I’ve been thinking about products that have genuinely made me go, oh, wow, when I heard about it. Now, I hate to cite Apple as an example, because everybody talks about Apple.
And I’m not going to talk about Apple as such, what I’m, what I’m going to talk to you about is many, many years ago, I was out with a colleague, and he was saying that he was swapping over from Windows to Macintosh, it was that discussion. And the thing that I remember that conversation given that I was never going to be persuaded was he said, No, he said, when you open the box, he said, You have an experience, you know what’s about to come. So in that respect, you can say, certainly, Apple achieved a purple cow, they achieved something that was remarkable, they did it for the very first time. And you can access opportunities to create purple cows, very simply, very easily, you just have to think about the market space that you’re in, and anticipate who’s the person that you want to be having a relationship with, and what’s the value you’re going to be delivering, and then you just work out your business model on the strength of that understanding. And when you do that, you create a frictionless experience.
And ultimately, when you have built a purple cow, that’s what you end up creating. But let’s talk about some examples of purple cows that also exists. Paint, right? For parently, for 150 years paint that you paint your homes with, was sold in exactly the same way. With a counter metal cam with a hook on it, paid no heat or attention to all the problems that you have if you have to use of paint can. So they wanted to differentiate themselves in a marketplace, whereas effectively a commodity. So they simply changed the can. And in the process to created a purple cow. or simple. When Seth Godin delivered this book, his first publication, I think it was 2000 copies. And the first 2000 copies were all delivered in a milk carton. And then after this, I think during the second print run, he offered an option instead of buying one book, you could buy 12 bucks for $60. Therefore, effectively, you would get 12 books that you could give the level to which we give over to your friends. So I made itself viral. And I think actually, I think that was his third edition. And the second the second print run, he offered the book for just packaging, and postage, and those that are self published or retail or so books like that before.
And that’s what Seth Godin did, eating the dog food, as it were, he wanted to show how you could create a purple cow out of something as simple as publishing a book. And then this fantastic purple cow, and I’m grateful to Seth Godin for these examples. socks for children is their, you know a more? Where is there a better represented commodity than socks for children? So how do you make money if you’re going to, you know, socks for children’s so what little mismatch did was they sell three socks, all of which are odd in a pack. And then first thing on a Monday morning when the kids go into school because it’s designed for up to 11 year olds is it pull up the skirts and they say hey, look at my socks today.
So a purple cow to selling socks to girls. I mean, Starbucks. And I’ve got a few. I’ve got a few friends in the room that have been around as long as I have and can probably remember what it was like not having Starbucks or Pacific coffee around to do the things that we do. And so if somebody would have told me 10 years ago that you could go to the modern day Starbucks and get that experience I said, I would never believe here ever. It’s a fully grown up purple cow. And remember, they just changed the way that coffee experience was had traditionally been folded, morphed it into their own their own experience. And then Zappos Have you heard of Zappos? They retail shoes, that’s what they do.
But they retail shoes over the internet and they have a really impressive business model and as much as it’s all about the customer. So there’s nothing the rules and regulation The way that the system works that gets in the way of the customer having the experience that they want to give to them. And then they support their people in such an incredible way, even as I understand that, I think when you’ve been hired by Zappos, at the end of the one week orientation program, they offer you $2,000 to leave. So they have an incredible culture. So they’ve reinvented the way that shoes are sold, and they sell shoes via the internet. And then close it home in Hong Kong, I was scratching my head, really, until late last night, looking for a purple cow in Hong Kong, and I was out for dinner with one of my colleagues and he, he has a client and he was telling me about this plan that they’ve got for this new gym business.
I said tell me all about it. Well, it transpires if you’re in the gym business in Hong Kong, do you know who your customer is? The landlord. Our ability as consumers, to be able to access a service that a gym provides is all designed around making sure that the landlord gets paid. It’s got nothing to do with your experience. So your time of turn that on its head with each time you come in as a customer and you basically buy whatever you want, and you pay will pay in a way that suits your needs. So it’s about you. It’s not about the landlord. It’s a fantastic way to differentiate itself in an extremely crowded marketplace. It’s already very mature with some big players in it that have been here for a very long time. Very clever. So that’s the purple cow closer to home. Of course, the Hong Kong Visa Center and I business is a purple cow.