Perceptual Map

A market strategy is developed within the context of the competitive strategy and the competitive environment. The decisions made within the marketing mix must consider the company’s position within the competitive market. A tool commonly used in understanding this position is the Positioning or Perceptual Map.

While they look very similar, Positioning Maps and Perceptual Maps serve different functions and reflect different perspectives. These maps can have multiple dimensions, but most simply (and therefore most often), the map is a straight-forward two-by-two matrix showing the positioning of competitors (including one’s own firm) on two competitive attributes.

The difference between a positioning map and a perceptual map is the perspective.

The positioning map is from the marketers perspective and is somewhat aspirational. Sometimes a positioning map is used to show how a brand wants to be positioned in the market in the future, and sometimes it is used to show technically and accurately where a product currently fits with competitors on two measurable attributes.

The perceptual map is from the consumers perspective and is based on market research. How are the brands perceived by consumers to be positioned on the chosen attributes?

Both positioning and perceptual maps can be helpful in making decisions about the marketing mix.

Tools for creating a Perceptual Map coming soon!