Turn It Upside Down. Do It Backwards.
TRIZ is the Russian acronym for a string of words that mean “Theory of Inventive Problem Solving,” an innovation matrix of the late Genrich Altshuller, a Soviet scientist who proved:
1. there are only about 1,500 basic problems in life and
2. implementing one or more of 40 archetypal answers can solve each of these problems. These “archetypal answers” are known as the 40 Principles of TRIZ.
Mark Fox is
1. a rocket scientist,
2. the youngest Chief Engineer in the history of the Space Shuttle project, and
3. a director on the board of Wizard Academy.
Mark co-teaches a class with me called DaVinci and the 40 Answers in which we teach students how to use the Principles of TRIZ as lenses that allow them to see their limiting factors from a new perspective.
New perspectives yield new answers.
New answers produce new outcomes.
Today we’ll aim one of these Principles at a common problem:
“How can I get more customers?”
Would you like to hear an innovative new answer to that question?
I’ve selected Principle 13, “Do It Backwards,” to be our solution stimulator. But before we can solve the problem backwards, we must first understand how the question is usually solved.
“How can I get more customers?”
Classic marketing revolves around the question, “Who is your customer?” Marketers study surveys, evaluate data and observe customer characteristics in the hope of more narrowly defining your “core customer” and thereby increasing your ability to more efficiently target these people. The assumption is that if you can clearly identify who is buying from you, you can find efficient ways of reaching out to other people just like them.
Instead of looking at who you’re getting and why, take a look at who you’re not getting and why you’re not getting them.
1. Who isn’t coming to you?
2. Why are these people not coming to you?
3. Are you prepared to broaden your message to appeal to people who haven’t been attracted to you in the past?
Gosh. That little window of insight reveals a whole new horizon of possibilities, doesn’t it?
The marketplace pie is shrinking for most business categories.
If, in fact, fewer customers spend fewer dollars in your category in 2009 than they did in 2008, doesn’t it make sense that you enact a plan to increase the size of your slice?
came into being
for such a time as this.
Our mission: to help people accomplish their dreams.
Roy H. Williams
Wizards in England: February 6, 2009 – Mark Fox is coming to England to present DaVinci and the 40 Answers as the guest of First Direct Bank. Our English Wizard of Ads Partner, John Cassidy-Rice, says, “Book your ticket today for only £49 which includes a copy of Mark's new book.”
Side Tunnel Alert: today’s rabbit hole is extensive and contains no less than 7 side tunnels. The one you don’t want to miss is found deep in the rabbit hole and is entered through the word “Picture.” That particular side tunnel takes 3 steps down. Be sure not to miss the second step with the poodle.
Mark's new book, DaVinci and The 40 Answers,
is available from Wizard Academy Press. Buy it.
Mark Fox will be in England with John Cassidy-Rice. Meanwhile, most of the rest of the international Wizard of Ads partners will be in Denver under the guidance of the mighty Dave Young.