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If the shoe fits, wear it.

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Is your brand position aligned with the value you provide to the marketplace?

What value does your company offer the marketplace? Do you provide a unique product, that no one else offers? Do you provide a quality service faster than your competitor? Do you have a greater selection in your niche than anyone in your market? In essence, every business is selling value of one kind or another.

Our selection of a brand is led by our perception of value. For example, you may select one airline over another due to low fares (“It saves me money”), the convenience of airport location (“Saves me time”), a variety of flight options (“I have options”) or carriers with first class accommodations and perks (“Provides me with more comfort”).

If I were to conduct a test and ask you to name the best shoe store in your market, the best exterminator in your market, the best burger in your market or the best printer in town, I am sure you could easily name them. And for each, you would have a good reason to cite these businesses. You believe in the brand either through personal experience with the product and/or service, an opinion developed through reputation and word of mouth or through positive exposure to the brand through marketing and public relations.

How do these companies build this kind of equity in their brands? They consistently deliver what they profess to deliver — that’s how. Their promises to the marketplace and the value they offer are consistent. They are consistent. They have crafted a position in the mind of the consumer. And I can guarantee, they didn’t do it by happenstance. They were deliberate in determining their position. Then they built their business around aligning all of their business practices to support the position.

Even small businesses do it. Take, for example, Crazy Charlie’s, a retail shoe store in Lafayette, La. I am sure at some point during the inception of the business, the owner thought, “I’d like to have a shoe store with the largest selection of shoes that the area has to offer. I’d like to include and offer name brand and designer shoes at a lower price than any other competitor.”

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I can attest that the store delivers as promised. They offer a huge selection and include high-quality brands within their selection — all at affordable prices.

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At BBR, we take clients through a process to help them identify their brand position. Arguably one of the most important exercises that a company can go through, this discovery process is designed to uncover the unique differentiators of the organization and capture their value proposition in a succinct statement — the brand positioning statement. All brand activities operate from this position. Brand position creates the roadmap for all organizational decisions, is the foundation for all marketing messages and truly shapes the personality of the company.

Your position has to be your own. Your company, like your unique personality, is one of a kind. It has to be authentic. You must define yourself and the values you profess. And, when conducting business, you have to live up to those values. When you do, you will reap the benefits of having developed a company with a strong brand — a brand whose promise matches the value it delivers.

Click here to download a checklist to help you evaluate your brand position.