The Untold Design (Hi)story Of The Original Emoji

In the late 1990s, the Japanese telecom giant NTT DoCoMo offered an early mobile service called i-mode that let users send small amounts of data over their pagers, including a heart icon at the end of messages. Users <3’d the <3. But for reasons that have been lost to history, DoCoMo pulled it from the service.
People were furious. They demanded DoCoMo bring it back. In 1999, the company released a new heart icon alongside 175 other icons that became the world’s first emoji.

Market Size Doesn’t Equal Market Demand

Market size is just a lazy proxy for the magnitude of market demand. But market demand is actually a function of:

  • Number of people who have a problem or desire
  • Intensity of that problem or desire
  • How well existing products solve the problem or satisfy the desire

Google Maps’s Moat

Google has gathered so much data, in so many areas, that it’s now crunching it together and creating features that Apple can’t make—surrounding Google Maps with a moat of time.
Amazing to see how Google is using its own byproducts (street view) to build bigger moat.

Drift’s Killer Brand Strategy: How to build a B2B SaaS brand that will stand the test of time

Building great products is no longer enough.
Creating stellar content is no longer enough.
Differentiating through price is no longer enough.

And the reasons are quite simple…
Someone can copy your product.
Someone can copy your content.
Someone can copy your price.
But there is one core element of every B2B SaaS company that cannot be copied…
That is brand.

Drift’s Brand Book


Stubborn sales stereotypes we really need to get over

Human beings can usually recognise a ridiculous caricature when we see one. We know when something is too over-the-top and stereotyped to possibly reflect reality. Unless, that is, we’re thinking about sales.
Greedy Gordon
Will do anything for a commission
Larry the Liar
Makes wildly unrealistic promises to close a deal
Invisible Irene
Only 39% of sales positions should be held by women, and there’s certainly no good reason why only 19% of sales leaders are women
Maurice the Motormouth
Any sales professional who can’t listen eliminates the opportunity to add value for a client.
Manipulative Mike
The snake-oil salesman
Stresshead Sid
Racing everywhere
Golfing Gary
All about the client entertainment.
Ronald the Totally Replaceable
Phil the Flit
Guaranteed to switch jobs whenever offered more money.
Aggressive Alvin
Continually emailing and cold-calling
Eric the Extrovert
Alpha personality (huge ego).

The Delightful Secret of Successful User Onboarding

There is a key secret that can help – one that connects churn and a strong user onboarding to deliver higher retention: the “Aha!” Moment. This moment, or the lack of it, is one of the major factors of a leaky user funnel.
The Aha Moment is the first time the user recognizes and internalizes the value of a product or feature.
(also see: The “F**king cool” moment: Those two words that create passionate users)

Great Products vs. Great Businesses

Making a business work requires mastering a series of steps, each one harder than the one before it. I call it the hierarchy of profit.
Great products live in the top few bars of this pyramid. Getting from there to the bottom is incredibly hard.