Today’s consumers are inundated with options. Thousands of businesses offer similar products and services or promise similar results. How does a consumer choose one business or product over the other? The answer: consumers will always gravitate toward distinctive, uniquely relevant brands.
With such high saturation in most markets, it can be easy for a business to get lost in the crowd. Brand differentiation is key to your business’s products or services standing out.
What is Market Positioning?
Market positioning is the process of creating a specific image or identity for a product or brand. Successful market positioning allows a business to occupy a distinctive place in the minds of their target consumers. This strategic exercise in consumer perception helps businesses establish unique places in their market and stand out from their competition.
Strong market positioning is essential for brands to become visible to their target audience and make a lasting impression. Once a business pinpoints what makes them unique, they can discover a positioning strategy that works for them. A strong positioning strategy highlights the unique features that make a brand different from its competitors.
For example, one company may find that their pricing is lower than their competitor’s and then position for affordability. Conversely, an organization may find their pricing is higher than their competitor’s and then position for quality or luxury status. Businesses may also focus on their product’s special benefits, ease of use, convenience, and more.
Why is Positioning in Marketing Important?
Positioning in marketing can essentially be boiled down to how a business wants to be perceived in relation to their competitors. The goal of market positioning is to find a defining characteristic that will help a business eclipse their competition.
Successful positioning results in a brand gaining the competitive edge they need to improve sales and promote company growth. Strong market positioning also helps businesses more clearly define their target market and better connect with their target consumer’s needs. As a result, brands can make more effective business decisions.
How to Create Strong Brand Positioning in your Market
Positioning in marketing is not easy. It requires extensive research and dedication to a specific niche, idea, or target audience. Effective positioning strategies consider three areas: the needs of the target consumer, a business’s own strengths and weaknesses, and the strengths and weaknesses of their competitor. Outsourcing this work to a marketing company is a great option for small businesses that do not have the in-house resources to complete extensive market research and cannot rebuild their brand’s architecture on their own.
First, businesses need to examine their existing position in the marketplace and determine their point of difference. Businesses may find they are marketing their product or service just like many other businesses on the market. Understanding their current market position gives businesses important insight into what needs to be changed and where to go next.
After understanding their current market position, businesses must analyze their competitors. How is the competition positioning their brand and products? Competitive analysis may reveal that one competitor’s weakness is another business’s strength. Once they have located an untapped corner in their market, businesses can begin to build a unique marketing strategy.
Once marketing materials such as slogans, logos, designs, or websites have been created, they need to be cleared for use. After your attorney conducts a search of registered marks and confirms your business can use them, you will then want to file for the necessary intellectual property protections to secure the unique materials for exclusive use.
Legal Considerations: Intellectual Property Protections
Market positioning is much more than selecting a category. The business has to commit to embodying the identity in all of its branding materials, products, and content. A strong market positioning strategy drives the words, phrases, logos, product names, and entire image of a business’s branding. Consequently, protecting your business’s intellectual property is an important part of your market positioning strategy.
Once a business has developed a strategy to cement their brand in a desirable position, they then have to actively protect that position from competition. Protecting your intellectual property means turning the unique, intangible aspects of your business into exclusive rights. As a result, competitors are unable to commercialize and benefit from the branding materials and content strengthening your market position.
Intellectual property protections naturally enhance market positioning strategies because they help secure exclusive brand identities, distinguish products or services from competition, and prevent competitors from encroaching on the unique concepts that identify your brand.
If you would like to learn more about any of the topics mentioned here, please call or text 484-801-0021 or reach out to Cassandra Ortner at firstname.lastname@example.org. We proudly support the nation’s business owners.
*Janelle Peyton is the Managing Partner of Peyton Law, a national boutique law firm providing general counsel and intellectual property legal services to small and mid-sized business owners and entrepreneurs. The firm offers business and brand building legal strategies; including business entity formation, contract drafting and review, human resources and employee matters, joint venture agreements, trademark and copyright protection, licensing & franchising, business succession planning, and mergers & acquisitions. Peyton Law serves as outsourced general counsel to companies in a wide range of industries. Visit us at peytonlaw.com.
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