October 15th, 2012 / Posted by
, Marketing Strategy
, Messaging & Positioning
/ Topics: marketing plans
Magnetude Blog Series: A First-Time Founder's Guide to Building a Marketing Plan (Step IV)
Welcome back to Magnetude Mondays. This week we want to help you create a message and position that resonates with your target market.
Step IV: Define Your Message & Position
With insights of your target customer in hand, paired with your prior knowledge of your industry and competitive landscape, you are ready to develop your message. This post is intended to help you think through revising or enhancing your message to ensure you are communicating in a clear, compelling, and concise manner.
Before you begin crafting your message, decide what you want the framework to encompass. Are you creating a company-wide messaging framework that can be applied to any audience that comes in contact with your firm, or are you focusing on messaging to the target audience outlined above.
Key Questions to Ask Yourself
Despite the temptation to run through these in your head, it is critical to write down your answers, as this will serve as the basis for your messaging framework.
A. About the Firm
- What does my company offer?
- What does our customer buy?
- Who do we serve?
- How are we different from our competitors?
- Why are we better?
- Do we have any proof?
B. Tone & Position
- How do we want to come across to customers—as a peer? An authority? A trusted advisor?
- Do you want to use language that will only be understood by others in the job function? Or do you want any educated person to be able to pick up your materials and understand what you do?
- How does our target market describe their pain points relevant to our solution?
- What specific words do they use to describe it?
- Do they know to pinpoint the problem, or do they speak more broadly?
- Do they know they have a pain point at all?
D. Sanity Check
- Is our messaging relevant to the prospects we want to target? (Hint: you may want to ask a few!)
- Do we sound different from our competitors?
- Does our message resonate?
- Is our message enticing and convincing?
Now it’s time to put your words into a single place—a text document or PowerPoint that summarizes the following:
- Company Overview: 1-2 sentences that describes the information from part A
- Target Market: Highlight who your target customer is—firm type, job titles, pain points they have. (If you’re not sure who your target market is, review last week’s post for assistance).
- Solution: 1-2 sentences on your specific solution in the customer’s language. Also, if possible, map specific pain points to unique elements of your solution
- Benefit: A sentence on the expected impact that your customers can expect from the solution
- Approach: A brief description of your unique approach or methodology
- Talking Points: Key messages, words, or phrases that you want to weave into your external communications
Join us next Monday, when we help you choose “Marketing Channels & Tactics.”
If you are joining us out for the first time, and would like to read the previous steps, you can find them here:
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