Tag Archives: Seth Godin

2017 – the choice of attitude

When I opened my email this first morning of the New Year, I received notice from Seth Godin, one of my favourite thinkers and writers, of a new post on his blog. He writes a post every day, so that’s not the unusual part of this. He also writes poignantly and succinctly, capturing a profound thought quickly, getting right to the meat of what he has to say. Unlike me with this long preamble. (He’s a great writer for someone as verbose as me to study, come to think of it …)

Anyway, I read The Choice and it resonated with me, especially on this first day of a New Year, with new possibilities, and all that. (Go off and read the blog post. It’s short. But come back when you’re finished …)

See what I mean? It’s the way I’ve been trying to live my life for years now, but Godin ties it all up neatly with a bow and presents it as a kind of a gift to me, an affirmation that the way I’ve been thinking all along is the way to continue forward.

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So, as I’ve said previously on this blog:

I choose to be positive, and I’m negative on negativity …

I choose to participate by promoting and helping other authors to get their writing noticed and read.

I choose to challenge the status quo of the writing and publishing biz with, as Godin calls it, My Purple Cow, among other ideas

I choose to be intolerant of intolerance, and will continue to keep a closed mind to close-mindedness.

I choose to be optimistic that the cheaters and bullies will never win in the end. To choose hope instead of fear.

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Really, as Seth Godin says, “We choose them [the attitudes] and do the work.” It’s as simple as that.

Sure, there are a lot of things happening right now in our world that we can’t change, but changing our attitude towards those things and those people is a good start, don’t you think?

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From the vaults – What’s in it for THEM?, Sept. 20, 2015

It seemed to be time to bring back this blog post of Sept. 2015 from the vaults and remind some people out there that they’re further ahead using “permission” rather than old-fashioned “interruption” marketing techniques to get the attention of their intended audience … Here’s what I mean:

Whether you are writing and publishing a book, writing and producing a song or video, delivering a speech, posting to your blog, writing a status update on Facebook or tweeting a message on Twitter, friending or following someone, accepting friendship or returning a follow—or just connecting with anyone in some way or another . . .

Don’t ask what’s in this for you. It should always be:

What’s in it for THEM!

Always try to make it about the other person, no matter what you do. No one really wants to receive a message from you that they should buy your book/like you on Facebook/check out your website or blog. Really, they won’t want to. Not when they’ve only just “met” you. This is why I will unfollow or unfriend anyone who sends me a direct message (and the automated messages are the worst!) “telling” me to check out their new book or site before even bothering to thank me or having taken any time at all to check out my profile or show an interest in me first.

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A fellow sales rep once told me a story of having been seated next to Tom Wolfe on a flight to their publisher’s sales conference. (And, yes, Wolfe was wearing his trademark white suit.) What amazed my friend about Wolfe was that their conversation revolved completely around … my friend: who he was, where he lived, what he enjoyed reading, how his job as sales rep worked for him. Then they talked about books and reading, but not about Wolfe or his books at all. What my friend realized was that Wolfe was completely involved in their conversation, but not at all involved in himself. I think Wolfe, for his part, was probably just acting upon those instincts he’d honed, as a journalist and novelist, and was observing, listening, maybe even looking for a story. Whatever the reason, Tom Wolfe won over a lifelong fan that day.

So what I’m getting at here is that you’re more likely to make friends and influence people, or find new readers/listeners/viewers for whatever it is you are writing and creating, by turning your pitch around and letting THEM know what you can offer that is different from all the others out there who are simply trying to convince everyone to Buy! Buy! Buy! This is so simple to do, too. Offer to review their book, if you’ve already read it, or even tell them you will promote it to your friends. Be like Tom Wolfe—ask THEM questions, show your interest in them. If you write a blog, ask them to be a guest. Share their status updates, like, and retweet what they post. (Although possibly not to the point of being stalker-like . . .) Trust me! This kind of flattery will get you everywhere!

Let’s all become more engaged with our friends and audience by turning the tables and always remembering to let them know first . . . What’s in it for THEM!

(This is actually a concept that is part of Permission Marketing and it’s well covered in the book of that name written by Seth Godin who coined the term in the first place. By following what I suggest above, you will find that people who do become your friends will then want to become readers and, if they enjoy what you write, will then become fans with an interest in anything you may produce in the future. And those fans will also likely look after your future promotion for you.)

Social Media – Giving as well as Taking … a revisit

This is a post I first wrote on June 28, 2012, and after reading Seth Godin’s blog today (the link to which is at the bottom of what I have to say), I was reminded to get these words out there again to all the new followers and readers who I have met in these past couple of years. If you want to skip my verbosity, scroll down and read Seth’s much briefer take on the subject. Otherwise, read on, and please add a comment afterwards to let me know what you think. Let’s get a conversation started! smt

Here’s the way blogging and Social Media work… We post our opinions and observations to our blogs; we create status updates for our friends to read; we tweet about where we are, what we’re doing and what is of interest to us so that our followers may know what’s happening in our lives and what we consider to be important news. That’s the “taking” part of how we use personal blogs and both Facebook and Twitter, because we’re using these opportunities to promote ourselves, to get the word out there about us and what we’re doing, and thinking, about all that we believe to be of interest to our readers, friends, followers, and the world at large. Great!

But that’s not where it ends. You can’t expect everyone out there in Internetland will be breath-bated, awaiting your very next missive. Well, one or two might be anxious to read your every word, but don’t fool yourself into thinking that every one of those subscribers, friends or followers is actually paying any attention at all to what you’ve written, let alone that they think it will all be totally brilliant. Sorry to burst your egotistical bubble, but that’s just the reality of the Internet and Social Media in general these days.

Don’t get me wrong! I believe that blogs, Facebook and Twitter are all great methods of promoting my business and my own writing and book and I use them extensively, and every day. But I also realized a long time ago that the only way all three work for me in effectively getting the word out is if I also give back to the system. So I have always made a point of “liking” blog posts, subscribing to blogs I enjoy reading on a regular basis, making comments on them (with a link back to my own blog), and sharing those blogs on Facebook and Twitter. And while on Facebook, I “like,” comment on, and share my friends’ status updates as much as possible. On Twitter, I retweet, mention followers, thank them for retweeting my tweets, etc. This is the SOCIAL part of social media – the giving part of Give and Take. By commenting, sharing, retweeting and liking, we’re exposing our friends’ and colleagues’ writing to a whole new set of eyes – those of our own subscribers, friends and followers! After all, if we have loyal people who like to read what we post, then they will likely be interested in anyone we’re recommending they read or learn about from our shares. (Which is the point of my other blog, Reading Recommendations.)

By doing this, we become part of a conversation which is really what all of this Social Media was meant to be in the first place. And a conversation means two or more people equally taking part, contributing, listening, and encouraging others to become involved. One person posting alone and never conversing with others is a monologue – and how quickly do we tire of listening to a monologue? I have hidden countless friends and followers because of their incessant Me! Me! Me!’s and their seeming inability to take any active role in the actual conversation, in the social aspect of Social Media.

So, if you are an active blogger or user of Facebook or Twitter (and I’ve only concentrated on these three here because they are what I choose to use, but the same goes for Google+, LinkedIn, etc.), think about how you interact on them. Remember that it’s not about the number of subscribers, friends and followers you have, but whether those people are actually reading what you post and sharing it with their own friends and followers. What goes around, comes around. Think of sharing as good Karma.

Give as well as take.

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Well, that put Mr. Griz to sleep. But if you’re still with me, read what Seth Godin has to say.

The generosity boomerang