Too many new business owners focus on the what and the how of their business and do not ask themselves why they are in business. According to a 2012 study by Neilson, 92% of people, world-wide, buy based on personal recommendations. It is usually easier to get personal recommendations from your clients if they know why you are in business.
In my work with people developing their marketing plans for their businesses I begin with the question why are they in business. I believe that this is a key determination of what will separate them from their competition.
Since I am a business coach and not an author, I freely admit that I started doing this after reading the book “Start with Why“. I am not an author, and just writing blogs is as much authoring that I want to do. Perhaps it is because my grandfather told me “that those that can do, those that can’t teach“. I am a better coach than teacher because it is closer to the “doing” that is in my own DNA. As a result of this belief, I love using other books as additional references for my clients and I recommend Start with Why by Simon Sinek.
Begin with why
If I were to extract out the key takeaway from the book, it is that there are three things that businesses need to understand in order to be successful, the how, the what and the why. The author refers to these as the “golden circle”. The author believes that the why is the most important of these. I do not agree that there are only three considerations, I believe the who of who we are selling to is almost as important as is your why. But who you are selling to is next weeks blog. I agree that starting with your why is a key and most important first step in differentiating yourself in your business venture.
What is your why? What dreams, aspirations and passions are inside of you that are driving you and inspiring you to create you business?
An example works well as to how this can work in a standard “sales commercial” used in most referral marketing venues. A client of mine has given me permission to share this.
“Recently, Sam shared why he got involved in the auto repair and service business. Because of his motivation to help others be safe in their cars and other vehicles, we have formed deep long lasting relationships with our customers.
I want to tell you a short story about what that means to them. Last weekend we went to the ninetieth birthday party for one of our customers. Sam went, his dad who created the business went along with a long term mechanic and myself. Our customers daughter who created the party told the crowed room that all of us had touched the lives of her father and she hoped the same was true for us. I can tell you that for me it certainly was.
The why of how our business was created is the desire to help others and keep them safe. We just happen to be in the auto repair business.
We are looking to grow our business and we need your help. Who do you know that wants to buy someone who will not just service their cars as a one time transaction, but wants someone who has their back to take care of their kids as they drive off to school for the first time or keep their aging but beloved commuter car in safe and reliable condition?”
If you live in the North Hills of Pittsburgh, you might want to check out Glenshaw Auto if this resonates with you and you need a great mechanic or even just tires or a battery.
What about you?
How likely are you to trust an auto service company in which four people are invited to a birthday party? Do your customers know why you do what you do? Will they invite you to their ninetieth birthday party because you have touched their lives? If an auto repair shop does this, what does that mean for financial advisors, insurance agents, bankers, lawyers and health providers. How much easier should it be for you to touch the lives of your customers.
Why are you in business?