After 22 years in business, we decided we should try to write a formal positioning statement for our company. We thought the exercise would help us learn more about ourselves and our customers, and it did.
We also thought it would be easy. It was not.
We realized that, over the last 20 years, we had become too many things to too many people and what we offer is too complex to be summed up in one sentence, so we didn’t do it. We think this is better:
Our customers are looking for serious, experienced professionals to take on projects that they can’t do internally because:
a) Their current staff is stretched too thin and can’t be stretched thinner
b) Their current staff is dedicated to supporting existing products instead of pursuing new opportunities, leaving great potential revenue-generating product opportunities sitting on the shelf for months or years (refer back to a)
c) Their current staff lacks some specific expertise and there is no time to develop it internally in time to meet their product release goals
d) They are looking for new, transformative, patentable ideas from outside their industry that can be applied to the job they have to do. Folks that want an outside perspective on manufacturing processes they aren’t familiar with, vendors they don’t know, ergonomics experience they don’t have, or counseling on how to look at their revenue stream differently (i.e. focusing on the impact of warranty service vs. initial COGS when evaluating their bottom line).
We wanted to make it easy for someone to decide to hire an outside firm for the first time. We have to imagine that it takes a lot of backbone to say “I can’t do this job with the engineering department that I built.” We have a 93% repeat business rate with our customers because once they’ve taken that leap, the return on their investment (and the relief it provides their entire department to do what they do best) makes it an easy decision to use DiMonte Group again.
The trick was to distill all the above into one or two sentences that would resonate with the reader so they say “Yeah, that’s me! Maybe I can look better to my boss and really help the company if I fight for a budget to go outside for this turnkey innovation engine with a proven track record that other people have already used successfully and liked working with so much that they used them again and again.”
We hoped to artfully position DiMonte Group to be the equivalent of “Yeah, I can jack up the car, lie in the cold, and change the oil in my car myself, but for less money and no hassle I can just go to Jiffy Lube and probably get the job done better with more options by a focused pro that knows my car better than I do, has more efficient tools than I have budget to own, and while under the hood might point out that I forgot to change my air filter or need new wiper blades.”
But we’re engineers and designers, not writers. It’s not a great metaphor.
It does capture the sort of convenience and release from pressure that we offer. And everyone can get their mind around it.