The Three Stages of Positioning Online For Brand Marketing – What Stage Are You In?

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Positioning Online: It is the process by which Online Marketers create an image or identity to embed in the minds of their target market for its product, brand, or organization. Simply put, It’s the art of creating perceived value(s) within the ranks of your buyers with a clear goal of converting it into sales.

1. Define the market(s) in which the product or brand will compete within.

2. Identify the dimensions of the product marketing sphere.

3. Assess and define the variety of competitor engagement techniques within the sphere.

4. Differentiate your deliverables and benefits in a clear and concise message.

5. Determine the sensory and cognitive stimulation techniques you shall employ.

6. Incorporate the Functional, Symbolic and Experiential marketing practices in the plan.

7. Benchmark, deploy and monitor the performance, adjust as needed, but do not tamper.

Re-Positioning Online: This stage requires changing the identity of a product, brand or service in the mind of the aggregate target market buyers. It’s either reactive as it relates to competing sales trends, margin loss or some unfavorable identity crisis in the collective minds of the target market. It is not a matter of re-doing steps 1 – 7 above (which are quite brief). This scenario is common without crisis contingency planning or proactive market trending; many simply fell from the cash cow to the dog and never knew it.

**Re-Positioning for Reputation Management is a totally different ball game; In volatile markets, it can be necessary to reposition an entire company verses a product line or brand.

** In a prolonged recession, such as we are in, what was effective in healthy economies more often than not becomes ineffective and it may be necessary to change your online brand marketing strategy.

De-Positioning Online: This is the change in the identity of the competitor products as compared to the identity of your own product in the collective minds of your targeted market. De-positioning is generally the result of a competitor taking your game and either stepping it up or simply saturating the sphere with an increased “Me Too” of what was once your differentiating edge; the chameleon among us all. Proactive De-positioning may very well be the tactical plan you employ from the start.

**De-positioning for online reputation management is totally reactive and one of the most difficult to change in this global sphere of indelible digital references. Reputation Management De-positioning involves attempting to de-position (displace), the identity of every unfavorable reference in at least the top 2 SERP’s (first 20 positions), with neutral or favorable references, and no, not rebuttals. Be proactive with a contingent of tactical plans of action, because for many businesses it’s inevitable.

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