It’s Not The Size Of Your Positioning That Matters But How You Use IT!

Recently I ran into an old friend.

We talked and caught each other up about the happenings in our lives.

But like always when you talk with an old work buddy, old salted wounds about work pops up.

Recently at his area of the store problems were popping up with little items called Meal Simple.

He worked in Produce and they had their own line of meals.

They were little trays of meals that you can cook in an oven or microwave.

The grocery store he worked at was one of the popular chains in Texas so foot traffic was not a problem.

The problem was despite the foot traffic the meals just didn’t sell. In fact they were taking some HUGE losses.

The losses were so BIG that the company started to try and incentive’s the employee’s so they could sell the meals.

No customer wanted to buy these meals.

Here was the kicker. At another part of the store there was another Meal Simple display that combined 3 other departments and those meals sold like it was going out of style.

Those departments just couldn’t keep the shelves stocked.

That’s how well they sold.

It didn’t take a seasoned detective to figure out that people wanted the meals. In fact customers begged for these meals so much that all 3 departments started taking preorders!

The produce line of meals? Like a dead body floating on a lake.

So what was the problem?


If you ask any marketer/business what positioning is you’ll get a handful of answers.

“It’s standing out from your market!” “Making yourself different from everyone else!” etc, etc, etc.

And yeah if you thought positioning was those things……

….you’re right.

Getting down Daper Man style.

Rosser Reeves the Madison Avenue Mad Man came up with the idea of a Unique Selling Position(USP).

When it came to advertising his philosophy was simple. Ad’s weren’t meant to entertain, win awards but beating customers over the head with repeating slogans over and over.

The O.G Daper Man came up with “rules,” for coming up with a USP.

– Each ad must make a proposition: “Buy this product and you get these benefits”.

– The proposition must be unique: something that your competitors do not, cannot or will not offer.

– The proposition must sell: it must be something prospects really want; it pulls them over to your product.

Usually when it comes to advertising these are good rules to follow.


The meals weren’t being advertised.

…Uncle John(Carlton) and his awesome infinite wisdom had another idea when it came to USP

He called it the PUS method.

Position U’ourself Uniquely To Sell.

His method mirrored Reeves with one exception..

…Your USP should be able to get its point across FAST.

Think of the flow of foot traffic going into a store.

Look at the people coming and going. Study their patterns and flow when they go about prancing around.

Some look and admire, others grab and go.

But their reason for shopping remains the same.

Going back to the problems with the Meal Simple’s at the grocery store.

The meals were tucked AWAY from the flow of traffic and stuck in a weird place between salads and cut fruit.

When customers shopped in the area where the meals were, they snagged salads and fruit only. And that caught my eye.

They wanted QUICK MEALS!

Salads and fruit satisfied that desire for a quick on the go bite.

Even though these meals were so damn tasty, they took a good 20 minutes to cook.

People on the go don’t have time for all that.

Can you guess what the next step was?

You guessed it! Relocation!

The meals got relocated right dabbed in the flow of traffic with it’s own golden spot and…..

…..The meals sold like water in the dessert!

And all of their problems were solved.

Of course it took an act of god, several blood sacrifices, and backroom deals with the devil to get it moved but hey……that’s another story.

Till then, Stay Hungry,


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