October 10, 2019

Soggy Test

Positioning your products and services is a key aspect of attracting more and better leads, enjoying better word of mouth / referrals, and ultimately having more pricing leverage in the sales process. I’ve often referred to strong positioning as “laser-focused” and weak positioning as soggy.

Friend of the list Josh Earl wrote in with a clever idea for a “sogginess” test for a positioning statement. Here’s our thread (shared with permission):


I saw this soggy positioning statement recently:

“We design winning solutions to complex challenges”

This got me thinking about a sogginess test...

Could someone who has a different world view reverse your positioning statement and say it with conviction and a straight face?

If not, it’s probably soggy.


Yes! I once heard someone say a similar thing about strategy (I think it might have been Joe Pine).

To paraphrase, if the reverse of your strategy is idiotic, it’s not a strategy.

For example, “we will achieve our goals by delivering would class customer service” is not a valid strategy because delivering terrible customer service would be idiotic.

Like a good positioning statement, a powerful strategy has an element of risk. It could fail. It draws boundary lines that cut the business off from many (actually, most) tactics and behaviors.


Love it :)

I know it seems counter intuitive but it’s true... the smaller your market, the bigger it gets.