Positioning – it’s how you differentiate your product or service from that of your competitors. And it’s highly important. As an entrepreneur, no matter what you actually do or what services you offer, there are countless other people who do the exact same thing. If you don’t appear to offer some sort of benefit that they do not, then you’ll never succeed. What you need is a calling, and then you need to market the hell out of it. Before you position your brand, ask yourself a few questions.

Find Your Target Audience?

We come back to the target audience again and again, and it’s because it’s just that important. You can’t sell anything if you don’t know who you’re selling to. Be as specific as possible when defining your audience, and then do some research to help differentiate your offerings. Visit groups they frequent, scan their tweets, find out what it is they’re talking about, and what is important to them.

How is My Product or Service Unique?

As an example, there are lots of commercial ice cream chains: Baskin-Robbins, Carvel, Dairy Queen, Ben & Jerry’s. But Dairy Queen is the only one to promise that their signature treat, the Blizzard, is so thick, it can be served upside-down (and if it isn’t served that way, you get it free). What is your Blizzard?

Is There a Niche That My Competitors Are Ignoring?

Let say you specialize in newsletter management and there are thousands of other people who do the exact same thing. But there probably aren’t thousands of other people who market newsletter management specifically to gluten-free pastry chefs who live in Wisconsin. You have to find that one group that’s being ignored and go after them.

Is There Something Your Competitors Don’t Do Well?

If everyone seems to be complaining about one thing that doesn’t get done well, then you need to become an expert at that one thing. For example, maybe people really need someone to set up email automation, but they can’t find anyone who can reliably set them up so they work every single time. Become the email automation person!

What is Your Client Really Buying From You?

Sure, you might sell newsletter management services, but that’s not really what they’re buying. At least, that’s not all that they’re buying. They’re buying your image, your reputation, your Facebook posts. They’re buying the way you make them feel. Positioning is only partly about your services. Make sure you’re selling the entire package.

Now create your positioning statement! It’s easy – just try to contain everything that you’re all about in 1 or 2 simple sentences!