So here is the quote of the day, again from The Brand Bubble by Ed Lebar and John Gerzema
In wanting the brand to bring more benefits in the future, consumers will accept some degree of “brilliant failure” as a necessary by-product of the brand’s search for progress. Remember, Apple had the Newton, the Lisa and Macintosh TV, but Apple’s inventiveness constantly supplies the evolutionary learning for the company’s new products, including today’s Nano video and iPhone.
All too often we benchmark the brilliant successes of others and ignore their “brilliant failures” along the way. We smooth out the bumps in history, erasing the part that either luck or failure play. We look at happy accidents as if they were by deliberate design. We can learn far more by studying both the success and the failures of others.
In fact there is an entire organization dedicated to learning from the failures of others and applying those lessons. (I image that their annual meetings can be pretty depressing…) It is the Association for the Study of Failure.
Apple tried and failed and tried and failed and tried again and finally achieved redemption. If not redemption, then at least a lot of market success!
When we are benchmarking, we need to be careful. Are we building a machine based on hindsight? Are we being bold in our vision or following the path of another? We cannot benchmark our way to the future.
To which I add another quote, this one from a favorite of mine, Samuel Beckett:
Ever tried? Ever failed? No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.
I never thought that I’d ever have the opportunity to quote Beckett in a branding discussion!