Purpose. Point of difference. Product.
My strategy when positioning any brand is centred around 3 P’s, in the order listed above. The order, and it’s conveyance in such an order, is paramount to its interpretation, and responds to psychological consumer & human behaviour research. It’s relevant to any brand, service or individual when promoting their offering, and in my opinion provides a solid structure for how to tell your story.
Purpose: why does your product exist? What problem are you trying to solve? How does this help people? The answers to these questions can establish a common connection with those who also believe what you believe. If the meaning resonates with people, they become part of your “tribe.” We’ve evolved as a cooperative race, programmed to respond to working in cohesion with each other as our best means of survival, reciprocated by our body in the chemicals it releases to reward such behaviour. We trust people with common goals & values, which is why you can hug a fellow supporter at a football match you have never met or find comfort in a strange place with someone from the same country as you.
Our purpose outlines our beliefs, and when we believe strongly this is amplified - we speak differently. It also allows us to work through discomfort, and unite people behind a common goal. Our purpose should be a common vision throughout our employees, customers, suppliers & shareholders, not something spoken about on the first day but clearly consistent in the work & underlying tonality of our combined voice. We know from neuroscience our “monkey brain” responds to this over logic, which is next on the list, but it’s most important first to create a brand which connotes the mission of your product. Tell a story. After all, this is how we’ve passed down knowledge for thousands of years, it makes sense for us to respond to narratives to remember and relate.
Point of difference - what is you differentiating value proposition? How is your offering diversifying outside that of your competitors? What’s unique about your product? This is the tangible, measurable ability of your business to provide solutions to common problems in the market, or create a new one. If you’re a technology company, what new system are you introducing & how does it benefit the consumer? If you’re a restaurant, what makes your food/service different to your competitors? Being able to list these factors then compound them into easy to digest, deliverable USPs will enable you to position your product to benefit the needs of your identified consumers.
Product - what do you do? We sell computers. We sell driving tuition. We sell doughnuts. Whatever it is, knowing what you do, and knowing it is third on the list, is golden. Regardless of product or industry, if you want to inspire people, the actual product or service comes last in the context of navigating the noise when marketing it.
If you sell vegan doughnuts, your marketing message may sound like this:
Purpose: we believe you should be able to eat the tastiest food in the world, without feeling guilty!
Point of difference: all of our doughnuts are free from sugar, animal products & come in over 30 delicious flavours!
Product: you can buy our doughnuts at....
Adopt this strategy throughout your communications to build a loyal community. This community becomes not only your customers, but advocates & sales people. Building a brand in such a way allows you to diversify with technology & culture, meaning longevity. In times of difficulty, it provides a roadmap to convey importance of priorities, creating a way to reignite the very reason you exist.