Yesterday with another 1,000 marketers and creatives at the Minnesota Interactive Marketing Association (MIMA) Summit I witnessed marketing thought leader Seth Godin spread his ideas about how to market in these times of great change and disruption. Like some in the room I have followed Mr. Godin for a decade and many of this remarks were not new but a retelling of ideas from his blog and books. In fact, I would estimate that 99% of the content of his speech yesterday was material culled from the past decade of his publishing. The irony of his plugs for nearly all his books was not lost on some of us. But that was OK with me because the 1% that was “new” amplified and made me look at his past ideas in new and interesting ways.
This, and the totality of the sessions and conversations I had at MIMA, made me question everything about what I have been doing over the past few years in social marketing work. While I have achieved some success, I do not feel truly successful. While I have done some interesting and innovative things, I have not been really that remarkable. The purple cow does not live at my house.
One of Mr. Godin’s remarks yesterday really hit home. It was the value of social media “friends.” No, this was not part of the 1% I had not yet heard, or more likely not paid attention to, but something I had seen in past talks. I had just not thought of it in quite the same way. His idea is that you should not focus on getting people to follow you but getting the right people to follow you. The people who would go out of their way to help you if asked. Although thousands of people follow my three Twitter presences, I would estimate that less than 1% would actually be the type of follower Godin is talking about. Humbling, indeed.
So I’ve decided to refocus my efforts here on the 1% that makes me think differently about marketing and life in general. And along the way illuminate the 1% of me that truly makes a difference.
Thanks for helping me make these connections, Seth.