An Ode to Paul Arden | Online Marketing Inspiration
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An Ode to Paul Arden

Posted in Insights — January 14, 2011

it's not how good you are, it's how good you want to be by paul ardenWe love quotes.   You’ll probably notice various ones scattered around the pages of this very website.  One particular quote, on our About Us page, comes from the book, “It’s Not How Good You Are, It’s How Good You Want To Be”, by Paul Arden.

We love this book. Although Paul Arden was one of the world’s most brilliant marketing executives – and ostensibly this book was written to advise on good marketing and business practices – basically, anyone can use it. Anyone could love it.

It’s pocket-sized for maximum convenience.  Each page packs a visual punch as well as a thought-provoking idea.  Most pages only contain a few (impeccably formatted) sentences – and hooray – there are lots of pictures.   You don’t have to read it in any order.  You could read the whole thing in one sitting, or only read a few pages, and still come out of the experience refreshed.

It’s obvious Paul Arden could sell anything when he actually begins to sell you on yourself, and what you are capable of.  We can extend that to what your company is capable of, or your website.

For only $9.99, we think everyone should own a copy. You can can purchase one online, but your local bookstore would be even better. Sarah found hers at Nicholas Hoare in Montreal, QC.

Nicholas Hoare - An Inelegant Photo From Sarah's iPhone But You Get The Idea

While we’d love to list every single ingenious sound bite and concept from this book, at the risk of getting a letter from someone’s lawyer, we will instead post a longer quote from one of our favorite passages.

IT’S WRONG TO BE RIGHT

“Experience is built from solutions to old situations and problems. The old situations are probably different from the present ones, so that old situations will have to be bent to fit new problems (and possibly fit badly). Also the likelihood is that, if you’ve got the experience, you’ll use it.

This is lazy.

Experience is the opposite of being creative.  If you can prove you’re right, you’re set in concrete. You cannot move with the times or with other people. “

IT’S RIGHT TO BE WRONG

“Start being wrong and suddenly anything is possible. You’re no longer trying to be infallible.

You’re in the unknown. There’s no way of knowing what can happen, but there’s more change of it being amazing than if you try to be right…

Risks are a measure of people… Being wrong isn’t in the future, or in the past. Being wrong isn’t anywhere but being here. Best place to be, eh?”

I can think of a myriad of ways this applies to our field of online marketing.  SEO and PPC as a craft are all about testing, testing, testing, to see what works and brings you traffic.  Google won’t tell you the secret to their algorithm.  It’s up to us to creatively figure out a way to rise to the top. Good content is the critical starting point, but only intelligent marketing of this content will get you get the maximum benefit out of it.

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