Different, Better – We’re Writing a Guide to Practical Positioning

Anyone that knows me knows that Positioning is one of my favourite marketing topics. For startups in particular, figuring out how to define a unique piece of the market that you can claim and dominate is really important. Today I’m announcing that Alistair Croll and I are working on a book – Different, Better – A Practical Guide to Superb Positioning in Noisy Markets. Many of you will know Alistair as the co-author of Lean Analytics. We’ve launched a new site and a blog where we will be posting articles, case studies and interviews. Sign up there to stay in the loop. Positioning is hard, necessary work. In the rush to build and launch products for hungry markets, however, it’s often overlooked. But organizations ignore it at their peril, because customers don’t buy what they don’t understand. If you can’t clearly communicate who you’re for, and why you’re better for them, you don’t have a position. In short, you need to be different, better. Good positioning lets you serve a target market better than competitors, earning their loyalty and erecting barriers to competition. A well-positioned company enjoys higher margins and lower sales costs. It knows what to build, for whom, and when to expand. Positioning is often misunderstood term. It’s not messaging, or a tagline. It’s not branding. And it’s not a lofty vision statement. Rather, it’s a clear understanding of what you are, what market you’re in, and who you’re selling to, combined with the thing that, in the eyes of that market, makes you better or different from your competitors. Hasn’t this already been written? Positioning is part of every first-year marketing...

Your B2B Startup Needs a Buyer’s Guide

One of the big differences between selling to businesses vs selling to consumers is the buying process. Most Consumer products are lower priced and purchased quickly because if you make a poor choice, you aren’t out much more than beer money. In B2B not only is there more money on the line, buyers often have to justify a purchase to their boss. A poor choice can cost the company big dollars and (often more importantly) damage the buyer’s reputation. This is precisely why a Buyer’s Guide is such a powerful piece of marketing content. It is designed specifically to meed the needs of a prospect that has been tasked with making a purchase decision. It’s a piece of marketing content aimed directly at the hottest prospects in your pipeline. The Buyer’s Guide is Targeted at a Critical Stage in the B2B Buying Process For B2B purchases, the buying process usually includes a stage where prospects try to figure out what their options are and which ones are best suited to them. For startups selling to businesses, this stage is particularly important. Often the solution is in a new or shifting market space and figuring out the competitive alternatives is a task in itself, nevermind trying to figure out which option offers the best combination of functionality, features, support, community, etc. For enterprise products, the evaluation phase might be a months-long process that includes a formal RFP process and/or a Proof of Concept. However for many lower-priced B2B solutions, the evaluation process is much more informal and looks more like a manager saying “Go figure out what we should buy and come back...

Marketing Strategy Hacks Presentation

If growth is stalled and all of your marketing metrics kinda stink – it might be time to look at your underlying strategy. How you would test the underlying assumptions around which buyers you are targeting and what market you are positioned in.

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