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Against the Grain

Forget big marketing budgets--it's time to think outside the (cereal) box.

This story appears in the August 2004 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Spending big bucks on advertising and product development is soover, proclaims marketing expert Seth Godin in Free Prize Inside: The Next Big MarketingIdea (Portfolio, $19.95). Today, if you want a successfulproduct, you must include "soft innovation" in theproduct itself. Soft innovation is innovation anybody can do. Itrequires initiative and curiosity, as opposed to a Ph.D. inmolecular biology. It-or rather the "free prize" of theinnovation-will cause the product to sell itself.

Godin presents techniques, tools and tricks for soft innovation.One of the most interesting is "edgecraft," orexaggerating a feature of a product or service to make itremarkable. For instance, make the permanent disposable-disposabledigital cameras. Or make the disposable permanent-$2,000 inkpens.

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