Friday, November 26, 2010

Social Nation

I ran the 4th annual Turkey trot in Huntington yesterday. Great weather. 40 degrees at the start. It was a hilly 4 mile course. My time was 29:58 which was good since my goal was 30 minutes.

Then I celebrated US Thanksgiving with friends. I certainly have a lot to be thankful for. I lead a charmed life.

And today, I will dig in and get caught up on things.

I read a great book by Barry Libert - "Social Nation - How to Harness the Power of Social Media to Attract Customers, Motivate Employees and Grow Your Business". Sometimes a book is great because it reinforces and clarifies things you already know at some level. Social Nation is one such book for me.

I am quite active in social media and I have been active since fairly early in the cycle. I Tweet daily and send those same updates on Facebook and Linkedin. And of course I blog.

It starts with a quote(and everyone knows I love quotations):

"We make a living by what you get. You make a life by what you give" Winston Churchill.

Part of being an active participant in social media is giving back. The challenge I have is I am such a time management fanatic that I filter what I say based on "less is better" and "respect others time".

Social media exploded even during down swings in the economy. The book cites examples of companies like Avon that were able to dramatically impact their sales through social media during the downturn.

Part 1 sells that social media is big and here to stay.

Part 2 has 7 principles for building your Social Nation. Things like Principle 4 - Monitor and measure your communities' contributions and Principle 6 - Rely on your community for growth and innovation.

Part 3 is how to get started.

Part 3 has a chapter on "How to get started and 10 pitfalls to avoid". Things like number 2: "underinvesting in social initiatives and abandoning them too soon".

Social Nation talks about the similarities between online and offline. Simple etiquette applies to both. Be genuine. Be nice. Obvious but...

I liked that the book separated real readers and just followers. Or as Libert says "differentiating friends and followers from fans and fanatics". I know I could build 100,000 twitter followers in a couple of months. But few of them would actually read what I tweet. Confusing eyeballs with readers (or fans and fanatics) is a common social media error.

It is a good general book on social media that covers most of the bases. I often give speeches on social media and will cite this book as a good source. It goes well with Hilary Toppers "Everything you wanted to know about Social Media but were Afraid to Ask". Now I think I should write one on "How to do Social Media in 20 minutes per day" since I see a need for people to figure out how to be efficient in the use of it.


At 12:49 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Jim -

I'm compiling a list of recommended book resources and will add this one to the list.

I've also been developing a Social Media Primer that is targeted to organizational leaders and focused on helping them obtain the understanding they need to provide the necessary strategic (and tactical) leadership to their organizations. You can learn more and access the parts of the primer that have been published to date via this link:

Courtney Hunt
Founder, Social Media in Organizations (SMinOrgs) Community

At 6:09 AM, Blogger barry said...


thanks for the great review!



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