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As one of today's most influential business thinkers, Seth Godin helps his army of fans stay focused, stay connected, and stay dissatisfied with the status quo, the ordinary, the boring. His books, blog posts, magazine articles, and speeches have inspired countless entrepreneurs, marketing people, innovators, and managers around the world. Now, for the first time, Godin ha As one of today's most influential business thinkers, Seth Godin helps his army of fans stay focused, stay connected, and stay dissatisfied with the status quo, the ordinary, the boring. His books, blog posts, magazine articles, and speeches have inspired countless entrepreneurs, marketing people, innovators, and managers around the world. Now, for the first time, Godin has collected the most provocative short pieces from his pioneering blog-ranked #70 by Feedster (out of millions published) in worldwide readership. This book also includes his most popular columns from Fast Company magazine, and several of the short e-books he has written in the last few years. A sample: * Bon Jovi And The Pirates * Christmas Card Spam * Clinging To Your Job Title? * How Much Would You Pay to Be on Oprah's Show? * The Persistence of Really Bad Ideas * The Seduction of "Good Enough" * What Happens When It's All on Tape? * Would You Buy Life Insurance at a Rock Concert? Small is the New Big is a huge bowl of inspiration that you can gobble in one sitting or dip into at any time. As Godin writes in his introduction: "I guarantee that you'll find some ideas that don't work for you. But I'm certain that you're smart enough to see the stuff you've always wanted to do, buried deep inside one of these riffs. And I'm betting that once inspired, you'll actually make something happen." Editorial Reviews In what's likely to be the next in a string of bestselling marketing guides (after Purple Cow), Godin compiles entries from his popular blog. Many are only a few paragraphs long, though he also adds longer entries, from his Fast Company column, to the mix. The pieces are arranged alphabetically by title rather than chronologically, leading to occasional choppiness, but Godin's ability to hone in on key issues remains intact. Following up on the themes of his earlier books, he reminds readers that the first key to successful marketing is to produce something remarkable and let it grow. "If your


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As one of today's most influential business thinkers, Seth Godin helps his army of fans stay focused, stay connected, and stay dissatisfied with the status quo, the ordinary, the boring. His books, blog posts, magazine articles, and speeches have inspired countless entrepreneurs, marketing people, innovators, and managers around the world. Now, for the first time, Godin ha As one of today's most influential business thinkers, Seth Godin helps his army of fans stay focused, stay connected, and stay dissatisfied with the status quo, the ordinary, the boring. His books, blog posts, magazine articles, and speeches have inspired countless entrepreneurs, marketing people, innovators, and managers around the world. Now, for the first time, Godin has collected the most provocative short pieces from his pioneering blog-ranked #70 by Feedster (out of millions published) in worldwide readership. This book also includes his most popular columns from Fast Company magazine, and several of the short e-books he has written in the last few years. A sample: * Bon Jovi And The Pirates * Christmas Card Spam * Clinging To Your Job Title? * How Much Would You Pay to Be on Oprah's Show? * The Persistence of Really Bad Ideas * The Seduction of "Good Enough" * What Happens When It's All on Tape? * Would You Buy Life Insurance at a Rock Concert? Small is the New Big is a huge bowl of inspiration that you can gobble in one sitting or dip into at any time. As Godin writes in his introduction: "I guarantee that you'll find some ideas that don't work for you. But I'm certain that you're smart enough to see the stuff you've always wanted to do, buried deep inside one of these riffs. And I'm betting that once inspired, you'll actually make something happen." Editorial Reviews In what's likely to be the next in a string of bestselling marketing guides (after Purple Cow), Godin compiles entries from his popular blog. Many are only a few paragraphs long, though he also adds longer entries, from his Fast Company column, to the mix. The pieces are arranged alphabetically by title rather than chronologically, leading to occasional choppiness, but Godin's ability to hone in on key issues remains intact. Following up on the themes of his earlier books, he reminds readers that the first key to successful marketing is to produce something remarkable and let it grow. "If your

30 review for Small Is the New Big: and 183 Other Riffs, Rants, and Remarkable Business Ideas

  1. 4 out of 5

    C. Hollis Crossman

    The subtitle of small is the new big is helpful for understanding the book: and 183 other riffs, rants, and remarkable business ideas. It's a collection of posts from Seth Godin's blog, as well as a 35-page postscript discussing the value of, and how to approach crafting, a website, a blog, and a marketing conversation about your product/services. These brief essays are by turns funny, informative, boring, repetitive, surprising, and helpful. If you're reading this to find a handful of groundbrea The subtitle of small is the new big is helpful for understanding the book: and 183 other riffs, rants, and remarkable business ideas. It's a collection of posts from Seth Godin's blog, as well as a 35-page postscript discussing the value of, and how to approach crafting, a website, a blog, and a marketing conversation about your product/services. These brief essays are by turns funny, informative, boring, repetitive, surprising, and helpful. If you're reading this to find a handful of groundbreaking ideas or shortcuts to success, you're going to be disappointed. Rather, Godin offers new ways of seeing things, new ways of thinking about business and success, new ways of behaving in the rapidly changing online marketplace. Because the book is now over a decade old, some of the content is outdated—but this happens far less than might be expected. Godin manages to be insightful and timeless even while he's talking about how you need to change the way you operate as a businessperson or entrepreneur because the world is evolving. Some of his ideas are stupid, but these are mostly peripheral to his main points. For instance, he says at one point that monks (I think he means priests) light candles and burn incense to convince people that God hears their prayers. Clearly he knows nothing about the ancient Divine Liturgy, or the deep meaning behind the physical acts involved in it. Oh well, you say, I'm not reading a Seth Godin book to learn liturgical theology. Very true, but this attitude (he frequently talks about marketing your church) reveals a particular approach, and shows us something about why Godin is writing all this. That approach is this: it doesn't matter the ultimate validity or truth of your propositions and statements in regard to the product or service you're trying to market as long as you express them well and with conviction. In other words, start your marketing conversation well and you'll be successful, truth be damned. Of course, he frequently reminds readers that they should believe in what they're selling, and that they should be trustworthy, etc. But he also praises the monks for what he thinks they're doing, revealing that for Godin the bottom line is the end of the conversation. Many of these essays reveal glimpses of a completely mercenary edge, so read with caution. Even as he's describing how the new entrepreneurs can best serve themselves and their customers through ingenuity, openness, and adaptability, Godin betrays the desire for gain that motivates the entire marketing field that he often castigates for just this stance. If you've got a product or service that you believe can (and should) change the world, you won't need all of the advice proffered in small is the new big. In the spirit of Godin's advice, then, take what you need and leave the rest.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Steve Piacente

    Once an artist puts some work up for sale, he or she, like it or not, becomes a small business owner. The time to read Seth Godin’s, “Small is the New Big,” is before taking this momentous step. The book, though not written specifically for those in the arts or even small business owners, is crammed with riffs, rants, and provocative ideas that are worth contemplating if you’re thinking about transitioning from creating art to creating markets. Take writers. Many worry about criticism, which bloc Once an artist puts some work up for sale, he or she, like it or not, becomes a small business owner. The time to read Seth Godin’s, “Small is the New Big,” is before taking this momentous step. The book, though not written specifically for those in the arts or even small business owners, is crammed with riffs, rants, and provocative ideas that are worth contemplating if you’re thinking about transitioning from creating art to creating markets. Take writers. Many worry about criticism, which blocks the path to innovation. Godin argues that no one starts conversations about those who play it safe. “The products and services that get talked about,” he notes, “are the ones that are worth talking about.” And how about this: “Turn strangers into friends. Turn friends into customers. And then do the most important job: Turn your customers into salespeople.” If there ever was a mantra for the self-published author, that’s it. Godin’s all over the place these days. His other work includes, “Unleashing the Idea Virus,” “Permission Marketing,” and, “Purple Cow.” There’s also plenty of free stuff at his blog, www.sethgodin.com, which, by the way, starts many conversations. And he happens to be one of the speakers now featured at www.authorlearningcenter.com. I’d be surprised if you read this book and didn’t walk away with at least five good ideas. For that, it gets all five of my stars.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Tamara

    I don't often read business books, but this one was amazing. Easy to read, with lots of anecdotes. Here are some great tips/quotes: Every single article about Google (until recently) included the phrase 'And employees eat lunch in a cafeteria where the food is prepared by a former chef for the Grateful Dead.'...For no good reason. It's a jarring juxtapositions of facts that no one expects but is pretty easy to remember. Oxymorons make it easy to tell stories. (BTW, This is the reason why I want I don't often read business books, but this one was amazing. Easy to read, with lots of anecdotes. Here are some great tips/quotes: Every single article about Google (until recently) included the phrase 'And employees eat lunch in a cafeteria where the food is prepared by a former chef for the Grateful Dead.'...For no good reason. It's a jarring juxtapositions of facts that no one expects but is pretty easy to remember. Oxymorons make it easy to tell stories. (BTW, This is the reason why I want to do a marketing campaign like Don't Go to the Library. It will get people's attention. Just like the darn tees at B.D.'s Mongolian Barbecue that say: We do it on the Grill.) Use sentences and short words. Tell stories and give scenarios. Use verbs, not nouns. "Shopping" says more than "Gifts." A confirmation note that customers receive when buying a CD from CD Baby: Your CDs have been gently taken from our CD Baby shelves with sterilized contamination-free gloves and placed onto a satin pillow. A team of 50 employees inspected your CDs and polished them to make sure they were in the best possible condition before mailing. Our packing specialist from Japan lit a candle and a hush fell over the crowd as he put your CDs into the finest gold-lined box that money can buy. We all had a wonderful celebration afterwards and the whole party marched down the street to the post ofice where the entire town of Portland waved Bon Voyage to your package, on its way to you, in our private CD Baby jet on this day, Tuesday, June 18th. I hope you had a wonderful time shopping at CD Baby. We sure did. Your picture is on our wall as Customer of the Year. We're all exhausted but can't wait for you to come back to CD-BABY.com! (This is what I would love to do for our Hold and Overdue notices at the library. Think it would fly?) Always look to re-imagine your product or service. Why make a better CD player when you could invent the iPod? Instead of changing, try "zooming." Zooming is about stretching your limits without threatening your foundation. It's about handling new ideas, new opportunities, and new challenges without triggering the change avoidance reflex. You already zoom every day...by buying a new CD or trying a new restaurant. Blogs work when they are based on: candor, urgency, timeliness, pithiness, controversy, utility. In the new world of business, you either have to be cheaper or different. Otherwise, you'll sink.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Muhammad Khan

    Although some might find this a dated book, I believe Seth Godin is a legend and way ahead of his time. The topics still resonate today, for example for emerging countries and markets on the digital/marketing transformation journey, so much is still valid. For the individuals looking to get a kick or boost, to think differently, there's much to find here. Seth is remarkable, his breadth and depth of topics never ceases to amaze me. It's not a book to read in one setting though! Although some might find this a dated book, I believe Seth Godin is a legend and way ahead of his time. The topics still resonate today, for example for emerging countries and markets on the digital/marketing transformation journey, so much is still valid. For the individuals looking to get a kick or boost, to think differently, there's much to find here. Seth is remarkable, his breadth and depth of topics never ceases to amaze me. It's not a book to read in one setting though!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Flora

    I didn't feel like reading the book anymore at "Egomaniac." I borrowed this book, because it's popular and gives actually really helpful advice about product design. It was very informative in terms of thinking differently to improve or start a business, but I can't stand the way he sounds. Just like how to a like a subject but don't like a professor's personality, each "post" made me think about design differently, but the author's tone and voice just overpowered the ideas. It was to the point I didn't feel like reading the book anymore at "Egomaniac." I borrowed this book, because it's popular and gives actually really helpful advice about product design. It was very informative in terms of thinking differently to improve or start a business, but I can't stand the way he sounds. Just like how to a like a subject but don't like a professor's personality, each "post" made me think about design differently, but the author's tone and voice just overpowered the ideas. It was to the point I can't tell if he's speaking out of wisdom or ego. Conclusion: Great ideas, gets straight to the point, makes sense, but too self-centered and over sensitive (it includes a screen shot of a rejection e-mail from Google, but just read the book to find out why). Read if you love TED talks, because every little snippet is so different and really gets you thinking, like a lot. This book is like if TED just threw up a bunch of little snippets in book-form. He talks a lot about moving forward, thinking, differently, ideal things that are just not concrete enough for me to keep on reading for. The only thing I like about the author is he's okay if you disagree.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Ann

    Since I follow Seth Godin's blog, I impulsively picked up his 2006 collection of earlier blog posts the last time I was in the library. Have I mentioned I love Seth? He rants about the same things I rant about and there is nothing more endearing than knowing someone else thinks as you do. Like all his work, he sparks your creativity. You are free to pick and choose and see what makes sense in your own world. Loosely alphabeticalized, you can read this book in small or larger (would that be appropr Since I follow Seth Godin's blog, I impulsively picked up his 2006 collection of earlier blog posts the last time I was in the library. Have I mentioned I love Seth? He rants about the same things I rant about and there is nothing more endearing than knowing someone else thinks as you do. Like all his work, he sparks your creativity. You are free to pick and choose and see what makes sense in your own world. Loosely alphabeticalized, you can read this book in small or larger (would that be appropriate?) chunks over a period of time.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Thursday Bram

    I'm a big fan of Seth Godin's blog and other online writing, and I've been working on picking up a few of his books. "Small is the New Big" was an exceptionally interesting read — particularly because I enjoy Godin's blog. The book was page after page of short sections, essentially explaining an idea Godin has about marketing and business. While "Small is the New Big" isn't a textbook, I feel like I came away with an incredible amount of new knowledge. I'm a big fan of Seth Godin's blog and other online writing, and I've been working on picking up a few of his books. "Small is the New Big" was an exceptionally interesting read — particularly because I enjoy Godin's blog. The book was page after page of short sections, essentially explaining an idea Godin has about marketing and business. While "Small is the New Big" isn't a textbook, I feel like I came away with an incredible amount of new knowledge.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Andrew Hager

    To the author's credit, this book was written in 2006 so it's outdated and not very useful in 2019. That being said, it reads VERY thin and doesn't offer much real help. In fact, most of it reads like petty boomer whining. "I get too many spam emails!" His advice is usually something along the lines of "don't do things that annoy me!" I'm sure this guy is successful and knowledgeable in a lot of ways but he doesn't share much wisdom here, and his writing comes across as uninformed or like he can' To the author's credit, this book was written in 2006 so it's outdated and not very useful in 2019. That being said, it reads VERY thin and doesn't offer much real help. In fact, most of it reads like petty boomer whining. "I get too many spam emails!" His advice is usually something along the lines of "don't do things that annoy me!" I'm sure this guy is successful and knowledgeable in a lot of ways but he doesn't share much wisdom here, and his writing comes across as uninformed or like he can't be bothered to back things up with research. It all reads like blog posts which I think they are. He talks about writing blogs and columns so I think this whole book is just his blog posts loosely patched together. I am a certified idiot and even I could punch holes through a lot of his arguments. The most laughable section is the one about how companies should choose a good name. He lists off many very successful companies with bad names, then lists some of his own companies with good names, names like "Skidoozle" or something. He also says that "PRIUS" is a terrible name and then one chapter later mentions that he drives one. I think Prius is doing fine, and their name is fine. There are a lot of really helpful books about small businesses and marketing, don't spend your valuable time with this book.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Matthew Royal

    "Riffs" is right. These range from mini blog posts to random thought dump to meditations, after which you imagine Godin's enraptured audience intoning "Selah." They're personal insights he had during the week, but even Godin unbelievers will find it useful since he documents them compares, contrasts, and inverts them to understand WHY. I deeply agree with his worldview that the only way to know whether something works is to try it and measure it, then try alternatives and measure those, think abo "Riffs" is right. These range from mini blog posts to random thought dump to meditations, after which you imagine Godin's enraptured audience intoning "Selah." They're personal insights he had during the week, but even Godin unbelievers will find it useful since he documents them compares, contrasts, and inverts them to understand WHY. I deeply agree with his worldview that the only way to know whether something works is to try it and measure it, then try alternatives and measure those, think about the numbers, formulate a theory, try it out, then measure it. Also, customers are smart people who buy more when you respect them. Many marketers don't realize the contrapositive is also true.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Kim

    This one took me a while to get through; but at the very beginning, Seth Godwin recommends reading this in chunks - not like a narrative. What I really like about it is that it was written maybe 10-12 years ago, and some of his predictions have become hilariously true. The other thing I like is the focus on small, nimble, agile organizations. That long ago, he recommended small orgs to get things done and make a difference. Now, “big” Fortune 100s are admonishing their teams to “think small” and This one took me a while to get through; but at the very beginning, Seth Godwin recommends reading this in chunks - not like a narrative. What I really like about it is that it was written maybe 10-12 years ago, and some of his predictions have become hilariously true. The other thing I like is the focus on small, nimble, agile organizations. That long ago, he recommended small orgs to get things done and make a difference. Now, “big” Fortune 100s are admonishing their teams to “think small” and be agile to be competitive in today’s marketplace. Hmmm. . . This would be a good book to read/review again in about 5 years to see if his advice still holds true. ;)

  11. 4 out of 5

    Scott

    Another great Seth Godin book. This is a collection of posts from his great writings across many different topics. Having read this as an audiobook, I unfortunately cannot recap some great quotes, but Seth brings forward the importance of the customer and "making moments matter". He reflects that too often the image is not the reality, and our role as leaders is to align words to action. Interestingly I was reading this at the time as "The Startup Playbook" by David Kidder (that one on the Kindle) Another great Seth Godin book. This is a collection of posts from his great writings across many different topics. Having read this as an audiobook, I unfortunately cannot recap some great quotes, but Seth brings forward the importance of the customer and "making moments matter". He reflects that too often the image is not the reality, and our role as leaders is to align words to action. Interestingly I was reading this at the time as "The Startup Playbook" by David Kidder (that one on the Kindle). These really complemented each other for key customer focus and challenging yourself and the organisation. Seth covers that the hardest thing to do is make hard decisions, which may involve people. However, passion, purpose and customer centricity are values, not tasks. Seth always inspires you to think differently. Do yourself a favour and read this book; as an audiobook it is great.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Frank Cardinale

    If you like business books and can’t go ten minutes without being interrupted by your kids or phone, then you’ll like this book. It’s a collection of blog posts from Seth Godin’s website about business, marketing, and how the economy has changed over the past few decades. I find the author can make you think even with the few paragraphs he writes a topic, many of which are from his day-to-day experiences. It doesn’t have to be read from start to finish, so you can put it down for a while and pick If you like business books and can’t go ten minutes without being interrupted by your kids or phone, then you’ll like this book. It’s a collection of blog posts from Seth Godin’s website about business, marketing, and how the economy has changed over the past few decades. I find the author can make you think even with the few paragraphs he writes a topic, many of which are from his day-to-day experiences. It doesn’t have to be read from start to finish, so you can put it down for a while and pick it up again without feeling you’ve forgotten what the book is about.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Maria Sigacheva

    Enjoyed reading this book with many marketing and business thoughts by author. I also liked the points made, specifically about a shift and reality of small businesses becoming in some instances more successful and profitable, than big corporations. The minimalist approach by SMEs, that bears fruits of profits. The business structure, that became ever more agile and adaptive to the changes, that gives small businesses an edge to succeed. Not a guide though, but good read anyway.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jeremy Howlett

    Solid. A lot of outdated information. Would be cool to have Seth do a rewrite in today and see how things change. Many of the riffs and principles are sound still today. Sure makes me want to create and rethink the way that I do things. I am grateful that I have had a part in creating something amazing in the 2000s.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Alicia Bonk

    Seth Godin people are my kind of people. After hearing him on Tim Ferris podcast I was reminded to dive in to some of his books. I don’t follow his blog so this book of riffs and rants was perfect for me and convinced me to read Purple Cow.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Omar El-mohri

    Old book from Seth Godin but really impressive how he can go deep into situations and insights in business, marketing that we usually miss or just don't consider important. how technology, web are playing to create new ways of doing marketing. Old book from Seth Godin but really impressive how he can go deep into situations and insights in business, marketing that we usually miss or just don't consider important. how technology, web are playing to create new ways of doing marketing.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Fayette

    This book is somewhat outdated (published in 2006) and the evolution of the internet, blogging, web sites, music, devices, etc....has been rapid over the past 13 years. Still, there are some interesting and relevant business and marketing ideas that might spark thought or conversation.

  18. 4 out of 5

    D

    Whilst this book is over a decade old there are very few aspects that are outdated. I’m sure the reference to widgets and podcasts may have changed. I enjoyed the chapters on rifting and his final chapter that spoke about mishaps; packaging and emotional attachment.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Vikrant

    Will this pandemic do otherwise though is a question worth asking! Though best time to create new categories and disrupt existing play as its a compilation of old blogs of Seth Godin, this was read as one blog post a day and hence took 6+ months

  20. 5 out of 5

    Dillon Boss

    This book has a few good nuggets in it — great ideas to discuss in a team meeting setting or just to get the gears turning. Unfortunately a lot of references and topics are very outdated, but it is remarkable in hindsight to have seen some of Seth’s predictions come to fruition.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Lia Hulit

    Didn't like it as much as some of his other books. Still solid ideas/takeaways. Didn't like it as much as some of his other books. Still solid ideas/takeaways.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Ashley Horton

    Decent concepts & well written but this book started to feel very redundant after a while.

  23. 4 out of 5

    A

    Entertaining

  24. 5 out of 5

    Raymond Goss

    Material is useful and entertaining. It really is a collection of things related to doing things differently. One could read just a portion and still get benefit.

  25. 4 out of 5

    David

    Timeless insights from Seth Godin

  26. 4 out of 5

    John Brian Anderson

    Hmmm, what to say? This is pure Seth but ..... I am not sure that I got a lot out of this one? It doesn't really have a theme and I think that hurts my personal retention of the material. Hmmm, what to say? This is pure Seth but ..... I am not sure that I got a lot out of this one? It doesn't really have a theme and I think that hurts my personal retention of the material.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Alexander Kelley

    Even years later, the core ideas in this book ring true.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Amr Swalha

    As usual, Seth never runs out of purple cows. And as always he leaves his free prize inside each thing he creates.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Shruti Sharma

    Thorough and succinct, this book is a must read for every blogger, CEO, marketer, SEO person, entrepreneur, or basically anyone who wants to understand how they can be better at selling something.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    Worth re-listening to at varied times. Reference parts of this at times I sense it's validity. Some examples are outdated however, I find the principles still relevant. Worth re-listening to at varied times. Reference parts of this at times I sense it's validity. Some examples are outdated however, I find the principles still relevant.

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