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The New Positioning

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The New Positioning

The Latest on the World's #1 Business Strategy


15 min read
10 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

If you know how the human mind works, you can position your product to soar. Just avoid information overload, agree with already-held beliefs, and select a catchy name, (Look what happened to Hog Island after they re-named it Paradise!)

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Editorial Rating



  • Innovative
  • Applicable


You can achieve better brand recognition and sales if you understand how the mind works. Jack Trout (assisted by Steve Rifkin) emphasizes that the human mind is limited, hates confusion and easily loses focus. The authors cite companies that have succeeded in their brand strategy and advertising by following these principles, and a few who failed because they didn’t. The book concludes with "tricks of the trade" that you can use. In keeping with these principles, the volume is simply and clearly written, brief, well organized and focused. However, since it was published about four years ago and talks about the beginning of the information age, some of the material already may sound familiar. But if you can ignore that sense of déjà vu, the book offers an excellent summary of the relationship between how the mind works and how best to use product positioning. recommends this book to marketing mavens with inquiring minds.


The Working Mind

You need to understand how the human mind works to position your brand effectively, since positioning is not based on "what you do to the product," but on "what you do to the mind." The way you present your product shapes the way people perceive and react to it. You can position it more strategically if you understand how the mind works.

Today, people are overwhelmed with so much information that it is especially critical to know how to reach their minds. Memory researchers report that people forget up to 80% of what they learn, and when they get too much information, they can’t absorb it. When consumers have too much information, problem solving is more difficult. If they have a surfeit of facts to analyze, they end up thinking and understanding less and less. Thus, you need to break through this modern disease of mental "clutter," where you are drowning in information, unnecessary words, statistics and jargon. With this onslaught, people block out information as a form of self-defense.

To penetrate such barriers and become more effective at getting response to your product, consider these five keys to understanding the way the mind works. Minds...

About the Authors

Jack Trout is the author of five best-selling books, including Bottom-Up Marketing, Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind and Marketing Warfare. He is the president of Trout & Partners Ltd., in Greenwich, Connecticut, a marketing strategy firm that has consulted for leading corporations such as AT&T, Merck, IBM, SouthWest Airlines, and Warner-Lambert. Steve Rivkin worked with Jack Trout for 15 years and then founded his own communications consulting firm, Rivkin & Associates.

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