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Article
Publication date: 5 September 2008

Donelda S. McKechnie, Jim Grant and Marios Katsioloudes

The purpose of this paper is to focus on the four strategy tools of positions and positioning: leader, challenger, follower and niche. It suggests that it is important for…

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15029

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to focus on the four strategy tools of positions and positioning: leader, challenger, follower and niche. It suggests that it is important for managers to understand where their business fits in the market, vis‐à‐vis the competition. Without this knowledge, it is difficult to identify a differential advantage that will give the necessary competitive edge to attract the target customer.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper reviews positioning using a back to basics explanation. A simply constructed matrix – represented by variables: company‐focused or competition‐focused and pushes the boundaries or stays within boundaries – illustrates business philosophy in the marketplace.

Findings

Airlines positioned in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) aviation industry exemplify a market environment with companies holding distinctive positions. Emirates Airline is the leader, Etihad Airways is the challenger, Gulf Air is the follower and Air Arabia is successfully established in the niche position. A summary explanation of business operations for each airline supports the discussion.

Practical implications

Marketing practice aligned with textbook theory is identified in the growth‐oriented UAE aviation industry. In real‐world terms, four airlines distinctively hold each of the four positions while a fifth airline is making inroads into the regional market and appears to be challenging the current challenger.

Originality/value

The strategy simply stated in this paper suggests that the market environment is dynamic and constant assessment is necessary. Managers seeking to maximize differential advantage vis‐à‐vis the competition should consider using more than one strategy tool particularly if it contributes to a manager's ability to understand the market environment.

Details

Business Strategy Series, vol. 9 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1751-5637

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 13 September 2021

Leeford Edem Kojo Ameyibor, Peter Anabila and Yvonne Kabeya Saini

This study aims to investigate the relationship between brand positioning and business performance, as well as the mediation effect of brand equity between them within the…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate the relationship between brand positioning and business performance, as well as the mediation effect of brand equity between them within the context of Ghana’s alcoholic beverages industry.

Design/methodology/approach

A sample of 196 staff across four alcoholic beverage firms in Accra, Ghana was selected using a judgemental sampling technique. A structural equation modelling approach using partial least squares was used to conduct the analyses to answer the research hypotheses.

Findings

All the hypotheses were confirmed in line with extant literature. Specifically, the study found a positive relationship between brand positioning and business performance. The study also found that brand equity partially mediates the relationship between brand positioning and business performance.

Practical implications

The study serves as a useful guide to strategy and policy formulation in branding in general and specifically on how brand positioning can be effectively deployed as a key strategy to enhance business performance.

Originality/value

The study has practical implications not only for the marketing and sale of alcoholic beverages in Ghana to achieve financial performance but also for lasting competitive advantage.

Details

International Journal of Wine Business Research, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1751-1062

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Article
Publication date: 1 November 2003

Robert E. Morgan, Carolyn A. Strong and Tony McGuinness

Adopts a firm‐level approach and attempts to develop our understanding of the means through which different types of firm compete. Addresses specifically, a lacuna in…

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17038

Abstract

Adopts a firm‐level approach and attempts to develop our understanding of the means through which different types of firm compete. Addresses specifically, a lacuna in existing knowledge by investigating a fundamental research question: “How do firms pursuing a prospector mode of market strategy differ from those pursuing a defender, analyzer or reactor strategy in terms of the product‐market positioning attributes they exhibit?“ Miles and Snow provide the basis for the assessment of strategy types, while “strategic market positioning” is characterised as the product‐market positions established by the firm. Conceptualises strategic market positioning as the ways in which firm‐specific resources and assets are deployed to build positional advantages in product‐markets. Presents analyses of data generated from high technology, medium and large, industrial manufacturing firms and discusses these results in the light of previous findings. Places particular emphasis on the distinguishing characteristics of prospector‐type firms. Identifies a number of potential research avenues from this study and discusses several implications for executives.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 37 no. 10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

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Article
Publication date: 30 March 2010

Kåre Skallerud and Kjell Grønhaug

The purpose of this paper is to investigate Chinese food retailers' positioning strategies. Specifically, retail segments and critical factors related to the nature of the…

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3612

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate Chinese food retailers' positioning strategies. Specifically, retail segments and critical factors related to the nature of the food supplier relationships that may be influenced by the positioning strategies are investigated.

Design/methodology/approach

The retail markets in Guangzou and Chengdu are investigated. Data are collected by means of observation and survey and then combined in the analyses. Observational research (i.e. expert assessments) is conducted in 152 retail outlets in order to assess their positioning strategies. The purchasing managers in the same retail outlets are personally interviewed by means of structured questionnaires.

Findings

A three‐cluster solution for the positioning strategies is revealed: down‐market stores, middle‐range stores, and up‐market stores. The annual sales and the number of self‐service counters are highest among up‐market retailers. They are also typically joint ventures, supermarkets and department stores, and members of a retail chain. A broad range of brands and products and also marketing support from the suppliers are most important for the up‐market stores.

Research limitations/implications

The study is limited to two regional retail markets and should therefore be cross‐validated with other retail sectors and markets. Thumbnail sketches of the retailer segments enable food suppliers to make better and more informed decisions about how to position their product offer and marketing mix.

Originality/value

Although positioning strategies are at the core of modern marketing, relatively little research has been conducted addressing how retailers in general and Chinese retailers specifically include their retail buying behaviour and structural characteristics in the positioning strategy. This study contributes to filling this gap in knowledge.

Details

Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, vol. 22 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-5855

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Article
Publication date: 11 November 2014

Mats Urde and Christian Koch

– The purpose of this paper is to revise the concept of positioning to differentiate between fundamental approaches to it and chart a scheme of schools of positioning.

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8912

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to revise the concept of positioning to differentiate between fundamental approaches to it and chart a scheme of schools of positioning.

Design/methodology/approach

An extensive literature review traces the roots and evolution of the concept. Two approaches to positioning are explored and related to the paradigms of market and brand orientation. Based on current theory and practice, different schools of positioning are identified and categorized along a market- and brand-orientation spectrum. Metaphors differentiate schools of positioning, illustrated by case examples.

Findings

Positioning is a key concept in marketing, branding and strategy. However, its theoretical and practical usefulness is in peril due to its many meanings, applications and overall vagueness. There is a need for a theoretical overview of positioning, which the literature currently lacks. Two approaches to define a brand’s position are identified and introduced: market- and brand-oriented positioning. Five principal schools of positioning show how these are different and why differentiating between them matters. The choice of school implies the market- and/or brand-oriented approach to positioning.

Research limitations/implications

Further empirical case-based research might investigate when, what and how different positioning schools are applied in practice. The brief cases in this paper indicate a dynamic over time regarding the applications of the brand- and market-oriented school of positioning. An in-depth theoretical and practical investigation of the dynamics of positions would be of value for the research field.

Practical implications

The distinction among different schools of thought helps bridge the gap between the theory and practice of positioning. A specific positioning objective can guide management in the selection of a particular school of positioning, which enables management to make more insightful conscious choices regarding its opportunities, limitations and consequences.

Social implications

Position and positioning is of relevance in society in broad terms, e.g. in sports, politics and culture. Positioning strategy is discussed and implemented in different industries (business-to-business and consumer), for all kinds of brands (including, for instance, corporate brands) and for “brands” in the very widest sense (such as places or people).

Originality/value

This paper relates positioning to the fundamental discussion of brand and market orientation. It integrates positioning research and provides a structured overview of the concept.

Details

Journal of Product & Brand Management, vol. 23 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1061-0421

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 9 October 2017

Robert Ebo Hinson, Ibn Kailan Abdul-Hamid and Ellis L.C. Osabutey

Market orientation and positioning have been widely recognized as organizational metrics linked to hotel performance. The purpose of this study is to offer the link among…

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4761

Abstract

Purpose

Market orientation and positioning have been widely recognized as organizational metrics linked to hotel performance. The purpose of this study is to offer the link among market orientation, positioning and hotel performance in Ghana’s (luxury) hotel sector. It also reports on the joint influence of market orientation and positioning on hotel performance in the same sector.

Design/methodology/approach

Three hypotheses were investigated on the link between market orientation and hotel performance, positioning and hotel performance, and the joint effect of market orientation and positioning on hotel performance. A survey of star-rated (luxury) hotels in the capital city of Ghana was used. One hundred and five responses were used in the analysis. Descriptive statistics, exploratory factor analysis and hierarchical regression were used to test the three hypotheses.

Findings

All hypotheses were accepted. Market orientation and positioning jointly affect hotel performance, and the study provides hotel managers with suggestions on how to enhance their performance via market orientation and positioning.

Research limitations/implications

Market orientation, positioning, and performance measures focused on management perspectives without including perceptions of customers.

Originality/value

This study is one of the few attempts to systematically investigate the intertwined concepts of market orientation, positioning and performance in a developing economy hospitality context.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 29 no. 10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2005

Salah S. Hassan and Stephen H. Craft

The purpose of this paper is to examine empirically the relationship between positioning strategies and bases of segmentation in international markets.

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23844

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine empirically the relationship between positioning strategies and bases of segmentation in international markets.

Design/methodology/approach

A principal component analysis was conducted to determine the major macro‐ as well as micro‐bases of segmentation that are linked with strategic positioning decision options. Further, a regression analysis was used to examine the effect of each of the segmentation bases on the different strategic positioning options used by segmentation managers.

Findings

This study suggests the combined use of both macro‐ and micro‐bases of segmentation in order to leverage similar strategic positioning across global markets. However, micro‐bases of segmentation are suggested for firms seeking differential positioning strategies.

Research limitations/implications

The conceptual and empirical findings of this study pave the way for embarking on promising and relevant future research that is needed to substantiate and enrich the academic understanding and managerial practice of linking global segmentation with strategic positioning decisions. Future research should focus on the use of hybrid segmentation strategies; its logical design; implementation issues; and its evaluation mechanism.

Practical implications

This study provides specific empirical evidence of the relationship between strategic use of segmentation bases and strategic positioning. An effective use of the proposed framework will have various strategic marketing implications for firms; including cost efficiencies, opportunities to transfer products globally, expansion opportunities of current operation, and development of more effective brand management decisions.

Originality/value

The proposed global strategic segmentation and positioning matrix is a new tool that guides managers to position their brands effectively in world markets.

Details

Journal of Consumer Marketing, vol. 22 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0736-3761

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 27 July 2012

Salah S. Hassan and Stephen Craft

This paper aims to examine the conceptual as well as empirical linkages between segmentation bases and brand positioning strategies in the context of discussing practical…

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33556

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the conceptual as well as empirical linkages between segmentation bases and brand positioning strategies in the context of discussing practical implications for firms operating in increasingly globalizing markets.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper empirically examines an inventory of market segmentation factors in relation to four global strategic positioning decision options.

Findings

The two studies reported suggest that a combined use of macro and micro‐bases to segment world markets is significantly linked to the perceived positioning strategies of global top brands, whereas firms seeking more localized positioning strategies use only micro‐bases to segment.

Practical implications

The conceptual and empirical findings reported in this paper pave the way for embarking on promising and relevant future research that is needed to substantiate and enrich the academic understanding and managerial practice of segmentation and strategic brand positioning decisions in world markets.

Originality/value

This paper is unique in identifying a link between global brand positioning and segmentation factors.

Details

Journal of Consumer Marketing, vol. 29 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0736-3761

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 24 August 2011

Morten H. Abrahamsen

The study here examines how business actors adapt to changes in networks by analyzing their perceptions or their network pictures. The study is exploratory or iterative in…

Abstract

The study here examines how business actors adapt to changes in networks by analyzing their perceptions or their network pictures. The study is exploratory or iterative in the sense that revisions occur to the research question, method, theory, and context as an integral part of the research process.

Changes within networks receive less research attention, although considerable research exists on explaining business network structures in different research traditions. This study analyzes changes in networks in terms of the industrial network approach. This approach sees networks as connected relationships between actors, where interdependent companies interact based on their sensemaking of their relevant network environment. The study develops a concept of network change as well as an operationalization for comparing perceptions of change, where the study introduces a template model of dottograms to systematically analyze differences in perceptions. The study then applies the model to analyze findings from a case study of Norwegian/Japanese seafood distribution, and the chapter provides a rich description of a complex system facing considerable pressure to change. In-depth personal interviews and cognitive mapping techniques are the main research tools applied, in addition to tracer studies and personal observation.

The dottogram method represents a valuable contribution to case study research as it enables systematic within-case and across-case analyses. A further theoretical contribution of the study is the suggestion that network change is about actors seeking to change their network position to gain access to resources. Thereby, the study also implies a close relationship between the concepts network position and the network change that has not been discussed within the network approach in great detail.

Another major contribution of the study is the analysis of the role that network pictures play in actors' efforts to change their network position. The study develops seven propositions in an attempt to describe the role of network pictures in network change. So far, the relevant literature discusses network pictures mainly as a theoretical concept. Finally, the chapter concludes with important implications for management practice.

Details

Interfirm Networks: Theory, Strategy, and Behavior
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-024-7

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Book part
Publication date: 3 October 2006

Javier Gimeno, Ming-Jer Chen and Jonghoon Bae

We investigate the dynamics of competitive repositioning of firms in the deregulated U.S. airline industry (1979–1995) in terms of a firm's target market, strategic…

Abstract

We investigate the dynamics of competitive repositioning of firms in the deregulated U.S. airline industry (1979–1995) in terms of a firm's target market, strategic posture, and resource endowment relative to other firms in the industry. We suggest that, despite strong inertia in competitive positions, the direction of repositioning responds to external and internal alignment considerations. For external alignment, we examined how firms changed their competitive positioning to mimic the positions of similar, successful firms, and to differentiate themselves when experiencing intense rivalry. For internal alignment, we examined how firms changed their position in each dimension to align with the other dimensions of positioning. This internal alignment led to convergent positioning moves for firms with similar resource endowments and strategic postures, and divergent moves for firms with similar target markets and strategic postures. The evidence suggests that repositioning moves in terms of target markets and resource endowments are more sensitive to external and internal alignment considerations, but that changes in strategic posture are subject to very high inertia and do not appear to respond well to alignment considerations.

Details

Ecology and Strategy
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-435-5

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