the importance of a positioning statement

The importance of a positioning statement is commonly overlooked, yet it is a critical piece of any brand. A business’ brand plays a vital role in the life cycle of any successful organization as it exposes and promotes your products and services to hundreds of potential customers.

All the marketing efforts in the world are useless if the market does not remember your name/brand. This is the hard truth about marketing and unfortunately, it seems many business owners fall short in this category.

In previous blogs, we have written about the power of a brand and the critical elements that contribute. This blog is focused on the importance of one of those key elements, a positioning statement.

What is a Positioning Statement?

One way to ensure people remember you and your products and/or services is to come up with a brilliant positioning statement. A positioning statement should define what you do, how you do it, and position you within your industry all within a few catchy words. Some good examples include Apple “Think Differently” and Kentucky Fried Chicken “it’s finger lickin’ good!”. Both statements identify briefly what the organization can do for you in just a few simple words. Remember, the KISS rule definitely applies here! Keep It Simple, Stupid. Not our words, but a universally accepted sound business principle.

How to Develop A Positioning Statement?

It is critical to engage a marketing professional who is well versed in the branding process. A good marketer will assist you in developing a strong positioning statement, one that is aligned with your brand and considers these key steps:

1. Begin by reviewing your company’s Mission and Vision Statements and keep these in mind throughout the process. Understand the difference, mission/vision statements share how you plan to execute your strategies, while a positioning statement is part of your brand and states “how you do what you do”.

2. Make a list of your audiences and prioritize them.

3. For each customer type, figure out what their urgent needs are. Do not assume you know what your customers’ needs and pains are. Get out and talk to customers to get an in-depth understanding of their wants and their needs, and pain points.

4. Make a list of key features of your products and/or services and how you each solves the customer needs identified.

5. Analyze your competitors. Gather information from their website, printed materials, and other sources. Evaluate how they are positioning themselves and what their key messages are.

6. Now you have all the necessary information to identify your distinctive positioning, focus on how you meet the most urgent need, or top two if there is a close second. In solving those needs, what do you do that is unique compared to the competition? Identify the one most compelling reason for customers to do business with you. It is important to be focused. We tell our clients to think of how they would complete this sentence: Only we ______. Hint: it cannot be related to customer service; we hope that is a given!

7. Write a sentence that gives a distinctive advantage, not just presents your value as a superlative claim. Keep honing it until it is clear and feels right. Check it out with outside contacts for confirmation that it conveys a compelling reason to do business with you.

Once you have applied these steps, you should have in your hands an effective positioning statement that will soon become the single most important sentence in your marketing arsenal. Use this positioning statement wherever you can. Remember, keep it simple. There is nothing worse than a position statement that takes more than a few seconds to read, process, and most importantly memorize.

Hyve Marketing is a true, full-service marketing partner, we can manage all aspects of your marketing needs: branding and design, website development, digital marketing, social media management, paid search, content management, photography, and video production. Contact us today for a complimentary marketing analysis of your existing brand and collateral.

When we develop a new brand or rebrand a company, we often find clients think they’re just getting a logo. A mark to stamp anywhere and everywhere – front and center on the back of the business card, thrown in the corner of a letterhead, etc. Of course, the logo is the centerpiece of any branding project and creates the visual of the company’s identity, however when done right, there’s so much more that is involved.

What Is A Brand?

A brand speaks through visual language, writes in a consistent voice, takes on a perspective, and evokes a specific feeling. There are many elements such as color, typography, and imagery style that, once defined, create the outline for the brand and anything that can be done within those boundaries is how the identity grows. A company’s brand not only states WHO they are and WHAT they do, but HOW they do it. The last element, the HOW is what so many company’s fail to relay through their brand.

A brand should include the following elements:

  1. Defined color palette
  2. Typography
  3. Imagery style
  4. Consistent icon/logo family
  5. Logo in color, black, and white
  6. Positioning Statement
  7. Brand Guide

What Makes a Good Brand?

A good brand draws inspiration from and reflects its owners and their values. A designer will listen to their client, and based on personal experience or research, will come up with several directions to take a brand.  But a great designer balances 1.) best-practice design and communication principles, 2.) current trends in the market, and 3.) the themes and messaging that inspired the client in the first place. A great brand rests comfortably, and seemingly effortlessly, on these 3 legs. But of course, getting to this point is the farthest thing from effortless and is done with deliberate intent.

A good brand offers a cohesive design system. Of course, you can simply throw your logo everywhere on everything, and probably for a lot less money, however, the result of that would be cheapening the logo (and by extension your brand) by significantly reducing the amount of impact it has on the consumer. A logo is your chorus and every instance that you use it should be thoughtful and intentional. It is the culmination of all the big ideas that went into your brand, the climax, and just like a song your brand needs verses. A good brand utilizes all its core elements (color, typography, etc.) to evoke emotion and communicate its mission, stance in the marketplace, and goals. To do this, you must create a design system that cohesively presents the brand in different, visually interesting ways, from many angles. The elements and graphics created within this system should push and challenge the boundaries of the brand without breaking them.

A good brand is well defined and maintained for consistency. A brand can ebb and flow and even ultimately change over time. However, it is of the utmost importance that the core pillars, themes, and messaging that went into creating the brand in the first place are maintained. Every decision should be made with deliberate intention.

A good brand is easily executable to any/all relevant mediums. If your logo is only going to live online (maybe it is a subset of a larger company and only needs a space off of the main website) many options are available. If the logo is going to be sewn or embroidered on fabric or used on small swag items…. then you need something simple. If the logo is going to be screen printed, then having a design that accommodates colors and/or limitations specific to screen printing is critical. These are just a few examples, and when Hyve’s Leadership Team is managing a brand we take into account all these considerations.

The Impact of a Powerful Brand

A powerful brand can propel your business into the world and command attention, it can situate you in the marketplace alongside good company or differentiate you from a sea of the same, and it can roll with the punches or scale easily with growth while withstanding the test of time. A brand that consistently and clearly communicates its messaging, purpose, and personality can garner true, unwavering loyalty. A new brand that positions itself well in relation to its competition while effectively solving an existing paint point or problem can take over an industry.

At the end of the day the question that we find to be most important, and the question that should be asked at every turn is “What am I trying to communicate?”. Whether you are creating a brand from scratch, pivoting your existing brand, or just developing your brand and its strategies further, come back to this question every time you need to make a decision. Ensure that the intent of communication aligns with the brand’s core principles, and message and execute accordingly and creatively within the brand’s visual language and tone of voice.

Hyve Marketing is a true, full-service marketing partner, we can manage all aspects of your marketing needs: branding and design, website development, digital marketing, social media management, paid search, content management, photography, and video production. Contact us today for complimentary marketing analysis of your existing brand and collateral.