Simon Sinek’s Ted Talk, “Start With Why” is an inspiring concept that can be beneficial to businesses or individuals.
People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it. They aren’t inspired to connect with you as a business unless your ‘why’ is compelling. Sinek stresses that your reason for being should be communicated to your customers in this order:
1. Why do you do what you do – your core beliefs
2. How do you fulfil that
3. What you do to fulfil that
In consumer marketing, the ‘why’ can be very subtle, and many organisations position themselves by leading with the ‘what’, which is much less engaging. He uses Apple as an example of a company that has nailed its ‘why’ and is wildly successful even though its products cost more than the competition.
In the B2B sphere,this concept is equally relevant, even where buyers have a job to do and are far less likely to be motivated by aspirations. There’s always still a ‘why’.
I’ve also found Sinek’s concept of ‘finding your why’ to be applicable to good construction content. For many years, when writing about construction products, I worked to a standard that begins with what something is, and then moves on to how it can be used and then the reasons why it should be preferred over an alternative product.
Construction examples of Starting with Why
In the past year or two though, I’ve noticed a few striking examples that lead with the reasons why a broad, general concept is compelling or beneficial to an end user. The copy below (for print in External Works directory) exists to provide information about cycle parking products but the opening paragraph focuses solely on why cycling is of benfit to the population more generally.
This ‘why’ is a compelling hook for the target audience – landscape architects – who are often motivated and inspired by the benefits that their designs or projects will have on the end users – people.
Looking at an online example – this page about signs starts with why vitreous enamel is the ideal finish for park applications.
Do you have any examples of a construction product manufacturer that effectively communicates the ‘why’ of their business, or of a product in particular?
Simon Sinek, Start With Why
Hubspot blog: 3 Key Marketing Takeaways from Simon Sinek’s Start With Why