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  • Writer's pictureTiffany Harder

Creating Space With Your Market Position

Updated: Jan 22

What’s your position? 

This isn't about where you stand on the latest trends or the hot topics fueling dinner debates. We're talking about your market position—the core that guides your business and your team, resonates with customers, rallies partners, and investors, and creates your brand and business community.

This isn't just important; it's the cornerstone of crafting a legacy in your market. After all, don’t you go into business to create something that lasts longer than creating it? Read this for a refresher on defining your target market. 

And let's clear the air—it's not merely about slapping on a fresh coat of paint, jazzing up your logo, or even about how many likes your latest social post gathers. We're going beneath the surface, beyond the superficial, to where the essence of your brand beats the strongest.

Join us for a quick read on market positioning and unraveling your Unique Selling Proposition (USP). We've got a stockpile of insights that are as actionable as they are enlightening—ready to transform how you and your business shine in the crowded market space.

Are you ready to claim your rightful spot in the business landscape? 

Market Position Is More Than Visual Branding and a Tagline

Picture FitBit, a pioneer in the health-tech domain for the last 15 years, faithfully counting our steps for a decade before the market expanded to welcome giants like Apple. With such heavyweight competition, what keeps FitBit in the game, besides Google Acquiring the company in 2021?

The secret to staying relevant? They remained true to their position to focus on the needs of their core users. 

James Park, VP and co-founder of FitBit, clarifies, “Our reason for being is to help those people take that first step on their health and fitness journey. We never really lost that focus.”. FitBit's dedication to guiding newcomers on their fitness odyssey hasn't wavered. They cater to those at the starting line of fitness, not just the seasoned athletes or fitness enthusiasts. 

Today, the Fitbit brand, now under Google, is still playing the long game with more wallet-friendly choices, marathon-like battery life, and a laser focus on health and wellness tracking, and health plans, contributing to Google’s ability to compete for market share. 

The Old Fitbit's Mission 

To empower and inspire you to live a healthier, more active life. We design products and experiences that fit seamlessly into your life so you can achieve your health and fitness goals, whatever they may be.

What is Market Positioning?

It is the most important thing you can do to grow your brand and business. 

Do you need quality products? Absolutely. 

Do my service offerings need consistency?  Always. 

But your positioning determines whether or not you will still be in business in 5, 10, and maybe even 20 years. 

Market positioning isn't just business jargon—it's the pulse of your brand's heartbeat. It's the strategic chess move that defines where you sit on your market chessboard. 

If success is what you want, then investing in a robust positioning strategy is your next move. 

Let's unravel the meanings behind some commonly entangled buzzwords.

Market Positioning: It's how a brand imprints itself in the consumer's mind, carving out a distinct space that sets it apart. Market positioning is the art of using strategy to shape how customers see and think about a brand or product in contrast to the competition. A tangible marketing positioning includes an internal positioning statement aligned with the strategy. 

Unique Selling Point (USP): The unique edge of a company, service, product, or brand makes it the standout choice. It’s about pinpointing and promoting what's special and more beneficial about your offering that others haven't caught on to. A brand might have different USPs, each shining in its own right.

Unique Value Proposition (UVP): This is the promise a company makes about the value customers will get if they choose their product. It’s a bold statement that captures the essence of a brand, the way it works, and the reasons it’s worth the customer's investment. It’s the core argument for why a customer should pick you over anyone else. Taking Apple as an example, they offer a tiered value proposition, highlighting a lifestyle choice centered on user experience and privacy.

Echoing marketing legend Seth Godin's wisdom, brand positioning is about extending a hand to your customers. It's not only about you finding a niche and demanding the market's attention. Instead, it's about clearing the path, cutting through the noise for your customer so they can easily say, "This is the brand for me."

Market Positioning Elements

Market positioning is like a multifaceted map, guiding and collectively contributing to the customer’s perception and how they interact with your brand or product. You may have heard the 4 C’s and the 3 C’s - Customer, Channel and Competition. Here's a more detailed look at the elements that should harmonize in a market positioning strategy, typically encapsulated in a brand deck or a strategic business communication plan:

  • Target Audience: The core of who you're here to serve.

  • Market Analysis: A look into the market's size, growth, and trends to identify opportunities (aka finding the gaps).

  • Competitive Analysis: A deep dive into competitors’ strengths and weaknesses.

  • Unique Selling Proposition (USP): The defining feature that sets your offering apart.

  • Positioning Strategy: The blueprint of introducing your product or service to your audience. Central to this is a positioning statement, serving as an internal compass to align marketing endeavors with the strategy. 

  • Brand Identity: This is the visual and verbal personality of your brand, complete with a mission statement that captures the 'Why' behind your brand. A brand deck often materializes this concept, weaving in various market positioning facets alongside the brand identity.

  • Product or Service Benefits: Highlighting the advantages your product or service offers to the target audience.

  • Pricing Strategy: Pricing must reflect the market position you aim to occupy. 

  • Distribution Channels: Whether online, in exclusive stores, or via a mobile service, where your product is available matters.

  • Communication or Marketing Strategy: Articulating your marketing message—what you say, how you say it, when, and through which channels, always striving for coherence.

  • Customer Experience: The holistic journey your customer takes, from packaging and product design to their digital experience, every touchpoint should echo your market position.

But what exactly creates brand equity in your market? 

It's everything that comes after and a market positioning strategy.  – a blend of your product's defining traits, the appeal of your pricing, the pathways you choose to deliver your product, the persuasive power of your promotions, and the finesse of your customer service. The marketing mix — product, price, place, promotion, and people — must sing harmoniously to amplify your brand's voice in the desired market position.

Your Market Positioning Strategy

Take the problem you are solving for your target audience and shape that solution into a strategy. Consider these four positioning tactics as you prepare to enter the target market. 

Product or Service Quality: Position yourself through the exceptional quality of your offerings. Let superior craftsmanship or service excellence be your message.

Product Price: Compete by offering better value at a more attractive price point. Position your brand as the smart, economical choice.

Unique Value Proposition (UVP): Leverage what sets you apart. Emphasize that special feature, service, or benefit that nobody else offers quite like you do.

Competition: Differentiate by contrasting with the competition. Highlight how your offerings are the alternative that your audience has been waiting for.

Each of these strategies has its strengths and appeals to different market segments. The key is to align your chosen strategy (there are many more!) with your brand's core values and the needs of your target audience.

Does my business need a position? 

Positioning isn't just industry jargon; it's the core beat that resonates with your audience, no matter your business size. Hitting your market position and USP right is like that unforgettable blue note in a soulful melody—it lingers in the air, strikes a chord with your audience, and leaves them feeling connected to your brand's unique rhythm.

The endgame? To plant the right idea of your brand in customers' minds before they even step foot in your shop. And then crafting that feel-good vibe around your service that keeps them returning through your marketing communication. 

Let us know how Ritch Reps can help with your market position strategy. 

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