Product positioning is the marketing strategy that focuses on targeting a specific audience for the product, streamlining their vision for the offering. The focussed group approach allows for better analytics in the field of marketing and sales to enable the company in identifying the pain points and brownie points of the offering, which makes way for improvement.
The benefits of a product are specific to the user of the product. It is, therefore, crucial to identify what benefits are for which group of people, and present it to them in accordance. To know more about product positioning, continue reading this blog that will answer almost all the questions.
Table of Content
What to Consider Before Positioning Your Product?
Positioning your product in the market has innumerable benefits. It could be a maker or breaker for your product, given the quality of product is to the mark. The following are some of the important factors to be considered before positioning your product in the market.
- Product Philosophy – This defines the basis of the existence of your product in the market. You should be able to clearly outline the mission of your product and how it aims to achieve the same. If there’s no purpose for the product, it is as good as junk. No one will ever even see it, it’ll be as good as invisible.
- Product Category – Not all products are universal, and neither are all niche. Every product has a certain demand or a viability in the market, which is why it was made in the first place. As important it is to make a desirable product, what is even more crucial is to know the target audience for offering that product. If a product falls under a certain category, for example facial shaving foam, the marketing should be targeted towards males and not females.
- USP – Every product should have a vision. To fulfil that vision, the product needs to have a unique selling point. The customers can be targeted with a foresight of what purpose it serves to them. There has to be a unique value proposition associated with the product if the target customers are expected to spend money on it.
- Market Research – This is the first and most important part of positioning your product. You need to know what the competitors’ offerings in the market are, to create something that is a better solution for your target market. Surveys and data analytics are the best approaches for effectuating marketing strategies.
- Differentiation – Once you know what’s already on offer in the market, you can still choose to make a product which already exists, by approaching it differently. You may choose from various product differentiators such as improve upon the quality, or the aesthetics, or lower prices, so the product benefits your customer. This sort of value proposition is what gives the product a competitive advantage.
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How to Develop Product Positioning Strategy?
To develop a successful product positioning strategy, you need to first identify a problem statement that you want to solve. Any and every innovation starts with the effort to solve a problem in the economy, and make it viable. This is how the concept minimum viable product (MVP) came into being in the technological sector.
- Positioning Statement – Once the problem for which a solution needs to be built has been identified, then the next step is to create positioning statements. The statement will include a defined product positioning schema to develop an actionable market plan.
- Competitor Research – The product strategy is ideally best compared with that of the competitors. It is a strategic exercise to identify the existing products and see if your service fits. Product management best practices comprise clear understanding of consumer minds to uniquely solve their demand.
- Customer Feedback – Effective product positioning comes from customer feedback in terms of repeat purchases. This tale tells a lot about the acceptability of your product to different customers and outlines your current position in the market.
- Market Category – Understanding the market position is as crucial as trying to figure the product positioning. It is of utmost importance to build products that the market is ready to accept. You need to be profitable to sustain the production and for fetching profitability, you either need a wide market base to profit from the scales or a very niche market to benefit from the margins. One way or the other, you need to pinpoint exactly what the target audience is like to garner customer loyalty.
- Market Circumstances – There are instances when the best of the products and technologies fail initially despite the fact that they offer a unique solution because the focus groups are too small or the market is probably not ready for such an ingenious offering. Key benefits to the potential customers need to be conveyed through right communication channels to change the perception of the product in a positive way.
What Elements to Consider while Positioning a Product?
Effective positioning of product calls for effective communication channels. You cannot expect someone to buy your product if they don’t know that the product is on offer, or exactly how good the product that’s on offer is. You need to create a marketing story so that the target audiences connect with the key elements that the marketing messages aim to deliver. The key elements to consider before initiating marketing efforts for product positioning are as follows:
- Product Attributes – This is a list of features that your product offers. What is the position your product acquires and what is the take of industry experts on the effectiveness of your product is all part of your product attributes. Attributes play a major part in making up consumers’ minds as they determine their choice based on these features.
- Competitor attributes – These are the elements that tell you what you should and should not do in order to position your product as imagined. The company name associated with the product definitely adds on to its reliability, but in the long-term, all this can change given you effectively offer a product unique enough to grab the attention of your customers.
- Customer Expectations – It is exceptionally important to do a thorough market research for acclimatising with the needs of the target audience. It helps build what they actually need rather than what you think they need. Certain considerations for any product or service are competitive pricing, well defined market segment and a product that uniquely solves the customers’ problems.
- Customer Perceptions – Another factor under consideration is what the customer thinks about your product and whether or not it positively impacts the sales of your product. Customers are usually of a flickering mind and they need to be aptly persuaded by the marketing team through glorifying the key benefits of the product or service that you offer. The marketing plan makes all the difference after the product research and development is on point. In many cases, marketing begins even before the product is ready for sale, to create a hype for it, and translate it into premiums.
What is a Product Positioning Statement?
A statement which strongly defines and elaborates on the positioning strategies and elements to consider as discussed above, is known as a product positioning statement. This is the holy grail for all marketing communication and content that is to be created for product positioning strategies.
The positioning statement is a product positioning template for prioritising the sequence of tasks to be performed to correctly attribute the relevance and impact of each of those tasks. This process helps a lot in redefining product positioning and tweaking the approach to product positioning as previously followed.
The product positioning statement is basically weaving your brand ideology through the way your product is being portrayed and whatever is being said about it. It is a vision of the product which the internal systems such as the sales team use to target customers and end up creating amusing customer experiences. The product positioning statement brings the vision to reality through effective implementation and execution.
What Elements Affect a Product Positioning?
The elements that affect a product positioning have already been discussed above as a part of elements to be considered. Some of the other uncovered aspects of product positioning are:
- Price point – The price that you can ask for a product is greatly deterministic of the value that you provide to your customers with it. If the potential customers start to convert too smoothly then your product might just be aptly priced or even a little too cheap. While if your existing customers start being disloyal, then there seems to be an issue of overpricing. Although price is a big factor in non-essential products, the same is not always true for essential, sin and luxury goods.
- Quality – The quality of product should be what the public demands, not more and definitely not less. Any slightest change in quality may dissuade the customer.
- Government Policies – If the government changes its policy so as to make your product more attractive or less attractive, this can hugely impact the positioning of your product.
- Size of Business – Small businesses might not be able to use analytics that effectively, but they do have actionable insights from actual customers and they need not speculate on what they need. The impact on their positioning can be seen through real consumer behaviour.
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Free Product Positioning Templates
The simplest way to create a product positioning statement is through an example provided below.
Product Position Steps:
- State your Vision.
- Describe the vision in brief.
- Have target audiences (primary, secondary, tertiary)
- Identify where you lie along the vision.
- Critique your position with that of a competitor.
- Have a brand identity to personify your product.
- Keep the statement simple but appealing.
- Get some third person reviews.
Product positioning is important because it lets the internal systems clearly portray what the brand intends to convey to their target customers about their product and the vision for it.
Target customers are the most crucial aspect of product positioning because as long as the target customers are not identified, the whole exercise is a waste. The ones who need the product, whose pain points are aimed to be addressed, they need to be addressed.
The focus should be on explaining and nudging them to ease their pain through the product being provided. While you are giving them what you think they need, it’s essential to keep taking feedback to confirm your understanding. This will also help in staying updated with the market demands.
Vision is what sets the pace for a business. If the foresight is sensible, then the path for it can be forged. Therefore, it’s necessary for a business to have an achievable vision in order to position its product aptly.
Any customer that buys a competitive product in the market, does not switch brands as easily as you think they do. This is because they have been consistently served by a brand and so they stay loyal customers. The promise that the brand makes is what the customer seeks. No one likes dubious brands, and that adds to the value system of the business.
Product positioning is the market perception of the product that is conveyed through an effective mission. It is the promise that a brand makes to its target customers about its values and the product it offers that uniquely solves their needs. The factors that decide whether the product is adequately positioned are the value proposition it offers, the differentiation it attempts in what is already on offer and most importantly, the market category that it attempts to cater.
It is crucial for a company to briefly work upon all the different elements that affect the product positioning for creating a product positioning template before combining all these to reach a comprehensive statement.
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