What We Can Learn About Blogging from Seth Godin

sethportrait.jpgSeth Godin is an icon of new marketing, and someone whose thinking I respect. Seth is also a prolific blogger. In some ways, he does blogging the way it’s “supposed” to be done, but in other ways, he bucks convention, such as by not allowing comments.

Just as I did with my learning from posts on Britney Spears and Boing Boing, what I’m going after here isn’t advice from Seth about how to blog, but rather, to see what Seth can teach us about blogging through his example.

Here we go:

  1. Closing comments doesn’t end the conversation: the conversation takes place on the web and through email. You can always email Seth. This automatically gets rid of a lot of garbage. Pingbacks are displayed, but not comments. Think of it as cross-blog commenting.
  2. Keep it short and to the point and valuable, because people’s time is valuable.
  3. Take unrelated things and show how they illustrate your topic (like what you can learn about blogging from Seth Godin).
  4. Use your physical appearance for branding. We all know Seth is bald. His dome is an aspect of his personal branding.
  5. Be prolific as well as on target.
  6. Give stuff away for free in order to sell more. Seth has given away several of his books as free downloads. You think that hurts his ability to make money? Quite the contrary–it strengthens it. The work on Seth’s part is worth it to build trust in his audience.
  7. Take things that already exist and re-imagine/re-invent them with catchy names. Seth is a master at this. The idea of the Purple Cow is really nothing more than just a catchier way to bring up the pre-existing idea of differentiation or of a UVP (unique value proposition). Unique in this case doesn’t mean something that’s never been done before. Reinventing something is the process of tweaking something that already exists to make it fresh and exciting. Business blogging sounds kinda boring, but Gateway Blogging, on the other hand, sounds fresh and intriguing.
  8. Writing a blog and writing books have a lot in common and help each other. Many of the web’s successful bloggers are also successful book authors… or is that the other way around? Print or ebook, it doesn’t matter. Print would help more, but both will help at least some. Seth has a blog for every book he’s published, lately.
  9. Public speaking and blogging go together. Seth is a well-known public speaker. Some of the best things I’ve ever learned have been from watching him speak. Blogging and public speaking reinforce each other very nicely. Just ask my friend Phil Gerbyshak.

Saying that we can learn from Seth’s example does not mean I’m saying that we should imitate him. Maybe you don’t want to use your physical appearance as part of your branding and image. Maybe you would never, ever speak in public. The key objective in all of this, it seems to me, is to find the best ways to be remarkable… and we have to decide what that means for ourselves and our blogs.

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2 Comments

  1. Mark Dykeman December 28, 2007
  2. Michael Martine December 28, 2007