Deliberate differentiation, intentional imperfection. Ray Bartkus is a street artist in New York. He created a unique mural in Marijampole, Lithuania on the Sesup River, by painting everything upside-down. It’s called Floating World. See the picture courtesy of Boring Panda.

But that’s not the whole story. Because he painted the mural upside-down, when you look directly at the painting, it’s upside-down, but when you look at it’s reflection in the river, it’s right-side-up.

The swimmers, swans, boats, and divers look out of place on the side of the building, but they make perfect sense on the surface of the water. Intentional imperfection. Deliberate differentiation.

Another fun example comes from Harvard. Imagine that you are a professor and want to offer a new course to help students communicate more effectively.

What do you call it? Alison Wood Brooks called it “How to Talk Gooder in Business and in Life.” What?! Gooder isn’t even a real word. A class at a prestigious university about how to speak well has a deliberate grammatical error in the title.

Did anyone sign up for the brand-new class with an incorrect title. Yes. So many students, nearly 1000, signed up.

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Stan Phelps walks the walk. He stands out in the sea of sameness by modeling his own Differentiated Experience (DX) message: Differentiation isn’t just about what you say, it’s about what you do and, more importantly, how and why you do it. Stan leverages his unique collection of 5,000+ case studies on customer, employee, and brand experience to engage audiences with informative learning-based experiences. He believes purposeful DX wins the hearts of employees and customers, and differentiation ultimately boosts loyalty, retention, referrals, and results.

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