Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Must-Read Social Media Books

By the time I finish writing this guest post, there will be 100 new books published about social media. At least, that’s how it feels. It’s hard to keep up with books on the subject, simply because it’s hard to keep up with changes in social media period!
But at Martin’s request, I want to share some of the better books I’ve read about social media, blogging and internet marketing.

What I Look for 
I review business books, so for a book to stand out, I want it to:
  • Teach me something
  • Be easily digestible
  • Let me walk away ready to do something, not just give me theories
There are many books I won’t put on this list simply because they don’t meet my requirements. Likewise, there are many books I haven’t yet read that would likely provide you benefit, no matter what level of social media understanding you’re currently at. Let’s dive in.

World Wide Rave: Creating Triggers that Get Millions of People to Spread Your Ideas and Share Your Stories
Truly, I recommend any of David Meerman Scott’s book. This is one of his more recent books. World Wide Rave does a fantastic job of cutting through the BS when it comes to trying to get people to talk about your brand. If you’ve ever been told by a marketing agency that they could “create a viral video” for you, please read this book. You can’t plan to create something that is guaranteed to go viral, but Scott does provide tips to nudge it in that direction.

What’s Great About this Book: You can use Scott’s techniques, no matter the size of your company or your marketing budget.

Social Media Marketing eLearning Kit For Dummies 
Phyllis Khare is the author of this book, which is accompanied by a CD-ROM for extra learning. What I love about this book is that it’s got something for every level of learner, from those who haven’t yet created a Twitter account, to those like me, that have been using marketing for years, but who always like learning new tactics. Khare delves into LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and geolocation services, and provides tips for using all.

What’s Great About this Book: It’s an easy reference book. Focusing on YouTube today? Immerse yourself in that chapter and you’ll be an expert by the end.

Inbound Marketing: Get Found Using Google, Social Media, and Blogs
This book may be an oldie (published in 2009), but it’s definitely a goodie. Inbound Marketing is written by the two founders of HubSpot, the very company that coined the term “inbound marketing.”
The book centers around the concept that customers are no longer willing to allow companies to cram their messaging down their throats. Smart brands now find ways to draw customers to them, through channels like social media and blogs.

What’s Great About this Book: This book is the perfect combination of theory and application. You learn the concept of what inbound marketing is all about, but you also get great tips for executing it for your brand.

Books on My List
I’ll never get around to reading all the great social media books, but these are on my list to read soon:

I like the idea of setting a goal to see results with social media within 30 days.
I think many businesses--small and large--could use a few ground rules for using social media.
Since the verdict is still out on how to measure the results of social media, I’d love to check this book out. Plus, my author crush David Meerman Scott is co-author!

What books have you read and recommend?

Susan Payton is the President of Egg Marketing & Communications, an internet marketing firm specializing in marketing communications, copywriting and blog posts. She’s written two books: 101 Entrepreneur Tips and Internet Marketing Strategies for Entrepreneurs, and has blogged for several sites, including The Marketing Eggspert Blog, as well as Mashable, Small Business Trends, FutureSimple, BizLaunch and Lead411. Follow her on Twitter @eggmarketing.


  1. Susan: Thanks for your guest post! What are you reading right now?

  2. Anonymous8:37 AM

    I just finished Branding Basics for Small Business, by Maria Ross, which had some great advice on branding! You?