Your Positioning

Subsection of: Create Your Marketing Plan
Adapted from content excerpted from the American Express® OPEN Small Business Network

Position is your identity in the marketplace; how you want the market and your competitors to view your product or service. Your positioning will have an impact on every segment of your marketing.

Base your positioning on the benefits you offer, who your customers are, and how your competitors are positioned. Keep your positioning statement highly focused and succinct. For example, Acme Movers could be positioned as “the most dependable moving company in the Tri-City region.” Two architects who specialize in kitchens could have totally different positions – one could be “the most innovative designer of modern kitchen environments,” while the other could be “the most cost-effective designer of traditional kitchens.” Whose kitchen do you think you’d see in Metropolitan Home and whose do you think is targeted at the average buyer?

Some positioning tips:

When creating your positioning statement, think in terms of extremes – the “most,” the “best,” the “fastest,” the “cheapest,” the “only,” etc.

If there’s not much difference between you and your competitors, look for a meaningful customer want or need that has not yet been filled.

Don’t position directly against a competitor, if possible. If you do, you may be caught without a position should your customer change its focus. Instead, focus more on your product’s or service’s strengths.

Be very careful if you position solely on price, since that position can be very easily pre-empted.

Don’t position just on image. You need to back up your positioning with substance. If you can’t, it’s a recipe for disaster.

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