What is Product Positioning?

Ruben Buijs

Founder & Digital Consultant

Written on Aug 10, 2023

3 minutes

Product Management

Product positioning is a strategic marketing technique used to create a distinct perception of a product or service in the minds of the target customers. It involves positioning the product in a way that highlights its unique features, benefits, and value proposition in comparison to the competition. By effectively positioning a product, companies can differentiate themselves in the market, attract the right customer segment, and gain a competitive advantage.


Let's consider a few examples to understand product positioning better:

  1. Apple: Apple positions its iPhone as a premium and innovative smartphone, focusing on its sleek design, user-friendly interface, and advanced features. By associating the brand with exclusivity and cutting-edge technology, Apple captures the attention of tech enthusiasts and high-end consumers.

  2. Nike: Nike positions its athletic shoes as high-performance footwear for athletes and fitness enthusiasts. They emphasize the quality, durability, and advanced features of their products, which makes them a top choice for professional athletes and those seeking superior athletic performance.

  3. Dove: Dove positions its beauty and skincare products as gentle and moisturizing alternatives to harsher ones in the market. They emphasize their natural ingredients, hypoallergenic formulas, and commitment to real beauty, making Dove products appealing to individuals with sensitive skin.


Product positioning plays a crucial role in the success of a product or service. Here's why it is important:

  1. Differentiation: Effective product positioning helps distinguish a product from its competitors. By highlighting unique features and benefits, companies can create a distinctive position in the market, making it easier for customers to choose their product over others.

  2. Targeting the right audience: Product positioning enables companies to attract the right customer segment. By understanding the needs and preferences of their target market, companies can position their product in a way that resonates with the intended audience, increasing the chances of customer acquisition and retention.

  3. Competitive advantage: A well-positioned product gives a competitive edge to the company. When customers perceive a product as superior or unique, they are more likely to choose it over alternatives, even if they are priced higher. This advantage can lead to increased market share and profitability.

How to Use Product Positioning

To effectively position a product, consider the following steps:

  1. Define your target market: Identify the specific group of customers you want to target with your product. Understand their needs, preferences, and pain points to tailor your positioning strategy accordingly.

  2. Analyze the competition: Conduct a thorough analysis of your competitors to identify their positioning strategies. Assess their strengths and weaknesses to find opportunities where your product can differentiate itself.

  3. Identify unique selling points: Determine the unique features, benefits, or characteristics of your product that set it apart from the competition. These unique selling points should be compelling and valuable to your target audience.

  4. Craft a positioning statement: Develop a clear and concise positioning statement that communicates the essence of your product. This statement should highlight the key benefits and value proposition your product offers to the customers.

  5. Consistent messaging: Ensure consistent messaging across all marketing channels and communication platforms. Deliver a unified message that reinforces the desired perception of your product in the minds of your target customers.

Useful Tips for Product Positioning

Consider these tips to enhance your product positioning strategy:

  • Research customer needs: Continuously gather feedback, conduct market research, and analyze customer behavior to stay updated with evolving customer needs and preferences. This information can help you refine your product positioning strategy.

  • Monitor competitor positioning: Regularly monitor your competitors' positioning strategies to identify any shifts or changes in the market. This will enable you to make timely adjustments to your own positioning strategy, ensuring your product remains relevant and competitive.

  • Highlight unique benefits: Emphasize the unique benefits and advantages your product offers. Clearly communicate how your product solves customer problems or fulfills their desires better than the competition.

  • Address customer pain points: Identify the pain points or challenges that customers face in your industry, and position your product as the solution. Showing empathy and understanding towards customer needs can create a strong emotional connection and increase brand loyalty.

  • Continuously evaluate and adapt: Product positioning is not a one-time task. Regularly evaluate the effectiveness of your positioning strategy and make necessary adjustments based on market feedback, customer insights, and industry trends.


Product positioning refers to the way a product is perceived and positioned in the market relative to its competitors.
Product positioning is important because it helps differentiate a product from its competitors and creates a unique value proposition for customers.
To determine the target market for product positioning, you need to conduct market research, analyze customer demographics, and understand their needs and preferences.
The key elements of product positioning include target market, competitive analysis, unique selling proposition, and brand positioning.
A unique selling proposition (USP) is a distinctive feature or benefit of a product that sets it apart from competitors and appeals to the target market.
Product positioning can be improved by identifying and targeting a specific niche market, conducting market research to understand customer needs, and refining the unique selling proposition.
Brand positioning refers to the image and perception of a brand in the minds of customers. It involves creating a unique identity and positioning the brand in a way that resonates with the target market.
Product positioning impacts marketing strategies by influencing the choice of target market, messaging, advertising channels, and overall brand communication.
Some examples of successful product positioning include Apple's positioning of the iPhone as a premium and innovative smartphone, and Coca-Cola's positioning as a refreshing and timeless beverage.
Yes, product positioning can change over time due to market trends, shifts in customer preferences, competitive landscape, and product updates or enhancements.

Article by

Ruben Buijs

Ruben is the founder of ProductLift. I employ a decade of consulting experience from Ernst & Young to maximize clients' ROI on new Tech developments. I now help companies build better products

Table of contents

  1. Examples
  2. Importance
  3. How to Use Product Positioning
  4. Useful Tips for Product Positioning
  5. Related Terms

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