Reading this reminds me of why I think this man is totally great. I hope you love this article from Seth Godin. Seth posted this note recently and I just loved every word of it. (Especially the Walt Disney mention at the end.)
Please enjoy his words (while i'm gathering mine).
Finding Chaos in Order is about exercising (your mind) or changing the way you and your organization currently thinks or behaves.
It's getting you to reconsider the what is of the business. They are the rules. The past history. The 'way we've been doing it' kind of mind set.
But the what if angle if far more interesting. Occasionally, this kind of thinking allows a person to engineer or experiment with other ways of thinking. It's open to new influences. And therefore—new approaches.
In 1999, during the height of the internet 'boom', while there were thousands of Blockbuster Video stores all across America, Netflix found 'Chaos in Order'. They said 'what if'.
The best ideas, products and businesses are far less 'hard wired' to their past business models—because that's what the marketplace is asking for today.
So now it's 2011, it's the early height of the 'mobile boom', what if...
How strategy kills a brand like the New York Times If a premium brand or product all of a sudden starts advertising with 'intent'—it never really works out very well. (When I say intent, I mean an advertisement that simply says, 'Do this'. 'Buy now!')
"Become a digital subscriber."
That's how The New York Times is advertising itself these days. It's a real shame to see such meaningless advertising from such an influential company in American media. The New York Times is the 'thought-leader', the superior brand—there's only one. That's the perceived reality of their brand.
Their advertising should be as intelligent as their content. It's a shame it isn't (and it's someones fault it's the way it is). I hope that someone comes across this note some day.
Meaningless, noise-making work like this simply ruins my perception of who they really are. Are they a newspaper comprised of brilliant writers? Or are they just another news source who's asking me to pay for content I can get anywhere else?
Well at least I know what their advertising is telling me—and I'm not buying it.
Sure they have a strategy to sell digital subscriptions, but today there's more than 2-billion ways to skin a cat. Maybe they should let their writers run the advertising department. Who knows, maybe that will help them get their voice back.
Getting press coverage (aka 'ink') has always been a powerful thing for a brand. In the past it's been the job of a reporter or pr person to 'get-it-out there'. And for a long time this approach was effective.
But today we have a shift, where the most effective 'ink' today comes from people, blogs, tweets and Facebook posts.
Don't 'get-it-out there'. Give them something to 'put-out' there.
'E. chromi is a collaboration between designers and scientists in the new field of synthetic biology. 'Created by seven Cambridge University undergraduates spent the summer genetically engineering bacteria to secrete a variety of coloured pigments, visible to the naked eye.'
This 'spectacular' comes by result of a 'meeting of the minds' between scientists and designers. To me science has always been an art and in the case of E.chromi it's clear proof that the benefits of combining both can lead to VERY unexpected results that can inspire our imaginations.
Thanks again to my super-smart friend Todd Kuiken, a research associate for the Project on Emerging Nanotechnologies at the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars. (Todd was a judge at the competition and was kind enough to post this great video to my FB page.)
I wanted to pass along this interesting 'future of' mobile report featuring yours truly. The report was created by the good people at PSFK and provides a great overview of the mobile tagging landscape today (and tomorrow.) Read or download the report here.
Thanks again to Kyle Studstill for making me a part of it. To learn more about the work featured in the report, please go to agencymagma.com.
Last night I met a very smart gentleman who worked at a brilliant company called Google. Not exactly an idiot, right? But here's the thing, after a long and intense series of conversations, the one and only thing we actually agreed on is the idea that none of us really knows what it will take to solve or even change the real problems in the global world today.
He said, "Even if you really try to make change, it won't be effecive—simply because change is inevitable and will happen with or without your participation—and that's how it goes." My thoughts were that change to him seemed like a pre-determined science, an organisim, a part of an evolutionary process that 'I wouldn't or couldn't even understand'. (to put it his way)
While I found myself unable to disagree with his comments, internally I very much disagreed.
But isn't that the point? Shouldn't we all agree to disagree? Regardless of my disagreement, our intellectual debate enabled me to have an unexpected level of "knowledge-sharing" around the philosophies that he finds 'essential' or even factual in his world. And sometimes these facts are a very hard thing to dispute in another person's world. Why? Because beliefs are almost like a religion—they convice us all to belive in what we think is true.
I honestly don't even really know where all of this is going. Perhaps i'm trying to a that it's better to have a couple of intellectual debates on an average day than to have none at all. Each conversation, debate or intellectual 'banter' make us all a little bit smarter simply by gaining a perspective from other smart people's perspectives—even if we DO disagree with where they are coming from.
So what do you have to lose? Why not JUST listen to what others have to say? It might just pay dividends in the end and open your mind to another world of thinking that you never could have had on your own.
This is how I feel every time I post a note with a typo:
In my earlier post today, I accidentally used the incorrect acronym. Future hybrids will in fact be able to go over 120mpg (not mph). Thankfully it's been corrected now. (Thanks Kristian for pointing that out to me.)
Everyone (including myself) is wondering when consumer culture will take a permanent shift towards considering a hybrid car over a gas-powered one. As a marketer, I ask myself, "What would it really take?". Lower hybrid-car prices? Soaring gas prices? Global warming pressure? More tax credits from the government? One can only guess.
These are simply the obvious factors that might impact that 'shift' towards hybrids. Unfortunately these factors are only creating small, incremental shifts. Today, we're constantly reappraising our transportation purchases and options. But unfortunately the 'value' proposition hybrid cars offer today just isn't quite enough to push us over the edge. It just isn't.
But every now and then something big(er) happens and causes an unexpected tipping point—the moment when the lightbulb goes off for ALL of us. And that moment juts might be arriving sooner than most people thought. What if I told you that the next generation of hybrids got 120mpg plus? What would happen then? I think we would all seriously consider buying one.
But seriously, don't laugh—it's really happening.
Invention, innovation and technology are enabling more tipping points to happen more often. And the best part about them is that most of us won't even see them coming. Case in point—i'd like you to meet the future of the hybrid car engine and catch a glimpse of what's to come. It just might be the very invention that tips us all over the edge.
*Sorry for any typos. I'm always good for a few...