A Lesson or two in Marketing from Seth Godin [Power of Freebie]

Seth Godin, better known for coining the word ‘permission marketing’ has launched a free ebook ‘What Matters Now’, that brings together 70 big thinkers and each one of them shares an idea – 1 page: 1 author.

The book is free (download it from here, also embedded towards the end of this post), but the real reason why this book launch is extremely important is this – Seth is launching Linchpin on Jan 26, 2010 and the free ebook is precursor to keep the buzz going.
The book was trending topic on Twitter for more than 7 hours (with as many as 20 tweets/minute) and a good number of people have started sharing their perspective/insights on their blogs (and linking back to Seth’s blog). In essence, its an idea worth spreading (TED styled) and is spreading like a wild fire (not an exaggeration, but why are we write about this book here?)

Free With a Mission

Seth brings in his friends/contacts to share their insights/perspective, binds them together and launches an awesomely done ebook. The amount of effort that is probably gone in getting the entire stuff ready would have brought anyone to say ‘let me charge a few dollars for this’, but free spreads the word and helps Seth in his most important venture, i.e. Linchpin (upcoming book).

That is, free ebook with a bigger mission.

Conversation? Not here!

Did you know that you cannot leave comment @ Seth Godin’s blog.

Apart from the fact that he may not have time to moderate them, it also helps him in spreading the conversation beyond his blog. Infact, people talk/discuss his blog content everywhere else (including offline meetings), because they cannot discuss them at his site.

Ofcourse, this is a function of one’s confidence on the quality of content, but isn’t this a great strategy for viral growth?
I agree, not everybody can afford this – but the point I am driving is the need for a ‘different’ strategy, if you want to position yourself as a thought leader.

It’s all about making a difference and engaging people – but ensure that your generosity has a bigger mission.

If you make a difference, you also make a connection. You interact with people who want to be interacted with and you make changes that people respect and yearn for.
Art can’t happen without someone who seeks to make a difference. This is your art, it’s what you do. You touch people or projects and change them for the better.

This year, you’ll certainly find that the more you give the more you get – Seth.

To summarize, free is important, but the sense of mission combined with a ‘good cause’ (heck! Indians support Brands that support Good Causes) gets far more attention than desperate selling.
So here is to the entrepreneurs – Rethink your marketing strategy. Ask yourself – Am I doing what everybody else is doing?
Am I impacting people’s lives? If not, why do I matter?

What Matters Now

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