How Peloton Changed Me From Evangelist to Disgruntled: Brief Lessons in Bad Decision-Making

Peloton scenic rides
(Reading Time: 5 minutes)

“If the big boys are doing it, it must be working.”

~ a former boss, who could not have been more wrong on this point

It hasn’t been the best few weeks for Peloton.

There was the treadmill recall in the first week of May.  That’s been covered elsewhere, but suffice to say Peloton’s response was not what it should have been.

I’m not here to dogpile on that, though incidents like this do make one question one’s loyalty.

Meanwhile, Peloton has also made some inexplicable changes to its user experience – and, in particular, the Peloton scenic rides that were the favorites of many members, myself included.

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What “The Biggest Bluff” Can Teach You About Strategy

(Reading Time: 3 minutes)

“The Biggest Bluff: How I Learned to Pay Attention, Master Myself, and Win” will be on my list of the best books I read in 2020.  It’s a layered story, compelling and well-told.

Written by Maria Konnikova, a Ph. D. in psychology and a contributing writer to the New Yorker, “The Biggest Bluff” details the year she spent learning to play poker, starting as a complete novice.  I won’t spoil the ending, but it goes pretty well for her.

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Three Levels of Brand Values

(Reading Time: 2 minutes)

I submit to you that there are three levels of brand values.

Level 1 – “No Values”

Here, you’re saying, “Values are irrelevant – profit is what we’re here for.”  You don’t think about your Why; you’re focused on your What and your How. 

It’s unimaginative, but at least it’s honest.  If you’re up-front about your desire to relieve me of some of the money in my wallet, I can work with you on those terms.

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Marketing in the Time of Coronavirus

(Reading Time: 2 minutes)

Last week, I joined a client for a virtual brainstorm.  The focus: Our marketing next steps in these trying times.

We established a rule up-front: For an idea to move forward, it has to serve our customers.  In other words, if it benefits only us, it does not advance.  It goes to either the “rework” or “trash” pile.

This is a good rule for new ideas in general.  Two decades ago, Doug Hall and his team at Eureka! Ranch found that new-product concepts with a high level of “overt benefit” outperformed concepts with a low level by 3:1.

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