About creativity, coffee and the need to think like a customer

Somebody told me about a very interesting TED talk on creativity. I was very intrigued, and decided to search for it when I got home. The person that mentioned the talk, said that the speaker discussed how starting to drink coffee (instead of beer) had had such a positive impact on creativity: people were lucid and energised for one; and they started meeting in coffee houses, which were great environments for exchanging ideas.

That was all I knew about this talk.

So, when I got home, I went to TED’s website, and entered the keywords ‘creativity’ and ‘coffee’ on the search box. But, as you can see from this screenshot, I had no luck:

creativity coffee TED

Then, I entered the same keywords on Google, and… voila: look at the very first result:

creativity coffee Google

I thought that this was a curious example of how being very close to a product may actually make it more difficult to sell it to a customer.

TED knows all about product features like the title of the talk (where good ideas come from), the speaker (Steven Johnson), the topic (innovation)… and probably organised the information according to those clues.

Google, on the other hand, seems to have considered how the ‘customer’ would search for this product: i.e., the interesting or recognisable aspects about the talk that people might remember or mention to each other.

I am going to save this example for my classes, about the need to think like a customer, not as a product expert.

On a different note, do check the video. It is very interesting.

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