The secret is to be original. Maintaining the status quo won't get anyone excited. It's when you do something new that people notice.
And original doesn't require you have some earthshattering new technology. Sure, flying cars are cool. But there are so many other original ideas. Many simple.
Take truck stops. Can you imagine clean bathrooms at a truck stop? Notice how exciting that could be! Clean bathrooms at gas stations are rare, even exotic.
When it comes to gas pump bathrooms, gross is the norm. Smells assault. Occasionally we even have to carry this ridiculous key to unlock the door, a key tied to a broom handle or tire iron.
I was once at a gas station in New Jersey where they handed me a big black plunger with key chained to the top. Just try looking discrete as you walk across the parking lot with a plunger, to the door marked 'MEN'.
And as our families grow, it only gets worse. I cringe to think of the bathrooms I've had to help my kids navigate.
So someone decides to fix the problem. They buy a gas station. They keep the bathroom clean. Now there's some unique STUFF. It's time to craft the STORY. They buy a billboard. A really big one. And all it says is "Sparkling clean bathrooms!! at the XYZ truck stop - exit 208".
We all crave something better. And now this little innovator figures out a way to keep the bathroom clean. And we take notice. We remember. We want to be there now! Now we're stopping to buy gas, sodas, coffee, snacks, lottery cards.
But try using that same billboard to promote a Hampton Inn. Imagine the slogan, "Hampton Inn. Now with Clean bathrooms!!" No one's gonna notice. Every hotel has clean bathrooms, at least they should.
You've got to tell a STORY. Start with the mop. Sparkle your STUFF up. Make sure it stands out. If you run a gas station, maybe all it takes is a clean bathroom. If you run a hotel, you'll have to do more. Free breakfast. Free drinks, even, now just the norm. But a free car wash? Now you're thinking.
Who knows what could happen. Well... Actually, it's you that knows. What are you going to build for us next?
ps - By the way, having spent way too many miles on the road, forget truck stops. If your kids need a bathroom, stop at a Hampton Inn. They've got the public bathroom thing figured out. They're everywhere. They're clean. The front desk people are used to people coming and going at all hours. And you might even get a free cookie for your trouble. ;)