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Seth Godin has written 18 bestsellers that have been translated into 35 languages

The complete list of online retailers

Bonus stuff!

or click on a title below to see the list


An intensive, 4-week online workshop designed to accelerate leaders to become change agents for the future. Designed by Seth Godin, for you.



All Marketers Tell Stories

Seth's most important book about the art of marketing




Free Prize Inside

The practical sequel to Purple Cow





An instant bestseller, the book that brings all of Seth's ideas together.




Meatball Sundae

Why the internet works (and doesn't) for your business. And vice versa.



Permission Marketing

The classic Named "Best Business Book" by Fortune.



Poke The Box

The latest book, Poke The Box is a call to action about the initiative you're taking - in your job or in your life, and Seth once again breaks the traditional publishing model by releasing it through The Domino Project.




Purple Cow

The worldwide bestseller. Essential reading about remarkable products and services.



Small is the New Big

A long book filled with short pieces from Fast Company and the blog. Guaranteed to make you think.



Survival is Not Enough

Seth's worst seller and personal favorite. Change. How it works (and doesn't).




The Big Moo

All for charity. Includes original work from Malcolm Gladwell, Tom Peters and Promise Phelon.



The Big Red Fez

Top 5 Amazon ebestseller for a year. All about web sites that work.




The Dip

A short book about quitting and being the best in the world. It's about life, not just marketing.




The Icarus Deception

Seth's most personal book, a look at the end of the industrial economy and what happens next.





"Book of the year," a perennial bestseller about leading, connecting and creating movements.




Unleashing the Ideavirus

More than 3,000,000 copies downloaded, perhaps the most important book to read about creating ideas that spread.



V Is For Vulnerable

A short, illustrated, kids-like book that takes the last chapter of Icarus and turns it into something worth sharing.




We Are All Weird

The end of mass and how you can succeed by delighting a niche.



Whatcha Gonna Do With That Duck?

The sequel to Small is the New Big. More than 600 pages of the best of Seth's blog.



THE DIP BLOG by Seth Godin

All Marketers Are Liars Blog

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« March 2006 | Main | May 2006 »

Flipping the funnel, teenage edition

Miel has a post about Melody: Coolz0r - Marketing Thoughts � Logitech’s 17 Year Old Brand Ambassador.

The first thing a jaundiced marketer would wonder is if this is just a special case. After all, the product that Melody is videoing about is the video camera. It's hard to be more self-referential than that. The second thing I would imagine one would ask is "how can we make this happen for us?"

Of course, you can't make it happen. That's the point. If Logitech had orchestrated this, it wouldn't have worked.

What you can do is make products that allow people to feel good (no, great) when they express themselves. Products or services that involve stories that are fun to spread. YouTube is just the medium.

Only on the web

an entire site of music for (and from) tv newscasts: News Music Now V.2 -- [In The Spirit of Texas].

Measure THAT

One of the secrets of the Yellow Pages was that the phone company would give you a second line when you bought a big ad.

Within days of the book coming out, you'd see and hear the phone ring. And you knew which phone it was. So when the time came to renew your Yellow Pages ad, all the sales rep had to do was glance over at the phone on the wall and the prospect would imagine that phone no longer ringing...

Aaron writes in and asks, why is it so easy for a client to spend a fortune on a brochure and to spend hours agonizing over it, and so hard for them to invest in an end to permission marketing/ideavirus system?

The answer is the same: measure this, measure that.

Once the number is on the wall, in marker, or in phone calls or dollar bills, the investment will follow.

Example: Google adwords. The price of adwords keeps going up because the cost per click pricing model forces clients to measure. As soon as they measure something and see it is working, they want more. Magazine ads don't have that effect, so companies rarely bid up the price.

Example: Indie musicians at cdbaby. They tour to make a living, and they obsessively track which gigs translate into record sales. As a result, they go back to the places and the types of venues that work, and stop going to the others.

So, my best advice is not to argue with the client about building a big kickass system. Instead, it's to argue with them about measuring. Once they start measuring, they'll be begging you for the big system.

The hardest thing

I had lunch with someone in publishing today. She's been doing it for more than forty years, I'd say. She said to me, "People ask me what the hardest thing is... is it finding authors? I tell them that the two hardest things are hiring great people and watching the cash flow."

In the computer chip business, some people say the hardest thing is yield. In soft drinks, of course, it's top of mind marketing. In sales, it's getting qualified appointments.

What is the hardest thing in your business?

Does everyone you work with know that it's the hardest thing?

And what percentage of your time do you spend on it?

The 80/8 Rule

Shane Wilson points us to  Jim Barnes who quotes James Allen, Frederick F. Reichheld and Barney Hamilton, The Three "Ds" of Customer Experience, Harvard Business School Working Knowledge:

A study by Bain & Company found that 80 percent of companies surveyed believed that they delivered a "superior experience" to their customers. But, when customers were asked to indicate their perceptions of the experiences they have in dealing with companies, they rated only 8 percent of companies as truly delivering a superior experience

Thanks, Tim!

Tim Stay and his network of 55 blogs have donated ad space to the Big Moo. Thanks! Know More Media: The Big Moo Gets Free Advertising on Know More Media.


...don't do this if you are on a deadline
or have a day job
or hope to accomplish much of anything today

unless your definition of 'accomplish' is to see hundreds of cool websites and a bunch of duds.


You install a tool into your browser and it, upon request, finds you the next cool thing. Or not.

Two things you know but don't do

1. treat different products differently
2. treat different customers differently

1. why doesn't fresh fish cost more than the same fish a day later? bowling a few cents less when it's not so crowded? movie tickets more on the day a movie debuts? why don't computers with a three-year obsolence cycle have predictable pricing that starts high and gets near cheap just before the new upgrades?

2. why do all of your customers pay the same price when they buy the same product?

There are a million reasons to keep things the way they were before it was easy to change them. And yes, we used to do things in a clumsy way, last minute discounts and early bird specials. But now that it is easy to change things all the time, have you tried?

What if your insurance company did this?

Rich sends us this story: "Hello_World": That's what I'm talking about.

The short, Americanized version: Guy runs off the road with his Citroen. Files a claim. The insurance company sends him a toy SUV with a note that says he'd enjoy off-roading a bit more in a different sort of vehicle...


Can you imagine the reaction?

No, of course it wouldn't be a great idea if small bunnies had been killed or people injured. But the sheer chutzpah of having a sense of humor about something so so serious as insurance and money...

The truth about domain names

Dennis Forbes is incredibly talented at working with data, and has way too much time on his hands. His definitive report on what domain names are out there (and which ones aren't) is fairly astonishing. Thanks, boingboing, for the link.

Okay, viral, check.

Well, of course it had to happen. The marketing hordes are descending upon the passalong video, without really understanding what they're doing. Check out this stupid Dancing Doughboy. It's sort of like the original dancing baby, but without the panache, the eeriness or the surprising elegance.

What marketers need to understand about most viral videos is that they are like car wrecks. We slow down and shake our heads. We can't believe what we're seeing. Or we are seeing something for the very first time and it's remarkable.

Now, as big brands (like Pillsbury) race the medium to the mainstream, all of that frisson is gone. Sure, some will succeed. Most will just sort of putter along, giving the naysayers at the big brands the chance to say, "see, I told you so," without understanding what went wrong in the first place.

Yes, I get to make my own Doughboy dance. But no, I can't make him do unspeakable things with Betty Crocker.

Chevy is learning this the hard way with their Tahoe campaign... in which the best commercials are the ones that say, "Don't buy me!"

No one invented this medium for marketers. The medium got here before we did.

Go Placeholders!! Defense, defense

Picture_6_1 Amazon jumps the gun on the NCAA...

All the technology in the world can't protect you, sometimes.

Fresh Fish Here

My health club has a huge sign designed to go by the heavily traveled railroad tracks next to my office.

"Exclusive Charter Memberships Available."

Well, of course they're not that exclusive, given that they're on a billboard.
And does it matter that they're 'charter'?
Of course they're memberships. All health clubs have memberships.
Which leaves, 'available', and the fact that they've got a sign pretty much makes that clear.

It's like the apocryphal story about the fish store. "Well, of course the fish is fresh. You're not going to sell me old fish, are you?" and "Of course it's 'here'. Where else would you be selling the fish?" and finally, "We know it's fish. We can smell it!"

The worst thing you can do is be boring and vague.
The second worst thing you can do is be boring and verbose and obvious.

The first goal of copy is to get you to read more copy.
The second goal is to tell a story that spreads.
And then, finally, to have that story get people to take action.

Q: What sort of bonuses should we pay?

A. "It's not about the money."

Usually, when people say this, they are lying.

Except, it turns out, at work.

Money, it's been shown time and time again, is a demotivator. I'm not talking about a fair or even generous salary. Being a cheapskate is no way to find a great employee. But once people have joined your team, incremental money--bonuses and the like--usually demotivate people. They demotivate because sooner or later, people feel as though they're being treated unfairly.

One guy gets a $10 bonus. The person sitting next to him seethes for weeks, while the bonusee forgets it soon enough.

A sales rep gets into a fight about a commission... and remembers it long after the moment is gone.

People who really and truly love their jobs are in every single industry. And people who do great work because they love their jobs are paid at every salary level. What they have in common is a boss that gives them respect and freedom and responsibility. A boss that listens when they have something to say. Which, not coincidentally, is exactly the way the best companies treat their customers, too.

Cutting your prices doesn't build customer loyalty, and paying a bonus doesn't build employee loyalty.

If I had money to spend on a bonus, Mr. question writer, I would invest it in allowing each of my employees to try a small project (Google style) with no strings attached. Giving fairly-paid people your trust and the freedom to grow is worth a lot more than $50.

[n.b. all bets are off when the topic is sharp-edged salespeople. Just as some stores (woot, for example) work hard to attract the money-focused shopper, there are some jobs where a razor-sharp commission structure is exactly what your people--and you--want.]

#33 with a bullet

Thanks to the generous (and kind, and good looking) people at MSN, The Big Moo is now #33 at Amazon. This was a really standup thing for MSN to do, and, as I said to ClickZ, it's like being at the cash register at WalMart. Every person who passes by isn't exactly the right person, but enough people walk by that it's just fine, thanks very much. The power of the masses hasn't diminished--they're just harder to find, that's all.

« March 2006 | Main | May 2006 »