Business Description

Bella knew she had created a winning product. Her friends had always raved about her biscotti, saying they'd never tasted anything like the macadamia nut or black currant varieties. She had also tested her recipes on colleagues in the food services industry and used the comments from these informal focus groups to hone her formula.

When it came to creating a positioning statement, however, she was perplexed. She knew that her unique flavors would set her apart from other biscotti bakers. She also understood her target customer - young professionals who think of themselves as worldly and who like to try new foods. She also noticed that her competitors had carved out their own niches: Viva Italia had come up with an inexpensive "biscotti" that was more like an American cookie than the real Italian biscuit, but sold for half the price of Bella's; and Roman Holiday had a very traditional recipe, but only offered the standard almond and chocolate dipped varieties.

Which of the following do you think would be a good positioning statement for Bella's Biscotti?

Choice A:

Bella's Biscotti offers biscotti in unique flavors utilizing Traditional Italian baking methods.

Choice B:

Bella's Biscotti is the tastiest biscotti in the widest range of flavors for people looking for a hip alternative to cookies.

Choice C:

Bella's Biscotti - take your mouth on a tour of Italy.

You Chose A

It's true that Bella's unconventional biscotti flavors set her apart from her competitors. But it is not so much a "position" as a USP - unique selling proposition. Your USP is the proprietary information that sets your product or service apart from your competition; it is critical to your discussion of your products. Your positioning, however, is based on the niche your product or service fills. It is your identity in the marketplace; how you want the market and your competitors to perceive your product or service. Your positioning is based on the perceived needs you fill. When creating your positioning statement, think in terms of extremes -- the "most," the "best," the "fastest," the "cheapest," the "only," etc. You might want to go back and re-read the positioning section to help you come up with a winning statement.

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You Chose B

This is a good positioning statement, since it deals with how she wants the product to be perceived by the market. Notice how it combines both the benefits of the product with a description of the target market. It looks at Bella's niche -- as a dessert alternative for people who want to try the latest in new food products. It also takes into account the positioning of competitors, since Bella does not try to portray herself as the price leader, or as traditional product.

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You Chose C

This is not a positioning statement, although it might make an interesting tag line for an advertisement. You will base your advertising and other promotional tactics on your positioning, but they are not the same thing. Positioning is based on the niche your product or service fills. It is your identity in the marketplace; how you want the market and your competitors to perceive your product or service. You might want to take another look at the description of positioning to give yourself a clearer idea of what is necessary to create an effective positioning statement.

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