Seth Godin: 7 Truths At The Heart of Marketing (& How to Use Them)

Seth Godins a prolific writer and blogger but don’t read his work unless you’re prepared to change how you think about and implement your marketing.

While Seth’s thinking isn’t always original, he’s a great storyteller who juxtaposes ideas and packages them in unexpected context to give them the attention they deserve.

Here are seven Seth Godin quotes at the core of marketing with advice on how to integrate them into your marketing.

  1. People rarely buy what they need. They buy what they want. This strikes at the core of most advertising that appeals to consumers’ aspirations. ACTIONABLE MARKETING TIP: Augment your product offering by related content that helps extend the value of your product. In the current weak economy, don’t underestimate the value of price.
  2. Choose your customers, choose your future. Customers are a business’ lifeline. Traditional direct marketers understand this and assess the value of their business based on the size and quality of their prospect, customer and past purchaser house file. Therefore, know your customers defined in terms of demographics, psychographics and past behaviors. ACTIONABLE MARKETING TIP: Extend your understanding of your customers and integrate this knowledge into your strategies. Create marketing personas to make customers real.
  3. Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories you tell. In the social media age, your company must build the best product you can because customers will talk about your products and services on social media platforms and in real life. Without great products, you’ll have trouble selling. Products need stories to provide context and human emotion. They provide the beginning, middle and end. ACTIONABLE MARKETING TIP: Source stories about your company, brand(s) and products. Get input from across your employee base.
  4. Why waste a sentence saying nothing? Seth’s advice applies to all forms of social media and content marketing from tweets to email to white papers. Since consumers are time pressed, create quality content they want and need.  ACTIONABLE MARKETING TIP: Go beyond just providing compelling  content, make it easy-to-scan because people consume information on-the-go. Use short words, bolding and bullet points.
  5. Social Networking that matters is helping people archive their goals. Doing it reliably and repeatability so that over time people have an interest in helping you achieve your goals. Social media isn’t about you. It’s about your family, friends, colleagues and social media contacts. It’s about paying-it-forward. You need to help others without expecting anything in return. ACTIONABLE MARKETING TIP: Provide regular content or other items or tools that’s useful to your community to entice them to engage with you and share the content with their social media colleagues. To this end, it’s helpful to have an editorial calendar.
  6. The best time to do great customer service is when a customer is upset. Solving customers’ issues with your firm’s products and services gives you an opportunity to resolve issues and win them over. Remember disgruntled customers voice their problems publicly and broadly. ACTIONABLE MARKETING TIP: Have brand monitoring in place to ensure you’re on top of emerging issues and to resolve existing ones. Pay attention to competitor’s issues since they can become yours in a heartbeat. Also monitor and engage on your social media outposts including your blog, Facebook page, Twitter and other areas.
  7.  Good marketers measure. Metrics are critical to ensuring that your marketing is aligned with your business objectives. Further, it’s not just about gathering information for the sake of data. Rather, track those elements that enable you to measure whether you’ve accomplished your goals.  ACTIONABLE MARKETING TIP: Develop a set of metrics that relate to your marketing strategies when you’re building your plan. Ensure that you’re able to gather the necessary data and convert it to useful information. (Need help? Here’s a set of social media marketing metrics, blogging metrics and content marketing metrics.)

Godin requires that you think about your marketing and how to improve your business by looking for new ways to do things better. Are you ready for the challenge?

What’s your favorite Seth Godin quote and why?

Happy marketing,
Heidi Cohen


Related links:

Seth Godin’s books on Amazon.com [affiliate link]

Here are some related articles with quotes from other marketers you may find interesting.

Photo Credit: http://sethgodin.com/

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  • Jenifrak

    Dear Heidi, Thank you for this interesting article. Would you mind sharing the sources that you used for these quotes? Especially for the 3rd one Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories you tell. ? Thanks a lot.