Get to AHA!: Discover Your Positioning DNA and Dominate Your Competition
October 09, 2017
Andy Cunningham brings over three decades of experience of working in the crucible of Silicon Valley to help you position your company.
Guy Kawasaki worked with Andy Cunningham on the launch of the Macintosh for Apple. "My job was to sell the dream," he writes in the forward to Cunningham's new book, Get to Aha!, while "Andy's was to make it credible."
"Andy is truly one of the people who caused Apple's success," Kawasaki says, "she could help you become the next Apple!" Ah, Kawasaki, always with the soft sell.
But he's not wrong. If you know anything of Silicon valley, you probably know the name Andy Cunningham. If you've seen the movie Steve Jobs, that is her being played by Sarah Snook. She founded Cunningham Communication, Inc. and continued working with Steve Jobs after he left Apple and she left the PR firm—Regis McKenna, Inc—she had been with while helping launch the Mac. She was so well known in the Valley that her business cards during this time just said "Andy." Describing her involvement in various developments of entire industries in the Valley, she writes:
I … founded Cunningham Communications, Inc., a nationally recognized high-tech PR firm with a client list that defined Silicon Valley in its earliest days. I've played a key role in the launch of a number of new categories, including video games, personal computers, desktop publishing, digital imaging, RISC microprocessors, software as a service, and very light jets.
And, most importantly for us, she's not shy about telling us how she has done it for over three decades, or in sharing her approach with others. She explains up-front how, "In many ways, Get to Aha! is a follow-up to Al Ries and Jack Trout's seminal book, Positioning." Based on her wealth of experience, she has developed a kind of personality profile for companies, and explains why gaining a solid understanding of yours is a vital first step of any marketing efforts:
This book will show that there are just three types of companies in the world, each with its own distinctive DNA. … I have come to understand that the single biggest reason so many brand strategy campaigns fail is that the agencies skip past the rigor required for positioning … and head straight for the branding.
She helps companies explore the depths of a their identity, defining three basic types of company—a customer-centric Mother, a product-focused Mechanic, or a concept-oriented Missionary—that you must decide from. It is what she defines as DNA-based positioning, and she believes it is a vital first step toward successful marketing. And, of course, she should know. There are some hard-won, sometimes simply hard, lessons here, won by navigating—and helping others navigate—one of the most competitive, disruptive, and profitable economies the world has ever known—that of Silicon Valley in the past 30-plus years.
If you're ready to take advantage of that experience (and you can, no matter what industry you're in), and dive deep into the DNA of your company to build an honest and effective positioning statement, message architecture, and marketing campaign, then check out Andy Cunningham's Get to Aha!
We have 20 copies available.