Scene 6: Introduce the antagonist

‘Will Big Blue dominate the entire computer industry? Was George Orwell right?’ Steve Jobs

Problem + Solution = Classic Jobs

  • Before introducing the problem:
    • Why do we need a revolutionary user interface?
    • Even raises problems to his own solution
  • When replacing the keyboard with a touch screen:
    • How are we going to communicate with this? We’re going to use the best pointing device in the world … our fingers.
  • Nobody really cares about the product but about solving problems and making their lives a little better
  • Describes the pain they’re feeling, gives them a reason for their pain and then offers a cure

Making his case to CNBC

  • We’re a product company. We love great products. In order to explain what our product is, we have to contrast it to what products are out there right now and what people use.
  • Crafting a persuasive story

The Apple religion

  • The us-versus-them strategy attracts fans, incites controversy, creates loyalty, and gets us thinking – and arguing – and, of course, buying.

Will it eat me?

  • Our brain craves meaning before details
  • Our brains were formed to see the big picture, e.g the saber-toothed tiger – not how may teeth does it have
  • Don’t start with the details. Start with the key ideas and, in a hierarchical fashion, form the details around these larger notions.
  • Need to establish a reason for the product’s existence
  • One simple sentence is all you need to introduce the antagonist: why do you need this? – reviews the current state of the industry and to set the stage for the next step in his presentation, offering the solution.

The ultimate elevator pitch

  • The antagonist can be introduced in just a few minutes or less by creating a one-sentence answer for the following four questions:
  1. What do you do?
  2. What problem do you solve?
  3. How are you different?
  4. Why should I care?

The antagonist: A convenient storytelling tool

  • Funny
  • Memorable
  • Powerful
  • Take facts, figures, and statistics and brings them to life
  • Introduce an antagonist early, rallying the audience around a common purpose

Director’s notes:

  • Introduce the antagonist early in your presentation. Always establish the problem before revealing your solution. You can do so by painting a vivid picture of your customers’ pain point. Set up the problem by asking, ‘Why do we need this?’
  • Spend some time describing the problem in detail. Make it tangible. Build the pain.
  • Create an elevator pitch for your product using the four-step method described in this chapter. Pay particular attention to question number 2, ‘What problem do you solve?’ Remember, nobody cares about your product. People care about solving their problems.

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