A friend of mine loves and quotes Seth Godin often. I tease her that she is in love with Seth, but I think she’s made an excellent choice in choosing to quote Seth Godin, because I believe that Seth thinks. He thinks deeply about life, culture, our contribution to the world and what is truly important.
Yesterday I listened, quite by accident, to a podcast, featuring Seth. I spent 11 minutes 28 seconds listening and it was one of the best investments of my time – EVER. I have since been listening to it over and over and I keep getting more and more from it.
As a definition, Seth refuses to describe marketing as advertising, hype, promotion, scamming, or selfish narcissistic short term thinking.
This unfortunately is how most of us, (even if we don’t overtly describe marketing this way), think. We see marketing and marketers as possessing some ability to make us take action against our will…seducing us with their offerings while we gladly part with our money. We think that some people are “good” at marketing – getting people to follow them and believe in what they are doing. When we think about marketing, while we see it as necessary, we are often put off by tactics yet see this way of being as a means to an end. Marketing doesn’t make us feel wholesome, it makes us feel icky.
Seth’s definition of marketing is simply anything we do that changes the culture for the better. “Once you are willing to take responsibility for the work you’re doing, once you’re bringing something to the world, then you’re a marketer. If you do it better, it’s going to work better than if you don’t.”
We get so caught up in numbers, and followers and setting huge goals that make our heads spin – yet Seth poses this and it’s a question I intend to ask of every person I work with from here on in:
What is the smallest VIABLE audience that can sustain you?
Start there. So often we have these goals we pull out of a hat. I want 500, 1000, 1000,000 clients, followers, likes but if we have zero traction – no work to consistently sustain us, then goals can become large, looming possibilities that seem to move further away from us as we labour incessantly to “get there”.
We must be intentional.
He invites us to be intentional, to contribute directly or by example. To be proud of the body of work we are creating and to share our thoughts daily with the world. Whether we are leading, connecting or inspiring, it begins with the word.
And most of all to remember that habits is what gets us results. A goal is a result.
One of my favorite quotes is one by Albert Gray, shared by Mike Litman – People form habits and habits form futures.
If you do not deliberately form good habits, then unconsciously you will form bad ones. You are the kind of person you are because you have formed the habit of being that kind of person, and the only way you can change is through changing habits.
We must be unapologetically comfortable in who we are.
We must trust and know our own magic and never succumb to the spell of society.
Your truest note in the symphony of life, can only be played by you.