AW05 Brand positioning


 Brand positioning (brand strategy, positioning strategy/statement) is the process of positioning a brand in the mind of their customers.

Kotler[1] defines brand positioning as “the act of designing the company’s offering and image to occupy a distinctive place in the mind of the target market”, or how a brand is different from its competitors and where, or how, it sits in customers’ minds. This is important for almost any brand, for by shaping their customers preferences, brand positioning strategies may have direct impact on consumer loyalty, consumer-based brand equity and the willingness to purchase the brand.

In this post, I’m looking at three different brands and describes their brand position.


Instagram is a free photo sharing service and social network, launched October 2010[2]. Users can shoot pictures or videos on their mobile phones, add filters and other effects and publish for the world to see. To find images, you navigate through hashtags (see my other article on hashtags or folksonomies as they are also called). Instagram’s mission is to bring “you closer to the people and things you love“, and to “express yourself in new ways” [3].

This brand statements has most likely contributed to their markedshare: Instagram has over 1 billion users world wide, and in Norway, as of Q3 2020, 38% of the population between 13 and 99 uses their services on a daily basis, which is upp 3% since Q1. Instagram is also an advertisement platform and a shopping platform. By extending their services, they reach new market segments.

It is difficult to find an extensive list of competitors of Instagram. On Wikipedia, I found a list from 2016, but that is most likely outdated. There are competitors for sure, but as far as I can tell, none of them and none as known as Instagram. In the early days (and for photographers), Flickr was vividly known. Now, Youpic has taken position as a Flickr replacement [4].


Luxury, sportiness and performance. These are the brand statements made of Mercedes on their website. A mercedes is a car brand where you pay for quality beyond the ability to transport you from A to B. Mercedes is a german vehicle brand produced by Daimler AG. The company has a long history and ever since 1909, the Mercedes star has been a symbol on their car[5].

The Mercedes brand is not only luxury. On their website, they state their goal to be to produce the “world’s safest and most efficient cars” by “pursuing more than what is immediately achievable”[6]


Mastercard is a multi-national company founded in 1966 within the payments and card transactions industry [7]. Their core products include consumer credit, consumer debit, prepaid cards, and a commercial product business. Mastercard have user sites all over the world. Their goal is to reshape the digital economy [8]and in their purpose manifesto, you can read that their mission statement is “Connecting Everyone to Priceless Possibilities” [9]

There are several other card solutions in the world, where Mastercard and Visa are the biggest.

[1] Kotler, P., 2003. Marketing Management. 11th ed ed. Englewoods Cliffs,NJ: Prentice-Hall.

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