Staying Above the Fray, Part 2

Tweaks reek

If you want to catch the attention of the public, don’t tweak the other guy’s latest and call it a miracle.

You don’t spell innovation “reactive.” You spell it “revelation.”

Going a little further in some other company’s direction just paves the path for them to mow you over while you’re counting your pennies.

Go your own way.

Better yet, go the customer’s way.

Yes, yes, of course, you can do your own thing.

Well, maybe. Maybe.

If you want to make money, then you can only do your own thing if somebody wants it. Needs it. Has to have it more than they have to have their dollars!

Big hurdle. How do you get there?

Delight. Amazement. The revelation that your thing is like no other thing, and it is an answer to their wishes. Wishes they’ve never said out loud before. Your own thing solves the customer’s unspoken needs. “How the hell did they do that,” they’ll say of you.

Innovation. Revelation. And strategy: to put your own thing in the terms they want to hear so the customer knows you’ve connected with their silent, urgent needs.

1. Begin with the customer’s way.

2. Back up to solving it with your own thing.

We’re staying above the fray this week. Don’t tweak the competition’s thing. Forget the competition’s thing.

Think of companies that consistently seem to reach in and solve problems you didn’t know you had, get you drooling for things you never heard of before, companies that are changing the game, rather than playing the game—not asking you to buy their stuff, but revealing your new stuff to you. What do you think they know about your way, that their “competition” obviously doesn’t?

If you’re ready to launch the next BIG THING, you need to know: What is the customer’s way? What are the needs they never say out loud? How can you solve those needs with your thing?


Grow and be well,

Kelly Erickson