When it comes to people, each person develops a way to dress, to walk and to talk that makes them unique. But when it comes to branded items, all of those are practically the same, and it’s a marketing and advertising job to claim the contrary. Are you familiar with the concept of positioning? It is the key behind this.
What is positioning?
Imagine the mind of a regular consumer. It is pure chaos, full of ads, branded items, logos, offers and prices everywhere. It is a battlefield. As a brand, your positioning would be the place you occupy in that battlefield, in that mind. If you make water, you can say (and repeat as many times as possible) that your water is the purest one in the market, until they believe it, and when someone needs a nice bottle of pure water, they will come to you.
Let’s keep using water as an example. You are a water producer, who sells bottled water, and claim that your water is the purest, it is still water. If you open the tap, you can get the same thing for a much cheaper price. That’s where differentials enter the battle. Yes, this is still a battle. A never-ending battle. A differential is a characteristic that will make you fight using another method than the rest of the soldiers. Like, yes, this is bottled water, but the bottle has a structure that will allow you to use it over and over again, recharging it and helping the environment. And that last thing would be part of a new positioning. Forget the purest water, now you are the water that is saving the environment.
So, come again?
If you don’t get a positioning for your product, it will become a commodity: a product that looks just like anything else, and your consumers will be so confused about you, that you may lose the battle faster than you think.