The No. 1 reason why your retail business is failing – Part 2

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Last week we talked about the challenges of running a retail business and why almost half of all retail businesses end up closing. The main reason is the brand’s inability to stick in to the mind of the consumer (i.e positioning).  

We also talked about how we could use the ladder tool as developed by Ries & Trout to determine a positioning for our retail brand  (find out more here).  

Today, I would like to to speak to you about another tool which I learnt and use to help retail brands determine how to develop a position in the minds of their consumers.  

I learnt this tool from an incredible speaker named Dr. Nido Qubein, and Dr. Qubein uses 3 simple questions to determine whether or not you have a positioning within your brand. The 3 questions are:

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Question 1: Why should someone do business with me?
I believe this is the fundamental question you should ask yourself with regards to your brand. Why should your customer do business with you? Is there something unique about me or my processes or even the product which I sell? If your answer is because I have great service or a better quality product; you are in for a surprise because here’s the shocker, All your competitors say that as well!! In my entire career as a retail consultant, if I had a dollar for every time a retailer told me that, I could retire! So, you need to figure this one out, what makes me so special?  

Question 2: How easily can someone imitate what I do?
Do you have a process in your service or a secret ingredient in your product that makes it difficult for someone else to copy what you do and how you deliver your service to your clients? It may sound stupid and straight forward but the more difficult it is for someone to imitate you the easier it is for you to create a positioning in the mind of your customer.  

Question 3: If I was in the market to buy what you sell, would think of you first?
In my mind this is the ultimate question that would be the most challenging to answer. What Dr. Qubein is talking about here is Brand Insistence. There are 4 different levels of branding:

Level 1 Brand Awareness:
This is where your customer knows about your brand and make no mistake, you will not be at this level is you have not answered to 2 questions above first!  

Level 2 Brand Preference:
At this stage, your customer is saying to you that they like dealing with your brand and buying from you. There is something there that keeps them coming back.  

Level 3 Brand Insistence:
Here, your customer insists to buy from you. At this stage, price is no longer an issue as you already have an inherently strong perceived value from your customer dealing with your brand. No matter what your competitors may say to your clients, they will insist on dealing with you and your brand. Think Apple and the Iphone.  

Level 4 Brand Advocacy:
To reach this level, you no longer need to sell, you are communicating your brand and the customer is doing the selling for you. Think again about the legion of Apple fans and their I phone’s, who believe that the I phone is truly the best product that has ever been introduced in the world and that Apple can do no wrong.   So what is your job? Your job in answering question 3 is to move your customers from Brand Awareness to Brand Insistence if not Brand Advocacy. We believe that through the usage of either of these tools will help you to figure out what your positioning for your brand should be and these represent the fundamental aspects of building a retail brand which lasts. Do not be a statistic, be a winner.  


At Visata Creative, we work together with our clients to Design Profitable Spaces. We work strategically as partners to our clients to ensure that they are equipped with the with the necessary insights and guidance for their businesses based on our years of experience in the retail industry through our interior design, graphic design & strategic marketing services.

To us, bigger space is not always better, what matters most in retail is the profitability of the space. We believe in winning the award that really matters in our industry – Helping our clients achieve the highest profitability possible within their retail business.

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