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122: Seth Godin: “I’m just a guy noticing things”

Seth Godin, Blogger, Author

This week’s “Marketing Today” features a very special guest. Alan talks with Seth Godin, author of 18 best-selling books, including “Free Prize Inside,” “Purple Cow,” and “The Dip.” And now he’s written a new one: “This Is Marketing: You Can’t Be Seen Until You Learn to See.

In his conversation with Alan, Godin discusses his new book and what it’s about: creating change and a modern way of thinking about marketing. Godin also touches on Nike and Colin Kaepernik, Brexit, and why, when trying to reach people, it’s important not to try to transform them or get them to admit they’re wrong, but simply to dance with them.

And while he is a best-selling author and thought leader, Godin considers himself, first and foremost, a teacher. “I decided a bunch of years ago that I was a teacher,” says Godin. “And I decided that the best, most comfortable way for me to teach would be to notice things and try to explain them. And, if I do it well, people will say, ‘Well, of course.’ And that’s the goal — to uncover the obvious in a way that once people see it, they can’t unsee it.”

You can find excerpts from Godin’s latest book and a video explaining why he wrote it here.

Highlights from this week’s “Marketing Today” podcast include:

  • Godin on his new book: “Writing a book is painful. Publishing a book is even more painful.” (1:32)
  • The tendency of marketers to race to the bottom. (3:22)
  • Godin discusses the ways polarization manifests itself in society and how to think about it. (7:06)
  • Focusing on what’s easy to measure instead of focusing on what’s important — Godin’s take on capitalism and culture. (14:29)
  • “Stories are more powerful than proof.” (19:36)
  • From aerospace servotronic controls to ski bindings: Godin discusses how a chain of events when he was 14 years old led to the way he still builds his projects today. (27:13)
  • Godin is fueled by seeing what happens when his work falls into the right hands. (32:04)
  • Godin’s response to people seeking the next big thing. (38:10)