According to best-seller author, Seth Godin, you're either a Purple Cow or you're not. You're either remarkable or invisible. Make your choice.
Cows are boring. Purple Cows are not. Purple Cow is a metaphor for something very special, not another marketing trick. It is embedded into the service or the product. If you've never read a book by Seth Godin, the Purple Cow is a good start. Godin has an innate way of making you think out of the box: Don't expect something academic, expect good sense and a great sense of humor too. If you run your own business, I bet after reading the Purple Cow you will keep wondering whether your business is a purple cow, and if not, how to make it purple.
This reminds me of the interview of a German manager whose family had been manufacturing garden dwarfs for centuries. Some twenty years ago, it was his turn to run the show. At the time, he said he hated the idea: How can you be successful with girls, he said, when they realize that you're in the business of garden dwarfs! As you may imagine, even if there are more and more garden dwarfs aficionados (including French designer Philippe Stark who made a stool out of a dwarf), most people tend to laugh at people who put dwarfs in their garden. They find it ridiculous, ugly what have you...
Now, it turns out that our German manager loves dwarfs and has developed a deep understanding of the garden dwarf market. What did he do to fall in love with his heirloom? He made a bet. He introduced a brand new (rather unexpected) kind of dwarf. His firm designed a new breed of dwarfs: For instance, a dwarf that has been killed by the neighbor. Imagine a dwarf, lying down, face (and beard) on the ground, with a knife deep in his back. This dwarf made a killing. The firm has sold tons of them.
The assassinated dwarf is a kind of purple cow. The dead dwarf is a fun and astute way of generating cash-flows out of the love-hate feelings that garden dwarfs trigger. You hate them, show it, buy a killed one. You love them and want to make fun out of your neighbor who hates them, buy one too!
As the Japanese koan wisely puts it, "always look for what you seem to miss in what you have." Many Internet businesses these days are born from this form of paradoxical wisdom. For instance, you think you do not have a hotel room, but as a matter of fact you do have one or even several, at home! So do many people all over the world who make Airbnb success. You do not have a cab, but as a matter of fact, you do have one, your own car. So do many people all over the planet who use Lyft, Uber... You do not have a distribution channel, but as a matter of fact you do have one, our PC and your Internet connection. Again, attitude beats latitude!