The New Era of Marketing: Embracing Diversity and Counterintuitive Thinking


Hatched by Glasp

Sep 14, 2023

4 min read


The New Era of Marketing: Embracing Diversity and Counterintuitive Thinking

In today's rapidly changing world, marketing strategies must evolve to keep up with the diverse needs and expectations of consumers. Jane Sue, a renowned expert in problem-solving and advice-giving, believes that the key to successful marketing lies in embracing diversity and thinking counterintuitively.

Diversity is often misunderstood and oversimplified, leading to superficial attempts to create diversity without truly understanding its essence. Jane explains that when individuals who lack a genuine understanding of diversity try to incorporate it into their work, it often backfires. This is because true diversity goes beyond mere symbols and requires a deep appreciation for the experiences and perspectives of marginalized communities. To truly embrace diversity, it is crucial to shift our focus towards those who have been excluded and marginalized, rather than superficially creating a facade of diversity.

However, Jane acknowledges that understanding and implementing true diversity is not a straightforward task. It requires a willingness to accept that there may not be immediate answers or quick fixes. It also requires individuals to overcome their fear of change and avoid rigidly defining themselves and their work. In today's dynamic world, there is no longer a single "right answer" that everyone can follow. Instead, we must be open to change and adapt our strategies as needed.

This notion of embracing counterintuitive thinking is also echoed in the concept of "Black Swan Farming" in the startup investing world. Startup investing is an industry that defies conventional wisdom and challenges our expectations about outcomes. The most successful startups often appear initially as bad ideas, and their success far surpasses what we could have predicted. This 1000x variation in outcomes requires investors to think beyond their intuitions and take calculated risks.

Peter Thiel, a prominent figure in the startup world, once drew a Venn diagram that perfectly illustrates this phenomenon. He depicted two intersecting circles: one labeled "seems like a bad idea" and the other "is a good idea." The sweet spot for startups lies at the intersection of these two circles, where counterintuitive ideas often lead to massive success. Looking back, it is easy to see how big successes like Facebook were initially dismissed as insignificant or unimportant. This highlights the importance of being able to silence our intuitions and trust in our intellectual understanding of what is right.

However, embracing counterintuitive thinking in marketing and startup investing is not without its challenges. It requires the ability to make decisions without immediate feedback or indicators of success. Picking a big winner in the startup world often takes years, and the metrics we can measure, such as fundraising success, do not necessarily correlate with long-term financial success. This counterintuitive nature of the industry can lead to hesitation and the temptation to rely on misleading metrics.

In light of these challenges, Jane Sue and other experts offer three actionable pieces of advice for marketers and investors:

  • 1. Embrace diversity authentically: Instead of merely symbolizing diversity, make a genuine effort to understand and include marginalized communities. This requires actively seeking out diverse perspectives and experiences and incorporating them into your strategies.
  • 2. Embrace counterintuitive thinking: Challenge your intuitions and be open to ideas that may seem initially unconventional or even bad. Remember that the biggest successes often come from ideas that defy expectations.
  • 3. Trust the process and be patient: In an industry where success takes time to manifest, it is crucial to trust in your decisions and not solely rely on immediate feedback or easily measurable metrics. Stay focused on your long-term goals, even if it feels counterintuitive in the short term.

In conclusion, the new era of marketing requires a shift towards embracing diversity and thinking counterintuitively. By understanding the complexities of diversity and avoiding superficial approaches, marketers can create strategies that resonate with diverse audiences. Similarly, by challenging traditional notions of success and embracing counterintuitive ideas, investors can uncover hidden gems in the startup world. However, these endeavors require patience, trust, and a willingness to step outside of our comfort zones. Only then can we truly unlock the potential of this new era of marketing.

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