The real muscle behind your marketing efforts is positioning. Just like you cannot force a puzzle piece into a space it does not fit, you can not force an idea into your customers’ minds or lives that does not match up with an interest, need or desire that is not already fulfilled by another service or product on the market. Positioning is the finding of an unaddressed need, and then fulfilling it with your distinctive and perfectly suited offering.
Some examples of successful positioning are:
1. Fulfill an unaddressed interest or need. Find an itch and scratch it! Study your customer to see what needs they have that no one else is fulfilling. Do they need a new product to make their lives easier? Is there an existing product that needs to be made better or more adaptable? Identify this need and move quickly into position before another company does!
2. Challenge the status quo. Find a new form of distribution to innovate your pricing and promotions. Take Air BnB for example, they took the hospitality industry by storm. Currently, they fill more rooms annually than all Hiltons combined. But, get this, they don’t own a single hotel of their own! Disrupt the “norms” or your industry and win interest and the hearts of your customers.
3. Specialize to serve a new market niche. Rather than compete with the pack, how can your brand step away and blaze a new trail? Specialty brands will serve a narrow segment of a bigger market. Does your industry focus on a bigger picture, but you find a smaller need that is often overlooked or under represented? Look what Spanx did to the pantyhose industry!
4. Transform an established solution or introduce a new solution altogether.. This takes enormous insight and a great knowledge of trends and popular culture, but it is doable. Think about when the desktop computer met the laptop and then the tablet. These new technologies were transformations of previous designs. Now, you can work virtually anywhere: in your office, at the park, or even while flying across the country all because someone decided to transform the desktop computer.
We’d love to hear from you! What questions or suggestions do you have about positioning yourself in the marketplace?
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