Kubrick's Five Marketing Lessons.
Marketing is everybody's job and yet many people deny their role in it. They do so either by neglect or ignorance. Neglect occurs when people forget that every interaction is a marketing occasion or, more accurately, the opportunity not to create a bad impression/experience. Ignorance is often more benign and occurs when people are living by marketing principles without knowing it.
I witnessed a great example of the latter here in Austin while sitting in on a fabulous chat with Jan Harlan - brother in law of, and executive producer to Stanley Kubrick. He explicitly denied any real involvement in marketing campaigns, but so many of the things he said about his production philosophy were steeped in great marketing thinking.
1) Get the first three minutes right.
That's nothing other than engaging the customer. Ensuring that you rapidly pique their attention and curiosity while not confusing or boring them.
2) If there's something wrong with the ending, check the beginning.
In other words, focus on getting the product right by focussing not just on where you're aiming (because as I keep saying, your actual customers may not even be there), but on where you're starting from.
3) You've only got one chance.
His full statement was, "you've got just two hours and an audience that comes once". That might seem movie-specific, but it's really not. Think of your customers as a movie audience with their attendant expectations and word of mouth potential and you'll be reminded that "always in beta" is more about continuous improvement than an excuse to make mistakes.
4) Trust your audience.
A corollary of point 1 in my eyes. Not giving them what they want is bad enough, patronising them in any way is worse. Don't keep them in the dark for sure, but don't treat them as idiots either. Give them the tools and the opportunities to understand and appreciate the full potential of your product/service. Their discovery will enhance their enthusiasm.
5) Go and get.
In typical self-deprecating style, he remarked that "Executive Producer is a meaningless title. What I do is I negotiate. I go and get what's needed." This included making four trips to Venice to buy face masks for Eyes Wide Shut because the costume designer was better employed back at base. Marketing departments are all too often about the business of marketing and not about going and getting.