I recently read Seth Godin’s book Purple
. Generally speaking, cows are brown or black and they basically all look alike. What if during your drive through the countryside you saw a purple cow?

Now, that would be remarkable!

Purple Cow is about actually BEING remarkable – not just having a great marketing plan or advertisements that tell people your offering is remarkable. It discusses how times are changing (have changed!) and how we need to change our approach to customers, product development, and marketing to be successful.

Some of my favorite ideas in this book are:

  • Sneezers – In the age of viral marketing, sneezers spread the germs! They don’t just like your product in silence. They have to tell people about it. Embrace them. Create a remarkable offering, find your sneezers, excite them, and give them messages that are easy to share.
  • Otaku – Why do sneezers HAVE to tell people about exciting offerings? Because they have an otaku for them. According to Seth, “Otaku describes something that’s more than a hobby but a little less than an obsession”. People with otaku are your passionate early adopters.
  • Interpretation of Geoff Moore’s idea diffusion curve: You all would know this if you saw it. It’s the curve that starts with innovators on the left and progresses through early adopters, early majority, late majority, and finally, laggards. Historically, marketers (and product developers) shoot for the big area under the center of the bell curve (the early and late majority). They create mass advertising campaigns aimed at mass markets. If instead you target sneezers (innovators and early adopters) – they’ll bring along the rest of the curve!

This is a very quick read and I highly recommend it to everyone. It’s also a great book to get for your whole team and discuss (no I’m not on Seth’s payroll – I just have an otaku for this kind of stuff!).

Purple Cow is a purple cow! (Ah-choo!)

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