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The Biology of Sales Conversion – what drives purchase behavior?

May 29, 2018

“People don’t buy what you do, they buy WHY you do it.”

Simon Sinek (Author and Marketing wizz) proclaims that “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” In his excellent TEDtalk (one of the most watched of all time), he repeats this statement again and again. I highly recommend you watch the full 18 minute video (here), …but not just yet. Instead spend 3 minutes and read on about why this approach is so essential to all elements of your marketing, but specifically to your video Marketing.

WHY before WHAT

Most of us approach our sales and marketing messaging the wrong way around. We work hard to tell our would-be customers WHAT we’re selling. We give them all the facts, the benefits, the specs – and yet the majority of the people who receive your message don’t respond…why? It’s not the limitations of your product or service. It’s not how you’re delivering your messaging, or where.
It’s because facts don’t drive decisions.

All The Feelings

Instead you need to communicate the EMOTIONAL WHY of what you do. Why do you provide the service you do? Why do you create and sell the products you do? What is the statement of belief behind your brand? You need to initiate an emotional response in your customers to initiate a purchasing decision.
As an example, let’s take a look at at Apple. We all know WHAT products Apple sells. We’re all familiar with the iPhone, the MacBook, the iPad and their various reincarnations and accessories. Yet as well-designed and user-friendly as these products are, this is not the reason that the iPhone is the most popular smartphone brand in the world. The reason we buy iPhone and other apple products is because we want to buy into what Apple BELIEVES: “Everything we do we believe in challenging the status quo. The way we challenge the status quo is by making our products beautifully designed, simple to use and user-friendly.”Instead of telling us WHAT Apple sells their marketing teams lead with WHY they sell it. They reverse the way in which most companies operation, leading with the WHAT and minimizing the WHY.

Why The WHY?

Your goal is to do business with people who believe what you believe, and this approach works regardless of the size of your business or the industry you are in. Why should believe me (or Simon Sinek)? Because this approach is backed up by BIOLOGY!
Let’s look at two parts of our brains:
Neocortex: This a relatively newly developed addition to our grey matter. The neocortex is responsible for analytical thought and language. It’s the part that processes the WHAT messaging. The problem is that it is not the part of the brain responsible for making decisions.
Limbic: The limbic brains are responsible for our feelings. Feelings like trust and loyalty and also control ALL decision making. The kicker is that this part of your brain also has NO capacity for language. This is where the concept of “gut decisions” come from. Sound familiar? What about: “It just doesn’t feel right”, “I am following my heart.”? These are the ways in which we convey that we are making decisions based on how we feel.

When you talk to the WHY you are talking directly to the part of the brain that controls behavior and makes decisions. If you want to encourage your audience to purchase, you must talk to the WHY, the emotional belief behind your brand.

Finding Your Why – The Heart of Your Brand

Here comes our (mostly) shameless self-promotion. At Front Runner Films we always start each and every project with one aim: To find the heart of your brand.
What do we mean by this? We mean the beliefs behind your brand that also happen to be your truly unique selling points. We talk with and visit with our clients. We expand our conversation to the owners and to all departments of the workforce. We interview the real human beings behind the company to decipher the values in which they believe, and in turn operate under. We then condense these into a singular all encompassing statement (or two) that speaks to the emotion of the brand – that summarizes the overarching mission that drives every part of the business. “Why does your organization exist and why should anyone care?”THIS is your WHY, and this is what ALL of your first-contact marketing messaging should be based upon.


At Front Runner Films we believe that every company has a unique and captivating story to tell. We tell these stories with humor and with heart (because we believe they are the foundation of all artistic excellence), and with a video camera (because the power of video is unparalleled). We also believe that corporate video should be fun and never boring, because no matter the brand, there is always something exceptional and captivating to uncover and share. And finally, we believe it’s important to love what you do and our team gets out of bed each day excited to tell more stories.
This is our WHY. You can find out more about our WHAT at our website: If you’re ready to start a conversation, send us a note at

Get to Know Front Runner Films

Front Runner Films is a corporate video production company telling humorous and heartfelt stories helping bring products, companies and passion to light.

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