the idea amplifier

On Friday I was talking to Peter Sisson, gapingvoid’s new client, the guy behind Toktumi and Line2.

We were talking about “The Cocktail Party Rule”- what’s true at cocktail parties is also true in marketing i.e. If you want to be boring, talk about yourself. If you want to be interesting, talk about something else.

Luckily, Peter concurs…

The way I see it, a product is an “Idea Amplifier”. You have an idea about something- phones or whatever- and you build a product as an expression of that idea.

For example, Zappos‘ central idea is not really about shoes per se, it’s about company culture and customer service- “Delivering Happiness”, as its CEO, Tony Hsieh calls it.

Similarly, with Line2 the central idea is not about an iPhone app, it’s about, and I’m quoting Peter here, “What phones could be”.

And what can a phone be? I’m curious to find out. I think we all are.

Comments

  1. Sometimes you just want shoes.

  2. OK, you asked “what can a phone be?” Immediately I thought:

    1. A doorstop;
    2. A paperweight;
    3. An excuse to sit in your car instead of getting out and socialising with other mothers in the playground;
    4. A homing device/GPS system for your son who’s cycled further than he’s supposed to;
    5. A missile;
    6. A shoehorn;
    7. An excuse to talk VERY LOUDLY when standing in a queue;
    8. A device for spooking people when you say “Hi!” right behind them and they think you’re talking to them;
    9. A teething instrument;
    10. A sun-bed for a mouse (clamshell design preferred)

    But of course, these are far too obvious and passé. Now “what a phone COULD be” is a different proposition all together! Ability vs Possibility … Now let me think …

  3. Hi, Neat post. There’s a problem along with your site in web explorer, could check this? IE nonetheless is the market leader and a huge part of folks will pass over your great writing due to this problem.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] What’s true at cocktail parties is also true in marketing i.e. If you want to be boring, talk abou… Hugh McLeod’s “Cocktail Party Rule” trifft es auf den Punkt. Eine Marke ist nur dann [...]

  2. [...] Macleod refers to this as The Cocktail Party Rule: “what’s true at cocktail parties is also true in marketing i.e. If you want to be boring, [...]

  3. [...] Macleod refers to this as The Cocktail Party Rule: “what’s true at cocktail parties is also true in marketing i.e. If you want to be boring, [...]

Speak Your Mind

*

Comment through Twitter

Are you ready to work with us?

Get More Info

Testimonials

Hugh MacLeod is a genius.  Genius.

Seth Godin
Best Selling Author

His work acknowledges the absurdity of workaday life, while also encouraging employees to respond with passion, creativity, and non-conformity...   MacLeod’s work is undeniably an improvement over the office schlock of yore. At its best, it’s more honest, and more cognizant of the entrepreneurial psyche, while still retaining some idealism.

The New Republic
Lydia Depillis

Last year my State of the College address was 76 slides loaded with data. This year it was 14 cartoons that were substantially more memorable.

Len Schlesinger
Former President, Babson College

"There are only two daily newsletters that I look forward to opening and reading every time they show up to my inbox: Seth Godin's and gapingvoid."

Tony Hsieh
CEO, Zappos

In moments of indecision I glance at the wall [to Hugh's work] for guidance.

Brian Clark
@copyblogger
 
  • Seth Godin
  • The New Republic
  • Len Schlesinger
  • Tony Hsieh
  • Brian Clark
prevnext