THE POSITIONING
MATRIX™

The Positioning Matrix™

The Positioning Matrix™ is a formula I developed over the course of more than 35 years of working as a big agency principal (think ‘Mad Men’), and as a marketing, strategic planning and SEO consultant to many very large brands in almost every niche imaginable.

Completing the Positioning Matrix™ properly allows the creation of the perfect combination of elements to match the dynamics of the market and competitive conditions in which the product will be promoted, properly positioned, and most importantly, how the competition will be de-positioned on a Category level.

Components Of A Positioning Matrix™

A properly constructed Positioning Matrix™ is a grid which has TWO main axes: The 4 Essential Elements, and The 4 Marketing Environments.

The 4 Essential Elements

The 4 Essential Elements

The 4 Marketing Environments

The 4 Marketing Environments

The 4 Essential Elements Of The Positioning Matrix™

 

Essential Positioning Element 1: The Meaningful Benefit

 

The FIRST of the 4 critical elements that comprise the Positioning Matrix™ must present a MEANINGFUL BENEFIT to the target consumer or prospect.  Most brands, especially those who believe that their ‘USP’ (Unique Selling Proposition) is the way to go about brand positioning get this wrong right at the start.

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Essential Positioning Element 2: Provable and Easily Evident

The SECOND of the 4 critical elements that comprise a winning Positioning Matrix™ is that the ‘Meaningful Benefit’ promised must be easily PROVABLE or clearly EVIDENT to the consumer.  In order to craft your Positioning Matrix™ properly, on the road to developing your ultimate Positioning Platform, you must account for the consumer’s perception of the credibility of your meaningful benefit promise.

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Essential Positioning Element 3: Differentiated from the Competition

The THIRD of the 4 critical elements that comprise a winning Positioning Matrix™ is that the ‘Meaningful Benefit’ promised must be clearly and distinctly DIFFERENTIATED from the competition. And the competition can be whatever brand or service your target is using NOW or other products vying for their attention. Competition comes in many forms (5 different flavors actually, which are the subject of another article here). To craft a truly winning Positioning Platform, you must consider the competitive impact of ALL types.

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Essential Positioning Element 4: De-Positioning the Competition

DEPOSITIONING THE COMPETITION, the fourth essential element of a powerful Positioning Matrix™, is the most difficult but the most powerful element of positioning. It means pre-empting the consumer from thinking positively about the competition, or what they are currently using.

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The 4 Marketing Environments Of The Positioning Matrix™

Marketing Environment 1: Introductory

The FIRST of the 1 Marketing Environments your brand might be competing in, that is required to craft a compelling Positioning Matrix™ is the INTRODUCTORY Marketing Environment.  This isn’t always what it might appear to be.  It’s NOT the 2019 Range Rover, it’s the AUTOMOBILE.  However, when positioning is done right, it almost ALWAYS includes some component of the Introductory Marketing Environment.

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Marketing Environment 2: Offensive

The SECOND of the 4 potential marketing environments your brand could be competing in is the OFFENSIVE Marketing Environment.  This is when you are trying to take market share away from your competitors.  This is one of the most important aspects of crafting a compelling Positioning Matrix™ and a winning Positioning Platform.

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Marketing Environment 3: Defensive

The THIRD of the 4 critical elements that comprise a winning Positioning Matrix™ is that the ‘Meaningful Benefit’ promised must be clearly and distinctly DIFFERENTIATED from the competition. And the competition can be whatever brand or service your target is using NOW or other products vying for their attention. Competition comes in many forms (5 different flavors actually, which are the subject of another article here). To craft a truly winning Positioning Platform, you must consider the competitive impact of ALL types.

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Marketing Environment 4: Remedial

DEPOSITIONING THE COMPETITION, the fourth essential element of a powerful Positioning Matrix™, is the most difficult but the most powerful element of positioning. It means pre-empting the consumer from thinking positively about the competition, or what they are currently using.

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Composing A Completed Positioning Matrix™

Weighting Of The Positioning Matrix™

Weighting Of The Positioning Matrix

Complete Your Positioning Matrix™

Having defined all 4 Essential Elements, you now weight the relative importance of each one based on which Marketing Environment you are trading in. Remember that one of the most powerful tactics is the creation of a new Category Class, which provides the power of a classic Introductory environment, but modified with the weighting of the Offensive Environment, as you are creating a new sub-niche AND seeking to capture market share from your competitors.  We call this a ‘Hybrid Marketing Environment.’ LEARN MORE.

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