Do you have a great product to offer but are unable to promote it effectively to your target audience? If so, you are not the only one. A lot of businesses struggle with developing a market positioning strategy that differentiates them for their competitors.
Given the cut-throat environment of the business world, this can have a significant impact on your business and the value you are looking to provide. The good news is, developing an effective positioning strategy may be difficult, but it is not impossible. As long as you can understand the concepts involved and can execute each step, you can develop an effective strategy.
Follow these 6 simple steps to develop the powerful market positioning strategy that you need:
- Define your brand.
- Define your ideal customer.
- Analyze your competitors.
- Identify your Unique Selling Proposition.
- Develop your positioning statement.
- Integrate the elements of your positioning statement in your marketing plan and brand strategies
Now, let’s take a look at the steps in detail:
Step 1: Define Your Brand
To design a market positioning strategy, you must define the identity of your brand first. This means establishing the values you represent and what your customers can expect from you. Remember, you are not just looking to sell a product here. Instead, you are building a brand. This involves answering questions like:
- What does your organization stand for?
- What are your goals and objectives?
- How are you going to provide value through your products and services?
Once you can communicate the story of your brand, you can use this information to develop a market positioning statement.
Step 2: Define Your Ideal Customer
The next step is understanding your target audience and what your ideal customer is like. To do this, you must create a profile of your ideal customer. This can involve psychographic factors such as their needs and interests. It will also require you to identify demographic factors such as their age, gender, annual income, occupation, and level of education, etc.
Understanding your target audience is very important because you will have to develop a positioning statement that appeals to them.
Step 3: Analyze Your Competitors
This is another key step in developing a market positioning strategy. You will have to analyze your competitors. This can be done by carrying out a SWOT analysis (identifying their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats).
You can also take a look at their marketing strategies and the promotional tactics that they are currently using. This can help you learn about which market trends are working. It can also tell you which weaknesses and opportunities you can exploit. For instance, what tools are your competitors using for their brand strategy and can you benefit from them too? What type of customer service do they deliver?
You can also consider building a market positioning strategy that counters the weaknesses of your competitors. This can help you draw the portion of the target audience that is currently unsatisfied with your competitor’s products or services.
Step 4: Identify Your Unique Selling Proposition
Now that you understand your target audience as well as your competitors, the next step is identifying the unique selling proposition for your brand. Your unique selling proposition (USP) is what differentiates you from your competitors. Simply put, it’s what makes you original. This can be based on the following:
- The characteristics of your products
- The benefits you are providing
- The pricing
- The packaging
- Or any other factor that makes you stand out in the crowd
Developing a unique selling proposition based on product characteristics and benefits is usually the most effective. You must also provide proof to support your USP. This is where the trustworthiness of your brand comes in. You must show your customers that you are genuine.
Make a list of reasons that can help your customers believe in you. These should be:
- Easy to communicate and integrate into the positioning strategy
- Hard to copy by competitors
Step 5: Develop Your Positioning Statement
You are now ready to create your market positioning statement. It is important to remember here that a positioning statement is more than a promotional tool targeting your customers. Its role is largely internal and it is used as a reference for designing your marketing plan.
A good market positioning statement implements the information gathered in the previous steps. It should also be able to:
- Capture your target audience
- Address the market category that you are looking to serve
- Highlight the unique selling proposition of the brand
- Provide proof of the USP mentioned above to build trust with your customers
The key here is to communicate what your brand stands for as best and concisely as possible.
Step 6: Integrate Your Positioning Statement
There are several ways you can integrate your positioning statement into your marketing plan and branding strategy. For instance, you can:
- Establish SMART goals based on your market positioning strategy. These goals need to be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-driven, and Time-bound.
- Ensure that all your products and services include the unique selling proposition of your brand.
- Back your claims through testimonials, product demos, reviews, and case studies.
Being consistent and taking corrective decisions is also important. You must make sure that your positioning statement is omnipresent across all your products and services. You also need to evaluate the effectiveness of your positioning strategy. If your positioning strategy proves to be ineffective, then you have two options:
- Redesign your positioning strategy from scratch.
- Identify the elements responsible for its ineffectiveness and make changes.
It is important to develop a market positioning strategy for your business. Having a strong positioning statement can help you make effective marketing decisions. In addition, it can help you create appealing marketing campaigns. It can also help you choose effective channels for advertising and communication.
However, remember that your market positioning strategy must be based on the core strengths of your business. This will help you consistently deliver on your brand promise and build trust with your target customers.