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9 Strategies to Position Yourself for Greater Profits
By Arnold Sanow   Printer Friendly Version

"Positioning, quite simply, is placing your product or service in a certain way in the consumer's mind."

In this competitive environment if we fail to differentiate our services and products from our competitors we will always be seen as a commodity.

To become less of a commodity and a business where people seek us out we can position ourselves by following the 9 strategies below:

  1. Develop your niche - Look for a niche that your competition is not filling. For example, one travel agency specialized in being the travel agency for Hollywood Production companies. By going from a general travel agency to a specialized one they tripled their income.
  2. Know your competition - To stay ahead of the game you need to constantly be evaluating your competition. By knowing the competition you can; copy success, determine where you have the advantages, and learn from their successes and failures. To evaluate your competition focus and compare yourself on the 6 P's --- price, promotion, packaging, personnel, place and product/service.
  3. Understand your customers - There is no issue more important to you than knowing your customers. There's an old saying, "Determine the wants and needs of your customers first then work backwards to develop the products and services. The feast is determined by the consumer not the chef." Only by knowing the wants, needs and demographics of your customers (age, sex, income, geographic region, lifestyle, etc.) can you truly position yourself.
  4. Develop your unique selling proposition - What is unique about your services and products over the competition. It could be something as simple as longer hours, getting back immediately by phone or a more complex unique selling proposition such as a niche.
  5. Offer exceptional customer service - This is one of the main ways to separate yourself from the crowd. In fact, Time magazine in a recent article stated that the #1 marketing strategy for companies in the year 2000 and beyond will be customer service. To move your company to the next level follow these 6 guidelines to keep customers for life; be reliable, be responsive, be credible, have the appropriate appearance, show empathy, and have a great attitude.
  6. Work your strategy - Give everything a chance to work. Many companies develop their marketing plans and don't allow enough time to see if a strategy is really working. Thoroughly analyze and review your strategy before you lightly discard it.
  7. Stress benefits - "What's in it for me" is what the client is thinking about. What can they save, gain or accomplish by using your product or service?
  8. Develop a business plan - A business plan simply asks, where am I going and how am I going to get there? The plan will help you focus on where to position your product or service.
  9. Become a "little bit" famous - By writing articles, getting on television and radio and teaching at local universities you position yourself so people see you as the expert.

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