How to find the soft innovation that will make your product, service, school, church, or career worth talking about.
We live in an era of too much noise, too much clutter, too many choices, and too much spam. And as Seth Godin’s 200,000-copy bestseller Purple Cow taught the business world, the old ways of marketing simply don’t work anymore. The best way to sell anything these days is through word of mouth and the only real way to get word of mouth is to create something remarkable.
Free Prize Inside, the sequel to Purple Cow, explains how to do just that. It’s jammed with practical ideas you can use right now to make your product or service remarkable, so that it will virtually sell itself.
Remember when cereal came with a free prize inside? Even if you already liked the cereal, it was the little plastic toy that made it irresistible. Godin explains how you can think of a bonus that will make your customers feel just as excited, no matter what business you?re in. Consider these free prizes:
• The Tupperware party, which turned buying plastic bowls into a social event
• Flintstones vitamins, which turned a serious product into something fun
• The free change-counting machine at every Commerce Bank branch
• The little blue box from Tiffany, which makes people happy before they even open it
This book offers a way to create free prizes quickly, cheaply, and reliably and persuade others in your organization to help you bring them to life.
According to marketing maven and Purple Cow author Seth Godin, the “Television Industrial Complex”–and its nasty habit of interrupting people with advertisements for things they don’t want–is dead. Innovation is cheaper than advertising, advises Godin who defines the “free prize” with diverse examples including swatch watches, frequent flyer miles, dog bakeries, Tupperware parties and portable shredding trucks. He explains “Design matters, style matters, extras matter.”
The largest portion of the book is devoted to how to sell an idea to your organization. His specific tactics range from irreverent, (let them pee on your ideas) to practical (how to build a prototype). One standout chapter explains how brainstorming can become boring. His alternative, “edgecraft,” involves divergent thinking to add something remarkable to your product. His long grocery list of edges (safety, equality, invisibility, and hours of operation) suggest a genuine marketing manifesto. The ideas are bold and insightful, but can suffer from being presented in less than logical order. The book is also diminished by Godin’s self-marketing, from using terminology in his previous books to naming key ideas after himself. These advertisements are unnecessary. This nervy little volume is bound to mother many inventions. –Barbara Mackoff
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