The Tenth Circle: Unique Selling Propositions

“Developing a unique selling proposition (USP) can be one of the most difficult brand messaging challenges you’ll ever tackle. In fact, it can be downright hellish.

That’s because your USP needs to accomplish an enormous task with incredible economy: it has to clearly articulate why buyers should choose your product or service over every other option they have—and it has to do so in the fewest words possible. Writing a USP is so difficult, in fact, that American companies are largely ambivalent about their USPs. They rate their confidence in the strength of their own USPs just 6.2 out of 10, on average, according to research from B2B International.

This raises an interesting question: If companies are generally lukewarm about their USPs, should you even go to the trouble of creating one for your company?[. . .]    –Michael Civiello, LinkedIn, December 1, 2015.

To read more about USPs and Hell, check out Civiello’s full article on LinkedIn.

The 9 Circles of Marketing Hell: Where Will You Spend Eternity?

“We’ve all committed marketing offenses. Hopefully nothing bad enough to get yer arse canned, but you know, people mess up. But sometimes there are offenses so egregious, so blasphemous, so INCREDIBLY REPREHENSIBLE that we just can’t help but … make a content visualization about it.

“Whatever, we’re marketers, that’s what we do.

“To put these marketing sins into perspective, we organized them into the 9 circles of marketing hell — our own little spin-off of the literary classic, Dante’s Divine Comedy, better known as Dante’s Inferno. Muaaahahaha. Take a look at the 9 marketing sins that could land any of us in an eternity of fire and brimstone, and most importantly, the tedious, sometimes torturous punishments that we’ll have to endure for committing these sins!” [. . .]    –Corey Wainwright, HubSpot, January 17, 2013.

Read the full list of marketing sins here.

“Nine Circles of Subscription Hell”

Spiral-Inferno-Subscription-Service-Hell“Sometimes revenge is best served in literature. The poet Dante Alighieri, powerless against the forces that had exiled him from his native Florence, populated his vision of hell with proxies for his enemies. The resulting epic poem has become a masterwork in Italian literature. If only politics were so literate today!

[…]

“In that vein, here’s my own vision of Subscription Hell, reserved for those businesses that abuse the trust of their customers in increasingly despicable ways.

“Dante’s nine circles were: Limbo, lust, gluttony, greed, anger, heresy, violence, fraud, and treachery. My vision has similar circles, populated by businesses that have misled or disappointed their subscribers, whether through intention or accident.” — Anne Janzer, “Nine Circles of Subscription Hell,” on annejanzer.com (March 15, 2016)