Simon Sinek created a movement with his “Start with Why” approach. He, correctly in my opinion, promoted starting with a purpose–the why you exist; the why you matter–rather than the what (what you do) or how (how you do it).
But why is not enough.
As I work with tech providers, I constantly push them to develop stories that convey why (not always Sinek’s why). Emphasizing the business outcomes they enable and the problems they solve. Using the customer situation to frame the story. It’s always important and has been proven to be effective.
But it is not enough.
In the world of tech, customers have been burned too often in the past for why to be enough. Or for an approach that emphasizes the outcomes without deep information on how they are accomplished.
Start with Why. But End with How.
Our research continues to show that buyers, whether they be in technical or business roles, care–and care deeply–about the how. It’s easy to say that people want a hole (the outcome) and not a shovel (the how), but that is not reality.
Buyers care about features. They care about implementation approaches. They care about best practices.
Without the how, they don’t trust you. Or themselves. They may believe the outcome (yes it is possible to get a hole), but they question your ability to give them that hole. And/or they question their ability to create that hole with your help.
The best combination. Start with why (and consider highlighting some product capabilities that help achieve that why). Then once you have initial interest, connect the why to the how by putting your features and capabilities in the context of how they help you achieve results. Offer proof points–not just of results, but of how they were achieved.
Connect your why with you how. Go deep. Build trust and confidence.
Why is not enough. Claimed outcomes are not enough.
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