Positioning is another face of your brand. It underpins the way you choose to do business, the future direction you might take...even the kind of people you hire.
Get it right and people will choose you over competitors that are bigger, closer, longer in business, or cheaper.
Your positioning is like a promise and must be a position you can deliver everyday. It must be unique, relevant and answer a yearning in the marketplace. Finally it must work with the other components of your brand as part of a unified market face and expression.
Positioning, depending on whether you are a product, person or a service business is one of the greatest challenges to all people in business of selling product, services or themselves as a brand. No longer are you the only accounting firm in town or the only brake fluid on the market. What you used to think was abnormal for your industry like being "on time", "providing value" or "professional", is now an expectation on every industry, product or person. We are in a commodity market place where it is all about the price until you can develop some influence and create another kind of pulling power outside of cheap.
The real secret to positioning is in micro-niching. Finding that space where your are the king or queen. For you to stand out you might have to find a radical engaging idea, that creates an emotional buy-in from your market. It could be something that you are passionate about and make work for you. Ideally it is also something in your Business' or Product's DNA that you do already, but have never developed or brought out in the right way.
Imagine your expertise involves a product that has a lot of positives, but suffers a bit of a stigma like "Bamboo". Interest in bamboo flooring is primed to make an impact soon. But it hasn't captured the imagination of the marketplace, even though it is sustainable, renewable and hard-wearing...hitting all those GREEN buttons. The problem seems to be a stigma left over from cheap imports of other products made of bamboo, that has left the brand "Bamboo" damaged as something low in value, Asian and undesirable.
So how do you make an impact in this type of market legacy.
Perhaps you need to change the market perception of your product. You may decided to find a new way about talking about your product. A new name can change the perception of your customers. It also separates you from competitors that are also beginning to import a similar sounding product.
You might choose to call your product is "Mosowood".
Being able to also trademark this name not only separates your type of flooring from competitors, but by branding it at source, now allows you to grow a distribution market for this brand of bamboo flooring as well. So you have increased your business from import/retail to national and international wholesale distribution as well.
About the positioning.
By far the greatest attribute of your "mosowood" is that it is hard wearing. It is actually stiletto proof!
You know this solves a big problem. Wooden floors have always suffered from the permanent marks made by thin heels. You realised that this is a major advantage over wooden floors as many of your customers are women and this has been one of their greatest ongoing concerns.
The existing rating system for hardness of floors is a somewhat obscure system that doesn’t make sense with your consumers. So, in the process of finding a new positioning, you also create a new rating system. "The Stiletto Rating" which measures the depression a stiletto will create on any type of wood surface. You discover this is trademarkable and proceed to do this as well.
Unlike pine and cedar, that have a poor stiletto rating (mark easily), your "mosowood" is one of the hardest rated woods matched only by a rare type of WA hardwood, which is nearly extinct. In today's green mindset using extinct timbers is fast becoming a complete "no-go" zone, which is great for you.
Mosowood on the other hand, is made from a type of bamboo, which is only grown in a sustainable farming environment, making it "the hardest, "sustainable" wood on the planet".
This positioning places your product in the forefront of peoples minds that have concerns about the durabilty of their surfaces and want an eco-rated product. You know that both of these issues are increasing as concerns of prospective clients...and only you have it.
Mosowood—the highest "Stiletto rated" flooring with the lowest environmental impact...now you can really walk your talk.
The next decision will be to decide the most effective personality and expression to wrap around this positioning through your marketing and advertising campaigns. That is really the speciality of advertising and marketing agencies. The only caution is that it must correspond to the values inherent in the business.
Brand is an in integrated approach. Your staff and CEO are as much your internal customers as the people that buy your product and services are your external customers. Your people need to be able to live and deliver your external personality as much as easy as you can advertise it. Otherwise you end up with a values clash with your staff and failing morale, a killer of any enterprise.
Nail the right positioning, you will begin the journey away from cheapest and competitors and into brand loyalty and a business for keeps.