Start With Why

Digital Marketing Philosophy

My digital marketing philosophy, start with why, is taken from the 2009 Simon Sinek lecture “Start with why, how great leaders inspire action.”

I also believe brands should play to their strengths and provide value by communicating with their audiences frequently. These ideas are informed by two other thought leaders in the digital marketing space, Alex Becker and Gary Vaynerchuk.

All of these ideas come together to form the following, overarching philosophy:


Start With Why

Start With Why

In this video Mr. Sinek discusses how there are a great deal of benefits that accrue from beginning your brand’s messaging with “why.” One of these benefits is that you can grant your business a great deal of leeway in terms of your product offerings. In some cases, you can even sell products that your brand’s competitors otherwise could not. For example, you’d never buy an MP3 player from Dell Computers, but you’d buy one from Apple, because Apple isn’t a computer company- they’re a company that produces great products that happens to sell computers.

Overall, the biggest benefit of starting with “why” is that your brand’s messaging connects with people in a much more effective manner than if you start with “what” (“what” being what you’re actually offering.). So, I like this messaging strategy because it is, ultimately the most effective way to reach people and it allows your brand a great deal of flexibility

This is my favorite content distribution strategy. Put simply, it involves creating a large piece of “pillar content” and then creating and distributing several social media posts based on this larger piece of work.

A piece of pillar content should be where a brand goes into an idea reflecting their values in some significant depth. Gary Vee is a content monster and creates one of these via a podcast basically every day. That is more than most brands can handle, which is fine. I have found that creating one piece of pillar content a week and then distributing information from that over the course of that week via social media posts is sufficient for communicating with a customer base.

Another idea that Gary Vee constantly comes back to is the idea that you should be providing value with your content. Why should someone consume your content if it isn’t helping them? Providing value and connecting with people regarding the “why” of your business is an effective way to stand out in a market place of ideas that is usually bereft of actual value.

Play To Your Strengths

We each have a unique skill set. Some of us are more math oriented, others are more creative. Some are both. Whatever you skill set is, you should use that to your advantage. Trying to emulate the success of others can be a fools errand if you’re trying to do something you won’t be good at.

If you’re out there trying to provide value to people with your posting, the value you’re providing is based on your expertise. You can’t provide something worthwhile to someone else in the field of math if you’re really just not good at math. This Alex Becker video makes a really strong case for why this is true.


If you want to reach people effectively, you need messaging that grips them. To do that, you need their attention. The best way to get someone’s attention is by communicating value through shared beliefs. Logistically, communicating that message works best when you communicate in a way you are good at communicating.

I’ll leave you with my philosophy again below. If you’d like help implementing this strategy for your brand, Stand Out Professional Branding can be reached by email at

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