In Made to Stick, brothers Chip and Dan Heath discuss why some ideas are instantly struck to one’s memory, while others fade away as quickly as they came.

They offer six principles of “sticky” ideas – ideas that are understandable, memorable and effective in changing thought or behavior. Their theory of SUCCESsful idea qualities (simplicity, unexpectedness, concreteness, credibility, emotions and stories) seems simple enough, until they introduce the villain – the Curse of Knowledge.

This book offers detailed explanations of the six principles, and gives examples to show how businesses and companies have implemented them successfully – and improperly implemented them to great failure.

Nonprofits can effectively use the principles of sticky ideas by delivering a message that is clear, concise and memorable to their audience(s). Otherwise, their message will get lost among the clutter of equally un-sticky ideas in their sector.

About Chip Heath:

Chip Heath is the Thrive Foundation of Youth Professor of Organizational Behavior in the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University.

Chip is also a columnist for Fast Company magazine, and he has spoken and consulted on the topic of “making ideas stick” with organizations such as Nike, the Nature Conservancy, Microsoft, Ideo and the American Heart Association.

A few years back Chip designed a course, now a popular elective at Stanford, that asked whether it would be possible to use the principles of naturally sticky ideas to design messages that would be more effective. That course, How to Make Ideas Stick, has now been taught to hundreds of students including managers, teachers, doctors, journalists, venture capitalists, product designers and film producers.

Chip’s research has appeared in the Journal of Organizational Behavior, Quarterly Journal of Economics, Cognitive Psychology, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Journal of Consumer Behavior, Strategic Management Journal, Psychological Science and the Journal of Risk and Uncertainty.

About Dan Heath:

Dan Heath is a Senior Fellow at Duke University’s CASE center, which supports social entrepreneurs. Heath is a columnist for Fast Company magazine, and he has taught and consulted with organizations such as Microsoft, Philips, Vanguard, Macy’s, USAID and the American Heart Association.

Previously, Dan worked as a researcher and case writer for Harvard Business School, co-authoring 10 case studies on entrepreneurial ventures, and later served as a Consultant to the Policy Programs of the Aspen Institute. In 1997, Dan co-founded an innovative publishing company called Thinkwell, which continues to produce a radically reinvented line of college textbooks.