Is your brand strategically positioned with its message clearly communicated?
Are you sure?

The effective development of brand positioning for any brand will aid in getting your desired message across and make an impression that lasts. Positioning is the way in which you want the consumer to think about your business (products and services) relative to competing brands. It is the most basic of all strategic statements, provides the blueprint for the marketing and development of the brand, and focuses the efforts of all those involved in brand activities.

Without a concise brand positioning statement with a competitive “point of difference” and complete management alignment behind this positioning, it will be difficult to communicate a clear and meaningful message about your brand. A brand must make a strong impression that lasts and translates into profitable sales and long-term growth.

You don’t have to embark on a lengthy and expensive consumer research study to find out. Just try this quick and easy exercise. You may be surprised by what you learn.

Ask each of your direct reports, each member of your marketing organization, and key external strategic and creative resources (including key consultants and all ad agency team members) to answer the following three questions:

  1. What business is your brand in? Your “frame of reference”.
  2. What is the “target market” for your brand?
  3. What are the “points of difference” for your brand? Note: List no more than three.

Analyze your results (or have the submissions sent to me and I will analyze them for you). If you observe either or both of the following, your brand positioning can most definitely be strengthened:

  • Significant inconsistency in the answers to most if not all of the above three questions.
  • “Points of difference” that are really “points of similarity” to your competition or simply “points of entry” in your business – and not pre-emptive, ownable and defendable attributes that are important to your target market.

I understand that you and your team know your business better than any outside consultant, marketing or advertising company does. Where I can assist you is by starting with my proprietary one-day positioning methodology, working directly with you and members of your team, to clearly state and communicate the core elements of a successful positioning for your brand. The end result will be the development of a concise positioning statement, agreed upon by your core management team that reflects the following three elements:

  • Target market (the customers you are marketing your products/services to)
  • Frame of Reference/Competitive set (what business you are in)
  • Point(s) of difference (the specific consumer benefit that is preemptive, ownable and defendable that you want consumers to associate most readily with your products/services).

The positioning statement will be summarized into the following format:

To _______________ (Market Target), Brand X is the brand of  _________________ (Frame of Reference) that is/that offers ________________ (Point of Difference).

Your brand will be in good company. I’ve used this approach to successfully position hundreds of well-known brands for a diverse group of companies, from Fortune 500’s to start-ups and turnarounds. Our positioning work includes international, national, regional and local brands across many industries.

You can also hear me speak more about “The Three Critical Steps to Positioning Your Franchise or Restaurant Into a World-Class Brand” at the upcoming International Franchise Association (IFA) Convention in Orlando, FL on February 13th and at the National Restaurant Association (NRA) Show in Chicago, IL on May 7th.

For more information on how to quickly and affordably properly position your brand to compete successfully in today’s competitive marketplace visit www.ellishmarketing.com, or reach me directly at 303-762-0360 or warren.ellish@ellishmarketing.com.