Perhaps the biggest news this week in the online world is that Seth Godin announced he is giving up on traditional book publishing and is going all-digital. Seth has the following and the leverage to make this an exciting development for digital publishing. This could be a big step in mainstreaming electronic publishing and changing the consumption of “books.” He has published 12 bestsellers in the traditional manner, so it’s possible he will be the reason some consumers start buying digital products.
This week I’ve seen several examples of ‘rule-breaking’ in marketing and social media. Minimalist business writer Everett Bogue has decided to turn off commenting on his popular Far Beyond The Stars blog. John Boitnott writes about how the New York Times breaks every ‘rule’ of Facebook Page management practice but has 700k+ ‘fans’. To top it off, Seth Godin announced that he’ll no longer be publishing traditional books.
I’m sure there will be, perhaps already has been, backlash and copycats in equal parts.
But what these folks are demonstrating to me is the luxury that success provides. And success can really be defined as having developed an audience that transcends the platform – audience meaning real, product-buying, idea-sharing people – not just numbers of passive ’followers’.