A member of The Marketing Compass asked me:
“What is the difference between ‘positioning’, ‘differentiation’ and ‘brand’?
Positioning refers to where a company (or brand) sits in the marketplace in relation to its competitors. This is usually seen via a chart with an X & Y axis. Think about supermarkets and how they range from low cost / no frills through to up market operators such as Waitrose (in the UK).
If you looked at price versus service, the first type of supermarket would be bottom left and Waitrose would be top right.
Differentiation refers to the ways in which an enterprise or brand stands out from the crowd. Norwegian Airlines currently offers return flights from London to Los Angeles for a few hundred pounds on Boeing Dreamliner aircraft (which are relatively lightweight and fuel efficient). Therefore their key point of differentiation is price.
A brand is a promise. It is the offer that the enterprise holds out to the marketplace. For example, you always know that you can return goods to John Lewis (in the UK) and that they will not make a fuss.
Here is my 4 step marketing model:
1. Marketing plan
4. Selling / conversion (the latter is an ecommerce term)
If you have a clear strategy that is embodied with your marketing plan, things will go better for you. The plan would include your decisions on positioning, differentiation and brand, amongst other things.
Does all of this apply to services? The brief answer is that, yes, it does.
Website not working? This may well be to do with the lack of a marketing plan and the clear direction that it gives you with regards to positioning, differentiation etc.