Big Kills Small

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I love Stumptown ☕ as a small, quaint experience of Portlandia — its warm textures of real wood and brass and tattoos with simple terminology appeals to me.

But after I cleared TSA security at PDX, a grand monstrosity killed my Stumptown “town-y-ness” illusion. I kept looking at it wondering, “This can’t be the same Stumptown I love. It’s all … big!”

Granted, I know they are no longer independently owned. So I knew to expect the unexpected. But this outcome far exceeded my expectations. In a bad way.

What is that lovely phrase I hear so often in the workplace? Oh yes. Underpromise, overdeliver. When people do this for you all the time — it really endears them to you. Products and services are the same.

Underpromising doesn’t necessarily have to translate to “be humble,” in the same way that exuding audaciousness doesn’t have to translate to “I’m an _sshole.” Finding this subtle space of underpromising audaciously is a sweet spot that I like to go hunting for … so back to the hunt! —JM

Relatedly: My post from yesterday on Product Marketing as Provocation on a visit to W+K Lodge.