Marketing Leaders Book Club - Purple Cow

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"In a crowded marketplace, fitting in is a failure. In a busy marketplace, not standing out is the same as being invisible," says Seth Godin, author of Purple Cow. 

purple cow

So, you might be wondering what all this has to do with Purple Cows. Or cows in general. Well, you'd be surprised, because marketing and cows have more in common than you might think. 

The thinking is as followed. You're driving down the road, a nice bit of green countryside. The landscape is filled with farm animals of all sorts. Being a city-dweller, this is pretty cool. Getting to see an animal that isn't a scabby pigeon is pretty good. So, when you see a brown cow, it's exciting. But that becomes mundane. 

This is where the purple cow comes along. You'll be shocked, surprised, and in awe. You'll tell all your friends about it. It'll be the last thing you mention on your deathbed.

So, this seminal work by Seth Godin shows you how to bring this mentality into your business. It demonstrates how to take your initial customer through to the mainstream market by using these purple cows.

Basically, traditional marketing doesn't work anymore. People instead rely on 'word of mouth' marketing to sift through the flood of offers and adverts they come across all day, every day.

That means you've got to create something remarkable. 🐂

Why Purple Cow is Vital for Any Modern Marketer

Purple Cow explains that building a great product, and sending out a bunch of adverts, is no longer enough. You've got to create something so remarkable that people have no choice but to talk about it.  

So, what are the three main lessons from the book?

  1. We live in the third era of advertising, where marketing is mainly done through word-of-mouth.
  2. Not taking risks is riskier than taking risks.
  3. If you want your product to succeed, focus on early adopters as your first customers.

About the Author

Seth Godin is an entrepreneur, author and teacher. Through his 20 bestselling books, his well-read blog and entrepreneurial ventures, Seth has motivated and inspired brands to communicate with customers more successfully.


Why we love him

Seth's view of marketing is from the point of view of ethics, rather than sales. His books and presentations have the intent to educate, where he utilises his years of expertise to help others see the change they can make.

Most of all, Seth's approach is profound but accessible. 


  • Graduated from Tufts University with a Bachelor of Science, Engineering and Philosophy
  • MBA in Business Administration from Stanford University
  • Founder of Seth Godin's altMBA, a leadership and management workshop
  • Founder and former CEO of Squidoo, a content-building website
  • Founder and current CEO of Seth Godin's Productions AND Do you Zoom
  • Presenter of the Akimbo podcast, which is in the top 1% of most-listened-to podcasts since 2018

Top Takeaways

Number One: Death of industrial complex. This means moving away from creating safe products with fantastic advertising. Instead, it should be reversed. Your advertising should be targeted toward the right people. Early adopters heavily influence the rest of the curve. 

Number Two: Moore's Idea Diffusion Curve:

  1. Innovators
  2. Early adopters
  3. Early majority
  4. Late majority
  5. Laggards

Number Three: Getting In. Only the risk-taking influential people will listen to you. The majority of people will not. But when the early adopters embrace you, others will follow. 

Number Four: Problems with the cow. The purple cow is rare because people are apprehensive. It's likely that if your idea is unique, it will face criticism.

Number Five: Being Cheap. Your competitors will likely try to undercut the price you charge. Remember, it can be a race to the bottom.

Number Six: Opposite of Remarkable. The opposite of remarkable isn't "rubbish", it's "very good". Something that fits this description is rarely remarkable. Instead, it'll be cookie-cutter and boring. 

Link to purchase page

Purchase Purple Cow on Amazon or Audible

Other Books You May Be Interested In 

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