Startup Lessons from Seth Godin [Video]

Master storyteller and blogger extraordinaire, Seth Godin, recently stopped by to share his marketing genius. From a group of over one hundred applicants, we selected a handful of Boston startups to serve up their greatest marketing challenges to Godin for advice. Boy, did he deliver.

Video Credit: Skyscope Creative designs and produces video marketing campaigns for technology companies in the northeast US.

Here’s a quick summary of a few of the startup challenges Godin tackled:

Bundio (Julian Weisser, CEO): Convince an industry to shift its model to a new approach. 

First, understand that different customers are different. Don’t try to get mass-market laggards to like your product; target the early adopters. Tell a story that resonates with this group and makes them want to give your product a try. Then make sure something about your product makes it likely that their peers will emulate them. Build a layer on top of your product that leads everyone who uses it to decide it would work better if others use it too.

Rhoost (Vianka Perez-Belyea, CEO): Sell a product to a niche market. 

Figure out how to be present in the exact moment at which your users experience the problem that your product solves. Align the conversation so the problem and the solution show up at exactly the same time.

Directr (Max Goldman, Co-Founder): Break out in a world with millions of competing apps, and decided where to invest precious resources

Figure out if you are a wandering generality or a meaningful specific. If you’re a wandering generality, the product itself has to be viral and have all of the elements that make it viral. Otherwise, it has to solve specific pain in a remarkable way.

Promoboxx (Sonciary Honnoll, Co-Founder): Use the right resources to get the attention of the right audience, using time efficiently and improving the buying cycle.

Build a turnkey, low customization solution that a low-level person inside your target organization can access and socialize within the company. Or find out how to get on more podiums and create buzz, so your product becomes the thing you have to explain to your boss if you don’t have it. Invent the category. Your job is to create pain, and then make the pain go away.

WordStream (Tara DiMaggio, UX): Bridge the gap between marketing and product design teams. 

Product and marketing are the same thing, and any organization that is splitting them apart is making a huge mistake. Move their desks—put the people in the marketing department physically in proximity to the product department, and have them switch roles one day per week.

Smarterer (Dan Pratt, Marketing): How do we identify a target market that values our core technology? 

Pick just one thing to stand for. It’s fearful, because you might be wrong, but it’s also what makes good companies become great. Pick one thing to stand for and say, this is what we do. And don’t forget—a product isn’t real until you have to pay for it, either with time or money.

In a recent post on his blog, Godin, made the following statement:

“Wouldn’t it be great to be gifted? In fact…

It turns out that choices lead to habits.

Habits become talents.

Talents are labeled gifts.

You’re not born this way, you get this way.”

Seth Godin sure is gifted.

This entry was posted in Community, Marketing and tagged by Sarah Hodges. Bookmark the permalink.
Sarah Hodges

About Sarah Hodges

Sarah Hodges is the co-founder of She is also the Vice President of People and Places at Pluralsight, the world’s leading online training company for technical and creative professionals, and is an advisor to Flybridge Capital in Boston. Hodges previously led Strategy and Operations at Smarterer (acquired by Pluralsight), led Marketing at RunKeeper (acquired by Asics), and led Marketing Analytics at Carbonite (CARB).

3 thoughts on “Startup Lessons from Seth Godin [Video]

  1. Pingback: Boston Startups Learn to Win with Seth Godin | Skyscope Creative

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