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Unleashing the Ideavirus

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  3,339 Ratings  ·  79 Reviews
Counter to traditional marketing wisdom which tries to count, measure and manipulate the spread of information, bestselling author Seth Godin argues that the information can spread most effectively from customer to customer, rather than from business to customer. Godin calls this powerful customer-to-customer dialogue the ideavirus and cheerfully eggs markets on to create ...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published November 19th 2001 by Dearborn Trade,U.S. (first published 2000)
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Sue Cartwright
Sep 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
‘The primary goal of a product or service is not just to satisfy the needs of one user. It has to deliver so much wow, be so cool, so neat and so productive, that the user tells five of their friends.’

They key message when it comes to building a virus-worthy cool product or service, identifying a ‘hive’ and promoting an idea, is the importance of WORDS. Words matter because they are how you start an ideavirus. You have to make it easy for people to ‘get it’ with one glimpse of your website or o
Sep 20, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Treat a product or service like a human or computer virus, contends online promotion specialist Seth Godin, and it just might become one. In Unleashing the Ideavirus, Godin describes ways to set any viable commercial concept loose among those who are most likely to catch it--and then stand aside as these recipients become infected and pass it on to others who might do the same. "The future belongs to marketers who establish a foundation and process where interested people can market to each othe ...more
John Montgomery
Jan 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Seth Godin explores how to turn a good business idea into an infectious "ideavirus" that spreads like wildfire. Early adopters, customers and key influencers, called "sneezers", will spread an ideavirus far more effectively than traditional, interruption-based marketing methods. The trick is to invent a virus-worthy idea, make it smooth and persistent, give powerful sneezers incentive to spread it, and get permission to follow up with its recipients. The key is to carefully identify and choose t ...more
Richard Newton
Reading this book has reminded me of a couple of things. Generally, I read business books because they are professionally useful rather than literary masterpieces - and I grade them according to this expectation. Secondly, how hard in this era of turbulent change it is to write a book with lasting appeal.

I probably am reading this book too late as it was originally published in 2001 and it's now 2017. It is full of interesting useful advice, but it feels so dated - examples like how brilliant ya
Zohar -
All of those who read this book in order to find a formula or even a guideline are in for a disappointment. This is not a textbook, this is a book written to give one an idea. The book does not teach you how, or why, it opens up a whole new way of thinking and gives the reader new directions to embrace change, and follow new ideas in order to take the business in a new direction.
This book has given me many things to think about, I view the marketing department in a whole new way, and as someone
Это моя первая книга Година, но я успел разочароваться в этой книге. Возможно просто у меня были более завышенные ожидания от автора, либо может на тот момент когда впервые издавалась книга ценность её была намного больше нежели чем сейчас. Но всё же основы вирусного маркетинга автор передал. Правда в книге полный дефицит инструментов данного вида маркетинга.
Буду благодарен если кто подскажет более ценную книгу на данную тематику.
Oliver Gassner
Jun 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An inspiring must-read If yo are in communication.
Jul 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Clear, simple, well-expounded ideas as always from Godin.
Frinzy Zulkarnain
Jul 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting read. Inspired me to apply to my brand comms strategy. The steps to follow are easy and logical.
Giedrius Švetkauskas
I recommend it to read for everybody who want's to unleash his / hers ideavirus :)
May 28, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: i-own, e-books
This book dates from 2001 and he is still right about most of what he talks about. The only thing is: Palm Pilots are gone and Tommy Hilfiger is irrelevant, and mp3’s are now ubiquitous, but that’s the nature of the idea virus.
Ideas, products and rumours spread super fast through the Internet these days. Godin calls it an ‘idea virus’. Look how fast the whole world was arguing about what color a dress was? I saw people comment that they could hear their neighbors arguing about it. Some people ca
Joshua Pitzalis
This book looks at how you can craft your ideas so that they are more spreadable. We now live in a world where consumers actively resist marketing. Rather than marketing at people it is now more effective to help people market ideas to each other. Instead of talking to customers directly we now have to help customers talk to each other.

Nobody is going to spread your idea as a favor. To make an idea spread worthy you have to make it interesting enough to be talked about. People only spread ideas
Adhi Glory (glory2go)
Sebenernya saya sudah membaca buku ini kira-kira 2 tahun lalu. Malah sampe 3 kali. Intinya nih buku ngajarin kita tentang cara marketing model baru. Pemasaran dari mulut ke mulut sudah kuno, ketinggalan zaman. Pemasaran lewat media iklan di TV dan media massa yang menginterupsi banyak orang, tidak lagi efektif. Tapi pemasaran dari mulut ke mulut, seerti misalnya referensi mengenai suatu produk dari sahabat atau kerabat kita, memnag lebih berpengaruh dan kuat penyampaian pesannya. Hanya saja cepa ...more
Kat Kiddles
One of the strategies that Godin believes will create and support an ideavirus is persistence. At one point, he instructs the reader to ‘[m]ake as many supporting manifestos available as possible, in whatever forms necessary, to turn consumers from skeptics into converts.’ (p.63)

I think that strategy might have backfired on him with this reader (that would be me). I read his manifesto in Fast Company before starting the book, and I think it ruined the book for me. Spoiler alert: the manifesto is
Vladislav Zarichniuk
Сет Годін - чувак з майбутнього. Проста для сприйняття книга, побудована на прикладах. Лишає простір для міркувань в ході читання, тому, що відкриває нові точки погляду на маркетинг. Ключове слово книги: "sneezer" - я розумів як "балакун".
Тепер з цікавості хочеться спробувати публікації за винагороду: як вони працюватимуть?
Сет каже, що класична реклама - гроші на вітер. Краще розумна і точкова тактика. У мене виникла думка з цього приводу. А якщо взагалі викинути з голови всі ці тактики і прийо
Aug 27, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
original review:

I don't remember why I picked this up, but I'm glad I did. Godin is a marketer (with a good blog) who believes that marketing via interruptions (read: TV commercials) is far less effective than marketing through contagious ideas.

He calls these ideas "ideaviruses", and writes that the best way to spread them is to find the group of people that want to be marketed to, identify the most influential people in that group, and to incent and make
CV Rick
Oct 14, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
While this book is somewhat dated, it does offer a new way of looking at how to promote yourself and your business. It would be wrong to expect a marketing class or some sort of step-by-step guideline but I did learn how to read think the concept of ideas. Seth Godin is brilliant at generating excitement that surrounds new ideas.

What use an idea? An idea is something that will generate followers. Followers can be customers, viewers, readers, or even employees. And ideas have shelflife. You can't
Ryan Watkins
Jan 18, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
A helpful book explaining how marketing at a large random group of people (similar to a TV add) is ineffective, and instead you should target a specific group of people (as he calls a hive) who can spread your idea for you. The author explains in more detail the importance of finding the right hive, finding the right people to expose your idea to, figuring out what you want people to say about your idea, making the idea easily spreadable, and amazing your audience so they will keep it growing.

Jan 17, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I have to admit that this was not my favorite Seth Godin book. I love the ideas behind it but it didn't seem as smoothly written as his other books. I usually have "Ah-Ha" moments with his books but this one didn't leave me with a lot of those.

Godin explores how an idea can spread, ways you dampen the spread of an idea and the people who help spread ideas. He digs into identifying your hive (the people who you are focusing on and will help spread the word). I found this a useful bit as I look a
Jan 15, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Came around to this one a bit late and it was cool to read it that way - to see how the ideas have stood the test of time. Answer: not very well. It's interesting to note all the companies that have disappeared and all the ones Godin didn't even know would come...and also disappear. The big point that's missing is that these viruses exist to cannibalize themselves. It's hard to see the point in so much hype leading to so little lasting value. I might subtitle this: How To Be Successful For All T ...more
Krishna Kumar
May 03, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The author talks about the power of viral ideas, that allow marketers to quickly establish a hold on the minds of consumers. He explains why some of the older strategies like spending millions of dollars in TV advertising do not work as well in today's markets and how people in marketing have to focus on better ideas and smarter relationships. There is a reference to Malcolm Gladwell's connectors, mavens and salespersons in "The Tipping Point": Godin talks about "sneezers" who can help you sell ...more
Jan 05, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Old book, but was a free download on some entrepreneur site. John Lee Dumas from EO Fire raved about it, so I read it a couple months ago.

The insight into how some idea takes off (becomes a virus) was brilliant. Seth describes the process beautifully. He gives some good ideas on how to try to get a service or product to take off.

In the end, however, I think success is at the intersection of hard work and luck. Seth will help you with the work part, but you'll just have to hope for the luck.

Sabrina  Brawley
Apr 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: business
Seth Godin is known as the go-to modern day marketing guru, and revolutionized the marketing approaches of the general populace when it came to the age of the Internet. With Permission Marketing, he brought to light the fact that with the rise of social media and online saturation, marketing at people by purchasing ad space and yelling the loudest just doesn’t work anymore. In Unleashing the Ideavirus, Godin goes a step further to explain why some ideas flourish and others fail when it comes to ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's a great read. I am sure that it would be an even better read if this book was read back in 2001 when it was first published. Nevertheless, there's still something interesting to pick up in this book. First time reading Seth Godin book and I would recommend this book to all serious marketer out there (though this is one really relaxing book to read). But then again, who said that it has to be complicated in the first place?
Lawson Hembree
Dec 10, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business, ideas
An enjoyable quick read that challenges traditional marketing/advertising tactics. Godin proposes shifting the way we market from the expensive and ineffective shotgun approach to a more tailored, relationship approach.

It's interesting that this was written before the explosion of social media and how Godin's theory has played out in that arena. It's be great for him to update this book to tie in the social media aspects of relationship marketing.
Dan Pfeiffer
Feb 26, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Viral marketing for a connected age. A must read for marketing students, pros and small business people. It got me thinking a lot about my small company's marketing approach. How can I apply an Ideavirus to increase exposure and sales? How can I buck the traditional interruption marketing that is so prevalent in my industry? A little book that got big wheels turning. This edition is a little dated, written before social media exploded so if there's a revised edition I'd pick it up.
A. Lundberg
My goodness this is old now! Not a lot of newness for me at this stage, though I'm sure he was ahead of his time when this came out in 2001... That's not to say that all companies are now doing what Seth Godin suggests, in fact, many would still benefit from reading this as a reminder of the inefficacy of mass marketing advertising. I particularly like the idea that "being brave and bold is the only reason you went to work today".
Eustacia Tan
Oct 07, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The only reason why this book isn't five stars is because the examples of this book are dated. But since it came out in 2000, I suppose that is to be expected.

I haven't read any of the related stuff, and while the constant advertisements (on how he was going to make this book viral) were a little annoying, there were a lot of interesting ideas in there. It sparked a very lively conversation among me and my friends.
Hendri Susila
Jan 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
seperti kebanyakan buku seth lainnya (padahal baru baca ini doank) KEREN!
buku yang mengungkapkan ide dari seth bagaimana sekarang kita berada di abad penyebaran ide. di era serba internet ini kita makin gampang/mudah terkoneksi dengan orang-orang dan bagaimana penyebaran ide di era internet ini menjadi lebih gampang. banyak tips trik lainnya yang berhubungan dengan marketing di buku ini yang berhubungan ide.
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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
More about Seth Godin...

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