A few weeks ago, Jimmy Fallon interviewed the Napster-founder-turned-serial-entrepreneur Sean Parker at NExTWORK. Near the end of the interview, Sean Parker dropped this bomb: “You don’t want people thinking your product is cool, because then you’re a fad.”

I love that. Don’t waste time trying to create a product, venture, organization, event, company, or website that’s cool. Cool doesn’t last — cool is a fad.

Find a real problem in the market and solve it for the people who are suffering, even if they don’t know it. If what you create is cool, great, but don’t start there. Build a solution that’s so good, people would be dumb to go anywhere else. If you can, (and not all products can — car washes, fencers, roof builders, etc.) become an integral part of your users lives — so much so that they don’t actively decide to use your product, they just do.

You don’t consciously think about signing onto Facebook when you wake up, you just do it. You log on and connect with your friends without even really thinking about what you’re doing. You refresh your Twitter feed on your iPhone without even realizing that you’re on Twitter — you just do it. You watch an episode of Arrested Development on Netflix without really acknowledging what you’re doing or that it’s “cool” — you’re just enjoying watching a TV show.

Don’t try to become cool. Solve a problem. Ingrain your solution into your users’ lives in such an integral way that they don’t think it’s cool — it’s just part of their life.

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