Have you had a chance to read the book Start with Why (Amazon affiliate link) by Simon Sinek? The big idea from this book is people don’t buy WHAT you do, they buy WHY you do it. The book explains how the part of our brain that is responsible for decision making is different from the part of the brain that is responsible for language and the challenges that presents when we try to aspire others to take action.
In Duct Tape Marketing, we are always talking about the principle of “strategy before tactics”. I find that while most business owners agree with this concept on an intellectual level, they often struggle with putting it into practice. I believe the ideas in Simon’s book line up perfectly with this principle – first we have to be clear about our WHY. With a crystal clear WHY, almost any tactic can be successful.
If you have taken the time to really think about your ideal customers, I’m willing to bet that once you got past the typical demographics (industry, geography, revenue, etc.) you will find indications that your best customers share one or more of your beliefs. They like what you stand for. You both value your relationship. As marketers, we sometimes muddy this up by calling it your Core Difference or some other name but it’s really just your WHY.
We marketers are also fond of saying “marketing is everyone’s job”. What if we replaced that with “everyone should understand and be able to communicate our WHY”? What effect would that have on your business? Would it change more than marketing? I think so.
If you haven’t had a chance to read Simon’s book, I highly recommend it. Start your marketing with WHY, find customers who believe what you believe and work together so that everyone can succeed.
Bill Brelsford Small Business Marketing Consultant