The ancient Greek proverb, “Know Thyself” has been attributed to several different Greek prophets, most notably Socrates. This well known phrase was inscribed above the door for all who entered the Temple of Delphi in ancient Greece.
“Know Thyself” Still Relevant Today
Today these words are still relevant for all types of businesses. Every business needs to “Know Thyself”—what it does well, and what differentiates it from its competition. Every business wants to communicate to their customers why they should buy their service or products instead of someone else’s. Thus the question: what do you offer that is unique?
Identify The Problem Your Business Solves
In order to discover the answer to this question, it is often helpful to consider a problem solution approach. First, identify a problem your business addresses. Second, describe the unique capabilities your business provides to solve the problem effectively.
Educate Your Customers
Sometimes the problem is obvious and the differentiators and messaging needs to focus on the solutions. In other cases, more time must be spent describing the problem clearly and concisely, so that a potential customer understands why they need your services or products.
For example, a company that specializes in nutritional supplements would want to focus on the health benefits a supplement provides so that their potential consumers can discover that problems they may have can be addressed with a specific product to improve their health. You are teaching the customer that you have a solution to a problem that the customer may not be aware of. This marketing strategy often involves in-depth educational content addressing one or more problems.
In contrast, a commercial cleaning service deals with a topic that needs no explanation. Everyone knows that a clean environment is a necessity for a commercial setting. Thus, the market messaging would focus on the distinct attributes of its business processes —timeliness, supervision, and customer relations—to differentiate itself from its competition. This marketing strategy highlights the unique aspects of the business that provide value to the customer. This is the “value proposition”.
Market Messaging Includes Problem and Solution
Effective market messaging targets a problem, a solution, or a combination of both. “Know Thyself” as a business matters. Make your marketing collateral—media (web, PowerPoint) and print—impact your viewers. Just like the trees in the forest. They know themselves, and know what they need to do to thrive. Read more about the value of creating a business identity.