Red Acer Trees

Or What does it Take to Become Remarkable?

You and your personality is remarkable but how do you deliver it when it comes to creating a compelling message of your product?

How difficult it is to be remarkable? And what does it take?

On the way to the Lake District, looking out through the car windows, I was amazed by the beauty of autumn colours. It was absolutely spectacular. But then 20 mins down the road, I stopped paying attention, because it was all the same and it became like a yellowy-orange blur. The mind disengages when it is exposed to the sameness.  

Then, when we reached Grasmere village, our destination, we saw this red tree. It looked as if somebody had just sprayed bright red paint in the morning. I have never seen anything like it before. It was spectacular, awe-inspiring, truly remarkable. One of those instances where a picture is worth more than 1000s of words. 

The tree I am talking about is acer. Because of their distinctive leaf shapes and vibrant foliage that change its colour through seasons, it is truly unique. Colours include purple, red, orange, pink and light green. It is remarkable. 

Now, all the other trees are amazing and beautiful, but after a short while you stop paying attention because there are so many of them, and they all look similar. 

It might sound a bit harsh, but after a while it becomes boring.

What is remarkable?

One of the most prominent American marketers, Seth Godin, describes this phenomenon as purple cow. 

If you want to stand out on a busy market place, you must be willing to create a purple cow. 

He says, if you have seen cows for a while, they become boring. Cows could be perfect, attractive, cows with great personalities, cows lit by beautiful light, but they are still boring. 

Now, a purple cow can be interesting ( for a while)

I guarantee you, if acer trees in all their magnificent glory were all over, they wouldn’t be attracting as much attention. 

What is remarkable? 

Something remarkable is worth talking about. Worth noticing and sharing. It is exceptional, new, interesting. It’s, as Seth Godin says, a purple cow. 

If you are trying to be like everyone else, you are a brown cow or a black cow. It is boring and it makes you invisible. 

You have to have a mindset of innovation. Innovation is the new normal. 

When I am talking about innovation, I am not referring to inventing the next internet thing. It is not about the product you are offering. It is the message that positions it in a unique way.

No need to invent anything new

when it comes to creating a purple cow, you can’t advertise to the masses. 

I often hear this argument, well, everybody needs my product, everybody can benefit from it. It might be true, but you won’t be able to sell it to everybody. 

The problem with mass markets is that they are all taken.

Those who were the first, got all the glory. That’s why they say, the early bird catches the warm. 

Imagine being number 1 in the detergent market. 

I truly believe you can find and beautifully express what it is remarkable about your offer, if you put your mind to it. 

How your positioning is different? What is it about you that is unique in the context of your offer?

I am not saying it is easy, but it is possible if you set an intention. 

Often remarkable things are surprisingly simple, but it takes a little bit of an effort. 

If it was such an easy thing to break through the clutter by creating a purple cow, why doesn’t everybody do it?

What does it seem so hard to be remarkable?

I believe the real issue of the matter is much deeper. And it is deeply rooted in fear.

I completely agree with Marianne Williamson, who said, “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, 'Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?' Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

People are afraid to be remarkable. Because you have to be willing to be criticised, and some people won’t like you. 

Being remarkable won’t ensure unanimous praise. 

Being willing to stand out is being ready to accept criticism. 

Society has conditioned us to conform, to fit it, to work really hard to be accepted. Otherwise, our self-esteem will be damaged. We have been programmed to play it safe, to stay on the ground, to be invisible and to follow the rules. 

While it is true, you can’t fall if you don't climb, but there is no joy in living your whole life on the ground. 

Attempting to be remarkable might seem risky. What if it won’t work? What if I am exposed to embarrassment? So we choose to fit in.

Why you can't afford to fit in?

In a crowded market place, fitting in makes you boring and invisible. Fitting in equals failing. It is the most risky strategy. 

I used to work in a restaurant on Ocean Drive in Miami. It was one of about 27 restaurants on a 2 kilometre stretch. They all were very similar: American cuisine, pizza, pasta, burgers and 2 for one drinks. Very Boring.

The only differentiating factor for all of those places was the location. It was right on the ocean. It was one of the toughest jobs I’ve ever had, as I was constantly on the mission impossible to get strolling tourists to dine in a restaurant I worked at. All those people were visibly  irritated ( quite rightly so), as they were harassed at every step of that busy street, since all of the restaurants had hostesses whose job was to keep their restaurant full. 

That was the biggest hustle I had to go through. If the restaurant wasn’t full, it meant I was doing a bad job. All that hustle was for $7/hour. Many of those restaurants would not survive more than 3 years.

You simply cannot build a successful business on just one marketing pilar, which is location. You need to be willing to create some substance in a remarkable way. 

What is the big misconception about being remarkable?

A big misconception is that the opposite of remarkable is something bad and average. But it is the wrong idea. The opposite of remarkable is good enough, which is a dangerous attitude as it doesn’t welcome innovation. If you don't change, innovate and adapt in the fast paced world, you are setting yourself up a failures.

If we really think about it deeply, not a lot of people are truly ready to stand out. They are afraid of the responsibility it will bring. General masses are petrified by Purple cow. 

So, with less effort you can become remarkable. Because most people won’t go for it.

The choice is very simple. Either be invisible, uncriticised, safe, boring and faceless, or take a stand for something, take a chance at greatness, uniqueness and a quest to create a purple cow. 

Where is the catch? There is always a catch, right?

It’s easy, it’s fun and it’s guaranteed to work. All of it is true, except for easy, fun and guaranteed to work. 

There is no guarantee that it will work.

And we are afraid of the unknown and failure, which cripples our motivation and keeps us stuck. 

How do you predict which ideas will backfire and which are worth the hard work? What is the way to predict it? Well, there isn’t. 

The only way is to try. 

When you look at the word breakthrough, the meaning is a sudden, dramatic discovery or development. The word automatically implies that it is preceded by struggle. In order to break something, you have to apply force. 

Someone once told me, if there is no resistance, you are not going in the right direction. 

I know many people are stuck, because they want to get it right off the first attempt. They want to pick the right niche, create the right product and make it work right away. Intellectually, they understand the benefit of trial and error, but emotionally they are stuck in the analysis paralysis trap. And failure makes them stall…

What’s the worst thing can happen if the project won’t work?

You are going to try something else, or you are going to try a different approach… 

This is why you absolutely need to believe in yourself and the strength of your dreams, and be flexible enough to adjust your approach.

What is your genius power?

Successful people know some ideas are not going to work but they are ok about it. Because they trust the process. Even if the project flops, and there is criticism and judgement, they know it is not about them and their inadequacy, it is about the idea. 

You simply cannot predict what will win. But it is the unpredictability of the outcome that will make it work. 

The more you try, the more effort you apply, the more chances you secure for yourself to become remarkable. 

I want you to process what the purple cow will mean to you.

My genius power is really about helping coaches awaken their unique brilliance that is aligned with their passion and values and confidently position it on the market place, while transforming other people’s lives. So that they can achieve the outcome of becoming a prominent transformational influencer, while enjoying the life of their dreams. 

What is yours?

Click here to discover how to

Monetise Your Story

About the Anna Simpson

I am a clarity and confidence strategist. I take coaches on a self-creation process to help them discover their unique voice, articulate their transformational message and equip them with the tools and resources to monetise their story, building soul and heart-aligned business they love. 

In my line of work, I teach my breakthrough formula to gain crystal clarity in your unique voice that reflects your values, passion and expertise and perfectly blends with a massive need on the market.

Overcoming major life difficulties of poverty in a Ukrainian village to building a dream life in the USA on her own, and now running a global coaching business with my husband, my mission is to inspire, empower and equip people to shine in their power.