[The Law of the Mind] It’s better to be first in the mind than it is to be first in the marketplace
[...] the law of the mind modifies the law of leadership. It’s better to be first in the prospect’s mind than first in the marketplace. Which, if anything, understates the importance of being first in the mind. Being first in the mind is everything in marketing. Being first in the marketplace is important only to the extent that it allows you to get in the mind first.
The law of the mind follows from the law of perception. If marketing is a battle of perception, not product, then the mind takes precedence over the marketplace.
Apple’s problem in getting into its prospects’ minds was helped by its simple, easy-to-remember name. On the other hand, Apple’s competitors had complicated names that were difficult to remember. In the early days, five personal computers were in position on the launching pad: Apple II, Commodore Pet, IMSAI 8080, MITS Altair 8800, and Radio Shack TRS-80. Ask yourself, which name is the simplest and easiest to remember?
Ego is the enemy of successful marketing. Objectivity is what’s needed. When people become successful, they tend to become less ...
No matter what your product is, you are ultimately in the education business. Your customers need to be constantly educated about the many advantages of doing business with you, trained to use your products more effectively, and taught how to make never-ending improvement in their lives.
In strength there is weakness. Wherever the leader is strong, there is an opportunity for a would-be No. 2 to turn the tables [...] If [the company] wants to establish a firm foothold on the second rung of the ladder, [it] should study the firm above. Where is it strong? And how does [the company] turn that strength into a weakness?
[The challenger] must discover the essence of the leader and then present the prospect with the opposite. (In other words, it shouldn’t try to be better, but try instead to be different.)
[...] The long-term effects are often the exact opposite of the short-term effects. Does a sale increase a company’s business or decrease it? Obviously, in the short term, a sale (discount) increases business. But there’s more and more evidence to show that Sales decrease business in the long term by educating customers not to buy at “regular” prices.
Aside from the fact that you can buy something for less, what does a sale say to a prospect? It says that [the company's] regular prices are too high. After the sale is over, customers tend to avoid a store with a “on sale” reputation.
(...) the key is to get the whole story into the headline but leave out just enough that people will want to click.