Positioning by Al Ries & Jack Trout

Book Summary: Positioning: The Battle For Your Mind by Al Ries & Jack Trout - Ryan Delaney

The Book in a Few Sentences

The book that forever changed marketing. Positioning is outside-in thinking targeting the deep inner workings of the human mind. A simple yet powerful way of working with the prospect's mind rather than against it.

Positioning summary

This is my book summary of Positioning by Al Ries and Jack Trout. My summary and notes include the key lessons and most important insights from the book.


A New Approach to Communication

Positioning Defined

1: What Positioning Is All About

The Overcommunicated Society

The Oversimplified Mind

The Oversimplified Message

2: The Assault On The Mind

The Media Explosion

3: Getting Into The Mind

The Easy Way Into The Mind

The Hard Way Into The Mind

The Positioning Era

What Miller Discovered

4: Those Little Ladders In Your head

You See What You Expect to See

An Inadequate Container

The Product Ladder

5: You Can’t Get There from Here

How to Go Against an IBM

Smith and Jones at General Electric

6: Positioning of a Leader

Establishing Leadership

The Failures of Leaders

The Instability of Equality

What Not to Do

What to Do

Covering All Bets

Power from the Product

Covering With a Broader Name

7: Positioning of a Follower

Why Products Fail

The Size Creneau

The High-Price Creneau

Other Effective Creneaus

The Technology Trap

8: Repositioning the Competition

Creating Your Own Creneau

Repositioning Lenox

Repositioning American Vodkas

Repositioning Pringle’s

Repositioning Listerine

Repositioning Vs. Comparative Ads

9: The Power of the Name

When to Use A Coined Name

Hubert and Elmer in the Sky

The Toledo Triplets

10: The No-Name Trap

The Mind Works by Ear

Acronyms and Phone Directories

11: The Free-Ride Trap

Two Different Strategies

A New Product Needs a New Name

The Teeter-Totter Principle

12: The Line-Extension Trap

Outside-In Thinking

Two Ways of Looking at the Name

13: When Line Extension Can Work

Long-Term Disadvantages

What’s a Chevrolet?

14: Positioning a Company: Xerox

15: Positioning a Country: Belgium

Three-Star Cities

16: Positioning an Island: Jamaica

17: Positioning a Product: Milk Duds

Looking Into the Mind

The Long-Lasting Alternative

18: Positioning a Service: Mailgram

Low Cost Vs. High Speed

19: Positioning a Long Island Bank

Developing the Strategy

20: Positioning a New Jersey Bank

Did It Work?

21: Positioning a Ski Resort: Stowe

The Top 10 Ski Resorts in the World

22: Positioning the Catholic Church

Teacher of the Word

23: Positioning Yourself and Your Career

Define Yourself

Find a Horse to Ride

The First Horse to Ride is Your Company.

The Second Horse to Ride is Your Boss.

The Third Horse to Ride is a Friend.

The Fourth Horse to Ride is an Idea.

The Fifth Horse to Ride is Faith.

The Sixth Horse to Ride is Yourself.

24: Positioning your Business

1. What Position Do You Own?

2. What Position Do You Want to Own?

3. Whom Must You Outgun?

4. Do You Have Enough Money?

5. Can You Stick it Out?

6. Do You Match Your Position?

The Role of the Outsider

What the Outsider Doesn’t Supply

25: Playing the Positioning Game

You Must Understand the Role of Words

You Must Know How Words Affect People

You Need Vision

You Need Objectivity

You Need Simplicity

You Need Subtlety

You Must Be Willing to Sacrifice

What You Don’t Need

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