Effective brand positioning is the key to maximizing brand value and competitive distinctiveness. In today’s overcrowded marketplace, what makes your brand stand out? Creating a strong brand is essential to a successful business. You don’t refer to a Frisbee as a flying disk right? Companies like Frisbee, Band-Aid, and Jacuzzi have become generic terms when referencing their products. This comprehensive guide will equip you with everything you need to know about effectively positioning your brand in the market.
What is brand positioning and why is it important?
Brand positioning is more than just a catchy tagline or fancy logo, it is a powerful marketing strategy used to set a brand apart from its competitors. Effective positioning of a brand aids in the way which consumers recognize and connect with a company. One of the driving factors of a company’s success is how well and how many people know their brand. It is established in a way that sets you apart from your competitors, showcasing the value of your brand to your target consumer. By differentiating itself, a brand is able to better communicate its value and increase its overall awareness.
The positioning of a brand must be able to effectively communicate not only its value, but also its uniqueness. Proper articulation of a brand addresses three primary points: Who your target consumer is, what their needs are, and how those needs can be satisfied by your brand. Once this framework is created, a sense of direction regarding strategic activities can be established.
Creating A Brand Positioning Strategy
Developing your own brand positioning strategy starts internally — by discovering what value you can bring better than anyone else can. These six steps will help you create a brand positioning strategy that sets your business apart from the rest.
1. Determine how your brand is currently positioned
The way your brand is currently positioned will help you gauge where you can go next. To do this, you must understand your current position in the market by defining your current and target audience and what their needs are. Then, identify your brand’s value propositions, mission statement, and unique characteristics. It is important to remain authentic when defining your brand’s positioning in order to better connect with your ideal and existing consumers.
2. Identify your competitors
After analyzing your own brand, it is essential to identify your direct competition and perform a competitor analysis. You can determine your direct competitors by using a number of methods like market research, social media platforms, and customer feedback.
3. Conduct research to determine how your competitors are positioning
Once you have identified who your direct competition is, you must conduct in-depth research on how they are positioning their brand. This research should identify the product/service they are offering, their strengths and weaknesses, their brand appeal and marketing strategies, and their current position in the market. Doing this will allow you to understand where your brand falls in comparison to your competition.
4. Pinpoint what makes your brand unique compared to your competitors
After conducting your competitor research, you will begin to see that many businesses have many strengths and weaknesses in common. Another tactic for seeing how your brand compares to your competitors from the consumer’s perspective is through a brand positioning map. Perceptual brand mapping is a visual representation of brands along axes, where each axis represents an attribute that is of importance to your target consumer.
After plotting each business or brand on the perceptual map, you will be able to see how one brand compares to their competition in regards to the two attributes. You can use this information to further analyze why one brand is ranking higher or lower than another.
5. Develop a unique and valuable brand proposition statement
Now it’s time to take all of the research you have conducted and create a brand positioning statement. According to Cult Branding, “a positioning statement is a one or two sentence declaration that communicates your brand’s unique value to your customers in relation to your main competitors.”
You can establish your brand’s positioning statement by answering these 3 questions:
- Who is your target customer? Identify their needs, attitudes, demographic, and socioeconomic attributes.
- Who are you as a company? Identify the category of your product/service and the context in which it is relevant to your target customer.
- How can your brand benefit your target customer? Identify the value your brand provides to your target customers in comparison to your competitors.
After answering these questions, you will have a strong base for crafting a brief but compelling positioning statement. Coca-Cola’s brand positioning statement, for example, is modern take on a classic brand. It’s vision statement is “to craft the brands and choice of drinks that people love, to refresh them in body and spirit…” By focusing on giving its consumers a positive experience when enjoying a Coca-Cola beverage, the company continues to be a powerhouse in dominating the carbonated soft drink industry.
6. Test the effectiveness of your brand positioning statement
Once your positioning statement has been developed, it is essential to evaluate its effectiveness by testing and gathering feedback from your target consumer audience. This testing stage is important for taking the time to learn about any problems your target consumers face and how your brand can solve them. It is important to ensure that your prospects feel a sense of connection, trust, and positivity when interacting with your brand.
Final Thoughts on Brand Positioning
Whether you are positioning or repositioning your brand, your primary focus should be to create value for your consumer. Your company’s product or service should provide the desired solution to any challenge your prospect is experiencing. While this process encapsulates many different aspects, remember to always remain authentic. Actively position your brand with purpose, knowing that you can own your segment of the market and successfully position yourself in the mind of your ideal consumer.
Contact us today for more information about effectively positioning your brand in order to improve its overall recognition and awareness. We can help you identify your strengths, weaknesses, and unique attributes in order to stand out from your competition. Contact us and let’s get started!