Flank Positioning

Posted in Marketing and Strategy Terms, Total Reads: 2071
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Definition: Flank Positioning

A Flank Strategy always occurs in a domain that is uncontested. This strategy involves an element of surprise and focusses on an area or segment which the competitor will not find threating enough to respond immediately. The primary aim is to target the competitor’s customers and hence depends on the strengths and weaknesses of the competition. Flank strategies can be either offensive (Flank Attack) or defensive (Flank Positioning).

In Flank Positioning, the organization re-deploys its resources in order to strengthen its domain where the company is most vulnerable in the market and can easily lose its market share to a competitor. This can be done by the introduction of new products, product lines, brands, re-positioning of the existing brand or simply additional promotional activity for the existing brand. Product differentiation and market segmentation are the two key concepts that every company focusses on in this type of strategy.

Creating a new brand priced lower than the company’s existing brand to target the lower end customers, such that the combined market share of both brands is significantly higher than the market share of the company when the original brand existed is a typical example of Flank Positioning. For example, P&G creating the detergent brand “Cheer” priced at 35% lower than “Tide”. The company also followed the same strategy with diapers when it launched “Luvs” diapers priced lower against its existing “Pampers” brand in 1994.

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