Disclosure: I count Deanna as a friend and colleague. While she interviewed me for this book, it wasn't included. She also asked me if I would review this book and obviously I said yes. Now on to my review...
Share This! How You Will Change the World with Social Networking by Deanna Zandt is a must read for everyone who hates on social networking, who isn't sure why the hell anyone would engage in social networking and for those of us looking to use social networking for good. That's a lot of people, I know. But it's a quick read! Barely 100 pages, if you don't count the significant extras she puts in the resource section. But still a quick read.
As someone who uses social networking/media for fun and good, it was a breezy read. It was far too social networking for me, but I know far more people who need this book than who could have been quoted in this book. There is a need for this book. I understand that statement each day someone asks me if foundations should be online. Yes! Can they fundraise there? Yes! Will they fulfill their capital campaign by Tweeting? Probably not.
That naunce of using social networking is what Deanna gets spot on and explains well.
For most of my blogging career, I did it under a tiny veil of anonymity. The last few years of doing just that made me uncomfortable for many reasons including the fact that I wasn't getting the props I deserved and that those around me didn't know the resource that had in me. OMG how many times I've been in the "We should start a blog!" or "Why should we buy the dot com if we just use the dot org domain?" conversations. I wasn't just holding myself back, but others by proxy. Deanna digs into this as well and dares us all to use our own names and pictures of us.
What I appreciated the most from this book was the death of clicks = popularity. There is no way to measure your influence online due to social networking. Yes, sometimes you can see when someone clicks over from Facebook or via Twitter, but sometimes your links and story get disconnected from your bit.ly account. Viral is not easily measurable. Everyone needs to realize that. Marketers, swag pushers and politicos. It's like porn, you know a great connector when you see it.
There is also a good segment that deals a death blow to personal branding and a section on why parents shouldn't be scared of what is online. Hooray!
Bottomline is that this is a great book for the newbies. Don't fall for people telling you that they are a social media guru and can help you raise a shit load of money online. Don't warp your message to fit what someone told you is your brand. Just be you and have fun.
Please purchase a copy from an indie bookstore or Powells.com and hand it to your favorite troublemaker.
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