How do you beat the competition in a crowded market to become number 1? That’s what you call a billion dollar question - now more than ever. You could have the most agile business model, excellent leadership, targeted marketing, innovative products - and still be nowhere near number one in your industry. Why?
Founder of What Big Brands Know, Gerry O’Brion, has the answer:
‘Companies spend a lot of time finding their “why”, when they should in fact focus on finding their “because”. Your “because” explains what it is you do that’s different or unique’.
The core idea at the heart of Gerry’s Power of Because Framework is that while customers may be interested in your “why” and engaged by your brand story, ultimately, they buy your “because”. So how do you determine what that “because” is? Gerry’s Vistage webinar on 7th October will give you all the tools you need, but in the meantime here’s a little sneak peek of what you can expect…
Highlighting your “because”: why it’s so important
Think about when you use the word “because”. It’s a precursor to persuasion, justification, or influence. It’s the word that comes before the punchline. And so Gerry believes a company’s “because” is vital if they want to clarify their brand message and close sales.
Your because is the ultimate reason someone should choose you instead of your competitors - the thing which makes you stand out from the crowd, or, as Gerry says:’ the proof that you can deliver your promise better or differently than everyone else’.
“We all use ‘because’ every time we recommend a company to someone else,” says Gerry. “When you give a referral you say: ‘You’ve got to go to this pizza place because…’ and then you use the most compelling words you can think of to describe the pizza place and prove what makes it a great choice.”
Within his framework, Gerry has dubbed this the ‘sentence of influence’. According to him, most brands only go halfway with their sentence of influence:
“Often when we’re trying to convince someone of something we do a good lead in by saying things like: ‘Our company cares about our customers’, or ‘we use higher quality ingredients.’ It sounds great but all our competitors will say the same things. What our brains are looking for is the end of the sentence: ‘We use higher quality ingredients because…’. ‘Because’ is the proof that makes the statement believable, but most brands don’t ever give that proof.”
Gerry explains how this taps into our buying psychology, and why brands who offer a ‘because’ gain a significant competitive edge:
"They want to justify the purchase with rational, logical proof that it was a good choice."
“Brain science shows that people make an emotional decision when they buy, but they want to justify the purchase with rational, logical proof that it was a good choice. This logical, rational proof is your ‘because’.”
Defining your “because” has far-reaching impacts in terms of sales and increasing your customer base, as Gerry explains:
“Whatever you say you’re going to deliver, your ‘because’ makes it more believable, and crucially, more repeatable. If I believe you and I can easily explain it to someone else, I can repeat your message on your behalf. The reason we don’t get as many referrals as we want is that we’ve made it too difficult for people to know what to say. If you narrow your focus and clarify your ‘because’, you make it easy for people to refer you to others.”
How the framework works
Gerry’s framework of influence consists of four questions, designed to determine a company’s “because”, create better sales flows, reduce the length of the sales cycle, and drive innovation. His Vistage webinar will give leaders all the tools they need to use this framework within their organisations - both internally and externally.
- Who are you trying to influence? Is it the CFO? Is it the CEO? Is it the consumer? A big company, a small company?
- What are your insights about them? For example: What are your customers frustrated about? What do they fear by saying yes to you or to your competitors?
- What do you promise to them?
- What are your pieces of proof to back up your promise?
Using the Power of Because to navigate disruptive change
Gerry believes that the key to navigating disruptive periods is finding the opportunities that they present. As long as you survive the initial impact, turbulent times can give businesses the chance to shake things up, to innovate, to step out of their comfort zones.
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Gerry’s Power of Because Framework helps business leaders who are facing disruption in their industries by giving them the tools to understand their customers and figure out what they’re going to change. He explains:
“We all go through changes in our industries all the time. This year they’ve been dramatic and outside our control but it doesn’t matter whether it’s the economy or Covid or your competitor’s innovation - there will always be disruption. The first stage is survival, and then you have to think about how you’re going to thrive - that’s where the framework comes in. Things are already disrupted, so why not disrupt them further?”
Becoming number one in a crowded market isn’t something that happens by chance or simply because you have a great product or service. It requires constant innovation, market knowledge, and, crucially, understanding what will drive someone to choose you over your competitors. Gerry O’Brion’s Power of Because Framework of Influence offers a methodological way of achieving this. As Gerry puts it: “The Power of Because is used by tens of thousands of CEOs across Vistage and around the globe to give them a framework of success for sales, innovation and marketing, and to clarify their message through their organisations. The end result is that everyone across the process of influence can use it to close the sale.”
Discover the “because” your business needs by watching Gerry’s webinar on 7th October – sign up now.