You may have thought starting with your why is best practise when building a brand. And it can be a good place to start but for some businesses. As it can also can be the thing that puts the breaks on your DIY branding, it can become the wall that you find impossible to climb over. I have recently found whilst doing my own rebrand that the why is probably the hardest part, and maybe that it’s just not the right place for some businesses start with. Today I’ll be taking you through three reason why you should consider not starting with your why. If you’ve been struggling to build your DIY brand then this might be the element that’s been holding you back.
Explaining the why in branding
Firstly let’s get clear about what the why is all about.If you’ve heard the name Simon Sinek you’re likely to of heard about the golden circle. He share’s how company’s that provide us with an emotional connect that isn’t in relation to making money, seem to do a lot better. The golden circle includes the why at the very centre of it. He also explains how this translates and taps into the part of our brain that is responsible for emotion and meaning called the limbic brain. Plus showing us how this part of the brain control behaviour. So essentially if your why speaks and resonates to your ideal people on a deeper level, they are more likely to make a purchase with you. So I get that it sound like the perfect and effective place to start. However, i have observed and through recent re-branding experience myself I’ve realise that in reality the why can be a problematic place to start. Let’s start looking a few reasons the why is causing you more problems and headaches rather than effectiveness right now.
The Reason you get stuck at why
When coming up with your Why, whether you are DIYing it or working with a brand designer, no one else can provide you with one. Working with a brand designer does make the discovering your own far easier though, in-depth discussions, being asked the right questions and analysing, even mirror your answers back to you. Couple this with knowing how effective it can be, working by yourself to come up with a why can quickly lead yourselves to spiral into procrastination land, which I know is hard to get out of. Most people will find it difficult to articulate or express why their work truly matters that’s why it can be that hardest place to start. That why sometimes working backward with the golden circle can be more helpful. You could always try getting clear on what you do, how you do it and then moving into the why you do it, in some case this still doesn’t help. But worth as go! My next point is some one-person led businesses just don’t actually have a Why that is strong enough, to resonate with others.
Because your brand why just isn’t strong enough
I’ll be honest I don’t think I started with a very strong why but more due to my own personal interests. I think I started for a number of reason, firstly I’m passionate about doing something creative and enjoy helping people. Maybe you started a business as more of a response to an event that occurred in your life. I know that after university I applied to lots of jobs but couldn’t get a job in the area I wanted, so I choose to do a bit of freelancing. Or maybe your circumstance was a little different, maybe you lost your job and therefore wanted to become your own boss so you didn’t have to feel reliant on someone else. Or some point in our lives we discover new aspiration we’d like to fulfil, like wanting to have a different lifestyle, one where you can work and travel or spend more time with your family. I think there are many reasons why you started your businesses and again probably nothing to do with money, but more to do with what you wants and or needs, rather than a why that will resonate with your people. A good thing to remember is that whatever your reasons were for starting they might not make for strong why or mission statements. But they must keep you motivated however, difficult the journey is to stay committed when the going get tough is important. It might be great for you brand story but might not be strong enough for your why.
A genuinely real brand why only please
Your why has to be coming from a place of genuine honesty. A fake why or mission statement slapped onto your website, won’t magically turn you into nike or apple. They’re why is deeply seed into everything that they do. So if you don’t feel connect to your why and be honest did you copy it from someone’s website? Then it’s likely it won’t help you and is more likely to cause issues. by making it difficult for you to uphold or live it out day-to-day. So if this is the case sometimes it’s best to just focus on how well you help and serve your ideal people. Sometimes a why can reveal it self at a later date, quite possible after you’ve dipped your toes in and have been doing business with a few people.
What to do and where to start instead of at brand why?
So hopeful by now you understand that the why sometime is not be the best place for certain businesses to start. If you resonated with the above and don’t feel like you’re why isn’t cutting it. You can try the following, as I already mention early using the golden circle backwards or you can focus instead on the other W. The who? The golden circle covers the what, how and why. But the Who can be just as important. Who are your ideal people, or who do you serve? Find a way to show your people how you care about them. I understand that most small businesses are worried about losing out on the effectiveness on having that emotional connection with their ideal people. However, we can weave that emotional connection by other means to make them care about you. You brand story, mission statement, values etc. Don’t fell defatted with not having a strong why you can still resonate with your people and be successful. Did you miss last weeks episode ? No biggie go check it now. Learn how to work from home more mindfully!