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Bruce Holland

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Purple Cow

This Strategic Snippet is based on a book called "Purple Cow" by Seth Godin.

A Purple Cow is a product or service that is worth making a remark about. Just like if you saw a purple cow you'd go home and tell someone, if you saw a 'purple cow' product or service you'd go home and tell someone.

Godin says, today people are overwhelmed with information and options. They have stopped paying attention to most media messages. To create Purple Cow products, Godin advises companies to stop advertising and start innovating. He recommends that marketers target a niche, and he describes (through an assortment of case studies) effective ways to spread your idea to the consumers who are most likely to buy your product. Godin claims there isn't a shortage of remarkable ideas - every business has opportunities to do great things - there's a shortage of the will to execute those ideas.

People have a problem creating Purple Cow products because they are afraid. If you are remarkable, some people won't like you. Nobody gets unanimous praise, ever, and criticism always comes to those who stand out. So the timid try their best not to stand out.

A Great Opportunity

The good news is that since almost everyone else is petrified of creating a Purple Cow product, you can be remarkable with much less effort. It is just common sense that if successful new products are the ones that stand out, and most people don't want to stand out, you've got a great opportunity. The lesson here is simple - since boring always leads to failure, boring is almost always the most risky strategy. Smart businesspeople realise this, and they work to minimise - but not eliminate - the risk from the process.

The old rule was:

Create safe, ordinary products and combine them with great marketing.

The new rule is:

Create remarkable products that the right people seek out.Look under "Free Stuff" and "Products".

Bruce Holland

Bruce helps large organisations be focussed, fast and flexible. Places where people have more meaning, depth and connection.

Bruce is an expert in Strategy, Structure, Culture, Leadership Development.

He is one of NZ's most experienced change agents.

Liberating the Human Spirit at Work
 
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