One of the first steps for creating or reinvigorating a is getting down on paper exactly what you wish to say.

You need to define your audience, your value proposition and your competition. This is known as a brand positioning statement

The brand positioning statement is essentially the focal point of your entire marketing and branding strategy. Everything you say or do, from tone of voice to website visuals, should support this statement. Generally only a couple of sentences long, a brand positioning statement can look remarkably simple at first glance. However, it is certainly worth putting time, effort and considerable thought into the crafting. Ideally, you should be able to judge any business decision by assessing it in light of the brand positioning statement. Ask yourself, does the outcome of this decision contradict any promise we’ve made in the statement? Will it require a shift in our target audience?

Something key to bear in mind when writing, is that the brand positioning statement should be for internal use only. It is not an elevator pitch or tagline. You are not trying to capture the audience’s attention with a witty phrasing. All of that will come later. Given that the statement is for internal use, it is best to try and consult as many stakeholders as possible. Customer and employee opinions should be valued. Make sure to keep it quite short to maintain clarity and hopefully make it memorable.  

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The Components of a Brand Positioning Statement

With a product or service established, you first need to consider your target audience. Demographics such as gender and age are obviously important but you also need to go deeper. What are their interests? What influences them? If you have several possible target groups, focus on the most valuable one.

The next step is to identify the main benefit you provide customers. This could be your quality level, your pricing, your years of experience, your friendly customer service etc. Identifying what sets you apart from the competition is crucial for any future business decisions.

Finally, you need evidence. Why should the target audience believe anything you say? Reassure them with statements that highlight the fact that you’re award-winning, that you save costs by selling exclusively online etc. Never promise anything that you aren’t confident of delivering. Failing customer expectations is a sure-fire way to receive negative brand perception. 

Brand positioning statements are the foundation of all your other branding choices and so should remain as consistent as possible. Inevitably, however, there will likely come a time when you want to rebrand in response to significant changes within the business or wider industry. In this situation, you should always re-evaluate your brand positioning statement. Failing to do so will lead to a rebrand that is purely superficial.

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Written by Jon Walker April of 2017