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10 Tips for Innovative Marketing from Guy Kawasaki

31/12/2015    hoangthuphuong   Marketing
At the AMA’s Inspired Marketing conference in Austin, Kawasaki laid out his keys to innovation. From mantras to bozos, here are his 10 tips (plus a bonus) to becoming an innovative marketer. 

1. Make Meaning. Innovators are motivated by the desire to make something meaningful, not to make money. The best companies want to change the world. Google is democratizing information and eBay is democratizing commerce. Decide how you want to change the world, and build a business around it.
2. Make a Mantra. Companies typically create wordy, loft mission statements rather than quick mantras, which Kawasaki says is a mistake. He imagines a few mantras for famous brands:
  • Wendy’s: “Healthy fast food.”
  • Nike: “Authentic athletic performance.”
  • Fed Ex: “Peace of mind.”

Create a short, three word mantra to focus your innovation on an actionable goal. 

3. Jump to the Next Curve. Mac wasn’t a better DOS machine, Kawasaki says. It was something really different. Stagnant companies define themselves by what they already do, and they stay on the same curve. But innovative companies figure out how to jump to the next curve. Typewriter brands never became computer brands because they didn’t think of themselves as word transmitting companies. Kawasaki says this is, at once, the most obvious and the most challenging directive on his list. 

4. Roll the “DICEE.” There are four qualities of great products (DICEE): 
  • Great products and services are deep and multifaceted.
  • Great products are intelligent, like Mustang’s smart key.
  • Great products are complete. For example, Amazon offers everything from e-books to groceries.
  • Great products are empowering, meaning that they make people better.
  • Great products are elegant. Someone cares about the design of an Eames lounger or a Macbook Air.

5. Don’t Worry, be Crappy. Innovators don’t worry about having things perfect on the first try. Don’t wait for perfection. Ship first, test later. Silicon Valley innovators throw a lot of things against the wall, and then run with what sticks.

6. Let 100 Flowers Blossom. You think you know everything about your company and your product. Then unintended people buy your product and use it in unexpected ways. Some executives will freak out over this change of course, Kawasaki says, but his advice is to take the money and figure out a new way to market the product. Your position in the market is determined by customers, not the C suite.

7. Polarize People. It’s not bad if people hate your product. The worst thing is when people don’t care about your product. People love and hate Uber cars on demand because it’s jumped to a new curve. 

8. Churn, Baby, Churn. Innovators and business leaders have to churn through negativity, that comes from all sides and in all forms, to jump to that next curve. This is possibly the hardest step, Kawasaki says, because you’re constantly fighting everyone around you. The, after you churn through the nay sayers and create an innovative product, you have to flip around and listen to those same people’s opinions to improve your product.

9. Niche Thyself. Imagine an XY axis. The horizontal axis is uniqueness and the vertical axis is value. You want to be in the top right corner, max unique and valuable. If you’re a marketer your job is to convince people that you’re unique and valuable. Fandango, with its unique and valuable service of buying and printing movie tickets at home, is a company that’s in the right spot. Positioning your product as unique and valuable is the holy grail of marketing. 

10. Perfect Your Pitch
  • Customize your intro by looking at LinkedIn to show the audience you know exactly what you’re talking about.
  • Follow the 10/20/30 rule of pitching: The optimal number of slides in a presentation is 10 slides, 20 minutes, 30 point font (think of the older people in the room, not the 16 year old venture capitalist)
  • Make your Power Point background black and the text white.

11. (BONUS) Don’t Let the Bozos Grind You Down. You wouldn’t take spiritual advice from Tom Cruise or parenting advice from Kim Kardashian. Don’t take business advice from the bozos disguised as experts.

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