Jeff Bezos was on Charlie Rose, talking about the Kindle but also about a lot of other subjects. This quote really struck home, especially with all the hubub about the magic of social media marketing:
"Before, if you were making a product, the right business strategy was to put 70% of your attention, energy, and dollars into shouting about a product, and 30% into making a great product.
So you could win with a mediocre product, if you were a good enough marketer.
That is getting harder to do. The balance of power is shifting toward consumers and away from companies...the individual is empowered...
The right way to respond to this if you are a company is to put the vast majority of your energy, attention and dollars into building a great product or service and put a smaller amount into shouting about it, marketing it.
If I build a great product or service, my customers will tell each other."
Here is the interview and transcript: http://www.charlierose.com/view/content/11138
It is interesting to note:
- Amazon makes ony one product, the Kindle and it is indifferent about all the other products it sells: it doesn't choose the best ones.
- Amazon outsourced its marketing years ago: it pioneered affiliate marketing in which it pays others a commission for any products that are sold by their marketing.
- Is he saying anything new? The expression: "You can't make a silk purse from a sow's ear," dates back to the mid-1500s.
Still, it's good to hear good advice again, especially with all the social media marketing gurus and experts out there, that make it seem as if you can get away with clever marketing, and that you can put lipstick on a pig...