When developing a branding strategy, your first task is to determine where your business sits in the marketplace. That’s branding is the creation of a singular expectation among a targeted audience that your offering will deliver a unique and meaningful benefit. This focus on creating a compelling point of difference for an offering presents businesses with two different options for your brand:
PRIMARY BRANDING OPTION: Promote a “difference of kind.”
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NOTE: If your brand is the category leader, the word you own is the category name (Red Bull = energy drink, Xerox = copiers, Kleenex= tissues, etc.). Your brand stands for the category, and if you're lucky, it becomes the generic for the category ("Make me a Xerox.")
SECONDARY BRANDING OPTION: Promote a “difference of degree.”
Position your brand within an existing category by determining where it ranks in consumers’ minds.
If your brand is #2 in the category, position it opposite the leader and use an offensive strategy.
If your brand is #3 in the category, use a flanking strategy.
If your brand is #4 or lower in the category, use a guerrilla strategy.
A brand’s differentiating benefit may be:
For more ideas on determining a differentiating benefit for your brand,
Once you’ve determined your preferred brand strategy and differentiation benefit, fill in the following position statement:
[BRAND NAME] is the only [BRAND CATEGORY] for [TARGET AUDIENCE] that [UNIQUE FEATURE] so [COMPELLING BENEFIT OF THAT FEATURE].
Ideally, the point of difference should be distilled into a single word or phrase. It might be benefit-related (cavity prevention), service-related (home delivery), audience-related (young people), or sales-related (preferred brand).
The essence of your brand’s value proposition should be able to be articulated this simply:
[BRAND NAME] = [WORD]
This article courtesy of Scott DeMenter