Roanoke Revealed

Beliefs are more important in marketing than benefits

Beliefs are more important in marketing than benefits

A couple of months ago I did a blog post noting that traditional marketing is backwards and ineffective, particularly for small businesses.  Part of the discussion included the features vs. benefits concept that’s back in vogue and how that doesn’t do it.

Recently, I came across a wonderful TED Talk explaining how most leaders think, act and communicate backwards.

Simon Sinek illustrates that a typical company communication approach is to say what they do, assert how they’re different then expect some kind of desired decision (for an audience to follow, buy, etc.).

Sinek highlights how some of the most successful companies are reaching audiences and converting customers by highlighting what they believe.

“People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it,” he notes, “the goal is to do business with people who believe what we believe.”

Although the presentation is entitled around leaders, this applies just as much, if not more, to marketing. Simon Sinek did a much better job than I explaining how selling works best. Namely, by pointing out your message and mission is much more important than service or product features and benefits. He illustrates how focusing on such things doesn’t appeal to the part of the brain that buys in his talk “How great leaders inspire action.”

4 Comments so far:

  1. SKJAM! says:

    This can, however, be overdone. If I get the impression that your business is all sizzle and no steak, I will presume you have no substance to offer.

    • This is a good video worth watching, Scott. The point is it’s not about selling. It’s about having the right reason driving the purpose of your business so people are naturally attracted to shared ideals.

  2. Amy Putoknen says:

    I was in a group discussion the other day and we were talking about connections between people. Unless there is something that you can connect on, something of value to you, you will have no interest in that person. Even if they are on the other side of the fence for you, (whatever that “fence” may look like), you can find something to connect on and build the relationship from there. Business is all about relationships, if its done correctly.

    We’ve lived in the same little town for over 8 years now. It’s the longest I’ve ever lived in one place. We’ve been very conscious about shopping locally and building relationships with the businesses in our area. They are important to us, since it is a 30 minute drive to any other types of stores and we want to ensure their survival. It is up to us to help them. I’ll happily spend an extra $5 or $10 in a store if it means I don’t have to drive. I’ve noticed over the years that this sort of thing actually has helped me to spend less. I just buy what I need and I don’t walk around the stores and look for stuff to buy. It’s a different mindset.

    • Good points, Amy. So glad to hear you are making a difference for those who live and are doing business in your community. Small towns are an incredible place to live when you get to know the people and places that comprise them.

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