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All Marketers Tell Stories

Seth's most important book about the art of marketing

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Free Prize Inside

The practical sequel to Purple Cow

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Linchpin

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Meatball Sundae

Why the internet works (and doesn't) for your business. And vice versa.

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Permission Marketing

The classic Named "Best Business Book" by Fortune.

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poke.the.box

Poke The Box

The latest book, Poke The Box is a call to action about the initiative you're taking - in your job or in your life, and Seth once again breaks the traditional publishing model by releasing it through The Domino Project.

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Purple Cow

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Small is the New Big

A long book filled with short pieces from Fast Company and the blog. Guaranteed to make you think.

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survival.is.not.enough

Survival is Not Enough

Seth's worst seller and personal favorite. Change. How it works (and doesn't).

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the.big.moo

The Big Moo

All for charity. Includes original work from Malcolm Gladwell, Tom Peters and Promise Phelon.

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the.big.red.fez

The Big Red Fez

Top 5 Amazon ebestseller for a year. All about web sites that work.

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The Dip

A short book about quitting and being the best in the world. It's about life, not just marketing.

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The Icarus Deception

Seth's most personal book, a look at the end of the industrial economy and what happens next.

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Tribes

"Book of the year," a perennial bestseller about leading, connecting and creating movements.

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Unleashing the Ideavirus

More than 3,000,000 copies downloaded, perhaps the most important book to read about creating ideas that spread.

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v.is.for.vulnerable

V Is For Vulnerable

A short, illustrated, kids-like book that takes the last chapter of Icarus and turns it into something worth sharing.

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we.are.all.weird

We Are All Weird

The end of mass and how you can succeed by delighting a niche.

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whatcha.gonna.do.with.that.duck

Whatcha Gonna Do With That Duck?

The sequel to Small is the New Big. More than 600 pages of the best of Seth's blog.

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« False choices that work | Main | Christmas shopping »

The caricature of your brand

0513_nixon_cartoon Cory has a post that points out research demonstrating that police have better luck finding suspects using caricatures than boring sketches.

A caricature falsely highlights various anomalies while diminishing the boring parts. So Jay Leno gets a ridiculous chin, or Jimmy Durante gets an even bigger nose (okay, he had a pretty big nose).

The same is true for your brand, but even more so. The best brands are caricatures of their true selves. Yes, they must have exceptional 'features' (a step that's easy to skip, but without which leads to failure) but then, over time, those features become a caricature. During the formative days of Fedex, the caricature was that their drivers would even rent a helicopter to get just one package delivered on time. It's easy to turn Starbucks' variety and focus on your needs into a caricature as well, "half-caf, extra hot, short macchiato, extra foam, with soy, in a ceramic mug...."

As Nixon discovered, when the caricature becomes negative, it's almost impossible to escape (glad I'm not Bob Nardelli or a shareholder at Topps hamburgers). Worse than avoiding the negative, though, is the tendency for most organizations to resist creating a brand that can be caricatured. It doesn't feel safe or responsible or prudent. Coloring inside the lines and pleasing most of your customers most of the time almost guarantees you'll be bland.

It's a lot cheaper and faster and more effective to have a big nose.

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» Is a caricature of your company easier to remember? from Crankshaw on Tech Marketing
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» I feel smarter already. from Marketing Headhunter.com | Executive Search for Ecommerce
Seth has a nice post about caricatures of a brand. So what? So this: Earlier this year I dropped what my wife calls too much money (it wasn't that much) to have a caricature of myself professionally developed for my [Read More]

» I feel smarter already. from Marketing Headhunter.com | Executive Search for Ecommerce
Seth has a nice post about caricatures of a brand. So what? So this: Earlier this year I dropped what my wife calls too much money (it wasn't that much) to have a caricature of myself professionally developed for my [Read More]

» How Freelance Designers Can Compete with the Online Bland Brand Crap Factories from Being a Starving Graphic Artist Sucks
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» What is personalbranding? from Waypoint
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