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Purple Cow Summary

5 min read ⌚ 

A purple cow doesn’t come from Switzerland – as you may think at a first sight of the title of this book. But may lead some of your future incomes there – joking…or not.

It – the purple cow – comes from your fearless ideas that went natural on the market and achieved some “wow, that’s really something” while being noticed by customers.

Don’t try to figure it out by yourself how to do that. Seth Godin gives you really helpful tips and we’ve already selected great tips from his book.

Being remarkable means not being afraid to stand out. Seth Godin’s book, Purple Cow, will let you know how and, more importantly, why you should want to stand out.

Seth Godin is a well-known writer, entrepreneur, marketer,  and public speaker. His books address topics like marketing and advertising, leadership or the way ideas spread.


Build a remarkable product that the market will actually seek out and promote it to the right type of customers.

“Purple Cow Summary”

Purple Cow focuses on remarkable marketing and offers a fresh approach to advertising.

Seth Godin‘s marketing strategy targets the new fast going consumers that are too busy to pay attention to advertising.

For the new type of consumers, there is only one new strategy that will get them to seek out a product.

This strategy is the Purple Cow.

In Seth Godin’s own words,

This book is about the why, the what, and the how of remarkable.

The main idea of the book is that in order for a product to get the consumers’ attention, it needs to be remarkable. If it doesn’t stand out, it will be as invisible as the rest of the products already surrounding us.

But how do you get a product to stand out? By building what is worth noticing directly into the product. Building a remarkable product will make it stand out.

This way “the marketing is the product, and vice versa. The marketing is built right in”. 

You should also focus on not trying to create a product for everyone.

Doing so will eventually lead to having a product for nobody. You need to find a market niche and create a remarkable product for that target.

Why do we need the Purple Cow in the first place? As there are more and more choices for consumers, it’s harder to get them to buy a new kind of any existing products.

Your audience gets smaller and smaller, and among the people that might buy your product, most will never hear about it.

Purple Cow Summary

Also, as the existing products already offer consumers what they need, there is a small chance that any new product could deliver something that will add to customers’ satisfaction.

Almost everything we can realistically imagine that we need has been invented.

Another reason for which a new marketing strategy is necessary is what Seth Godin calls the death of the TV-Industrial Complex.

When the system worked, the TV ads used to guarantee retail distribution and sales of the advertised product.

Consumers believed that having a product advertised on TV was the proof of its quality.

We need the Purple Cow because the post TV age needs new marketing rules.

The old rule was this: create safe, ordinary products and combine them with great marketing. The new rule is: create remarkable products that the right people seek out.

As the old rules no longer apply, when you realize that the future of a product will not be remarkable, it’s safer to stop investing in it and start building something new.

Although the Purple Cow doesn’t have the same domination the TV ads used to have, it’s clear that this strategy is the best chance a product has.

The Purple Cow is the key to success. This means that you need to focus on and to invest in developing a remarkable product.

You need to be investing in the Purple Cow.

You need to invest in products, services, and techniques that are so useful and interesting, that the market will want to listen to what you have to say. You must develop products, services, and techniques that the market will actually seek out.

As stated at the beginning, being remarkable means not being afraid to stand out. This is the problem with the Purple Cow …fear.

This is why the Purple Cow is so rare. Because people are afraid to stand out.

Starting with our early school education, we learn that the safe thing is to follow the rules and fit in. This way we can avoid failure.

Unfortunately, trying to play it safe will eventually lead to failure.

We also believe that criticism leads to failure. So we will do whatever it takes to avoid being criticized, even choose to be boring (and safe).

We need to realize that playing it safe is the worst strategy one can take. We don’t have to hide from criticism.

Why not? First of all, because having your project criticized doesn’t mean you are being criticized as well.

Second, it turns out that people who have projects that are never criticized are the ones who ultimately fail.

As most people believe that the best way is to play it safe, the reward for making something amazing is great grate. Being the Purple Cow brings huge benefits.

The leader on a market is the leader because he did something remarkable and took the risk of standing out. He is the leader because he is the Purple Cow.

Purple Cow PDF

Although there is no formula for creating a Purple Cow, there is a good advice that Seth Godin shares with his readers.

His advice is to go for the edges.

To challenge yourself and your team to describe what those edges are. And then test which edge is most likely to deliver the marketing and financial results you seek.

We learned that the world changed and that the old rules of marketing no longer apply. So what happens in marketing?

The answer is simple – marketing also changed. It now refers to everything. It refers to:

  • Inventing the product,
  • Designing it,
  • Producing it and
  • Selling it.

In a world where just about anything we need is good enough, and where just about all the profit comes from the Purple Cow, we’re all marketers!

Creating a Purple Cow isn’t easy. But if you feel like you have what it takes to develop something remarkable, you should dare to go further. You could start by reading the book and discover everything you need to know about the Purple Cow. Don’t be afraid to stand out. After all…

 Almost everything you don’t do is the result of fear or inertia or a historical lack of someone asking, “Why not?

“Purple Cow Quotes”

As consumers, we’re too busy to pay attention to advertising, but we’re desperate to find good stuff that solves our problems. Click To Tweet In your career, even more than for a brand, being safe is risky. The path to lifetime job security is to be remarkable. Click To Tweet Marketing is too important to be left to the marketing department Click To Tweet Instead of trying to use your technology and expertise to make a better product for your users’ standard behavior, experiment with inviting the users to change their behavior to make the product work dramatically better. Click To Tweet The more crowded the marketplace, the busier your customers, the more you need the Purple Cow. Half-measures will fail. Overhauling the product with dramatic improvements in things the right customers care about, on the other hand, can… Click To Tweet

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