T he 22 Immutable Laws of Mar keting

By Al Ries and Jack Trout Click to edit Master subtitle style



Immutable – (adjective) Unchanging or unable to change. Law – (noun) A rule which cannot or should not be broken.

Sometimes called: The First Mover Advantage .. most people know who flew across the Atlantic first. The basic issue in marketing is creating a category you can be first in. but not second.g.. E. T he Law of Leader ship § § § § It’s better to be first than it is to be better.

but they know who the first woman to do that was. set up a new category you can be first in.T he Law of Cate gor y § § § If you can’t be first in a category.g. E. most people don’t know who flew across the Atlantic third.. Lexus was the first Japanese luxury car .

. but now we associate software with… ..g. E. Altair 8800 was the first PC. but Apple got first in the mind. IBM was the first software vendor. T he Law of the Mind § § § It’s better to be first in the mind than to be first in the marketplace.

it is a battle of perceptions.T he Law of Per ception § § § Marketing is not a battle of products. Is Honda better than Toyota? Is Toyota better than Honda? Which would you rather have? Why? .

New ones: iPod & Blackberry . Or when the brand become synonymous with the category E.T he Law of Focus § § § § The most powerful concept in marketing is owning a word in the prospect’s mind.g. and get me some Kleenex. Xerox this.. FedEx that.

What companies do you think of when I say “operating system” or “mustard” or “frozen pizza”? § .T he Law of Exclusivity § Two companies cannot own the same word in the prospect’s mind.

and they try even harder—and trying to find an unoccupied rung Being closer to the top usually leads to risk aversion .T he Law of the Ladder § § § § What strategy to use depends on which rung you occupy on the ladder.g.. Avis is 2nd – we try harder. Hardee’s is third or forth. E.

T he Law of Duality § § § In the long run.g. every market becomes a two horse race. Coke v Pepsi.. McDonalds and Burger King. E. Dell v HP/Compaq . Kodak v Fuji.

.T he Law of the Opposite § § If you’re shooting for second place. so Pepsi went successfully for the choice of a new generation.g.. your strategy is determined by the leader. Coke is an old soft drink. E.

automobiles. coffee .g. computers..T he Law of Division § § Over time. a category will divide and become two or more categories. e.

T he Law of Per spective § § § Marketing effects take place over an extended period of time. Don’t expect results to be instantaneous A successful campaign can resonate for years .

Coming soon: Arm and Hammer Cat Food .T he Law of Line Extension § § There is an irresistible pressure to extend the equity of the brand.

and owned the word “overnight”..T he Law of Sacrifice § § § You have to give up something in order to get something.g. FedEx sacrificed other air freight options for small packages overnight. For years Honda focused all its efforts on the Civic (cvcc) and dominated the subcompact market . E.

E. effective attribute.T he Law of Attributes § § § For every attribute. PC is synonymous with business computing.. but Close Up freshens breath.g. there is an opposite. Crest toothpaste fights cavities. Apple = creativity .

and they reward honesty UPS’s brown trucks are ugly.T he Law of Candour § § § § When you admit a negative. but we love the truck . Prospects know what the truth is. E.g. the prospect will give you a positive. the 1970 VW will stay ugly longer – implies reliability not good looks..

Choose the move where you expect the least chance of “surprises”. only one move will produce substantial results.T he Law of Singularity § § § In each situation. . E.g. In a military sense. this is called the line of least expectation. the Allied invasion of Normandy..

It is best to be flexible and ready to react to changes in the market. you can’t predict the future. .T he Law of Unpr edictability § § Unless you write your competitors’ plans.

T he Law of Success § § § Success often leads to arrogance. GM was successful into the 70s but continued to lose share thru the 90s. and arrogance to failure. and all that time they assumed they knew what consumers wanted In 1985 IBM assumed they owned the PC market .

Ford almost lost the company on the Edsel in the 50’s Radio Shack and Apple marketed some disappointing computers in the 80’s .T he Law of Failur e § § § Failure is to be expected and accepted.

T he Law of Hype § § The situation is often the opposite of the way it appears in the press. When Ford was successful.” . the company said very little. “We have the best prices in town. What do you think when a car dealer says. Now it throws a lot of press conferences.

T he Law of Acceler ation § Successful programs are not built on fads. and if the makers had tried to turn the fad into a trend. . they’re built on trends. Ninja Turtles could have been the next Barbie dolls if the market hadn’t been flooded.

the only product that sells is the one the consumer is aware of. Regardless of how good a product is. .T he Law of Resour ces § § Without adequate funding an idea won’t get off the ground.

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