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Click Summit 2012: Seth Godin Talks the Science of Weird


I had the good fortune to sit as a note-taker for Seth Godin’s session, “What to do about the weird.” The gist of the session was talking about the unconventional—be it test, demographic or business idea. Questions flew at him and he threw back eloquent, smart answers on the fly. Here are five weird takeaways from Click Summit 2012.

So you want to explore the weird, the alternative…the people that are hardest to convert. Where do you start? Find the pockets of weird and get them to trust you.

Weird can even be brought into your testing program. Keeping an open mind about unconventional tests that go outside your comfort zone is vital for a healthy testing culture.

How do you target the weird? Find the sweet spot—the scarcity—that people want to have. That’s the weird.

How does weird win? The normal, average, everyday will lose its value and appeal. The weird will win appeal with a smaller audience, and then grow in popularity until it becomes normal. Then a new weird will take its place.

How do we find a balance between targeting these customers directly and scaring them with the potential privacy invasion? The essence of permission marketing is to make a promise and keep it. It’s not the privacy we care about; it’s the surprise. It exposes our vulnerabilities and secrets. Doing it well starts with humility, recognizing the fact that we have no right to spam, invade privacy, etc. The winners are asking permission. There’s also a generational thing going on. The younger generation is fine with the “lack of privacy.” They have grown up with it.

So, are you ready to find the weird? Have you already found it? Enjoy it while it lasts, because soon enough it’ll be the new normal…