Providing an Immersive Experience

May 10, 2008
Grab some !Image by ? ? Adam via Flickr

There’s been a lot of talk lately about the success of Grand Theft Auto: IV. I haven’t really seen much of the game, so I won’t comment on that.

But what strikes me about the numbers is that they aren’t surprising. The basic economics show that. Here in Singapore, at least, a movie ticket costs anywhere between $7 to $10. A computer game can cost up to between $30 to $60.

People are willing to pay more for computer games, that’s a simple fact. Why? Because of the experience. Games allow you to get more immersed in the story. It’s about the first hand, interactive experience.

And there’s great value in that – providing an experience.

It doesn’t matter what your product is. The more immersive the experience you provide, the more its value increases. And it increases exponentially.

How can you provide a more immersive experience for your customers?

Michael Jordan

Nov 13, 2007

Michael Jordan is well known as arguably the best basketball player of all time. But something I just found out today, apparently he had an 18 month stint as a baseball player, in the Minor League with the Birmingham Barons.

SneakerFiles tells us that “[i]n his time spent as an outfielder, MJ had a .202 batting average in 127 games, 114 strikeouts in 436 at bats, 3 home runs, 51 RBI’s, 30 stolen bases, and led the Southern League outfielders with only 11 errors.” That’s not a bad set of statistics. But it’s nowhere near the top players. And the top was where he was with basketball.

I can’t read minds, so I can’t say for sure, but maybe that’s why he went back to basketball. Yes, he’s decent at baseball, but he would not have made a name for himself doing that. He was good, but not exceptional. He wasn’t remarkable. He was just above average. And being above average isn’t enough. So he quit, and chose to focus on something he knew he could be the best at. And we all know how that turned out.

This is kind of the point Seth Godin makes with The Dip. If you’re not going to be the best at it, quit. Sometimes it’s better to cut your losses, than try to pursue something you’ll only be “above average” at. To truly succeed, you need to play completely to your strengths, and really be the best.

Is there something that you should be quitting today?

What I Learned From the World Pool Championships 2007

Nov 8, 2007

I’ve been watching the World Pool Championships 2007 today. And as always, there’s a lot of things that I think can be learned from it.

I mentioned 9 ball a while back, and the lesson on positioning that it thought me. But today, I want to focus more on the trends in the tournament.

Soft breaks are a lot more common now, it seems. A few years ago, everyone was breaking really hard, just hitting it and hoping for a good spread. But now, it’s a lot more controlled, and almost everyone is going for a soft break. The first lesson it shows is something that I’ve written about before: control. Sometimes, holding back is better, because it allows you to have more control over the results.

Something interesting from the commentators as well. One commentator talked about how because the soft break gives less spread (the balls don’t fly around the table as much), there tends to be more clusters of balls, and could create more trouble. A while later, I heard another comment, this time saying how the balls are closer together after a soft break, thus the cue doesn’t need to travel as far, making run outs easier. Just goes to show how everything is a matter of perspective. The same soft break, the same result (less spread of balls), but two completely different conclusions.

A third lesson that watching this has taught me is that everyone has an equal chance, and it’s all about taking your opportunities. I’ve seen so many upsets, with the supposed underdogs pouncing on one mistake. And especially with the winner-break format, they can easily string a run of racks together to win. Lesson here – even if nobody expects you to win, you can. All you have to do is maintain your mental strength, and wait for your chance. Then make the most of it. No matter how much the odds are stacked against you, you will get your chance (I don’t think I’ve seen ANYBODY break and run out the whole match).

So there it is. 3 lessons from watching the world pool championships. The value of holding back – the control it gives, the importance of perspective and what a huge difference it can make, and how no matter how unlikely it seems, opportunities to succeed (in whatever you’re doing) will come, it’s up to you to make the most of them.

This is written as an entry to this month’s “What I Learned From…” group writing project.