Marketing with Seth Godin

Marketing with Seth Godin

You may have heard me talk about Seth Godin on occasion.  Seth Godin is a great resource (find him at and offers a lot of basic ideas to about a very complicated subject: Marketing.

At CPC we are directly involved with marketing…indeed, most of the things we print at CPC are marketing tools.  Brochures, direct mail, variable data pieces, maps, catalogs…even business cards…these are all marketing products.  Yet all too often I see projects pass through our systems that seem to have little concern to the impact this project could or should have.  Some suggestions on how to improve the success of your print communication marketing project revolve around involving others’ opinions, working hard on honing the messages, starting early so you are not under pressure to hit a deadline and becoming a student of marketing wizards.

Seth Godin is one of those wizards.  He has many books that are all very quick to digest.  He has free blogs.  His lectures and presentations are available on YouTube.  I strongly suggest you START with his book “Permission Marketing” and grow from there.  Many of the tools discussed in that book are available at CPC and are actually being used in this email to you (yes..this email you are reading now is a personalized email that was merged with my large Know More data base for which I patrol like a bird hunts for worms…an email list which, of course (if you are reading this), includes your name…and all in the very spirit of Seth Godin’s instructions in Permission Marketing!!).

Note that MOST of the stuff Seth discuses is simple and fairly common.  Lately a friend of mine that has been a running partner of mine for years introduced me to a physical training technique known as “cross fit”.  Here is how it works: we run for a while and then do push ups, sit ups, chin ups, jumping jacks, etc.  Then we run again and repeat.  Sounds simple and fairly common but YOU TRY IT!  And I thought I was in shape!  Forget that idea! Still these SIMPLE, BASIC, FREE exercises that I learned in grammar school are more effective than buying and learning to use an elaborate home gym (aka: necktie rack).  Likewise, I have found over and over again that many clients I work with do NOT have groomed data bases…names, addresses, email addresses…or, if they do, they never use them effectively.  They don’t know anything about email blasts, newsletters, variable data post cards…all very basic and effective tools (like push ups!) yet lost in the mystery of effort and time.

Anyway, here is his latest Blog entry…a blog I read daily and from which I always learn something.

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The CPM gap

Ads online typically cost $5 to $20 for one thousand impressions. A fancy magazine might cost two or three times that. But it’s still pennies a person.

Attending a conference, on the other hand, costs $1000 by the time you add up the expenses. That’s a CPM of $1,000,000. One thousand of the right people at the right conference costs a million dollars, as opposed to $12 for the same thousand people online.

That seems nuts. Same people, radical difference in price. Apples and oranges. It’s not a valid comparison because one is about ads and interruptions, the other is from the point of view of the conference organizer or the attendee awash in attention and connection…

Here’s the thing: advertisers treat prospects online as targets, as victims, as people to subject to interruption. Conferences treat attendees as royalty, as paying customers who invested time and money to be there.

And that’s the difference. As long as your site is about something else and the ads are a distraction, you’ll see CPM rates drop. As soon as you (or the advertisers) figure out that creating online communities aligned with the advertising, where attendance is a choice by the consumer, then you’re creating genuine value.

The irony is that advertisers continue to push media people to create the very environments that don’t work. They want a bigger M and a lower C.

Far more useful for everyone to do the opposite. Pay a lot and get more than you pay for.

-Seth Godin

Questions? Please email me at or call me at 970-250-6749

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