Routine or Remarkable?

Are your products and services remarkable? Does your messaging tell people why?

Jeff Bezos, founder of, has been quoted as saying that “Advertising is the price you pay for having an unremarkable product or service.”

For decades, brands and their agencies have looked for magic messages to compensate for the unremarkable; persuasive messages that could be shouted into the unsuspecting ears of the public; messages that differentiate based on what, where and for how much, but seldom by sharing a story of why the brand exists.

Things are different today. The public is onto us. They trust their friends, neighbors, even perfect strangers, more than the voice of the brand - far more than advertising and marketing.

People Don't Buy What You Do, They Buy Why You Do It!

Start with Why - small
Simon Sinek, author of "Start With Why. How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone To Take Action" says that marketing, per se, is neither good or bad. It's simply the way a company speaks to us. What makes bad marketing is in how were being spoken to and what is being said.

Bad marketing, according to Sinek, promotes product features, drives transactions, promotes price, and manipulates behavior. Bad marketing is focused on a company's what and how.

Great marketing comes from a deeper place. A place that focuses on a company’s sense of purpose and mission. Great marketing, like great leadership, comes from messages focused on why. It provides a view of the world, starts with a cause, drives loyalty, promotes values, and inspires consumer behavior and conversation.

Brands, and the agencies that support them, that effectively and consistently communicate their why will be the ultimate winners. They will set the higher bar and move from routine to remarkable at each and every touchpoint, and with each and every product they create. By doing so they will engage the voice of the customer and enable highly shareable and influential messages more powerful than any campaign they could otherwise create.

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The Fine Print

Rod Brooks (that's me) is VP & CMO of PEMCO Mutual Insurance Company and serves as Immediate Past Chair of the Board of Directors for the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA).  It's important to disclose both of those relationships and to be clear that this is my personal blog where I share thoughts and opinions that are solely my own.  Contact me!

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