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Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies Hardcover – 1 May 2008
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Every leader needs to read this book and make sure that his/her employees read it, too.
-- Børsen, Denmark, June 6, 2008
Readable and clearly argued ...Any organisation thinking of taking advantage of social networking will find plenty of food for thought.
-- IT Week, May 9, 2008
This business strategy book is set to help people see UGC not as a threat, but an opportunity to communicate. -- Putting People First - Experientia blog, May 4, 2008
'entertaining, well- written and mercifully free from techy details'
-- Financial Times, June 4th, 2008
Best Book in Marketing Category, Best Business Books 2008
-- Strategy and Business, December 2008
For any businesses that have not yet ventured into the world of social media, Groundswell is an excellent guide. -- ILM Edge magazine, September 2008
This book is a must-read for anyone getting to grips with the impact of Web 2.0 on business.
-- Information Age, August 7th 2008
`for Groundswell's intended audience ... the emphasis on data and analytics is not a bug - it's a feature.'
-- Financial Times, 21 May 2008
From the Back Cover
Corporate executives are struggling with a new trend: people using online social technologies (blogs, social networking sites, YouTube, podcasts) to discuss products and companies, write their own news, and find their own deals. This groundswell is global, it's unstoppable, it affects every industry and it's utterly foreign to the powerful companies running things now.
When consumers you've never met are rating your company's products in public forums with which you have no experience or influence, your company is vulnerable. In Groundswell, Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff of Forrester, Inc. explain how to turn this threat into an opportunity.
Using tools and data straight from Forrester, you'll learn how to:
- Evaluate new social technologies as they emerge
- Determine how different groups of consumers are participating in social technology arenas
- Apply a four-step process for formulating your future strategy
- Build social technologies into your business including monitoring your brand value, talking with the groundswell through marketing and PR campaigns, and energizing your best customers to recruit their peers
Timely and insightful, this book is required reading for executives seeking to protect and strengthen their company's public image.
"Groundswell is jammed with big ideas, useful stories, and quotable stats. This is the new industrial revolution. Are you on board?"
-Seth Godin, author, Meatball Sundae
"This book will rock your world, if social technology hasn't rocked it already. It's a tsunami of unstoppable force. Amazon, Procter & Gamble, Facebook, Google, and Dell are profiting from the crest of the wave. Are you? Li and Bernoff are the apostles of the tsunami. This book will be your bible."
-Scott Cook, Founder and Chairman of the Executive Committee, Intuit
"Groundswell provides practical advice on how to stay nimble and flexible in an ever-morphing digital world. Enabling your company to respond to change quickly especially when talking to and supporting your consumers is essential for business success."
-Cathie Black, President, Hearst Magazines
"The first phase of the Internet was about getting everyone connected. In this next phase, which changes the way we work, live, play, and learn, we re starting to realize the value of those connections as well as the new communications and experiences those interactions lead to the human network. Groundswell effectively documents this shift and underscores the opportunities available to all from this major market transition."
-John T. Chambers, Chairman and CEO, Cisco
"Heed the Groundswell! It's critical reading and helped us master the new dynamics of social media."
-Christina Norman, President, MTV
"Groundswell is a comprehensive look at the tidal wave of change engulfing marketers. Nobody should attempt to engage the newly empowered and emboldened consumer without first hearing what Li and Bernoff have to say on the subject."
-Clark Kokich, CEO, Avenue A | Razorfish
"Social technologies and the groundswell impact every business and organization worldwide. Li and Bernoff have written an insightful book that takes a refreshing research-driven approach to helping businesses transform themselves and successfully navigate this new dynamic landscape."
-Steve Rubel, Senior Vice President, Edelman Digital, and columnist for Advertising Age
Top customer reviews
Although much of the specific content is now very dated, the principles it sets out are still very useful, especially categorising internet users as creators (who upload videos, write blogs posts etc), critics (who comment on other people’s content, rate videos, etc),collectors (who tag comment, subscribe to feeds etc), joiners (who sign up to social networking sites etc), spectators (who read and watch but don’t take party) and the inactives (who do none of this).
The original is brilliant but if you've got it then you don't need this and if you haven't got it then buy that rather than this and get the whole story.
What unique threats does the groundswell pose?
How to turn it to competitive advantage, "like a jujitsu master"?
What are its component technologies?
What is The Social Technologies Profile and what does it offer?
What is the four-step POST process for creating strategies?
What are the five primary objectives for a groundswell strategy?
How to create customers who are evangelists for you?
How to establish and support relationships between and among your customers?
How can the same trends that empower customers also empower employees?
Throughout their narrative, drawing upon a wealth of data accumulated by Forrester Research as well as by their own studies, Li and Bernoff include a number of real-world examples - in the form of mini-case studies -- that demonstrate key points. They offer lessons to be learned from Mini USA, the American arm of BMW's Mini Cooper brand (how to listen through brand monitoring, Pages 89-93), Ernst & Young (how to communicate in social networks, Pages 104-106), Hewlett-Packard (how to communicate with customers through blogging, Pages 108-112), eBags (how to energize with customer ratings and reviews, Pages134-140), Constant Contact (how to energize by creating a community, Pages 140-145), the Lego Group (how to energize an existing community, Pages 145-147), and BearingPoint (how to use a wiki to reassure clients, Pages 165-168). Granted, not all of these lessons are directly relevant to a reader's own organization. However, they help to create a context for each key point as well as a frame of reference for what Li and Bernoff describe as a "permanent, long-lasting shift in the way the world works."
They conclude this brilliant book by offering some advice, not on what to do but on how to be: ever-mindful that the groundswell is about person-to-person activity, a good listener, patient, opportunistic, flexible, collaborative, and humble. Guided and informed by the information and counsel provided by Li and Bernoff, readers will be able to formulate and then execute strategies to achieve a competitive advantage. "You'll be able to build on your successes, both with customers and within your own company. And then, as the groundswell rises and becomes ubiquitous, you will be ready."
Those who share my high regard for this volume are urged to check out Rob Cross and Andrew Parker's The Hidden Power of Networks: Understanding How Work Really Gets Done in Organizations. Also Gary Hamel's The Future of Management (with Bill Breen) and Ram Charan's Leaders At All Levels as well as Enterprise Architecture as Strategy: Creating a Foundation for Business Execution co-authored by Jeanne Ross, Peter Weill, and David Robertson, Richard Ogle's Smart World: Breakthrough Creativity and the New Science of Ideas, and Global Brain co-authored by Satish Nambisan and Mohanbir Sawhney.
Forrester analysts, Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff have produced the most up-to-book on the subject and present their findings in a clear and easy to understand format. Both demonstrate their expertise as analysts and writers and provide numerous data examples throughout the book.
What is a Groundswell?
Charlene and Josh define the Groundswell as:
"...a social trend in which people use technologies to get the things they need from each other, rather than from traditional institutions".
The authors discuss why it important to participate in the "Groundswell" and why the "Groundswell" is happening now. The book begins with an overview into what "social media" actually is, and discusses many of the successes and the pitfalls that a company can go through during its journey. The book then offers steps that a business should follow to implement a successful social media strategy.
The book essentially examines how such tools threaten institutional power, and how individuals can use them to empower themselves and their businesses.
Many businesses foolishly believe that participating in social media is as simple as creating a blog, or being active in Facebook. Groundswell does a great job at explaining that creating a successful social media strategy is probably one of the most difficult things that a business can do and takes time and commitment
Hopefully by reading this book the business person will be well on their way to mastering the new dynamics of social media.
Truly, a well presented and written book that is a must read for anyone who wants to learn and utilise Internet marketing, as it exists today and will exist tomorrow.
So much so, I would say this is the most important book to be released since The Cluetrain Manifesto and Naked Conversations.
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