Atoning for educability through delicate beauty
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To create a winning strategy, you must figure out how to create value in a way that is distinct from your competitors. There are only two kinds of competitive advantage: to operate with sustainably lower costs or to differentiate by offering a significantly better product or service. You can choose a low-cost strategy, like Walmart or Southwest Airlines does, where you profit by creating a lower cost structure than rival companies. Or your company might go with a differentiation strategy, like Whole Foods or P&G, and charge a price premium for your products or services, because they’re more valuable to customers. Whichever you decide on, be sure to clearly choose one. No company can win by attempting do both.
Winners of a million followers, fans, friends, lovers, dollars…after all, a billion people tweeting, updating, flicking, swiping, tapping into the void a thousand times a minute can’t be wrong. Can they? And therein is the paradox of the bullshit machine. We do more than humans have ever done before. But we are not accomplishing much; and we are, it seems to me, becoming even less than that. The more we do, the more passive we seem to become. Compliant. Complaisant. As if we are merely going through the motions.
“Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes… the ones who see things differently — they’re not fond of rules… You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things… they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.”- Steve Jobs, Think Different (1997)
you a wonder.
you a city
of a woman.
you got a geography
of your own.
somebody need a map
to understand you.
somebody need directions
to move around you.
you not a noplace
mister with his hands on you
he got his hands on

— What the Mirror Said, Lucille Clifton (via lydiamartinis)

(via jsmn)

Persuasion is communication. At its core, persuasion needs a strong, clear message sent from one party to another.
Persuasion is an attempt to influence. Understanding your audience and what makes them tick makes your attempt more likely to succeed—though the outcome is never guaranteed.
Persuasion involves more than words. Aesthetics, interactions, ease of use, and other factors can make a website or application more persuasive to potential users.
Persuasion is not coercion. It is up to individuals to form or change their own attitudes. Utilizing dark patterns or purposely tricking a user into doing something they wouldn’t otherwise do is not persuasion. It’s being an asshole.
Persuasion can reinforce attitudes. Your audience has opinions that need to be strengthened from time to time. If you don’t preach to the choir, someone else will, and eventually your faithful followers will be led astray.


The first is what we might call constant optimisation. This is what most planners are doing on a daily basis, attempting to optimise an approach or solution to maximise its effectiveness. This might be through monitoring what people are talking about online, undertaking creative development research, understanding how a campaign has performed, building a communications strategy, improving the communication of a piece of work, briefing new work and so on. I see this role as much like that of a sheepdog marshaling a flock of sheep, heading off in one direction to bring the sheep back in the direction the shepherd wants them to go – in other words the course of the brand has been set and our job is to keep it on course. On the whole in this mode it is rather better to be right than interesting. The second form of value is in periodic disruption. This is when as planners we imagine and construct a new future for a brand or business. A future that creates new value for our clients and in doing so creates new value for the agency. Clearly this kind of value is only delivered occasionally and when a change of direction is required. The key ingredients in periodic disruption are imagination and audacity and so in this case it’s essential that you are interesting first and a right a rather distant second. I always think that Heatherwick’s Olympic cauldron and Foster’s Millenium footbridge are brilliant examples of the philosophy of interesting first, right second. Olympic cauldrons are ordinarily single flames not a flame for each the competing nations, while suspension bridges simply do not have the suspension to the sides to improve the view as Foster’s does.
"We were desperate to create work that became part of the cultural landscape. And we talked about ideas that moved people," he said. "The thing I wasn’t interested in doing was creating advertising that tripped people up, that faked that this was a piece of editorial when it wasn’t. There’s a lot of talk today about how we can influence people on Facebook or we can put messages into Twitter. Personally—and I don’t give a shit if you agree or disagree—I don’t like that. I think there’s an honesty in our creativity that says here’s a great idea, and inspires people to follow it." John Hegarty