There is so much hype around finding your life’s purpose these days. Why am I here? A question my eleven year old daughter asks often. My answer is always the same, though I’m sure it doesn’t suffice for her. It’s love. I believe we are all here to simply love and share that love in the best way we know how.
But, a business purpose or brand purpose is different. It needs to be better defined and unique to your business. It starts with the founder and is the positive change your business would like to make for your customer, your community or the world. And, these days it’s exactly what can help you fall in love with your business again.
Re-energize with purpose
I’ve had the privilege of helping over thirty small businesses find a purpose that motivates them to keep pushing forward even on the toughest days. And, quite frankly, helps them to enjoy marketing their businesses because they aren’t just trying to sell, they are trying to help.
After peeling back the layers to find her brand purpose, my client, Liz Neve, Owner of Ahh Bars said, ” I am starting to feel excited about my marketing now!! Which is quite a statement, if you have any sense of who I am yet!” She’s a psychotherapist who created a recipe for no-caffeine, sugar-free, vegan and Keto-friendly “non-chocolate” bars that give everyone who desires a chocolate treat the opportunity to have one.
Define your core values
Now I have lots of tricks up my sleeve to help clients discover the purpose of their businesses, for Liz, it came down to first identifying her core values. One method we used to identify her values was the Opposite Experience Exercise. I had her think about the most negative experiences she’s had as a customer. Once she had a couple in mind, we choose one word to describe why those experiences where so awful in her eyes. Generally, those things that bother us the most are the exact things we value most in their opposite.
Figure out why you started in the first place
The core values she chose brought a lot of clarity into the kind of world she wanted to live in, one that’s inclusive and compassionate. Then I gave her an exercise to do that I learned from the great Dean Graziosi called Seven Layers Deep. This emotional exercise had Liz thinking about why she started this business in the first place and forced her to keep asking why seven times.
” Compassion is incredibly important to me – turning toward suffering, acknowledging it, and doing what you can to help. It’s why I’m a psychotherapist. Every day, I sit with people as they courageously explore painful memories, experiences, feelings and thoughts, and I do what I can to help. I can’t imagine doing anything else. It’s incredibly rewarding. But it can also be intense. People don’t always leave my office smiling.
And then I started making Ahh Bars. People who have had to give up chocolate for various reasons, but who miss it, A LOT, smile when they taste the bar. Some even verge on tears. I love that I now also get to bring compassion to people in such a joyful way!” she says.
It doesn’t matter what you are selling. She sell bars, but her purpose is so much more than that.
Your brand purpose helps create more meaning and depth. For Liz, it gives her brand life beyond the ingredients and secret recipe, beyond packaging.
Today’s customers want meaning
Those who share her values will love what she does and stands for and this will translate into more sales as she extends this brand purpose into her marketing efforts.
According to Forbes, “60% of Millennials gravitates towards purchases that are an expression of their personality — the brand must speak to them at this level and make them feel good.” The same holds true for other generations. Relate to your customers on a personal level and you will create more pull for your products and services.
Not only will discovering your brand purpose help you fall in love with your business again, but it will also help others do the same.