The Concept of Golden Circle in Business

The Golden Circle is a concept developed by Simon Sinek who says, “people don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” According to Sinek, most people communicate by starting with the “what” they do aspect and eventually work their way back to talk about “how” and “why” they do what they do.

Lets understand this golden cycle:

The golden circle in its simplest form states:
“Users don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.”

Using the Golden Circle

To use the Golden Circle for your marketing content just answer three simple questions:

  1. Why – Why are you doing what you are doing? For example, why are you in business, why did you develop your product or service?
  2. How – How will this help your readers? For example, what problems are you solving for your readers, what challenges are you helping them overcome?
  3. What – What are you offering? For example, what is your product or service, what are the features and benefits of it?

The power of WHY is not opinion. It’s biology.

The Golden Circle is more than a communications hierarchy. Its principles are deeply grounded in the tenets of human decision making. How the Golden Circle works maps perfectly with how our brain works. 

“ By “why,” I mean:
What’s your purpose?
What’s your cause?
What’s your belief?
Why does your organization exist?
Why do you get out of bed in the morning?
And why should anyone care?”
 Simon Sinek

I think that marketers will find the most value in his Golden Circle model, which helps give focus to how a business can stand out from similar competitors by communicating its differences.

To help illustrate his point Sinek says, imagine if Apple also started backwards by creating a marketing message that started with “what.”

“We make great computers. They’re user friendly, beautifully designed, and easy to use. Want to buy one?”

While these facts are true, It’s unlikely we’d buy one. But Apple don’t communicate how most people do. Here’s what a real marketing message from Apple might actually look like:

“With everything we do, we aim to challenge the status quo. We aim to think differently. Our products are user friendly, beautifully designed, and easy to use. We just happen to make great computers. Want to buy one?”

See the difference? Feel the difference?

Why does this matter?

Why does the order in which you communicate your story matter? Well it has to do with the parts of the brain that we use to communicate. When you’re talking about what you do, you’re speaking to an analytical part of the brain. But when you talk about the why and how, you’re communicating with feelings and dealing with human behaviour.

And it’s an age old saying that we buy with our emotions and then justify it with logic. So by tapping into your readers emotion and feeling you can educate your readers, build trust and credibility, position yourself and your organisation as the expert, build connections, and start conversations.

Apply the Golden Cycle to your business and do leave us a comment and share your feedback!


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