Perfecting Your Positioning Statement

While the creative brief provides direction and guidance to your design agency, the positioning statement clarifies your value proposition: the unique quality that sets your offer apart from others.

Creating a clear and effective positioning statement can galvanize your company’s future as long as it’s convincing, genuine, and felt realistically by your organization.

Positioning Statements vs. Mission Statements

A mission statement or value proposition is not the same as a positioning statement. These can have things in common but some things set them apart. For instance, a positioning statement can be used to align internal teams but also used in an external environment. It describes a service or product, who the target audience is, and what need it fills that other items do not.

On the other hand, a value proposition looks at what benefits your product offers to customers. A mission statement is broader and is a public statement that goes into your brand strategy.

Why Positioning Statements Are Essential

The proficient online consumer knows a thing or two about finding value. If they don't understand what's unique about your offer, they can always go somewhere else to seek clarity in their purchase.

Take the world of radio-controlled helicopters. Henry, my eight-year-old son, had suffered not one but two disappointments since Christmas. The first helicopter that Santa had brought him shattered within 48 hours. We found one at Best Buy that claimed to be almost indestructible, only it got whacked at a certain angle so the charger receptacle disappeared inside the electronic innards.

We googled RC helicopters and found, a sort of RC Helicopter Nirvana. Henry has spent hours exploring the site, watching YouTube videos, learning about spycams, and reading through customer reviews. And I still feel like we're no closer to finding the perfect helicopter because none of the helos on this site offer a clear value proposition in our price range.

Many are heavily discounted, and some have stellar reviews, but I'm afraid that we'll go through another disappointment and then either lose our money or go through RMA hell.

Understanding What the Average Customer Wants

Whether it's RC toys, computers, jeans, novels, films, or automobiles, consumers definitely want choice, but they also want to feel confident that they're going to get their money's worth. The value proposition, the heart of any positioning statement, needs to be decisive and lucid.

What's the idea underlying the offer? Are you committed to the highest level of quality? Strong and effective wording will stimulate interest if your VP is clearly expressed.

Using the right language is important. This statement may begin with the word “because”, and it will include information that demonstrates clearly to the listener who you are as a company and why they should choose to do business with you instead of your competitors.

If customers are frequently passing on your business, it may very well be because your positioning statement is too flaccid. First, you must understand that the statement should not be the same as a tagline or a slogan; there should be some substance to it.

However, the statement should also be clear, concise, and well-articulated. If the statement is long-winded, or if it sounds wordy, they are not likely to invest as much time with you.

Positioning statements should sound simple, but it can be very difficult to make them memorable, succinct, and powerful. Even though you understand your vision and why your business is special, do you really know how to make a statement that will resonate with customers?

Your positioning statement must entice and convince a person to follow your lead and become a customer.

How to Write the Perfect Market Positioning Statement

A great positioning statement will hit several goals. Six key factors to keep in mind when creating yours include the following:

  • It should be memorable, short, and tailored to your target audience.
  • It is easily understood and provides a picture of your product that differentiates it from others.
  • It’s highly credible and something you can deliver on.
  • It gives you a place in the market that nobody else has.
  • It lets you determine whether marketing decisions are supportive of and consistent with the product.
  • It lets you grow as your business sees success.

When writing a positioning statement, you want to be sure all of these things are present. For instance, you include what makes you different and how your product will fill a hole in the market that competitors can’t stand up to. You should mention the category your product is related to and provide a reason to believe in what you are saying.

If you put all of these things together, you’ll have a great positioning statement that lets customers know who you are, what you offer, and why you’re the right brand to purchase from.

Final Thoughts

If you find yourself laboring over your positioning statement without finding the right language, it may be time to seek some extra guidance. It can be very beneficial to find a professional who has experience writing these statements and seek their opinion.

Sometimes, you are perhaps too close to be creative, and a new perspective on the matter can infuse new life into how your products will be better understood. By delving into your business as an outsider, they may be much more adept at noticing what really sets you apart.