Despite being the CEO of an internet-based education company, I have had difficulty in getting my hands around the discussions about Web 2.0 and social marketing. Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies“, authored by Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff, may be the best text that I have read on the subject. The authors are partners at Forrester Research and provide 25 different examples of companies that have used relationship marketing, social networking, the internet, and various research tools to increase their customer satisfaction and either increase revenues or save costs. Their four step POST (people, objectives, strategy and technology) process for creating social marketing strategies is easier to remember for foundational purposes but important to consider implementing the technologies necessary. I enjoyed reviewing some of their charts that allow you to profile your customers regarding their critic/creator/joiner/spectator tendencies.
I read this book during a round-trip flight to the West Coast which is usually when I catch up on my sleep. I also sent emails to friends and colleagues recommending the book and took the initiative to subscribe to the Groundswell blog. I’ve even asked the gurus who maintain my website to add the same RSS or email subscription option. The book was great and I hope I learn a few things by subscribing to the blog as well.