Cult of the Purple Cow
By Seth Godin

December 26, 2021

Cult of the Purple Cow

For those familiar with the 'Cult of the Dead Cow' (cDc), this episode title is just a nod to cDc even though it has nothing really to do with the cDc or computer security. However, one could make the leap that we are ultimately trying to 'hack' our way to success by creating 'Purple Cows'. I recently read Seth Godin's book, 'Purple Cow', which is actually about marketing and advertising. Seth Godin essentially asserts that only members of the 'Purple Cow Cult' (my term) will survive and succeed in the new era of online sales and marketing. Here are my top 5 takeways from this book!

The secret doesn’t lie in the job-seeking technique. It has to do with what these people do when they’re not looking for a job. These Purple Cows do an outrageous job. They work on high-profile projects. These people take risks, often resulting in big failures. These failures rarely lead to a dead end, though. They’re not really risks, after all. Instead, they just increase the chances that these people will get an even better project next time.‘Purple Cow’, pg. 110

Five Takeaways From ‘Purple Cow’

So is it even logical to include and associate the word ‘cult’, as used in this blog post title, with the ‘Purple Cow’ concept? Possibly no, but from a marketing perspective…maybe. The ‘Cult of the Purple Cow’ are we ‘otaku’ who are keenly interested in successful enterprise through highly focused, effective marketing campaigns. We might be on to something…

1: Big Advertising Is Dead

Maybe this idea is a bit out-dated, but big TV advertising is dead. ‘Purple Cow’ was published in 2002. The author, Seth Godin, claims that Television Advertising is no longer effective like it used to be. In 2021 I would tend to agree with this assertion. I can’t remember the last time I actually saw a TV Commercial. My household does not subscribe to cable and we do not watch all that much television. We do, however, relish the occasional weekend movie on Netflix, HBO or Amazon Prime, which does not have any commercials, and if it did, we would not be subscribers. So, point well taken - advertising has greatly changed since 2002.

2: Your Business Needs To Be A ‘Purple Cow’ In Order To Succeed

Your business needs to be truly unique and distinct to a segment of the market - a ‘Purple Cow’ outstanding in it’s field.

Remember, it’s not about being weird. It’s about being irresistible to a tiny group of easily reached sneezers with otaku. Irresistable isn’t the same as ridiculous. Irresistable (for the right niche) is just remarkable.‘Purple Cow’, pg. 118

Highland Cow, Ovoka Farm, Paris, VA

3: Riches Are In The Niches

Niche-down, as you will often hear over at ‘Fire Nation’ with John Lee Dumas. Mass marketing is simply ‘spray-and-pray’. But ‘hope is not a strategy’, as my man Rich LaFace always says. Targeted marketing is much more efficient. Plus, as we discussed in our last episode about sales, selling is so much easier when selling to people who are in the market for what you are selling, especially when selling a solution to a problem!

4: Otaku

‘Otaku’ is a Japanese word referring to a person with a high degree of interest in a given topic such that it’s more than a hobby, but maybe somewhat less than an obsession, for that person. The ‘Otaku’ are who your business should be marketing to. These are the “sneezer’s”, or people most likely to help spread your business idea virus.

5: Looking For A Job? Be A Purple Cow

‘Purple Cows don’t need a resume to find a job. Think Steve Wozniak, Mark Andreesen, Jesse James Garrett, Linus Torvalds, Ed Catmull, Jeff Hinton, David Heinemeier Hanson, David Rensin, etc.

If you were interviewing any of these folks at your tech company, would you really require a resume from them? Nope.

If there was a problem, yo, I’ll solve it. Check out the hook while my DJ revolves it.Vanilla Ice

Life goals.

podcast learning entrepreneurship seth godin sales advertising marketing business cult success okatu purple cow cult of the dead cow cDc hacking cracking cracking the code to success

Dialogue & Discussion