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Small Is the New Big: and 183 Other Riffs, Rants, and Remarkable Business Ideas

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  3,843 ratings  ·  151 reviews
As one of today's most influential business thinkers, Seth Godin helps his army of fans stay focused, stay connected, and stay dissatisfied with the status quo, the ordinary, the boring. His books, blog posts, magazine articles, and speeches have inspired countless entrepreneurs, marketing people, innovators, and managers around the world. Now, for the first time, Godin ha ...more
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published August 17th 2006 by Portfolio (first published July 24th 2006)
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Average rating 3.86  · 
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 ·  3,843 ratings  ·  151 reviews


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C. Hollis Crossman
May 15, 2017 rated it liked it
The subtitle of small is the new big is helpful for understanding the book: and 183 other riffs, rants, and remarkable business ideas. It's a collection of posts from Seth Godin's blog, as well as a 35-page postscript discussing the value of, and how to approach crafting, a website, a blog, and a marketing conversation about your product/services. These brief essays are by turns funny, informative, boring, repetitive, surprising, and helpful.

If you're reading this to find a handful of groundbrea
...more
Steve Piacente
Jan 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Once an artist puts some work up for sale, he or she, like it or not, becomes a small business owner. The time to read Seth Godin’s, “Small is the New Big,” is before taking this momentous step.

The book, though not written specifically for those in the arts or even small business owners, is crammed with riffs, rants, and provocative ideas that are worth contemplating if you’re thinking about transitioning from creating art to creating markets.

Take writers. Many worry about criticism, which bloc
...more
Tamara
Apr 06, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I don't often read business books, but this one was amazing. Easy to read, with lots of anecdotes.

Here are some great tips/quotes:

Every single article about Google (until recently) included the phrase 'And employees eat lunch in a cafeteria where the food is prepared by a former chef for the Grateful Dead.'...For no good reason. It's a jarring juxtapositions of facts that no one expects but is pretty easy to remember. Oxymorons make it easy to tell stories. (BTW, This is the reason why I want
...more
Muhammad Khan
Mar 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Although some might find this a dated book, I believe Seth Godin is a legend and way ahead of his time. The topics still resonate today, for example for emerging countries and markets on the digital/marketing transformation journey, so much is still valid. For the individuals looking to get a kick or boost, to think differently, there's much to find here. Seth is remarkable, his breadth and depth of topics never ceases to amaze me.
It's not a book to read in one setting though!
Flora
May 26, 2015 rated it liked it
I didn't feel like reading the book anymore at "Egomaniac." I borrowed this book, because it's popular and gives actually really helpful advice about product design. It was very informative in terms of thinking differently to improve or start a business, but I can't stand the way he sounds. Just like how to a like a subject but don't like a professor's personality, each "post" made me think about design differently, but the author's tone and voice just overpowered the ideas. It was to the point ...more
Ann
Oct 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Since I follow Seth Godin's blog, I impulsively picked up his 2006 collection of earlier blog posts the last time I was in the library. Have I mentioned I love Seth? He rants about the same things I rant about and there is nothing more endearing than knowing someone else thinks as you do.

Like all his work, he sparks your creativity. You are free to pick and choose and see what makes sense in your own world.

Loosely alphabeticalized, you can read this book in small or larger (would that be appropr
...more
Thursday Bram
Mar 15, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I'm a big fan of Seth Godin's blog and other online writing, and I've been working on picking up a few of his books. "Small is the New Big" was an exceptionally interesting read — particularly because I enjoy Godin's blog.

The book was page after page of short sections, essentially explaining an idea Godin has about marketing and business. While "Small is the New Big" isn't a textbook, I feel like I came away with an incredible amount of new knowledge.
Andrew Hager
Aug 23, 2019 rated it it was ok
To the author's credit, this book was written in 2006 so it's outdated and not very useful in 2019.

That being said, it reads VERY thin and doesn't offer much real help. In fact, most of it reads like petty boomer whining. "I get too many spam emails!" His advice is usually something along the lines of "don't do things that annoy me!"

I'm sure this guy is successful and knowledgeable in a lot of ways but he doesn't share much wisdom here, and his writing comes across as uninformed or like he can'
...more
Matthew Royal
Sep 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audio-books
"Riffs" is right. These range from mini blog posts to random thought dump to meditations, after which you imagine Godin's enraptured audience intoning "Selah."

They're personal insights he had during the week, but even Godin unbelievers will find it useful since he documents them compares, contrasts, and inverts them to understand WHY. I deeply agree with his worldview that the only way to know whether something works is to try it and measure it, then try alternatives and measure those, think abo
...more
Kim
Mar 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
This one took me a while to get through; but at the very beginning, Seth Godwin recommends reading this in chunks - not like a narrative.

What I really like about it is that it was written maybe 10-12 years ago, and some of his predictions have become hilariously true.

The other thing I like is the focus on small, nimble, agile organizations. That long ago, he recommended small orgs to get things done and make a difference. Now, “big” Fortune 100s are admonishing their teams to “think small” and
...more
Scott
May 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Another great Seth Godin book.

This is a collection of posts from his great writings across many different topics.

Having read this as an audiobook, I unfortunately cannot recap some great quotes, but Seth brings forward the importance of the customer and "making moments matter". He reflects that too often the image is not the reality, and our role as leaders is to align words to action.

Interestingly I was reading this at the time as "The Startup Playbook" by David Kidder (that one on the Kindle)
...more
Frank Cardinale
Aug 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
If you like business books and can’t go ten minutes without being interrupted by your kids or phone, then you’ll like this book. It’s a collection of blog posts from Seth Godin’s website about business, marketing, and how the economy has changed over the past few decades. I find the author can make you think even with the few paragraphs he writes a topic, many of which are from his day-to-day experiences.

It doesn’t have to be read from start to finish, so you can put it down for a while and pick
...more
Maria Sigacheva
May 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Enjoyed reading this book with many marketing and business thoughts by author.
I also liked the points made, specifically about a shift and reality of small businesses becoming in some instances more successful and profitable, than big corporations.
The minimalist approach by SMEs, that bears fruits of profits. The business structure, that became ever more agile and adaptive to the changes, that gives small businesses an edge to succeed.
Not a guide though, but good read anyway.
Jeremy Howlett
Apr 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
Solid. A lot of outdated information. Would be cool to have Seth do a rewrite in today and see how things change. Many of the riffs and principles are sound still today. Sure makes me want to create and rethink the way that I do things. I am grateful that I have had a part in creating something amazing in the 2000s.
Alicia Bonk
Nov 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Seth Godin people are my kind of people. After hearing him on Tim Ferris podcast I was reminded to dive in to some of his books. I don’t follow his blog so this book of riffs and rants was perfect for me and convinced me to read Purple Cow.
Omar El-mohri
Dec 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018, audio-copy
Old book from Seth Godin but really impressive how he can go deep into situations and insights in business, marketing that we usually miss or just don't consider important.
how technology, web are playing to create new ways of doing marketing.
Fayette
Feb 19, 2019 rated it liked it
This book is somewhat outdated (published in 2006) and the evolution of the internet, blogging, web sites, music, devices, etc....has been rapid over the past 13 years. Still, there are some interesting and relevant business and marketing ideas that might spark thought or conversation.
D
Mar 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Whilst this book is over a decade old there are very few aspects that are outdated. I’m sure the reference to widgets and podcasts may have changed.

I enjoyed the chapters on rifting and his final chapter that spoke about mishaps; packaging and emotional attachment.


Lia Hulit
Dec 04, 2017 rated it it was ok
Didn't like it as much as some of his other books. Still solid ideas/takeaways.
Ashley Horton
Mar 16, 2018 rated it liked it
Decent concepts & well written but this book started to feel very redundant after a while. ...more
A
May 14, 2018 rated it liked it
Entertaining
Raymond Goss
Jul 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Material is useful and entertaining. It really is a collection of things related to doing things differently. One could read just a portion and still get benefit.
David
Nov 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Timeless insights from Seth Godin
John Brian Anderson
Dec 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: business, personaldev
Hmmm, what to say? This is pure Seth but ..... I am not sure that I got a lot out of this one? It doesn't really have a theme and I think that hurts my personal retention of the material.
Alexander Kelley
Even years later, the core ideas in this book ring true.
Amr Swalha
Sep 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
As usual, Seth never runs out of purple cows. And as always he leaves his free prize inside each thing he creates.
Shruti Sharma
Feb 02, 2020 rated it liked it
Thorough and succinct, this book is a must read for every blogger, CEO, marketer, SEO person, entrepreneur, or basically anyone who wants to understand how they can be better at selling something.
Amanda
Feb 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Worth re-listening to at varied times. Reference parts of this at times I sense it's validity. Some examples are outdated however, I find the principles still relevant.
Artjom Petersen
Apr 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Inspiring, eye opening, out of the box thinking
Vlad
Jan 25, 2019 rated it liked it
A compilation of short riffs and rants by the ever-provacative Godin. I enjoy the way this man thinks and articulates. I don't regret reading it at all, but it's not his best work ... mostly because there's very little connective tissue that ties it all together into something that's greater than the sum of its parts.
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4,323 followers
Seth Godin is a bestselling author, entrepreneur and agent of change.

Godin is author of ten books that have been bestsellers around the world, and he is also a renowned speaker. He was recently chosen as one of 21 Speakers for the Next Century by Successful Meetings and is consistently rated among the very best speakers by the audiences he addresses.

Seth was founder and CEO of Yoyodyne, the indust
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