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Highly Recommended: Harnessing the Power of Word of Mouth and Social Media to Build Your Brand and Your Business Hardcover – September 23, 2013

4.9 out of 5 stars 36 customer reviews

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  • Highly Recommended: Harnessing the Power of Word of Mouth and Social Media to Build Your Brand and Your Business
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"The book is well-written and easy to read. Rand introduces a few new concepts that are easy to implement into any type of marketing. It's a great book for those new to marketing, and it's a good refresher for those that have been in marketing for a while." BlogCritics 20130924

About the Author

PAUL M. RAND is the founder, president, and CEO of Zocalo Group, one of the world's leading digital, social media, and word of mouth marketing agencies and one of the fastest growing companies inside Omnicom Group. He also serves at the Chief Digital Officer for Ketchum, a leading global communications firm. He served as president of the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA) and is on the board of the national Council of Better Business Bureaus and vice chairman of the Dean's Advisory Board for DePaul University's Driehaus College of Business and Kellstadt Graduate School of Business.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education; 1 edition (September 20, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071816216
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071816212
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1.2 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #797,103 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This book is the perfect balance between theory and real world proof. It's compelling in its content and engaging in its writing style. As business books go, it's truly an enjoyable read - choc full of valuable information, case studies and best practices. I found this book to be a great roadmap for how to build business through the power of word of mouth and recommendation.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've worked with Paul a number of years and enjoy his honesty and sense of humor. Finished reading Paul's book this weekend - it's a great read - has Paul's voice in it throughout, and has lots of numbers backing up the claims in the book. Some of the many ideas that stood out for me were: moving from ROI as return on investment to return on involvement; the Shareable Story Map on page 105 nicely demonstrates an effective elevator story that can work with many different people and channels; the movement of customer service from internal processes to Social Care that engages actively with consumers in live time (yes, that means within 24 hours). I loved the idea at the close of the book that notes social media is like one big magnifying glass that cracks open your company and lays it bare for all the world to see... and the most highly recommended businesses know how to turn the magnifying glass around and use the transparency of social media to study, understand and engage with consumers on a quality basis. As Paul notes, some companies see transparency as a danger: "They'll learn all our secrets". Others see it as an opportunity: "We'll learn all of theirs!". It's a well written book that gives practical, data-based advice, on how to get your brand highly recommended in the fast moving and evolving world of social media. And best of all, it has Paul's honest humorous approach to life - a fun read.
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Format: Hardcover
I heard Paul Rand speak on the Social Media Examiner podcast with Michael Stelzner and immediately ordered his book. A quick Google search will turn up that podcast for you--where Paul does a better job explaining the premise of Highly Recommended better that it's possible to do in an Amazon review.

Suffice it to say this is easily the best marketing book I've read all year. Paul's insights into the science of becoming a highly recommended business are strong, and his tactics are prescriptive (and include a detailed list of both paid and free tools that you can use to implement social listening and outreach on your own). He shares detailed information from Zocalo Group's work for Frito-Lay, Subway, Nissan, and SAS. Unlike other books in the category, Highly Recommended isn't fattened up with long winded personal stories. Instead, Paul uses his experiences with clients to illustrate different steps along the process.

At its core, Highly Recommended is a guide to becoming not just Highly Recommended but also profitable and a step ahead of your competition. This book should be required reading for anyone interested in or working:
- business management
- marketing
- advertising
- HR (he lays out how to become a highly recommended work place)
- R&D (he also discusses the implications of consumer recommendations on product/service innovation)

The advice will still be as relevant in 5 years as it is today. I've personally recommended it to countless friends, clients and colleagues over the last year. I believe it's made me a better consumer marketer and I look forward to seeing more from Paul in the future!
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Format: Hardcover
Word of mouth marketing is the new holy grail says author Paul Rand in this book on harnessing the power of social media and word of mouth marketing to build your brand and your business. Some statistics Rand relates to prove this point: 92% say that WOM is the leading reason why they buy a product or service. 70% of brand content is now created by the consumer. Regarding search results, 25% of results are links to user generated content.

Brand is what consumers tell each other it is claims Rand. So, how do you become recommended?

Here's a sampling of some ideas on how to become recommended per Rand - the book is full of them:

* Companies have to become social and talk WITH consumers

* A goal is to make the brand talkable, sharable and recommended ~ become the most talked about in their category

* You're not selling so much anymore as sharing

* Don't think ROI as return on investment, but return on involvement

* Don't interrupt but interact ~ integrated, hybrid and holistic

Those who engage with a company will spend 20-40% more money with the company. Rand offers many ways to engage with consumers. He also discusses how different departments can use social media and stresses the importance of social media as customer service. HR can use it to find quality talent with the goal of being the most recommended place to work. Loved the ideas and examples of how different companies such as Chlorox and Frito-Lay used social media to co-create products through conversations or contests.

The book is written in a lively and conversational style so it is an accessible read. Rand works in the field of social media and marketing and is clearly passionate about his topic.
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