Chapter 7. Compete by Tapping the Success of Others: Jibbitz Wins by Riding a Croc

AT 32, JEFF GRADY WAS WASHED UP—A JOBLESS, ALMOST PENNILESS CASUALTY OF THE 2000 DOT-COM BUST, GOING NOWHERE IN DURHAM, NORTH CAROLINA. BETWEEN FRUITLESS JOB SEARCHES, HE SPENT HOURS AT THE GYM, SWEATING OUT HIS ANXIETIES. THEN HE DISCOVERED AN IRRESISTIBLE TOY, THE NEWLY INVENTED IPOD. HE HAD TO HAVE ONE.

In a burst of bravado and borrowing, he scrounged $399 and danced home with his treasure.

Eager to protect its shiny ...

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