Let Your Products Do the Talking

Paying to get attention may not be as effective as making a product people want to talk about.The new rules of marketing don't rely on paid media to attract attention, but rather products and services that command attention.

"The new era of modern marketing is about the connection economy," says prominent marketeer Seth Godin. "It's about trust. It's about awareness. It's about the fact that attention is worth way more than it used to be."

In an interview with Inc., Godin says the success of companies such as Airbnb and Lululemon shows that the market decides what is important, not the companies that make and sell things. "They make something the market wants to talk about," he explains. Marketers don't have to invent a way to spark a conversation about them because the conversation is already under way.

"The first thing is that they need to embrace the weird," Godin told Inc. "Instead of thinking, 'What do the masses want?' they need to think about what the people who care want. The masses aren't listening because they have so many choices. The people who care are going to choose to listen. And by appealing to the people who care, it is way more likely the company will be talked about."

Godin says the best connections between products and customers are emotional. "Airbnb is nothing more but crashing on the floor of a house," he says. "But there is a bunch of people, if Airbnb went away, that would deeply miss it."

Brands with an emotional appeal mean more to consumers. "It's not just stuff. People have enough stuff, but they don't have enough meaning," Godin says.

Good marketing, Godin advises, is to "provide something the market wants to talk about. If that's not what you have made, make something else."