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Guest Columnist: Embracing your “why” is essential to your marketing messaging

Lisa Colavito (she, her) is developing a new business, Leading a Digital Life, a marketing firm. She has worked in sales and marketing for her own businesses, community organizations, and major corporations. She has created, grown, and maintained newsletters, websites, social media accounts, and fortune 500 client lists. She is also a certified business consultant, adjunct professor, and experienced speaker and trainer. (Submitted photo)

Marketing – we encounter it every day and everywhere it seems. Yet, when developing marketing for our own businesses, knowing what to say and how to say it eludes us. Often tactics come first, like creating a website, social media posts, blogging, and vlogging. But focusing on tactics before developing marketing strategies dilutes the message and misses the targeted customer – your buyer. One of the most successful strategies begins with embracing your “WHY.”

Your “Why” is the emotional connection.

Why are you in business? Why do you do what you do? Included in one of the marketing webinars that I present, I provide a framework for a unique value proposition (aka the elevator pitch), asking attendees to use it to inform the group about the solution their product or service provides. A solution, because no one wants to buy what we sell, they want their problem solved. In a recent Q&A following that webinar’s activity, one of the attendees stressed that she could not determine the problem that her sauces solved. So, I asked her to share her “WHY.” This answer was easy for her, and as she delivered her “Why,” her motivation, where the idea originated, “Why” she is compelled to share these sauces that she learned from her grandmother, the audience became emotionally invested too. What’s your “Why,” your story, your passion? Is it family, a community, a loss, a right, a wrong, a cause? Connect the power found in your “Why” to your brand and share it in your messaging

Embracing your “Why” will clarify your ideal customer.

You need to do this. You, your product, your services, cannot please all the people all the time. If you think you are speaking to everyone, no one will listen. There are many ways to learn about potential customers. Using census.gov will give you demographics, using claritas360.claritas.com will give you psychographics. But which demographics and psychographics are you after? Often, your ideal customer is in your mirror. It’s you. It is that simple. Think about your “Why” again. You created your offering because you saw a need and envisioned a solution. Basing your ideal customer on YOU, the demographics and psychographics of your ideal customer become clear. Reverse-engineer your ideal customer. This clarity will inform your messaging, branding, and where and how to reach YOUR ideal customer. With this new lens you will know which social media platforms, which networking events and which modes of communication to use for optimal engagement.

Proclaiming your “Why” will draw your ideal customer to you.

Share the details of your “Why.” Be relatable. Instead of trying to sell in marketing, what you are really trying to do is make a connection. So, if you wrap who you are around the solution you offer you will find the person who needs that help, and they will find you. That is the key. That is the power of embracing your “Why,” seeing your customer for who they are, and proclaiming your “Why” in relatable terms.

about the author
Lisa Colavito (she, her) is developing a new business, Leading a Digital Life, a marketing firm. She has worked in sales and marketing for her own businesses, community organizations, and major corporations. She has created, grown, and maintained newsletters, websites, social media accounts, and fortune 500 client lists. She is also a certified business consultant, adjunct professor, and experienced speaker and trainer.

Minority Business/Expanding Opportunities cover

Expanding Opportunities

This article is featured in the 2022 edition of The Daily Record’s Expanding Opportunities Resource Guide for Small, Minority and Women Businesses that was published on Sept. 23. Published in conjunction with the Governor’s Office of Small, Minority & Women Business Affairs, Expanding Opportunities explores diversity, entrepreneurship and innovation in Maryland’s small business community. Read more from Expanding Opportunities or read the digital edition.


To purchase a reprint of this article, contact reprints@thedailyrecord.com.

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