Neal Schaffer on How to Maximize Social Business

Neal Schaffer’s book Maximize Your Social  (Wiley) just came out, and this is exciting for several reasons.  One, he just plain knows this stuff.  If you’re not already familiar, Neal (bio) is a Forbes top 50 Social Media Power Influencer, and is also a noted author, 9781118651186_cover.inddspeaker and consultant.

He invited me to write for his group blog about two years ago, where I have been covering content marketing every month.  It has been a blast to work with Neal and fellow contributors in this time, and also have the chance to contribute a section on visual content marketing to the book.

The most important reason is that it is a great book, one that I am convinced will help a wide range of organizations improve social media results.  Why not see for yourself, by picking up a copy on Amazon or Barnes & Noble?

Meanwhile, I asked Neal a few questions about his book, and the state of social business:

What is the state of social media adoption today?

At this point in time, we are beyond the question of “Why social media?” and in a state of either “How do I best leverage these tools?” for those companies that haven’t been active in social media to “What is my social media program missing? What more can we do with social media? How can we be more effective in our social media?” For those companies that already have established programs. eMarketer has a stat, which I used in my book trailer video, that 92% of U.S. companies with 100 or more employees are already using social media for marketing back in 2012, so social media is now very much a mainstream activity for most large companies, although it is still a challenge for many small and medium size firms.

Why this book, now – there are already many great books out there on the topic of social media?

That’s a great question Bob. Yes, there are a number of great social media books out there on the market, many by authors who I have a deep respect for. But because social media permeates every industry and corporate discipline, there is a need to develop and share multiple perspectives to move the ball forward in our industry. I differentiate myself from many of the social media authors in that my background before social media was primarily in sales and business development, not solely public relations or marketing. I also launched my career – and lived for 15 years – in Asia, where I had to sell to local companies, manage local personnel, and then figure out how to channel that back to my North American headquarters to get more resources for my initiatives. For many social media professionals, it’s a similar battle. So I believe that holistic business experience of building up business from scratch without any previous brand recognition – in foreign markets – gives me a unique perspective that many have said helps them paint a very practical picture of how to leverage social media.

More importantly, while there are many books that concentrate on the “why social media,” my book is all about the “how to do” social media. Specifically, it is based on my experience of social media strategy consulting since January, 2010, so I believe it is the only book that covers how to create, implement, manage, and optimize a social media strategy while also giving tactical advice for each platform, discussing internal issues that erupt when implementing social (social media policy, social media guidelines, integration, etc.), as well as discussing social media metrics and ROI. It introduces the framework and methodology I used to create my own social media strategies, so in essence, in lieu of hiring a social media consultant, you can simply read this book! As an educator, my objective is to make my readers as self-sufficient in their practice of social media as possible, and I think that this spirit that the reader will find further differentiates my work from the other books and provides content and value that can’t be found elsewhere.

What are three things that people can learn from your book?

1) How to create a social media strategy.

2) Tactical tips on how to maximize their social media presence on all of the major platforms

3) How to determine social media metrics and calculate social media ROI

Good stuff! You can win a free copy of Maximize Your Social by being the first to comment here: what are some of your thoughts on this topic?

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