The New Positioning: The Latest on the World's #1 Business Strategy Paperback – 1 Jan 1997
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Sure, some others reviewers gripe because (despite the title) there's nothing particularly new in his book. Some suggest you read The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding instead.
I say they're spoiling the fun. Anyone who's good at anything knows that success comes from repeating the basics. The fact that you've heard this all before (especially if you've read work from Jack Trout and/or his partner Al Ries) doesn't mean you shouldn't read it, or that you'll get nothing from it.
Here are some tidbits that are worth revisiting:
* If your assignment... is to change people's minds, don't accept the assignment. (p. 36)
* Think small and don't tinker. (p. 55)
* Today, the marketing wars are being won by the well-focused specialists. (p. 64)
* A picture is not worth a thousand words. (p. 101)
Sure, it's focused on big-company branding for companies with $zillions to spend. Even so, there is a lot for the entrepreneur:
* If you don't have a simple, differentiating idea to drive your company or brand, you'd better have a great price. (p. 167)
* Don't trust your customers to give you all the answers. Trust your instincts. (p. 137)
Despite my overall agreement with his content, I took issue with his claim that positioning/differentiation is basic common sense.
If your differentiation is obvious, someone else is probably already using it! Why else would so many organizations believe that they're differentiated on the basis of quality, service, or commitment to their clients/customers?
As an aside: if there's anything less common than common sense, I'd like to know what it is!
Differentiation is difficult for entrepreneurs. Your organization works the way it's always worked, which is the way it should work!
Am I right or am I right?
Your approach and processes are different, but the differences are transparent to you because they're such a natural part of who you are.
Sure, once you understand your differentiation, it'll be obvious. But that puts differentiation into a very broad category: that group of understandings which is much clearer in hindsight!
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