Re-Positioning: Herculean, but no Myth

A recent post in Marketing Week declared the Myth of Re-positioning.

Not only is Re-Positioning sometimes essential, it is certainly not mythical. Just hard, Herculean graft.

I do agree that ‘lipstick on a pig’, ‘jogging-pants on a clunking fist’ (ah, if only my photoshop skills were up-to that image) overnight transformations are hollow, but you can move a brand’s position. (Yes We Can).

Your brand’s Position is the Idea – usually one-word – which your consumers / clients / electorate use to name the file on their mental desktop. (apologies to Al Ries for any paraphrasing).

With or without our help, this happens anyway. If we’re lucky / work hard – we get the chance to influence this Filename. By determining the One-Word we’d like to own, and working to create meaningful content for our brand, which gets ‘filed’ in there.

We determine the One-Word by examining 3 overlapping circles: Our (target) Consumers’ WANTS, Our Competitors’ Gaps, and Our Capabilities.

Our Position lies in the overlap. Spot-it, Claim-It, Own-It, Build-It.

But…none of these ‘circles’ is fixed, over time. Competitors, once we show our hand, may try to seize our territory. Wants can change (though we try to find the enduring-ones.) And, our Capabilities can grow (or diminish).

The point is: just as we can work hard to create our Position, we can work hard to Re-Position. Because sometimes we have to. Because the circles have shifted.

Gordon Brown didn’t have time. No do some brands. But with resourcefulness, and sometimes resources, it can be done.

When’s the last time you gave a sick-kid a bottle of Lucozade?




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