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Michael Linton on Marketing Innovation

I attended an interview last night with Michael Linton, CMO of Best Buy, sponsored by Fortune magazine. He expressed the same healthy attitude toward trials that I’ve heard from other successful executives, e.g. “We have the programs we do regularly, the ready-aim-fire activities. Then we have the ready-fire-aim activities, the new programs we’re trying out. It’s important you don’t try to measure those in the same way. Some won’t contribute to making your numbers but will teach you new things.

And he offered less common advice, like “If you can be 70% successful in a new activity, that’s great. If you try to acheive the other 30%, the market will probably move on without you while you’re striving for perfection. We work hard to keep up with the market.