What do Martin Luther King and Apple have in common? - c3centricity | c3centricity

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What do Martin Luther King and Apple have in common?

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To paraphrase the great Martin Luther King’s famous speech: I have a dream that one day this world will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all products are created equal.”

Inspiring words indeed, but unfortunately, when it comes to innovation, successful new products are rarely created equal. Why then did I find my inspiration for this post in them? Because I believe that the main reason many new products don’t sell as expected is because they are sold as such – as just new products!

Today’s consumer has so much choice that product benefits on their own rarely sell. Consumers dem and so much more. They ask that they are in fact sold a dream! An inspiration to a better world for them and their families.

Does Apple sell just a computer, an MP3 player, a mobile phone? No, they sell creativity, excitement and individualism. I am not criticising their products, they are of course fantastic, but rather showing that even if their products are arguably better than their competitors, they are selling them emotionally. They have found a way to build excitement, longing and love into each of them. They have enabled each and every consumer to feel special, privileged, an individual. And in this mass market world that we live in, this is certainly something that we all desire, dare I say crave?.

So what can we learn from Martin Luther King and Apple in launching new products that will sell? Many things I am sure, but here are the first three that came to me:

  1. Inspire a dream – why will your consumer’s life be better with your product or service, emotionally not just rationally. Describe and picture their future with your product or service in it.
  2. Build emotion – make consumers excited by the launch; build anticipation, make the wait a part of the sell, so that they will be lining up to buy it
  3. Provide individualism – make consumers feel privileged to have bought it, whether this is through great after-sales service, automatic club membership, personalised offers or limited editions; even limiting distribution can work, although this needs to be done very cautiously, as it can have the opposite effect and disappoint rather than inflame the longing

With so many new product failures today – I have heard anything from 80% to 95% – consumers have become blasé about them. They know that if they are not immediately satisfied, there are many more out there on the market to try. Building loyalty comes from connecting with your consumer on an emotional level, so that there is no comparison to competitive products and services, even if they are in reality very similar at a rational level.

What other keys do you see for new product launch succcess today? What would you add to my starter for three? Do you have your own list? Please let me know if I have “inspired you emotionally as an individual” to comment here.

For more ideas on successful innovation, please check out our website here: https://www.c3centricity.com/home/vision/

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