Sunday, December 30, 2018

Review: This is Marketing: You Can't Be Seen Until You Learn To See

This is Marketing: You Can't Be Seen Until You Learn To See This is Marketing: You Can't Be Seen Until You Learn To See by Seth Godin
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book had so much potential! It showed up on Amazon Charts out of the blue, as a nonfiction "most sold", and I bought it immediately. I began reading intensively soon after purchase, but about halfway through, I bogged down. And being honest with myself, although I have tried reading other books by Seth Godin, and remember being entranced by some of their ideas and examples, I eventually stop reading. Until "This is Marketing", I don't think I have ever finished one, even though his books are typically really small.

So what did I like this time? First and foremost, I was intrigued by Godin's idea of engendering "tension" in potential customers, the emotion they feel when the product or service you are offering, and the way it is communicated, leads to people who are no longer at ease with what they currently have. Godin recognizes, as he should, that there is a real, legitimate unmet need being filled, but it is his customer-eye view and the idea of growing tension, expressing it very well and in a unique way, at least for me.

Least? I realized about two-thirds of the way through that Godin insists, much of the time, on using a "second-person" voice that gets very annoying. I realize this point-of-view analysis (first, second, and third person) belongs more to the realm of fiction, but he pounds hard on the "you must do this" and "you have to do that" style, and it got very old to me. Yes, I am seeking a certain level of advice here, but treating me and other readers as helpless until now and his imparting of tremendous wisdom in commend form is naive. (I just noticed - he uses "You" twice in the book's subtitle.)

Another strong dislike? His choice of the NRA as a wonderful example of marketing excellence is ill-advised and not valid. This is one readers will have to stick around until near the end to find, so my guess is not that many will!

BTW the book has never appeared again on the most-sold Amazon Charts list, and I don't expect it to appear on the most-read list.

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