The 5 Ys to help you plan any marketing campaign


Where you do you start when considering your next marketing campaign?

How do you effectively rationalise whether your target customer will actually sit up and listen to what you’re going to say? Assuming you don’t have a big budget to instruct a market research company to ask questions directly of your audience, you need to make some considered judgements yourself.

Why not start with the 5 Ys…Or more accurately we should say, the 5 WHYs…

We used the 5 WHYs as the basis for the messaging structure within a project a few years ago. And since have brought it up in conversation with a number of clients during the briefing phase of graphic design and marketing campaign projects.

The reason being is the 5 WHYs force you to ask some simple black and white, objective questions.

And as such, they are particularly useful as a starting point when compiling thoughts for a new proposition. Simple in their basis. Yet powerful in helping clarify thinking. The 5 WHYs, we’ve found, can be invaluable in helping bring clarity to a project’s purpose.

Here they are…

Why this?

  • Whatever it is you’re taking to market – a product or service – there must be an overriding purpose for it to exist. Or else, why should a potential customer buy it?
  • That’s why it’s essential to show your audience what it actually is you’re offering. Be clear. Be instructive. Be bold.

Why bother?

  • Unless you’re bringing something totally new to market – and let’s be honest, very, very, very few companies ever do – you’ll need to work hard to show why your offering is different.
  • So now’s your chance to provide convincing arguments as to why your offering is different from, and, better than others.
  • Think of this as the carrot. You want to draw your prospective customer in. Make your offering shine brightly and more compelling than the competition’s.

Why not?

  • Human’s are funny creatures. Some respond to positive messaging. Others to more negative messaging.
  • So think of this as a stick. Creating an element of fear can help.
  • Show what the alternatives might be if your customer doesn’t choose you. That’s not to say you rubbish your competition. Not all all. Rather, consider your customer’s options as being 1. ‘you’ and 2. ‘nothing’. What does ‘doing nothing’ look like?

Why us?

  • Providing proof of your expertise and experience is essential. Human’s need reassurance that you can be trusted.
  • So take the opportunity to let your prospective customer know why you should be their supplier of choice.

Why now?

  • Think of all those ‘save xx% before the end of the month’ and ‘last few remaining’ messages you see from retailers. Time-limited offers and a sense of scarcity are proven to drive action.
  • Likewise you’ll want your prospective customer to take action. And probably sooner rather than later.
  • Your understanding of the market, the sales cycle, particular sensitivities of your customer, etc should help you strike the most appropriate tone.
  • And make the first action you’re asking them to take as simple and risk free as possible.

We hope you’ll agree that the 5 WHYs can help bring some structure to your marketing campaigns and planning. We’ve certainly found them useful in guiding clients and helping bring some clarity of purpose to projects.