Guy Kawasaki has a great interview/discussion of a new book which should be on the bookshelf of all inventors/entrepreneurs in the coming year: Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die (NB - not yet available in the UK, but coming soon...). It's clear that it has connotations/lessons for marketers and brand creators, but there is also no reason why much of this couldn't apply to social inventors, and other types of idea.
Apparently, there are six key principles to an idea becoming 'sticky'; as the authors put it:
"For example, JFK’s idea to “put a man on the moon in a decade” had all six of them:
Simple A single, clear mission.
Unexpected A man on the moon? It seemed like science fiction at the time.
Concrete Success was defined so clearly—no one could quibble about man, moon, or decade.
Credible This was the President of the U.S. talking.
Emotional It appealed to the aspirations and pioneering instincts of an entire nation.
Story An astronaut overcomes great obstacles to achieve an amazing goal."
So there you go: SUCCES (sic) will come nice and easy....I have to say I respect the authors for not simply adding a seventh principle beginning with an S....
There are some other interesting points as well. A few quotes to chew on:
"Bottom line, there’s less evangelism than there probably should be."
"People in their 40s have MySpace pages. That can’t be good and it might leave room for a hipper niche player."
"No one teaches engineers or entrepreneurs or chemistry professors how to make their ideas stick"
"Our book was written for a type of problem, not a type of person. The problem is this: When you have an important idea, how do you communicate it in a way that has impact? How do you construct a great idea?"
All good stuff: and worth trying Guy K's 'stickiness aptitude test' as well. What score will you get in your SAT?