)? ___________________________________________________________ What is the category’s ideological conventions? It’s perceived worldview. __________________________________________________________________________ FOCUSING IN ON THE IMPORTANT STUFF BRAND (no lame adjectives allowed) (OR: HOW DO WE CONNECT WITH PEOPLE AND GIVE THEM A REASON TO CARE?) Brand story? Brand idea/ideology Brand persona (our public persona) PRODUCT/SERVICE (OR: HOW DO WE CLOSE THE GAP BETWEEN PRODUCT AND BRAND?) How can improve existing and create new, products and services? Product innovation Services innovation (incl. delivery) Limited editions/campaign ideas UX Growth Hacking Digital optimisation STRENGTHS BRAND: COMMS: PRODUCT: OPPORTUNITIES BRAND: COMMS: PRODUCT: WEAKNESSES BRAND: COMMS: PRODUCT: THREATS BRAND: COMMS: PRODUCT: PEOPLE - WHAT ROLE WILL WE PLAY IN THEIR LIVES? For which subculture or group of people can we be particularly relevant? What problems do they face, in life and society? Related to identity, status and belonging? With whom do we have a shared set of values, worldview and a common enemy? Make up your own definition, but be specific about what makes it a group. The members don’t have to know each other or currently see themselves as part of this group. PEOPLE POSITIONING STATEMENT Thesimple,butcomplex,one-pageguidetoUSUP(UniqueSolutiontoUniqueProblem)Strategy. INVOLVEMENT DRIVER 1 PRICE DRIVER 2 Pr0perty0ftheShad0wMinistryf0rC0nsumerInf0rmati0n. 1.1 COMPANY Where do we come from? What made us successful? How can we describe our brand? What are the perceptions of our brand? Business objectives What is set in stone? What is the five-year business plan? What’s currently working? Not working? How do our products and services stand out? RESEARCH What further research is required to answer these questions? QUANTITATIVE Objectives: QUALITATIVE Objectives: KEY PEOPLE INSIGHT KEY CATEGORY INSIGHT KEY CULTURAL INSIGHT CULTURE - WHAT WILL WE SYMBOLISE? What aspects of culture will we take a point of view on? What cultural issues can we take a position on that our category opposes? What will our position on these be? How can we come to stand for something distinct and relevant to both users and non-users? Become a statement and a symbol? CULTURAL POSITION STATEMENT WE WILL X FOR Y BOLD. RELEVANT. PROVOCATIVE. INTERESTING. CONFIDENT. IRREVERENT. COOL. FUN. UNIQUE WHAT IS THE UNIQUE PROBLEM THAT WE WILL SOLVE? The first step towards unique solutions is by defining a unique problem. So, what’s it gonna be? I’ll give you three hints: 1. It relates to culture. 2. We will be credible in solving it. 3. The category is guilty of either creating, reinforcing, or at least failing to address it. THE EASY WAY TO COME UP WITH A UNIQUE SOLUTION IS TO DEFINE A UNIQUE PROBLEM CATEGORY - HOW WILL WE BE DIFFERENT AND DISTINCT? How can we map the wider category according to cultural dimensions? Look at the cliches and conventions, what do these imply about the worldview and ideology of the brands people are exposed to? The goal is to discover white space for us to occupy. Making sure we’re truly different and distinct. CATEGORY POSITION STATEMENT Keeping the S.W.O.T. in mind, we’ll go back and forth between People, Category and Culture, to explore territories, approaches and opportunities. The goal is two-fold: 1) Define a Unique Problem, and 2) Come up with a Unique Solution. USUP! Come back here to make sure your USUP ticks the all the boxes: Relevance - Will anyone give a shit? Credible & authentic - evolution not revolution Big idea - inspires creativity for, and guides, all marketing efforts Distinct - Does it stand out in our culture as well as the category? Polarising - Will it generate conversation, debate, PR and buzz? Flexible - is it adaptive to constantly evolving culture and context? People Culture Category USUP NOW COMES THE FUN PART Solutions to problems may lie within either Brand, Communication or Product - or most likely a combination of the three. Coherency is key, and changes in one area usually leads to opportunities also in the other two. The goal is for the three to reinforce each other and become larger than the sum of their parts as all efforts are aligned and working together towards common objectives as a seamless whole. But it all starts with the BRAND. People just don’t care about brands and their problems. Which is why brands, in order to solve their own problems, must first aim to solve people’s problems. And once a unique problem is defined, a unique solution will be much easier to find. And that’s what this approach is all about. This is more about the product than the brand. Comms Product BRAND AWESO MNESS What part of who we are now can we zoom in on and have represent the brand? Brand, Communication and Product Strategies & Tactics Brand________________________________________________________________ Communication_________________________________________________________ Product_______________________________________________________________ Think TENSION Think TENSION Think TENSION