How to write an effective B2B positioning statement
How you position your company is how you grow.
A clear and compelling positioning statement will help you focus your marketing and sales efforts — and give prospects and customers a convincing reason to choose your company over your competitors. This succinct description expresses what you do, who you serve and how you’re different. It is often also called a B2B brand promise or a B2B value proposition, because it promises the unique value that you deliver every time.
To write a B2B positioning statement for your company, begin by asking yourself these questions:
- Why did your customers decide to do business with you?
- What value do you provide that they can’t find anywhere else?
- What features and attributes are you exceptional at and what benefits do they deliver?
Be sure to write down all of your answers. Then, go ask other people in your company the same questions. Don’t just ask people in your department; select a cross-section of roles from throughout the organization. The differences in their answers may surprise you. You should also ask several customers — stress that you’re seeking to better serve your clients, and value their input.
Next, compile all the answers into a list organized by topic. Then go through the list and circle all the phrases that you deliver exceptionally and consistently. Then narrow those down to the ones that set you apart from your competitors or that you’d be willing to bet your reputation on. The remaining options will help you lay the foundation of your positioning statement.
Helpful formulas and templates for writing a B2B positioning statement.
A proven technique for crafting a memorable brand positioning statement is to complete a standardized template or formula that has proven effective for other companies. Use the phrases from your narrowed-down list to help you fill in the blanks of any of the templates and formulas below that resonate with you — or experiment with your own combination.
A variety of industry thought leaders have pitched their own version of a winning formula for the optimal B2B positioning statement. Below, we’ve recapped two of the best-known examples and included our proven favorites.
In their bestseller, Made to Stick, Chip Heath and Dan Heath laid out the formula for comparing two different concepts to illustrate a new concept. The examples they cited used movies, such as “Die Hard on a bus” for Speed and “Jaws on a spaceship” for Alien. The same formula can work for a business:
[Proven industry leader] for [the new problem or industry].
In his book, Crossing the Chasm, Geoffrey Moore developed this template for competitive positioning:
For [target customer], who [statement of need or opportunity], our [product/service] is the [product category] that [statement of benefit].
Here are several other variations the team at The Marketing Blender have fine-tuned over the years:
The [superlative describing your company] [what your company does] for [your ideal customers].
We help [buyer persona] accomplish [solution you offer] by doing [service or benefit you provide].
For [target customers] who are dissatisfied with [the usual alternative], we provide [product or service] that delivers [superior problem-solving capability]. Unlike [the usual alternative], we offer [key product features].
[Name of your business] is the [generic term for your type of offering] to provide [your unique features] to [your customer profile] who choose our offering in order to feel [emotional outcome].
We consistently deliver [your most compelling feature] and [a benefit that your customers depend on], and we promise our customers [the unique value you provide].
No matter which formula you use as a starting point, the key to crafting a positioning statement that acts as a catalyst for your B2B growth is this: be true to your company’s strengths and culture.
For additional insights on refining the best B2B marketing strategy for your company, watch this video.
Blender is a full-service B2B marketing agency focused on accelerating growth for clients in manufacturing, healthcare, software and professional services. If you have any questions, we’re here to help.
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