Jordan Ogren

November 29, 2021

Why purpose is key to differentiation.

What hill are you willing to die on?

Unsure? I'd bet you're also unsure how to separate yourself from the competitor down the block.

They sell the same widgets. They have the same feeds and speeds. And if they don't, they will copy what you have. 

But what they don't have is your secret weapon.

Your purpose is the one thing they can never duplicate—it's your secret weapon and key to differentiation in the future.

"Your purpose is the meaningful difference you want to see in the world — the reason why your company exists, above and beyond making a profit." — Paul Cash and James Trezona (Authors of Humanizing B2B).

They may sell similar widgets, but, unlike your company, they don't aim to elevate childhood learning through widgets, thus lowering poverty rates in the future.

You may know some technical wizhat that only shops where they can find the best widget at the lowest cost. They are rare.

Instead, most of us buy from companies that we identify with. 

For example, I love the earth, so I buy from Patagonia. I want to lower fossil fuel usage (and appear rich), so I buy Tesla.

I can hear some of you calling bullshit on this. You don't believe purpose drives any more value than putting a lucky chicken leg in your pocket before taking a test. You may be right. But let me explain why you may also be wrong.

An atheist will claim there is no objective value in worshipping a God. They'll then mention how you cannot prove that you live a better life by being religious, so there is no point in religion.

But to the atheist, I ask: What if you're wrong?

If the religious person is correct, you lose. And when you die, you'll burn in hell for eternity (FYI, this is from fundamental Christianity, not my own thoughts).

If the atheist were wise and used the minimization of regret framework, they would quickly pick religion as it provides the best outcome for most scenarios. Therefore, it's the safest choice.

I would argue the same with purpose.

I will not go out on a whim and state that there is a direct correlation between purpose and profit. You can find statistics that prove there is. You can also find statistics that prove there isn't.

My argument is that if purpose DOES affect profit, you better have one. So why not make one now, and have the greatest chance for success?

I believe every company needs a purpose larger than profit.
I believe every company needs a hill to die on.
I believe in you to be purpose-led.

If you are unable to differentiate on features, how will you win?

Marketeer Insights ⚔️
  • Feeds and speeds are no longer enough for true differentiation
  • Purpose is your secret weapon to stand out in 2022
  • Even if purpose doesn't objectively work, it has clear subjective benefits for your organization (akin to religion vs. atheism)

What hill is your company going to die on?

🧠 + ❤️ // JO