Monday, September 27, 2010

Changing hearts, minds and actions

Nobodies are the new somebodies.
That's the advice from Guy Kawasaki, who says It's no longer big business and media giants who determine whether or not a new service or product will succeed. It's the unknowns, ordinary folks who have become the key influencers. And companies must remember that when they are trying to win people over to their ideas, products and services.

It all boils down to one word: 'enchantment.'
"If you can change people's hearts, minds and actions, you can change the world," said Kawasaki, a venture capitalist, a columnist with Entrepreneur Magazine and author of nine books on marketing and entrepreneurship who, as one of the employees behind Apple's marketing of the Macintosh pioneered evangelism back in 1984, turning consumers into avid advocates for the brand.
While old-school marketing saw companies seeking to enchant those they figured had to power to influence, social media has made that practice obsolete.
"I think marketing is completely reversed," said Kawasaki. It used to be that companies sought favourable reviews from influential publications like Fortune and the Wall Street Journal but today's consumers are more likely to be influenced by blogs or Twitter users they follow.
"The new way is that nobodies are the new somebodies," said Kawasaki.
Instead of top down delivery, marketing happens from the bottom up, he said.
"Someone you've never heard of embraces your product, they love the product and they spread the word," he said.
"You never know which mommy blogger is going to make your product successful."

Enchantment is more than a smile and scintillating conversation. Here are some more of Kawasaki's tips on becoming enchanting:

1. Always default to a yes attitude. Kawasaki attributes this bit of advice to Vancouver's Darcy Rezac, author of Work the Pond! Use the Power of Positive Networking.

2. You can't enchant people if you're not trustworthy. And if you want people to trust you, you have to trust them. Companies like Zappos with its paid shipping return policy are an example of how trusting customers can pay off. Be a mensch, someone who can be trusted, who is honorable and has a world perspective -- think Nelson Mandela if you're looking for an example.

3. Deliver a product or service that meets the enchantment test: Is it DICEE? Deep, intelligent, complete, empowering and elegant. "It is easy to enchant people with something that is great; it's hard to enchant people with something that is crap," says Kawasaki, who points to Google as one company that meets that DICEE test.

4. Conduct a pre-mortem before you launch. Gather your team together and say, 'let's assume our product failed and come up with the reasons why it failed.' When you're creating something, it's very difficult to poke holes in it; this exercise is aimed at identifying the shortcomings without having the team at odds with one another.

5. Sell your dream. The iPhone is really $188 worth of part and AT& T (at least in the U.S.) but Apple sells the dream, the smartphone that changes your life.

6. Follow the 10-20-30 formula in presentations. That's 10 slides, 20 minutes talking and a 30-point font.

7. Rules of email: have a great subject line and a message that is no longer than five sentences and includes: what you want, what your cause is, who you are, why the recipient should help you and what the next step is.

8. Use Twitter - the greatest marketing tool ever to be created, according to Kawasaki. Have a good avatar, no red eyes or out-of-focus photos; remember your profile is in a sense your resume so make it good and when you tweet, provide interesting links. And make it personal. Read Twitter bios so you can focus your tweets on people's interests and give everyone a fast response, within 24 hours, not just those who you consider the influencers.

Source - Vancouver Sun

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