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3 Steps to Establish a Market Positioning Strategy

As an entrepreneur it is very important to be familiar with one of the basic marketing strategies, the market positioning strategy.

Market positioning: “It is defined as the act of designing the offer and the image of the company seeking to occupy a distinctive place in the mind of the target market.” – Philip Kotler.

Market positioning will help us tell our customers and the entire market how they should see our product or service, brand or organization in relation to the competition. Simply put, market positioning describes how a brand differs from its competitors and how it is in the minds of customers.

Below we share 3 steps to establish a market positioning strategy, according to Stanton, Etzel and Walker in their 14th edition of the book Fundamentals of Marketing:

3 Steps to Establish a Market Positioning Strategy


Step 1: Choose the concept of market positioning

To position a product, brand or an organization, as an entrepreneur you must start by determining what is important for the target market.

From there you must carry out market positioning studies to know how the members of the target market see the products or services of the competition in the important dimensions. Examples of dimensions could be in the case of services: Expensive, Cheap, Fast, Quality, Specialized, Generic.

To carry out the market positioning study, you must carry out a marketing investigation. To do this you must create a form with questions related to your competitors. As many questions as necessary. For example:

How do you perceive the consulting service of the brand A company?

  • a) Expensive
  • b) Cheap

You consider that the services of the company Brand B are …

  • a) High quality
  • b) Low quality

The results of this research should be emptied on a positioning map that will place your brand or organization in relation to your competitors in the dimension in question, and also, will allow you to design your market positioning strategy.

Here is an example of a positioning map that you can use as a model when designing a market positioning strategy, as well as to determine new opportunities in the market or some niche of the market without being served.

Market Positioning Map.


For example, in the market positioning map we can detect the opportunity for the consulting agency “Imagine Hub”. We can see that no other agency occupies the position of offering a high quality service at a reasonable price. We can visualize that, or the normal quality service is very expensive or very cheap.

Step 2: Design the dimension or characteristic that best communicates the market positioning 

The next step corresponds to designing the dimension or characteristic that best communicates the position in the market. A market position can communicate with a brand, motto, appearance or other characteristics of the product or service, the place where it is sold, the website, the appearance of employees and many other forms.

However, some features are more effective than others. It is important not to forget the details. You have to make decisions about the best way to communicate the desired positioning concept.

Examples of features to communicate market positioning.

  • Apple: Design, innovation and functionality.
  • Adidas: An authentic brand that thinks and works for athletes.
  • Coca Cola: Uncover happiness.


Estrategia de Posicionamiento de Mercado - Market Positioning Strategy


Step 3: Coordinate the components of the marketing mix so that they communicate a congruent market position

It is important to communicate our position in all the elements of the marketing mix (product, price, promotion and place or distribution). A good strategy is to select a slogan or brand motto that communicates our positioning, and use this slogan in any marketing activity or channel. Another is to select the points of sale that are consistent with our market positioning. As well as thinking about promotions that are related to the positioning we want to achieve.

It is silly to make 2×1 promotions when we want to position ourselves as an exclusive product or service. We are contradicting ourselves.

Important (!)

Over time, market positions wear out due to lack of attention, become less attractive for a market where needs or tastes have changed, or competitors usurp.

Therefore, the positions must be checked regularly and sometimes adjusted. It is possible that, over time, a new evaluation of its position in the minds of consumers will be suggested, this suggests that your product or service has become less desirable in relation to the competition.

When your company’s market position is worn out, and you are trying to restore its appeal, practice a market repositioning strategy. An example of repositioning is that of the company Procter & Gamble. When they discovered, after conducting market research, that “oil” has a negative connotation for younger women when evaluating products. Thanks to this discovery, Procter & Gamble repositioned its venerable Oil of Olay brand with a simple name change to “Olay”.

To conclude

From Imagine Hub, Agencia de Marketing Digital, we hope this article has been very useful for you to design a web positioning strategy. Share with us your opinion about this article or if you would like to add something more of interest to our community of readers. Read more articles…

Source: Fundamentals of Marketing, 14a edition, Stanton, Etzel y Walker.