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Can't Buy Me Like: How Authentic Customer Connections Drive Superior Resultsby Bob Garfield
Synopses & Reviews
Todays brands face an apparent choice between two evils: continue betting on their increasingly ineffective advertising or put blind faith in the supposedly mystical power of social media, where likes” stand in for transactions and a mass audience is maddeningly elusive. There has to be a better way . . .
As Lennon and McCartney wrote a half century ago, money cant buy you love. But in todays world, where people have become desensi­tized—even disillusioned—by ad campaigns and marketing slogans, that maxim needs an update: Money cant even buy you like.
Thats because weve entered the Relationship Era,” where the only path for businesses seeking long-term success is to create authentic customer relationships. Not through hip social media promo­tions, viral videos or blizzards of micro-targeted online ads. Those tactics, which simply disguise old ways of thinking with new technology, just dont work in the long run.
So what does work in this bewildering new era? Where do authentic customer relationships” come from? The answers will make some leaders sigh with relief while others rip their hair out: Honesty. Transparency. Shared values. A purpose beyond profit. Sure you still need a high-quality product or service to offer, but thats not enough. Now that people can easily discover everything thats ever been said about your brand, you cant manipu­late, seduce, persuade, flatter or entertain them into loyalty. You have to treat them like flesh-and-blood human beings, not abstract consumers or data points on a spreadsheet.
It may sound like the woo-woo language of self-help books and inspirational wall posters. But as Garfield and Levy show in this book, its the deadly serious reality of business in the 2010s. Its why General Motors abandoned its $10 million annual budget for Facebook ads, and why some brands have hurt themselves badly on social media by nagging, interrupting, abusing and generally ticking off their customers.
The good news is that some companies have already embraced the Relationship Era and are enjoying consistent growth and profits while spending substantially less on marketing than their competitors. The authors show what we can learn from case studies such as . . .
You're either a Purple Cow or you're not. You're either remarkable or invisible. Make your choice.
What do Starbucks and JetBlue and KrispyKreme and Apple and DutchBoy and Kensington and Zespri and Hard Candy have that you don't? How do they continue to confound critics and achieve spectacular growth, leaving behind former tried-and true brands to gasp their last?
Face it, the checklist of tired 'P's marketers have used for decades to get their product noticed -Pricing, Promotion, Publicity, to name a few-aren't working anymore. There's an exceptionally important 'P' that has to be added to the list. It's Purple Cow.
Cows, after you've seen one, or two, or ten, are boring. A Purple Cow, though...now that would be something. Purple Cow describes something phenomenal, something counterintuitive and exciting and flat out unbelievable. Every day, consumers come face to face with a lot of boring stuff-a lot of brown cows-but you can bet they won't forget a Purple Cow. And it's not a marketing function that you can slap on to your product or service. Purple Cow is inherent. It's built right in, or it's not there. Period.
In Purple Cow, Seth Godin urges you to put a Purple Cow into everything you build, and everything you do, to create something truly noticeable. It's a manifesto for marketers who want to help create products that are worth marketing in the first place.
Every marketer and CEO has felt the ground shifting beneath their feet. Most have responded by either doubling down on increasingly inefficient advertising or by putting blind faith in the supposed mystical powers of social media. Only the most thoughtful brands have followed a third path—the only path to meaningful returns in the dawning Relationship Era. To remain relevant and sustain growth, businesses must now create and cultivate authentic customer relationships, based on shared values, in all they do. For example:
Drawing on proprietary research and decades of experience, Garfield and Levy show how brands can outperform their competitors and inspire their employees— while also spending fewer marketing dollars.
About the Author
Simon Sinek teaches leaders and organizations how to inspire people-From members of Congress to foreign ambassadors, from small businesses to corporations like Microsoft and American Express, from Hollywood to the UN to the Pentagon. He lives in New York City.
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