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What Marketers Get Wrong, According To Seth Godin [Infographic]

Seth Godin is THE marketing OG. We really enjoyed these articles packed with Godin’s advice for marketers in a new landscape forever changed by the Internet and social media.

We’ve condensed that wisdom into an infographic for your pleasure, enjoy!

Seth Godin Marketing Advice – Transcript:

The Internet and social media are the first mediums in a century not invented for advertisers.

Attention no longer comes in little bundles, and is worth much more than it ever was.

In what Godin dubs the “Connected Economy”, a marketer’s role has changed.

It’s no longer about getting customers or empowering a brand –

it’s about humility, building truss and amassing awareness.

1: Quiet Your Lizard Brain – Silence your fears, follow your gut

In your brain, right next to your brain stem sits a prehistoric lump called the amygdala. Godin calls it the “Lizard Brain”.

“The lizard brain is the reason you’re afraid, the reason you don’t do all the art you can, the reason you don’t ship when you can. The Lizard Brain is the source of The Resistance.” – Seth Godin

The lizard brain leads to risk-averse thinking and an interrupted workflow.

It’s responsible for writer’s block, self-doubt and a lack of focus.

Godin says a marketer must learn to silence their Lizard Brain and trust their gut to make the right decisions, and truly test their business plans and hypotheses.

Read next: 6 Steps To Eliminating Creative Anxiety For Content Marketers

2: Think Like An Artist – You gotta care about what you do

Godin encourages marketers to think beyond regular job roles (Managers, Executors, Grunts) and think like an artist instead– to stop “doing work” and start “making art”.

He defines art as something that…

  • Transforms the world in some way
  • Is generous (gives value)
  • Involves risk of rejection, puzzlement and stasis
  • Something the creator cares enough about to pursue in spite of possible failure

Thinking like an artist leads to otherwise inaccessible possibilities, positive changes and progress.

“An artist is someone who uses bravery, insight, creativity and boldness to challenge the status quo. And an artist takes it personally.” – Seth Godin

3: Embrace the Weird – Disregard the masses, connect the disconnected

To spread a message, instead of appealing to the mass market, Godin wants marketers to embrace “The Weird”.

It’s difficult to grasp the mass markets’ attention because of the endless options available.

It’s more effective to try catching the attention of “The Weird”, consumers who want something unconventional and specific, because they are actively looking for what they want.

Another point Godin wants marketers to note– ideas that really spread tend to be ideas that that are BETTER when spread. He cites the example of the fax machine: The first person with a fax machine had a worthless device until someone else he knew had one– this gave him an incentive to talk about fax.

“Don’t find customers for your product. Find products for your customers.” – Seth Godin

Read next: The Power Of Niche Marketing: Emulate These 4 Successful Brands to Get More Word-of-Mouth

4: Make An Emotional Connection – Become more than a company

A marketer’s role is more disconnected from traditional advertising than ever before.

With information freely available, touting the perks and features of a product is a strategy that no longer works.

Marketers are no longer in the business of getting customers, but of writing a narrative that connects a brand to those who want to be connected.

Godin raises the example of Airbnb, a company that’s “nothing but crashing on the floor of a house.” (Airbnb would hotly contest that as oversimplification– they provide a unique, homely experience– creating relationships between hosts and guests.)

If Airbnb were to disappear, there would still be many ways to rent a couch. What people would miss about Airbnb lies on an emotional level.

Companies like Apple, Lululemon and TripAdvisor would be missed if they were to disappear – even though adequate solutions would fill the void.

They mean something to customers emotionally, and that connection can’t be easily replaced.

“People have enough stuff, but they don’t have enough meaning.” – Seth Godin

To be a successful marketer in the connected economy, one has to move beyond tactical business thinking and connect to niche consumers with guts, passion and emotion. And that’s the bottom line, ‘cause Seth Godin said so.

Read next: #feels – 13 Examples of Emotion-centric Marketing


Jon Tan

My coffee expenses and my office rental are one and the same.

Terrified of mathematics and carbohydrates.

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