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Marketing Values Not Just Value

20180608_values

Last night I watched an interesting video which really challenged the whole notion of the way I’d thought about marketing. For me, marketing had always been about informing people about the benefits of a product/service and explaining how it’s awesome! What I’d missed in my thinking was the reason “why” a business behaves the way it does and how this concept impacts customers.

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The below circle diagram illustrates how most marketers think about their marketing activities. They proceed from the outside of “What” they do and move inwards towards “How” they do it and finally some get to the “Why” they do what they do.


Values

Pause to think about this for a second. Brochures inevitably espouse the “What” is great about a product and “How” it’s going to benefit you. There’s nothing inherently wrong with this approach other than the “Why” you made the product has been left out.

In the video, the presenter encouraged the group of entrepreneurs he was sharing with to work from the inside of the circle to the outside. Talk about the “Why” and work your way out to the “How” and “What”.

He then highlighted that both “Apple” and “Harley-Davidson” use this approach in all their marketing communications. When customers understand the “Why” they then begin to associate with the company’s values.

The reason why a biker gets a tattoo of the “Harley-Davidson” logo on their arm is because they identify with Harley’s values of “All for freedom. Freedom for all”. The reason why people queue for days to buy the latest iPhone is because they associate themselves with Apple’s values of “Simple not complex”.

The following video from Harley-Davidson illustrates what I’m talking about.

The video doesn’t talk about how big the engine is or how many miles to the gallon you get driving a motorcycle. It’s all about the freedom of the road and how Harley-Davidson motorcycles are the key for you to open the door to your own freedom.

Steve Jobs, the founder of Apple said, “Marketing is about values. It’s a complicated and noisy world, and we’re not going to get a chance to get people to remember much about us. No company is. So we have to be really clear about what we want them to know about us.”

In Apple’s case, the focus on sharing about their values has resulted in fanatical customers that share a common bond of owning a Mac, iPhone etc. Let’s be completely honest, the Mac does exactly what a PC does and yet millions of people pay a large premium to own a Mac versus a PC that is actually faster.

Here’s the difference, when you think about a PC you more often than not think in terms of functionality, when you think about a Mac you think in terms of aesthetics and beauty. If two Mac users meet they behave as if there is a common bond that binds them together. This just doesn’t happen with PC users.The end result of Apple sharing their values is the most valuable company in the world.

The question I have for you is “Why” does your business do the things it does and does this inspire customers to believe in your values or does it leave you competing on “What” and “How”? I’m doing a lot of thinking about the values of my own businesses and whether we need to adopt this inside out approach….it’s a challenge to get your thinking to change around but it’s also exhilarating! I wish you all the best on your own journey....

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Comments

Guest - Vivek Goyal on 08 June 2018
3 golden circles

Looks like you were watching a Simon Sinek video. I quite enjoy what he has to say, I am yet to see a solid example of actual transformation in the corporate world achieved via his methods.
Please let me know if I am completely off the mark.

Looks like you were watching a Simon Sinek video. I quite enjoy what he has to say, I am yet to see a solid example of actual transformation in the corporate world achieved via his methods. Please let me know if I am completely off the mark.
mgilmour on 09 June 2018

Yes it was a Simon Sinek video. I'm not sure at this stage how valid his position is but it is definitely thought provoking. I know that I'm finding that it's causing me to evaluate the own way I'm viewing my businesses.

Yes it was a Simon Sinek video. I'm not sure at this stage how valid his position is but it is definitely thought provoking. I know that I'm finding that it's causing me to evaluate the own way I'm viewing my businesses.
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Tuesday, 16 October 2018
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