We work in the tourism marketing industry on a daily basis and constantly ask ourselves, “How?” How to attract visitors to a city? How to put more heads in beds? How to change the perception of a city or county? How to increase economic development through tourism?
These are all great questions, but we’ve started thinking there’s another dimension: HOW are we asking these questions? We gathered a little nugget from the book Hey Whipple, Squeeze This that we just have to share. This book is full of advertising insights, and these three words really resonated:
“How might we…”
Let’s take a moment to focus on HOW our questions are phrased. “How might we…” is different than a standard “How to…” While both phrases hold similar connotations, there are underlying meanings that can totally shift your mindset. Let’s break it down word for word, just as Luke Sullivan and Edward Boches did in Hey Whipple, Squeeze This.
This one syllable word assumes there is a solution to whatever comes after it. There is a need that hasn’t been met, and it invites the reader to listen for the answer or create their own.
This is where this concept really sparkles. “Might “opens up permission to provide insight, while “to…” indicates there is already an answer. It opens the table for a deeper discussion to throw out ideas. These ideas might or might not stick, but I guarantee something will be learned or created along the way. There might be a fork in the road that needs to be discovered with a more open-ended conversation. Take the road and see where it leads. You can always turn around.
This two-letter word has a large implication. We will find the creative solutions together. That’s the attitude we share with our tourism clients. This is a team effort. As an employee of a CVB, city, chamber, etc., you’re the subject matter expert on your product. As the marketing gurus, we’ll swoop in behind you and challenge your way of thinking about the city you engage yourself in every single day. If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll continue to get the results you’ve always gotten.
Who knew three one-syllable words packed so much punch? We thought we did. But Hey Whipple, Squeeze This encouraged us evaluate it even further.
Interested in advertising or just enjoy a comical read? Check it out! You might find some of your own insights, just like we did from this one phrase.
Disclaimer: We are not in any way affiliated with Luke Sullivan, Edward Boches or Hey Whipple, Squeeze This. Just wanted to pass along some of their wit and wisdom.