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Publisher's Summary

You're either a Purple Cow or you're not. You're either remarkable or invisible. Make your choice. What do Starbucks and JetBlue and KrispyKreme and Apple and DutchBoy and Kensington and Zespri and Hard Candy have that you don't? How do they continue to confound critics and achieve spectacular growth, leaving behind former tried-and true brands to gasp their last?

Face it, the checklist of tired P's marketers have used for decades to get their product noticed - Pricing, Promotion, Publicity, to name a few -aren't working anymore. There's an exceptionally important P that has to be added to the list. It's Purple Cow. Cows, after you've seen one, or two, or 10, are boring. A Purple Cow, though...now that would be something.

Purple Cow describes something phenomenal, something counterintuitive and exciting and flat-out unbelievable. Every day, consumers come face to face with a lot of boring stuff - a lot of brown cows - but you can bet they won't forget a Purple Cow. And it's not a marketing function that you can slap on to your product or service. Purple Cow is inherent. It's built right in, or it's not there. Period.

In Purple Cow, Seth Godin urges you to put a Purple Cow into everything you build, and everything you do, to create something truly noticeable. It's a manifesto for marketers.

©2002 Do You Zoom Inc. (P)2009 Gildan Media Corp

Critic Reviews

"Take Leo Burnett,David Oglivy, Bill Bernbach and Mark Twain. Combine their brains and shave their heads. What's left? Seth Godin." (Jay Levinson, author of Guerrilla Marketing)
"Godin's style is punchy and irreverent, using short, sharp messages to drive his points home. ....[H]is wide-ranging advice - be outrageous, tell the truth, test the limits and never settle for just 'very good' - is solid and timely." ( Publishers Weekly)

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Derek
  • New Market, MD, United States
  • 12-21-09

A must read for all entrepreneurs

If there is a required reading list for entrepreneurs, this book should be at the top.

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

!!!! Good !!!!! Should be a chapter, not book!!

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

I would and have recommended to friends, only because I agree with the concept; the delivery was long winded way of saying 'make your products unique' so that your talked about and remembered.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Ren
  • Altona Gate, VIC, Australia
  • 04-09-10

Classic Seth Godin

I've become a big fan of Seth Godin in recent months, and this audiobook didn't disappoint. The Purple Cow is the truly unique and remarkable product, service, benefit or feature that can make your brand stand apart from the countless boring - and floundering - brands out there.

Godin's very good at weaving together his advice, anecdotes and theories, and I came away from Purple Cow feeling newly energized with creative and innovative ideas. The man himself is a living demonstration of the power of creative brand-building, and I hope his ideas keep flowing freely for a long time yet.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Sunny
  • Cedar City, UT, USA
  • 05-07-10

Excellent

I found this book so informative and interesting, that I listened to it twice. It is easy to listen to, and full of insight. I highly recommend this book to anyone in any line of work, especially small business owners.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Daryl
  • Perth, Australia
  • 12-29-09

Possibly Seth's best work to date

I am a big fan of Seth Godin. I am on Tribes on Ning, I have interviewed him in my blog, and I read most things he posts or publishes.

And for me, this is probably his best work to date. The entire concept of the purple cow is simple - be remarkable. But as always he supports this with many layers of examples, tactics and case studies.

I am a consultant and for me this book has helped a heck of a lot.


9 of 11 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • George
  • Austin, TX, United States
  • 08-02-13

wholly unremarkable

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Not really, it just seemed like the really interesting point to this book is that the title is a Purple cow, after that, not too much that stands out.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • jfhn
  • United States
  • 11-25-09

Kinda like the Blue Ocean

i liked the examples shown in the books which explains how the tips have been applied to reality, also clarifies that safe is risky in a way that sticks. It overfills with information at certain times but overall is good.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Matt
  • Parkdale, Australia
  • 08-28-09

Delightful, Engaging and Insightful

I love this guy's work. It's not just that he's a marketing visionary - he's a brilliant communicator too.

I'm amazed at how well the book works in the audio medium. It's almost as if he wrote it with audio in mind.

Strongly recommended. Very, very useful if you have your own business.

9 of 12 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • c
  • 02-08-14

A quick review for a quick book...

What would have made Purple Cow better?

The value of the The Purple Cow is entirely in its premise: you need an outstanding product or service or not only will you not sell anything, but you will be ignored.

Another reviewer succinctly warned that the book was all repetition and not to bother with a purchase. Well, I like to think for myself and often take reviews lightly as sometimes reviewers have agendas that aren't apparent. My loss.

Seth probably wrote the whole concept with all branches in a page of single spaced 10 pitch font. His discussion, I think, is intended to make him look like he is a Purple Cow. I had the audio speed at 1.25 but should have bumped it up higher. I would have lost nothing.

Sorry Seth, but shallow sells as well as boring. Your next book will be hard to pick out in the vast Audible library.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Long, Boring and Dated

I was having a hard time just staying awake during this audiobook. While 3 hours doesn't seem like a long book, the information here could have been provided in less than 20 minutes.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • KayKay
  • 03-21-16

It says it all on the cover...

Then spends the rest of the book repeating it. I didn't hate the book, I wanted to hear it based on its hype. You can't argue the importance of being 'remarkable' in business but the message is superficial and everything I got from this I could have gotten from a quote poster. This is better if you already have a formed business idea. Loads of sound bites, not the greatest amount of substance

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Michael Rice
  • 05-29-15

Stimulating and brilliantly read by the author!

I love it when the author narrates his own book, bonus Seth! Good listen, especially when driven but felt it could be condensed. I got the point quickly! Good point, well made, just a bit repetitive towards the end.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • JedHoll
  • 05-17-15

Convincing arguments

In this book the author makes a compelling case for being outstanding or exceptional. While this might seem obvious he does put a different spin on it and he links it to how it will help you market your business. I enjoyed the book and it made me think.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Ruari
  • 12-05-12

Purple Cow

The title initially made me dubious but I was sold by what the book was offering. This book is a MUST HAVE for every small business and larger businesses could also learn from this. The best read I have had in years and every sentence has had me thinking, reviewing and processing my own business. I wish I had found this book a few years back. Hoping Seth has more for us to learn from. Thank you.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Maisha
  • 06-23-18

This is the Book Before Gary Vee

This is the book that clearly preceded anything written by Gary Vee! That fact makes the book a little outdated - but this takes nothing away from what is a great, simple read! Also, there are still some golden nuggets to be had from Godin’s insights! This is a good and concise read.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Adam
  • 02-13-16

Not the revelation I expected

If this book wasn’t for you, who do you think might enjoy it more?

People who know little about marketing or still do things the old school way.

What could Seth Godin have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Offer something new

Any additional comments?

I saw this book listed in a top must read business books. I was very disappointed. Correct me if I am missing something but all this book does is to suggest to do something different than other companies to get your self noticed. Great. Its really just a list of examples of companies that are doing something different and achieving success. Very little in practical examples to apply this to what you may already be doing. Any book by Daniel Priestly will offer this in much more depth.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Joey
  • 04-03-15

Good ideas

Another good Set Godin book. Good examples and theories. Sometimes hard to fully accept the theory entirely

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Maureen Johnson (Kent U.K.)
  • 03-07-15

Excellent content.

This audio book shows you how to be extraordinary and stand out from the crowd. I would definitely recommend this book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Music Man
  • 08-18-15

Interesting read

I found this book useful and the ideas interesting for starting up and running my new business

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Rich
  • 07-20-15

Interesting

Super fast and interesting listen. Definitely worth taking lessons from it and changing your strategy to be remarkable and standout

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Nick
  • 05-18-15

change your perspective...

I listened to the entirety of purple cow in one sitting while at a cafe near my home, that happened to be a few doors away from a (very) popular restaurant chain. I watched people with wonder scurry in and out like ants in an ant hive, and silently asked myself why it was so popular. Little did I know that Godin was quickly changing my perception of what an incredible business was while I watched. I had finished listening to the book by noon, and had so far counted on average about 10 people per minute (!) entering the restaurant, either entering by car or on foot. What better way is there to experience the power of a remarkable business than to observe the attraction of the successful restaurant chain such as this one, that demonstrated the power of branding?
Once I had finished Purple Cow I walked the short distance home, and to my surprise I found myself observing every single shopfront with curiosity, asking myself how that business, that machine, behind the shopfront could be different, how it could challenge the norm, and how it too could be remarkable.
What this book does is distinguish very clearly for you what is and what is not a remarkable business, and what you can do to create one in today's environment.
Seth Godin covers topics ranging from the history of the televisual industrial movement, that saw advertisers competing for sales through mainstream television or radio commercial advertisements, to a newer method of targeting and attracting customers by catering to percieved wants that have been expressed by the consumers themselves. In Godin's world, every item that a person perceives as being needed to be bought has already been created. It is now up to the entrepreneurs of the present and future to create items that fulfill a percieved want in a select group of people who lead others to purchase the product or service.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • salma
  • 11-05-16

Meh

the concept was interesting but didn't feel it really offered much to those who are involved in businesses beyond venture capitalism.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Roan
  • 11-09-15

Really did I just pay for this?

Truly unremarkable where is the value here? Nothing new and very short. It should be discounted or free. It is just someone's ranting on what they think without structure or evidence of anything. Why do people rate this so highly?

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-21-19

not bad

obviously now quite dated, purple cow concepts are still relevant although many examples lack depth

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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-20-19

Excellent book, inspirational and full of value

Exceptional book, easy to listen too. it's a great book for those looking to inspire, invent, achieve and be different.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Zon Living
  • 12-18-18

Amazon FBA sellers need this

An excellent book for improving product design and selling on Amazon FBA. Really enjoyed this, but somewhat short.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Sitiveni
  • 12-16-18

Wonderful and simple

This is a great book which makes marketing and product development so simple. It’s a must read for any self employed or business person. Being remarkable works for the one man operation or the medium and large corporation. No matter who you are in business, implement the Purple Cow strategies and success will find its way to you.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Malcolm Kay
  • 10-10-18

Getting a little outdated now

I like Seth's ideas in general as a whole however I was slightly underwhelmed by this book - very relevant back in 2004 but old in 2018 when I got around to reading it.
If you are completely new to the concept of marketing there are some solid points in here however if you know anything about Martech then most of this content is old hat.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-08-18

Oldy but a goody

Was told to read this a few years ago. Still relevant today in many ways.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-21-18

how do i return this book?

very ho hum. some old american crap laden with anecdotal stories of old companies and no real new message.
save your money.