Small Business Marketing Positioning

Small Business Marketing Positioning

Small Business Marketing Positioning

Positioning is another one of those marketing jargon words that everyone uses and is important to understand. It's also important to understand how positioning applies specifically to your small business marketing.

Basically, a marketing position describes your unique place in the market. The keyword here is unique. What makes you different from your competitors? What features and benefits do you offer to your target market that the other players don't?

Here are some things that can go into your rankings:

-Price point: This does not necessarily mean that it has the lowest price. You may be the most expensive in town, and that's okay if you convince your customers that you're worth it.

-Service: Almost all companies claim that they have great service. If you can provide exceptional service compared to your competitors, your customers will remember you. I'll never forget calling a grumpy plumber to try to bring it to my house for an emergency on a weekend. he acted like he didn't want my business and then he told me he was going to cost $200 just to show up no thanks. I called roto-router who gave me amazing service, a warranty, and the total bill was less than $200. Now I use them for all my pipes.

-Features and benefits: positioning is not only about what makes you different, it is also about what you emphasize. Folgers advertises to the world that it is "mountain grown coffee" (a feature). Guess what? All the coffee is from the mountains. Folgers just claimed this feature first. What is something none of your competitors are talking about?

-Credibility: Legal Seafood's clam chowder is served at every presidential inauguration. Many products get celebrity endorsements. Many companies advertise how long they have been in business. All of these things build trust in the mind of the consumer. What trust-building factors do you have that the competition doesn't?

-Negative features: Is there something you don't have that bothers your competitors' customers? I'm not saying use negative publicity, just mention the feature and link it to a benefit. I get upset when I have to pay for parking to go shopping at the mall. Instead of promoting free parking, a mall that wants to talk to me might declare, "You'll never have to pay for parking." This drives home the pain of buying from a competitor without turning negative.

-Anything else: Literally anything that sets you apart from your competitors can be part of your positioning strategy: your location, your hours of operation, the way your office smells. Small business owners need to think outside the box here.

In a great article by John Jantsch, he states that a positioning strategy should answer the question "why should I buy from them?" This is brilliant in its simplicity; cuts through all the strategic crap that complicates marketing. If you can't answer this question, your client won't do the work of finding an answer on their own.