That’s where your positioning statement comes in.
In a few concise sentences, you can let your target audience know exactly who you are, what you do, and how you do it better than anyone else.
But, how do you carry that across into your email campaigns and various email clients?
Read on to find out more about creating your own killer positioning statement and how to cleverly inject into your email campaigns to boost your brand awareness, authenticity, and identity.
What is a Positioning Statement?
Formal written positioning statements are rare these days. Often brands tend to position themselves with slogans, mission statements, and brand identity signals. If you’re at a company that has hosted a webinar recently, you’ve probably inserted your positioning statement within the first couple minutes of the presentation.
A concrete positioning statement can help to inform brand decision-making to keep your whole team on track. It solidifies expectations, both regarding what the customer will get and how the brand should perform.
Simply put, a positioning statement defines your position in the market. It outlines the services you provide and the target audiences for which you cater.
Your positioning statement also sets out your unique slant, showcasing how you’re different from your competitors.
In general, a positioning statement explains:
- Who you are
- What you do
- How you do it
- Why you do it
- How you compare to others
Why Include a Positioning Statement in Your Email Campaigns?
Firstly, it’s about brand authenticity.
According to one in five branding professionals, brand authenticity is now the key differentiator between brands.
While written position statements aren’t that common anymore, including one in your email campaigns can help improve brand authenticity. You can check out Supreme Dissertations if you need help with any aspect of writing.
Not only that, but a positioning statement is a quick way to raise brand awareness — the number one concern for 43% of branding professionals.
Using just a few sentences in your email, you can get across exactly who you are, what you’re about, and what you stand for.
80% of branding professionals agree that social and cultural issues play a big role in a company’s branding strategy. Your positioning statement provides you the perfect opportunity to delve into where you stand on these topics and how they drive your brand’s promises and practices.
It’s an immediate hook for your target audience and a way to weed out those who’ll never buy.
Another reason to broadcast your positioning statement in your emails is to differentiate yourself from your competitors.
One in five branding experts admit that it’s a real challenge to stand out from competitor messaging. A positioning statement is a concise way to do this.
Equally, it helps to keep your brand consistent.
The number one fear for 12% of branding experts is an inconsistent brand.
When you have a positioning statement, it’s easier to combat inconsistency. You’ll have a consistent brand voice in your emails if you’re using the tone and language of your position statement as a guide.
You’ll also find your position statement helps you to make brand decisions that align with your values and mission.
Whenever you’re in two minds about whether to go ahead with an email outreach strategy or particular style of messaging, you refer to that statement. Which campaign aligns best with the values, expectations, and promises in that statement? That’s the email campaign to choose.
What Are the Four Elements of a Positioning Statement?
To keep your positioning statement brief and to the point, it’s smart to use the tried-and-tested format.
The best positioning statements include the following elements.
1. Target audience
Who does your brand cater to?
Most companies target a specific niche because it’s easier to market to a niche audience than to try and determine what works for everyone.
As Zach Pentel, the Head of Global Brand Strategy at Spotify explains, “If you make something for everyone, it won’t really appeal to anyone.”
Your positioning statement should immediately appeal to your target audiences or personas so that the prospective customer reading it can say, “Oh look, they’re talking to me. This must be a product for me.”
Let’s take the product lifecycle management platform, Propel, for example.
See how the positioning statement points out exactly who the platform is for: product creators and manufacturers. If you’re not a product creator or a manufacturer, this platform probably won’t be useful to you.
Also notice how Propel points out that it’s a platform for product creators and manufacturers ‘everywhere’. This shows that the product isn’t just limited to the United States. Instead, it can be used by internationally distributed teams and remote workers.
Alternatively, check out Simple Money Lyfe.
The financial advice website has no qualms stating exactly who they cater for — Americans in the Generation Z age group.
They also give a little detail about the types of Gen Z audience they’re speaking to, such as those looking to repair their credit or invest in the stock market.
Or how about EarlyBird?
Rather than positioning itself as an app to simply help parents save for their kids’ futures, Earlybird positions itself as a service for parents, friends and family.
This widens its target market.
2. Frame of reference
In your positioning statement, you’ll need to give your prospective customers a frame of reference. This means you need to point out the market category in which your brand operates.
There’s a whole world of different market categories, for example, food and beverages, hair and beauty, apparel, finance, SaaS, automotive, professional cleaning, real estate, construction, education, and so on.
By giving a frame of reference as your market category, you give prospective customers a way to compare you to the competition.
It’s no good simply saying you’re the best at what you do. Customers want to know that you’re the best compared to who.
While this might be obvious for some companies, other brands may need it to clarify their purpose and identity.
Check out GoAura, for instance.
When you first hear the name ‘GoAura’, it’s not obvious what the company does or what market they operate within.
Even if you understood that GoAura could ‘maximize Amazon sales’, you’d still want to know if it’s the best tool for the job.
To understand how GoAura compares to other similar tools, you need to know what market it’s in. By highlighting that it’s the best ‘Amazon Repricer and Revenue Analytics’ tool, you can now set out to see how it fares against its competitors.
Or, look at how Havoc Shield does this with a subtle dig.
By implying that your old cybersecurity practices aren’t safe enough, Havoc Shield positions itself in the cybersecurity market while also inferring that its software is better than comparable products.
Similar to the ‘GoAura’ example, one wouldn’t know what Genbook as a company does, but a quick look at their website and it becomes clear that they are an all-in-one appointment booking software for small businesses. A swift glance at the image on the right and it further becomes clear who it will benefit the most from this tool— hair and beauty entrepreneurs.
3. Point of difference
The point of difference is your chance to explain what sets you apart from your competitors.
This is usually worded as a compelling benefit for the customers — what will they get if they come to you instead of another brand?
Let’s look at invoicing software, Wave Apps.
Wave Apps is a free invoice software that’s designed to make accounting easier. The position statement conveys this by listing the benefits: “saves you time, gets you paid, and makes managing customer information stress-free”.
To a potential new customer, not only will they save time, the platform is easy to use so the experience will be hassle-free. This infers that other softwares are more stressful to manage.
Before we move on to the next core element of a positioning statement we should mention that if you aim to stand out and point out what distinguishes you from all your competitors consider creating content as one of the tactics. Let’s say you can make up an article on your blog, in which you draw a certain comparison between you as a service provider and one or several of your competitors and sort out features in a way, making your product more beneficial to your customers. For instance, take Ringblaze – a VoIP business phone system provider and their blog article RingCentral vs Vonage, where they personally tested and then compared on several points the two alternatives their potential clients can use by giving an example of another major competitive VoIP service.
Lastly, you should include a reason for your prospective buyers to believe in what you’re saying.
Your point of difference promises a particular return for your customers. Your proof section should show them why they should believe you.
Take Savvy Sleeper.
To boost credibility, this sleep advice website explains how its team is made up of qualified experts, coaches, and researchers.
To stress this, it clarifies that all team members are qualified in the specific areas that the brand provides advice on.
Alternatively, look at Best Value Schools’ positioning statement.
Helping prospective students find the best online universities and on-campus schools, the brand proves its value through its thorough research.
Positioning statement template
To develop your message carefully and successfully, use an email service that has the features you’re looking for to optimize your statement.. That may be a gmail desktop app paired with gmail templates.
If you’re unsure how to roll this all together to create a coherent brand positioning statement, try one of these formulae:
For (audience), (your company name) is the (frame of reference) that provides (point of difference) because (proof).
For Registered Nurses looking to complete a BSN degree, Best Nursing Programs is the leading nursing school comparison site that provides in-depth reviews of the top schools by highly experienced nurses.
(Proof), (Your company name) is the (frame of reference) that provides (audience) with (point of difference).
Founded by highly experienced nurses, Best Nursing Programs is the leading nursing school comparison site that provides Registered Nurses in-depth reviews of the top schools providing BSN degree programs.
Key Tips for Creating a Killer Positioning Statement
1. Be concise
If your positioning statement is too long, nobody is going to read it.
What’s more, if you can’t express who you are and what you’re about in a couple of quick sentences, you’re not clear about these things.
On the one hand, that makes it difficult to communicate your brand identity to your customers in your content. On the other, it makes decision-making harder as you don’t know the values that underpin your direction.
Take a look at how this Toronto Home Care Services achieve this:
Using just a few simple words, Toronto Home Care Services manages to convey exactly what they deliver, to who, and how.
2. Show your brand’s identity
The tone and language you use in your positioning statement will communicate your brand identity.
Your brand identity is the image you convey to your potential buyers about who you are as a company.
For example, some brands may want to indicate that they’re an authority on a particular subject. These firms would use an authoritative tone coupled with language that incites trust and establishes expertise.
Look at Medical Alert Buyers Guide, for example.
Medical Alert Buyers Guide pitches itself as the authority on medical alerts.
Notice how the review website uses terms like ‘industry expert’ and ‘research and data’ to help build trust with its users and prove its expertise.
Alternatively, imagine you want your brand identity to revolve around empathy.
You’ll use a compassionate tone with soothing language that conveys a sense of caring.
Check out Better Addiction Care, for instance.
Helping those suffering from drug and alcohol addiction, Better Addiction Care uses a compassionate tone that tries to empathize with its target audience.
The positioning statement uses language that shows addicts that they’re there to help and understand, while providing the best care possible.
Phrases like ‘just as it is yours’ and ‘work with you’, show that Better Addiction Care’s identity is rooted into empathetic care.
3. Communicate your values
Your brand values align you with your target audience. Customers tend to shop with brands that have the same values as they do.
As noted above, 80% of brand professionals agree that social and cultural issues are a significant part of branding, meaning that the values that underpin your brand will drive the customers who buy your products.
Be aware that the importance of values is inflated among younger audiences. 83% of millennials say it’s important that a brand aligns with their values. Likewise, 63% admit that they like buying products that show off their social or political views.
In this respect, it’s smart to embed your company values within your positioning statement. After all, your positioning statement shows where you’re positioned in the market. Since the market isn’t isolated from political, social and cultural issues, it’s wise to express your position on these factors too.
However, don’t just focus on societal values. You can also express the general values that make your company a cut above the rest.
For example, you may pride yourself on high-quality products, low prices, friendly services, and so on.
Take a look at Excel Builders, for example.
Notice how this construction firm puts a special emphasis on the fact they were founded to provide energy-efficient building services. This appeals to an environmentally-conscious audience.
Beyond that, Excel Builders also make a point of highlighting other important values such as providing high quality and maximizing value for the customer.
4. Make your promise deliverable
Your positioning statement is a chance to promise something to your target audience. This promise shows off the benefits your customers receive from choosing your brand.
However, if your promise is unrealistic, customer expectations won’t meet reality. This can lead to poor reviews and a breakdown of your reputation.
For example, if your brand promises super-fast delivery, but you don’t have the capacity to scale order fulfillment, you’re likely to have problems delivering on this promise when your company grows.
Look at how business process automation software, frevvo, makes attainable promises.
Providing workflow software for small businesses, frevvo positions itself as an affordable option that makes it business process automation easier.
Let’s break down its promises.
Firstly, frevvo infers that it’ll be easier to automate and manage processes with its workflow software. It knows it can deliver on this as it has a plethora of customer success stories to prove it.
In terms of reasonable costs, frevvo will have compared itself to its competitors. Based on the going market rate, it knows it offers top-notch software at an acceptable price.
Lastly, frevvo promises there will be no coding or I.T. required. Given the nature of the product, this is part-and-parcel of its design, so it’s inherently simple for the software firm to deliver on this benefit.
5. Check it sounds credible
Credibility goes hand-in-hand with deliverability. If you’re not sure you can deliver on your promises, they certainly won’t be credible.
More than this though, your claims need to seem believable. If customers feel like your proposed returns are unrealistic, they’ll be turned off.
Think of those adverts you see to make tons of money from home for no work at all.
Why don’t you immediately switch jobs? Because you know they’re too good to be true. While you might be able to earn those high wages, it just doesn’t seem credible that it’s really viable.
Now let’s consider how brands reduce their credibility with unrealistic offers.
Let’s say you offer a content service that helps websites get more traffic.
On several occasions, you’ve helped firms with 10 monthly visitors boost that to 100 monthly visitors simply by starting a blog and adding a couple of posts.
While, technically, you’ve 10xed their traffic, could you do this with a firm that gets 100K monthly visitors?
If you’re not sure you can, don’t claim you can increase their traffic by tenfold.
Put simply, if it sounds too good to be true, customers will think that it is and will go elsewhere.
Take Legacy Healing, for instance.
The addiction treatment center makes very credible claims about what it’ll deliver without promising unrealistic results.
For example, the company states that they will help you get better with a “second chance in life”, but also says that it will not be an easy process.
6. Make sure it enables growth
Some companies limit their capacity for growth by positioning themselves too small, too locally, or too specifically.
While it’s good to target a niche audience, if you’re planning to expand, don’t narrow down too far, or you’ll find it hard to branch out later as you grow.
Take DCIM software firm, Nlyte Software as an example.
Nlyte could have chosen to limit its services to particular devices and platforms or particular locations.
Instead, Nlyte offers its services on all networks, servers, and devices, across all facilities, data centers, collocations, and cloud setups.
That way, Nlyte offers its services to whichever client needs them, whether it’s a small business or a huge enterprise firm. They’re not limiting themselves, but instead, getting ready for growth.
7. Write it to inform brand decision-making
Your positioning statement serves as a blueprint to brand decision-making.
Whenever you have tough choices about the direction you plan to take your brand, your positioning statement should help you to decipher the answer.
Let’s look at The RealFx Group as an example.
This real estate company positions itself as the real estate leader for customers looking to buy and sell the finest properties in Austin.
Notice how the Austin-based real estate firm puts an emphasis on ‘experience, professionalism, and detailed analysis’. This insinuates that they’re experts in their field.
Now, let’s imagine there’s a question about what should be included in the brand’s content strategy.
A team member wants to know if it’d be smart to create a guide to private mortgage insurance.
Looking to the positioning statement for direction, it’s clear that a private mortgage insurance guide would demonstrate ‘experience, professionalism, and detailed analysis’. In this sense, it’s a smart move that aligns with the company’s position.
This doesn’t just apply to B2C markets like mortgage insurance, either.
In the world of B2B, business phone service Phone.com positions itself clearly as a low-cost, no-commitment business phone service—in an industry that’s full of options.
From Phone.com’s homepage:
“Users start as low as $12.99 per month. Feel free to mix and match. There’s no contract and no commitment.”
For a brand like Phone.com, it may be easier to incorporate humor and even casual phrasing like “mix and match” into brand content than it would be for a brand like The RealFX Group, which touts its “professionalism” as a value.
Whenever hiring writers especially, make sure to communicate your brand’s positioning upfront. Your web copy needs to stay consistent.
3 Powerful Examples of How to Insert Positioning Statements into Your Email Campaigns
Looking for ideas to inject your positioning statements into your email campaigns to tell your fans what you’re all about?
Get inspired by these brilliant examples.
Cosmetics brand, Wearth, positions itself as a leading eco-conscious brand with this email to encourage new readers to buy:
Notice how Wearth pinpoints its target audience by referring to the ‘conscious consumer’ and highlighting its ‘vegan’ features.
The brand also includes its values, referring to the fact its products are ‘cruelty-free’ and ‘ethically made’.
Lastly, take note of how Wearth positions itself against its competitors who include ‘harsh chemicals’ and ‘dodgy ingredients’ in their competing products.
2. The Telegraph
The Telegraph newspaper positions itself as the ‘clarity provider’ with this email to sell readers on its 3-month deal:
Playing on the concept of unprecedented times, The Telegraph positions itself as the leading newspaper that brings ‘clarity’ to its readers by offering ‘hand-picked stories’.
Notice how the online newspaper provides evidence of its market prestige by referring to its ‘award-winning team’.
Also, note how it compares itself to its inferior competitors with the term ‘unrivalled journalists’.
Look at how Coschedule gives a frame of reference to exacerbate its points of difference in this email:
CoSchedule is a marketing calendar that positions itself as a simple solution that provides instant visibility so you can focus on being productive.
By comparing it to the act of ‘slogging through tons of spreadsheets, apps, emails, and notes’, Coschedule makes itself seem far more appealing than comparable options. A similar option is google sheets integration , which also helps you increase your productivity and not waste your time unnecessarily.
To double down on this, Coschedule adds social proof to the email:
Using a customer testimonial that talks about financials, Coschedule also positions itself as a money-saving option. They could also use a customer testimonial video here and embed the video in the email instead.You can even use videos to get more email subscribers.
When it comes to email campaigns, think of your positioning statement as your blueprint. In a few short sentences, it guides you on what your customers expect and how you promise to meet those expectations using email marketing.
Use your positioning statement to inform the content, tone, and language of your emails. Make sure you’re always targeting the right audience, giving a frame of reference, pointing out your benefits, and offering up proof.
If you need more help creating positioning statements to guide your email campaigns, simply contact the experts at Voila Norbert.
About the Author
Name – Vikas Kalwani
Vikas Kalwani is a product-led growth hacker and B2B Marketing Specialist skilled in SEO, Content Marketing, and Social Media Marketing. He is a mentor at 500 startups and Newchip Accelerator. You can connect with him on LinkedIn.