Author, Meaningful: The Story of Ideas That Fly and Marketing: A Love Story: How to Matter to Your Customers.
Believes the secret to spreading ideas is focusing on the story rather than just the product. (video)
In this 8-minute TED talk, Jiwa explains her core belief about how ideas spread. She points out that we’re all inundated with marketing messages and most of those messages are ignored. But the ones that stand out and connect with people tend to revolve around something she calls “the fortune cookie principle.”
The fortune cookie principle is the idea that every product or concept has two elements – the cookie (a tangible commodity) and the fortune (a thing that changes how people feel and moves them to act). Jiwa believes marketers spend most of their time trying to sell the cookie when what they really should be doing is finding a better way to tell the story of the fortune.
Because ideas spread when you can change how people feel, not just what they think or do.
Recommends you think about value before ideas and has 8 questions to help you focus on creating value.
The questions include who needs your product, what problems your product will address, why people will pay you, where you will find your first 10 customers, why customers will come back, what they will tell others about their experience, what other ways you can create value for them, and how many customers you’ll need for a viable business.
“It doesn’t matter how good your idea is if nobody cares.”
Thinks there are two things to focus on to craft your brand story – your end user and a human connection.
Jiwa explains that your brand story is a combination of everything you do – it’s how you manifest the values you promote and the emotions you want to evoke in your business. To do this successfully, she suggests you start by focusing on why you’re in this business and identify what your buyers want and need.
The next step is then to find the human connection to your customers by considering what values and emotions drive your buyers. She points out that 64% of people say shared values drive their loyalty to a brand and suggests you think about what will make your customers happy and trigger an emotional response in them.
Believes there are three things your product story must do including affirm the customer’s worldview, speak to their emotions, and deliver the information they need to confirm their decision.
Jiwa believes too often in marketing we forget why people buy. In this blog post, she points out that relying on reasons to buy that are based on features and benefits overlooks the fact that most buying decisions are not rational – they’re emotional.
She suggests that asking questions like “What’s the change customers are hoping for?” or “How does it feel when you experience the product?” can help you better frame an effective story for your product.
“A great brand is not a mark burned into a product—it’s something we want to belong to.”
Thinks marketing is not a department – it’s the story of how you create a difference in the lives of the people you serve. (video)
In a 27-minute talk she gave at a LinkedIn conference, Jiwa takes apart the problems she sees with the way most marketing is done these days. She points out that billions of dollars are spent on advertising to interrupt people with things they don’t care about and aren’t paying attention to.
She attributes much of this to the idea that we’re afraid of being invisible and falsely believe we can control and manipulate growth through advertising and marketing. We also confuse awareness with impact.
Jiwa goes on to point to Uber’s success as an example of a company whose growth has been powered by one person at a time and suggests it works because it makes you feel good and want to tell your friends about it. “They did it by understanding empathy is one of our most valuable resources,” she says.
Suggests you stop looking for shortcuts and be willing to take the long way round.
Jiwa recognizes that shortcuts are tempting and believes this is what makes selling hard. But she cautions against letting fear of failure get in the way and force us to compromise to get results.
Instead, she recommends giving yourself permission and time to do things right and not ignore the opportunity cost of interrupting people and looking for shortcuts to sales.
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