Finding your unique niche in the market is both critical and necessary for your brand’s success in the marketplace. One very good method for identifying holes needing to be filled in your marketplace is a perceptual map. This can be particularly useful if your brand is not yet established, yet you know roughly what you do and what you want to be known for.
The way a perceptual map works is to take two concepts or brand attributes and lay them out on a graph, then you simply place your competitors on the graph where you believe they fit based on the brand messaging you have been exposed to. This map will highlight areas that are being under served by your competitors and will facilitate your brand’s ownership of a specific space in the marketplace. It’s useful to make several different perceptual maps to identify the one(s) that will give you the best niche and consequently the most cost-effective advertising niche.
Creating your own category or subcategory will ultimately costs you less and facilitates your long term success. In a recent article titled: 4 Ways to Block Brand Competition, inc.com elaborates: “In other words, instead of being focused on being the superior brand in an established category, such as computers or snacks, create something so innovative that it surpasses your competitors, thus creating your own category or subcategory.” By not competing head to head with another brand, your money can be spent building your business up – not tearing your competition down.
While it can be a bit daunting to set out on your own course, the HBR recently noted in Make Your Competition Irrelevant (blogs.hbr.org), “Certainly not every company is willing to take the risks of going outside the comfort zone of the existing target market, value proposition, and business model. Those who do, however, stand a chance of creating a category or subcategory in which some or all competitor brands are not visible or credible. The result can be a market in which there is no competition at all for an extended time or one in which the competition is reduced or weakened. The payoff of operating with no or little competition is, of course, huge.”
So if you haven’t taken the time to create perceptual maps for your brand – this would be an ideal time. The economy is beginning to recover and both consumers and businesses are beginning to spend more freely — this represents a profound opportunity to capture more of your market from consumers and to better utilize your hard earned advertising dollars. Creating your own Category or Subcategory allows your brand to get the most bang for your buck, to not have to compete head to head with the market leaders, and to identify a niche that has the potential to be valued and valuable in your marketplace. What does your perceptual map tell you about your brand?