The more things you ask people to focus on, the fewer they’ll remember
Lee tore five sheets of paper off of his notepad (yes, notepad—Lee was laptop-resistant at the time) and crumpled them into five balls. Once the crumpling was complete, he started his performance.
“Here, Steve, catch,” said Lee, as he tossed a single ball of paper across the table.
Steve caught it, no problem, and tossed it back.
“That’s a good ad,” said Lee.
“Now catch this,” he said, as he threw all five paper balls in Steve’s direction. Steve didn’t catch a single one, and they bounced onto the table and floor.
“That’s a bad ad,” said Lee.
I hadn’t seen that one before, so I rather enjoyed it. And it was pretty convincing proof: The more things you ask people to focus on, the fewer they’ll remember. Lee’s argument was that if we want to give people a good reason to check out an iMac, we should pick the most compelling feature and present it in the most compelling way.
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.
As customers, what we crave more than the commodity we think we are paying for is to be understood.
What we want more than a reliable ride to our destination, a comfortable bed for the night, or even a book we can get our teeth into, is to really be seen.
What we want more than responsive organizations is personal relevance.
The value isn't just in the data that businesses collect. What counts is how they use it to make our lives better.
We know that sentences are better than paragraphs. Two bullet points are better than five. Easy words are better than hard words. It's a bandwidth issue: The more we reduce the amount of information in an idea, the stickier it will be. Simple = core + compact. Proverbs are helpful in guiding individual decisions in environments with shared standards. Those shared standards are often ethical or moral norms. Proverbs offer rules of thumb for the behavior of individuals. The Golden Rule, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you," is so profound that it can influence a lifetime ...
Selling is about a transference of emotion, not a presentation of facts.
I have great respect for anyone who can invent a clever name that suggests something about the brand. Some of my favorite coined names are Dreamery, Groupon, Pictionary, Cinnabon, Chillow, Pinterest, Chuggemaut, and San Franpsycho. (…) It's important to make sure your name is meaningful to potential customers, not just to you.