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Purple Cow

Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable
Narrated by: Seth Godin
Length: 2 hrs and 58 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (292 ratings)
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Publisher's Summary

You're either a Purple Cow or you're not. You're either remarkable or invisible. Make your choice. What do Starbucks and JetBlue and KrispyKreme and Apple and DutchBoy and Kensington and Zespri and Hard Candy have that you don't? How do they continue to confound critics and achieve spectacular growth, leaving behind former tried-and true brands to gasp their last?

Face it, the checklist of tired P's marketers have used for decades to get their product noticed - Pricing, Promotion, Publicity, to name a few -aren't working anymore. There's an exceptionally important P that has to be added to the list. It's Purple Cow. Cows, after you've seen one, or two, or 10, are boring. A Purple Cow, though...now that would be something.

Purple Cow describes something phenomenal, something counterintuitive and exciting and flat-out unbelievable. Every day, consumers come face to face with a lot of boring stuff - a lot of brown cows - but you can bet they won't forget a Purple Cow. And it's not a marketing function that you can slap on to your product or service. Purple Cow is inherent. It's built right in, or it's not there. Period.

In Purple Cow, Seth Godin urges you to put a Purple Cow into everything you build, and everything you do, to create something truly noticeable. It's a manifesto for marketers.

©2002 Do You Zoom Inc. (P)2009 Gildan Media Corp

Critic Reviews

"Take Leo Burnett,David Oglivy, Bill Bernbach and Mark Twain. Combine their brains and shave their heads. What's left? Seth Godin." (Jay Levinson, author of Guerrilla Marketing)
"Godin's style is punchy and irreverent, using short, sharp messages to drive his points home. ....[H]is wide-ranging advice - be outrageous, tell the truth, test the limits and never settle for just 'very good' - is solid and timely." ( Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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change your perspective...

I listened to the entirety of purple cow in one sitting while at a cafe near my home, that happened to be a few doors away from a (very) popular restaurant chain. I watched people with wonder scurry in and out like ants in an ant hive, and silently asked myself why it was so popular. Little did I know that Godin was quickly changing my perception of what an incredible business was while I watched. I had finished listening to the book by noon, and had so far counted on average about 10 people per minute (!) entering the restaurant, either entering by car or on foot. What better way is there to experience the power of a remarkable business than to observe the attraction of the successful restaurant chain such as this one, that demonstrated the power of branding?
Once I had finished Purple Cow I walked the short distance home, and to my surprise I found myself observing every single shopfront with curiosity, asking myself how that business, that machine, behind the shopfront could be different, how it could challenge the norm, and how it too could be remarkable.
What this book does is distinguish very clearly for you what is and what is not a remarkable business, and what you can do to create one in today's environment.
Seth Godin covers topics ranging from the history of the televisual industrial movement, that saw advertisers competing for sales through mainstream television or radio commercial advertisements, to a newer method of targeting and attracting customers by catering to percieved wants that have been expressed by the consumers themselves. In Godin's world, every item that a person perceives as being needed to be bought has already been created. It is now up to the entrepreneurs of the present and future to create items that fulfill a percieved want in a select group of people who lead others to purchase the product or service.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Meh

the concept was interesting but didn't feel it really offered much to those who are involved in businesses beyond venture capitalism.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Really did I just pay for this?

Truly unremarkable where is the value here? Nothing new and very short. It should be discounted or free. It is just someone's ranting on what they think without structure or evidence of anything. Why do people rate this so highly?

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Wonderful and simple

This is a great book which makes marketing and product development so simple. It’s a must read for any self employed or business person. Being remarkable works for the one man operation or the medium and large corporation. No matter who you are in business, implement the Purple Cow strategies and success will find its way to you.

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Getting a little outdated now

I like Seth's ideas in general as a whole however I was slightly underwhelmed by this book - very relevant back in 2004 but old in 2018 when I got around to reading it.
If you are completely new to the concept of marketing there are some solid points in here however if you know anything about Martech then most of this content is old hat.

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Oldy but a goody

Was told to read this a few years ago. Still relevant today in many ways.

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how do i return this book?

very ho hum. some old american crap laden with anecdotal stories of old companies and no real new message.
save your money.

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Fantastic quick read

Brilliant book for any marketer. It’s always nice to be reminded of the key messages that make our trade.

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so insightful.

love this book to bits. Seth is such an incredible thought leader. He has such an amazing way of explaining things that anyone can understand.

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Still current

I was afraid that written so many years ago this book may have been outdated. NOT SO. Some brilliant inspiration thoughts lay buried in this book.

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  • Derek
  • 21-12-2009

A must read for all entrepreneurs

If there is a required reading list for entrepreneurs, this book should be at the top.

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • Phillip
  • 25-06-2012

!!!! Good !!!!! Should be a chapter, not book!!

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

I would and have recommended to friends, only because I agree with the concept; the delivery was long winded way of saying 'make your products unique' so that your talked about and remembered.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Ren
  • 09-04-2010

Classic Seth Godin

I've become a big fan of Seth Godin in recent months, and this audiobook didn't disappoint. The Purple Cow is the truly unique and remarkable product, service, benefit or feature that can make your brand stand apart from the countless boring - and floundering - brands out there.

Godin's very good at weaving together his advice, anecdotes and theories, and I came away from Purple Cow feeling newly energized with creative and innovative ideas. The man himself is a living demonstration of the power of creative brand-building, and I hope his ideas keep flowing freely for a long time yet.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Sunny
  • 07-05-2010

Excellent

I found this book so informative and interesting, that I listened to it twice. It is easy to listen to, and full of insight. I highly recommend this book to anyone in any line of work, especially small business owners.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • Daryl
  • 29-12-2009

Possibly Seth's best work to date

I am a big fan of Seth Godin. I am on Tribes on Ning, I have interviewed him in my blog, and I read most things he posts or publishes.

And for me, this is probably his best work to date. The entire concept of the purple cow is simple - be remarkable. But as always he supports this with many layers of examples, tactics and case studies.

I am a consultant and for me this book has helped a heck of a lot.


9 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • George
  • 02-08-2013

wholly unremarkable

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Not really, it just seemed like the really interesting point to this book is that the title is a Purple cow, after that, not too much that stands out.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • jfhn
  • 25-11-2009

Kinda like the Blue Ocean

i liked the examples shown in the books which explains how the tips have been applied to reality, also clarifies that safe is risky in a way that sticks. It overfills with information at certain times but overall is good.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Matt
  • 28-08-2009

Delightful, Engaging and Insightful

I love this guy's work. It's not just that he's a marketing visionary - he's a brilliant communicator too.

I'm amazed at how well the book works in the audio medium. It's almost as if he wrote it with audio in mind.

Strongly recommended. Very, very useful if you have your own business.

9 of 12 people found this review helpful

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  • Ola Vea
  • 31-07-2012

Great book about marketing

If you could sum up Purple Cow in three words, what would they be?

Great book about marketing.

What did you like best about this story?

Make insanely great products, base your marketing on that

What does Seth Godin bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

He believes.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes I did listen to it in one sitting.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Arnold
  • 24-10-2010

Excellent Book

I have wanted to read this for sometime now. Glad I was able to download it and listen to this short book. Godin presents theories and concepts in different ways than most think about. Highly recommended!

3 of 4 people found this review helpful