Brand positioning is complex, with various definitions and multiple ways to approach it. But whichever approach is chosen, the positioning should be distinctive, inspiring and ambitious. Effective positioning should be informed by trends, market research and external market realities. A brand can opt to occupy the market in various positions including market leader, premium or challenger. Regardless, it is important that the positioning idea is practically useful and clearly relates to a commercial aim.


Brand positioning is a marketing strategy that aims to make a brand occupy a distinct position, relative to competitor brands, in the mind of the consumer.

Key insights

1. To combat “insurgent brands”, big brands should refresh their brand positioning

Big brands facing a threat from small but fast-growing “insurgent brands” should first and foremost sharpen their existing brand positioning and use it to focus investment and guide a revitalised marketing mix. They need to renovate the core of the business to respond to new needs in order to maintain the ‘trust advantage’ that should come from being a large, well-known brand. Big brands such as Ben & Jerry’s and PG Tips are more trusted than insurgents to deliver product quality in their respective categories, reflecting the work they have done on revitalising their mixes.