The BS in the title of this book seems to be referring to the notion that social media is somehow an end in itself, a worthy goal and pursuit that any organization should engage in in its own right. The authors of this book don’t really buy into it, and they suggest that neither should you. They view social media as just another form of media engagement. It either helps your business in very tangible and concrete ways, or it doesn’t. Any organization should view their social media engagement through a very utilitarian standpoint, and not treat it as a hobby or, even worse, a good-will nebulous outreach. So if that’s what you mean by social media BS, then sure, this book will not provide you with any of it. However, if you are looking for a very specific set of advices on how to build your own social media strategy, then you will be somewhat disappointed. The authors are in fact very clear about this point: they don’t believe that there is a single overarching strategy for approaching social media. What they do instead in this book is provide you with a collection of insights and case studies that, when understood properly, can give you ideas about how to approach social media in your own situation. This is all fine as far as it goes, but I was really hoping for much more of a concrete, actionable advice.
I am neither a social media maven nor am I looking into a career in such a field, but I have done a fair amount of personal social media promotion over they years. I’ve read a lot of books and articles on the topic, but am yet to come across one that can provide me with a clear sense of how to grow my own personal brand through social media strategies. So far I have been relying mostly on trial and error, and this book is only marginally helpful beyond the insights that I’ve come across on my own. However, if you are completely new to the world of social media marketing, then this book could be a useful first resource.
"No Bullshit Social Media: The All-Business, No-Hype Guide to Social Media Marketing", is exactly what its authors (Jason Fall and Erik Deckers) say, with both possessing decades-worth of experience in marketing, most recently from the perspective of social media marketing. They have offered readers a complete nuts and bolts guide to social media marketing that emphasizes facts, not the myths, associated with this new frontier which remains surprisingly, quite elusive for many businesses. Theirs is a common sense approach based on the need to be candid with customers and earning their trust and support, which will translate into substantially improved revenues if it is implemented successfully. They emphasize that, unlike other forms of marketing, social media marketing requires building relationships with potential customers, emphasizing one's sincerity, especially with regards to dealing with unexpected problems. For them, a classic example of a business's failure to cope with social media is Nestle's notoriously lackluster attitude toward dealing with complaints posted at its Facebook page, just as Greenpeace was launching a campaign against the company, condemning it for purchasing palm oil from a supplier who was allegedly responsible for substantial deforestation in Indonesia and the deaths of thousands of orangutans. The authors provide readers with ample examples of the roles in which social media can play in marketing, often noting how, almost in the blink of an eye, important news like the killing of Osama bin Laden can be circulated immediately around the globe via social media such as Twitter and Facebook. If one wishes to understand social media marketing and desires a firm understanding of it, then, despite its brevity, the reader will find no better guide than this most timely, and insightful, book.