All Marketers Are Liars: The Underground Classic That Explains How Marketing Really Works–and Why Authenticity Is The Best Marketing Of All
By: Seth Godin
Portfolio; Reprint edition (April 24, 2012)
All Marketers Are Liars is a book about the stories (lies) we tell ourselves and the way that marketers talk into those stories. The premise is that most things purchased today are not needs, but wants. And the way that you speak to a want is by framing your product with a related story. This is why a mom might want a particular SUV instead of a minivan. And why another woman would rather have a diamond ring from Tiffany and Co. than an identical ring from a wholesale warehouse. This is similar to the book by Donald Miller, Building A Storybrand.
Two of my favorite quotes:
There are only two things that separate success from failure in most organizations today: 1. Invent stuff worth talking about. 2. Tell stories about what you’ve invented. Make up great stories. That’s the new motto. This is urgent. The transformation of our organizations has been under way for a while, but now, thanks to outsourcing and computers and increasing manufacturing quality, it’s easier than it’s ever been to get something made, shipped and stocked. Easier than ever to ensure quality and durability. What’s difficult—really difficult—is figuring out what’s worth making and then telling a story about it.
It’s transportation, not a branding tool or a personal marketing choice. It’s the most expensive discretionary expense in people’s lives, but most people rarely choose a car for a logical reason. Every car tells a story, and a minivan tells that story particularly clearly. It doesn’t matter that minivans are durable and cost-effective and fuel-efficient and way more comfortable than SUVs. What matters most of all is the way it makes someone feel. The story (soccer mom driving a taxi for kids all day) demolishes the utility of the car itself. Avoiding this story costs hundreds of thousands of dollars to people over a lifetime of car buying. Instead of buying the car that makes sense, more people choose to buy an SUV. They believe the story, not the facts. SUVs get lousy mileage. They are more dangerous to the driver, to her passengers and to people in other vehicles than minivans. They create more than their share of pollution. They create more wear and tear on the roads and take up extra space on parking lots and highways. But they make people feel good.