In my last post, we cover the Law of Perception, the first of four laws shared by Trey Ryder in his latest newsletter based on Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind by Al Ries and Jack Trout.

Today we discuss the Law of Leadership. It’s simple premise: “It is better to be first than it is to be better.”

Charles Lindbergh is a perfect example. Do you remember who was the second pilot to fly the Atlantic solo? Well, it was Bert Hinkler. Who, you ask? Exactly, me too; and that is the point. Turns out according to Trey, Hinkler “flew faster and used less fuel than Lindberg. Plus, he was a better pilot.”  None of that mattered, did it?

Here is a simple exercise: who is first (substitute “leader”) in rental cars, computers and soft drinks? Of course – Hertz, IBM (although some may argue Dell), and Coca-Cola.

Trey gives a couple of examples of leading companies who were first (and are still in first place)  vs. second for a couple of products currently:


Chrysler – 47%

Ford – 28%

Laser printers

HP – 49%

Apple – 9%

He also tells us about a lawyer in Phoenix who was first in that market to promote “living trusts to middle-income consumers,” and how it paid off for him. For details click on Continue Reading below.

So, what can you offer that will make you the leader, and put you out there first ahead of the pack?

Trey recounts:

“In 1984, I was hired by a Phoenix attorney who wanted to market living trusts to middle-income consumers.

“As a result of our marketing efforts, this lawyer owned the Phoenix market for five years.  He was featured in every major newspaper, many of them more than once.  He was granted 12 one-hour interviews on the state’s largest news-talk radio station.  He was featured regularly in TV news interviews and magazine articles.  He even had his own weekly radio talk show, which was co-sponsored by a local newspaper for seniors.

“During that time, the number of prospects who requested his educational materials topped 10,000.  He conducted hundreds of seminars and spoke to thousands of interested consumers.  One seminar alone was attended by 233 prospective clients.”