Book Review: Purple Cow by Seth Godin

Book Review: Purple Cow by Seth Godin

The Book In 3 Sentences

  1. The world of marketing has changed forever since the advent of the internet and social media where TV advertisements and mass-media advertising don't work anymore.
  2. The best way to build a brand or launch a new product/service is to be remarkable or to be a Purple Cow i.e., some product or service worth noticing and talking about.
  3. You can create a purple cow by being not very good but remarkable, fearing invisibility and not failure, using targeted marketing not advertising, exploring the edges or fringes by thinking out of the box, adopting short development cycles, go for a few big changes, find people with Otaku or obsessive "sneezers" who will sneeze your idea into virality.

My 411

A brilliant read filled with compelling examples, Purple Cow should be recommended reading for all entrepreneurs or students interested in learning about the new way to market their business.

My favorite part about this book was the plethora of pertinent examples provided about successful companies that milked the purple cow because they were uniquely remarkable in their field. Also, the sage advice given by the author will probably be the reason I reread this book; my favorite nugget of advice was "It's people who have projects that are never criticized that ultimately fail." and along the same lines: "We mistakenly believe criticism leads to failure. Being invisible is what leads to failure."

Highly recommend this fairly quick but enticing book to anyone who is interested in marketing a company in today's day and age and understanding why some companies succeed and others fail.


What is the Purple Cow?

How to Create the Purple Cow?


  1. You must design a product that's remarkable enough to attract the early adopters but it's flexible enough and attractive enough that those early adopters will have an easy time spreading the idea to rest of the idea diffusion curve and become sneezers.
  2. Don't try to make a product for everybody, because that's a product for nobody.
  3. The way to break into the market is that you target a niche in the market.
  4. Services that are worth getting talked about, get talked about.
  5. It's useless to advertise to anybody except sneezers with influence.
  6. Criticism comes to those who stand out.
  7. We mistakenly believe criticism leads to failure. Being invisible is what leads to failure.
  8. Being safe is risky.
  9. It's people who have projects that are never criticized that fail.
  10. Measurement is the key to success.
  11. It's a lot easier to sell something to people who are already in the mood to buy.
  12. Sneezers love to sneeze.
  13. A company fails because management is busy running a company rather than marketing a product.
  14. It's not about the way you say it, it's about what you say.