Slide 4: Positioning

Here’s slide 4 in the business plan pitch deck. This slide completes the Situation/Complication/Resolution narrative, with a clear, simple statement of your company’s reason for being, aka your overall strategy. It also speaks to the two previous elements of your pitch (slide 2 and slide 3) by showing that you will give customers what they need, allowing you to take advantage of the attractive market opportunity.

Warning:  Boiling your company’s reason for being down to a simple, clear statement is tougher than it looks, so many entrepreneurs botch this slide. Some throw try to squeeze too much information into it, and end up looking like they are trying to boil the ocean. Others fill the description with meaningless business jargon. Still others fail to provide a clear indication of how their product or service is differentiated in the market, using assertions like “we’ll be the market leader” without explaining how.

One helpful tool here is an oldie but a goodie: A positioning statement. It’s kind of like Madlibs for startups. Start by filling in the blanks. Then adjust the language to read better.

For ______________ (your specific target segment),  ______________ (your product name or brand) is the ______________________  (definition of your product or service) that  _____________________  (unique point of difference).

Be sure to show how you satisfy the needs of your target segment in a way that’s clearly differentiated from competitive offerings, with a focus on the differentiation factors that are most important to that target segment.  Also, think about this as an internal product positioning statement, rather than as a consumer-facing marketing message. It’s more about having tight logic than about being catchy.

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2 Responses to Slide 4: Positioning

  1. […] / service offering Here’s slide 5 in the business plan pitch deck. After stating your strategy, give your audience a brief overview of your product. This is a time to get them excited, so wheel […]

  2. […] Slide 4: Positioning « UpStart Advisors Says: May 12, 2009 at 10:09 am | Reply […]

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