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Intelligence Report – Permission Marketing (Book Review)

Permission Marketing Book Review

The Verdict: 4/5 Stars


Why 4 Stars?

Permission Marketing was written by Seth Godin (the author of Icarus Deception, Purple Cow). If you’ve been living under a rock, Seth Godin has been the go to guru for internet marketing and creativity in the internet age. Seth Godin wrote Permission Marketing during the Yahoo! glory days.

To give you context, Seth Godin wrote Permission Marketing in 1997. And like a modern Nostradamus, he predicted the necessary shift of marketing from Interruption Marketing (meaning I will annoy the fuck out of you with as many ads as possible until you remember me) to Permission Marketing (let me ask permission before I sell you something and I’ll do it gradually and gently like a moist towelette). He also managed to predict several trends in both marketing and the internet that most people said wouldn’t happen at the time.

Seth Godin:  all the insight without the creepiness (Photo from wikipedia)

Despite its age (its almost as old as some of my students), Permission Marketing manages to be relevant to marketers and founders alike. His sentiments, that there is just too much information vying for our attention that you need to make things personal again, holds true almost 20 years later.

Almost every chapter has something you can apply in some way or another. He gives cases (some of them dated but still relevant) that can give you an idea how to bring the book into your life.

Working Summary

WorkedDidn't Work
It is THE fundamental book for content-driven, rewards-based and personal marketing.It’s an intro book in my opinion. So don’t expect a comprehensive guide. For more details on processes and other tools, you may need other sources.
For a book that was written in 1997, it holds the test of time and has predicted trends and new ways of working in the internet age.The book is dated and the examples are as well. Sometimes while reading it, the needs, trends and shifts may seem obvious. This is because the book was written before its time and needed extra selling to convince people. The ideas seem like a no-brainer, now.
Chapter 11 gives awesome insight on how to evaluate and measure permission marketing.

Should I buy it?

If you are in the marketing profession or in the world of sales, YES. This is a fundamental book for your library.

If you are a founder or project manager bootstrapping to your billion dollar start-up or million person impact assessment, YES. This will guide you on a cost effective, and more importantly, relevant way to connect to potential customers and stakeholders. Don’t waste more money on ineffective marketing by not buying this book.

Intelligence Reports are reviews, criticisms, and compilations related to books, products, services and general information.

1 thought on “Intelligence Report – Permission Marketing (Book Review)

  1. Thanks for suggesting this book! Am learning a lot so far about the effectiveness of interruption marketing vs. permission marketing. 🙂

    Another insightful read that can probably add to this book is “Contagious” by Jonah Berger. Says a lot about how you can make an idea or product viral in today’s age, and also very helpful in suggesting ways to cut through the Internet clutter with your marketing. 🙂

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