- Paperback: 303 pages
- Publisher: Crown Business; 1 edition (April 16, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0385496680
- ISBN-13: 978-0385496681
- Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.8 x 8.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 53 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,283,284 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Anatomy of Buzz: How to Create Word of Mouth Marketing 1st Edition
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The Palm Pilot. The novel Cold Mountain. The iMac. Hotmail. FedEx. The Blair Witch Project and There's Something About Mary. According to former marketing exec Emanuel Rosen, they all became successful not through traditional advertising or marketing routes, but through "buzz," that semitangible process through which information and commentary jump from one brain or mouth to another. Rosen also ascribes buzz to creating customer loyalty, which he says is built through the advice of friends, colleagues, or such trusted "mega-hubs" of information as Oprah Winfrey and Rosie O'Donnell. Rosen has spent the past few years studying the routes, nodes, and clusters through which buzz passes and grows, and the result is this well-researched book. While it doesn't throw much new light on the mechanics of buzz, it is at least instructive and entertaining, offering minisagas of the successful buzz behind such marketing triumphs as the dELia's catalog for teenage girls, PowerBars, and the BMW Z3 roadster. Buzz seekers, be warned, however: with the exception of a short chapter at the end of the book called "Buzz Workshop," you won't find much of a blueprint for starting the gears of buzz for your product or service. What you do get is a trove of real-life stories that, if they don't inspire and guide you toward taking your first buzz-creating baby steps, probably mean you're the type of person who should stick with conventional advertising and PR. --Timothy Murphy --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Often generated within the hive of the Internet, "buzz" has become essential to a product's success in today's fast-paced business environment. As Rosen (a former marketing executive for Niles Software) explains, in pre-Internet days a new product would appear in stores; consumers would buy it or not; and the company would then take however long it wished to evaluate the launch. Today, however, consumers immediately voice their viewsAon message boards, review sites, company sites, complaint sites, via e-mail or on their own Web siteAand so have a strong and immediate influence on whether a launch succeeds. Covering the same territory as Seth Godin in Unleashing the Ideavirus (E-Publishing, Aug. 7), Rosen draws on his own experience with Niles Software's EndNoteAa computer program that converts bibliographic annotations from one form to anotherAto offer an overview of the mechanics of buzz. Topics range from how to seed the market at the grassroots to how to tantalize with scarcity and mystery, to how to accelerate natural contagion. The concluding "buzz workshop," complete with checklists and sidebars, is the most helpful, but marketers and inventors looking for concrete ideas may be disappointed by its brevity. Agent, Daniel Greenberg. (Oct.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
Think about how fast information can exchange in this generation. If I buy a product that I enjoy, I have the ability to spread my enjoyment and knowledge across the country, or even the world with the click of a button. Information regarding products can be distributed in minutes or even seconds. Rosen begins by discussing his own personal experience when Buzz was helpful to him and his company. He was in charge of marketing and advertising a product called ‘Endnote.’ The company has not done any marketing for the product yet their first order was from across the country in New Jersey. It turns out that a person who attended their information session was so excited about the product that they discussed the product on an Internet forum for academics. This was his first experience with Buzz.
Rosen wrote this book to educate business owners about the trials and tribulations of marketing. He wanted to show the world about an inexpensive form of marketing that businesses have no control over. Everyone has participated in Buzz weather they know it or not. Every time you have a conversation with someone where you say something along the lines of “Where did you get that?” or “Is that good?” you create a Buzz about a certain product or service. Buzz can be created in many ways, big or small. One person can create a Buzz by telling their friends or coworkers how good their new car is. A large Buzz can be created when trusted celebrities like Oprah, for example, give a book a good review. This creates a very large Buzz to a very large population. A show like Top Gear, which is dedicated to driving cars, can create a Buzz about a new car that can either make the vehicle an immediate sensation or an immediate flop.
Two types of Buzz that Rosen mentions are positive and negative. Buzz can make or break a product’s success according to Rosen. Buzz can be negative just as much as it can be positive. The novel details a study that various companies completed in which they surveyed customers about how many people they told about their experience. For companies like General Motors, people who were very happy with their product told on average 8 people. If the people were dissatisfied, they told about 16 people. This is double the amount and could be very detrimental to a product no matter how big or expensive of a marketing campaign the company can put together. Montrese Etienne, the PR representative for Hotmail, states, and “Money can help, but word of mouth rooted in a great user experience wins!” which demonstrates that money cannot buy user experience (Rosen 416).
This is example shows how companies like Hotmail got on the grid and became very successful. Apparently in the early 1990’s a person would have separate work, school, and personal emails that made things very complicated when trying to interact with others. Hotmail decided that at the bottom of its initial users it would have an offer for a free email address. The email would be able to be used for anything and was compatible with every computer and other email. There were no ads or commercials, just a small sentence that said “sign up for a free Hotmail email.” Eventually everyone wanted one and in 18 months Hotmail had over 12 million users. The Hotmail founders noticed that users would spring up sparingly in a town or location and eventually they began to spread throughout that town or city until they acquired a large group in that area.
Now everything that has been illustrated above can only work under the condition that the product creates quality buzz. If a company does not produce a quality product or overstates its function it will receive a negative Buzz. A negative Buzz is almost impossible to come back from and that is why Rosen believes in understating the quality and letting the word of mouth show the success and quality of a certain product. In my opinion, a negative Buzz is a death sentence for any product or service.
I think that all the arguments that Rosen has made are very true and he has supported them with sufficient evidence from academics throughout the entire country. He argued that Buzz is an effective way to market a product or service. It is based on his personal experience with Endnote. The product went from California to New Jersey in a few days merely because of Buzz. He even made me start to think about my father’s business in logistics. He has no marketing and advertising campaign to bring him in new work. I realized that my father has a quality service and that through word of mouth he is able to get new customers just as Rosen discussed in his novel.
Rosen also did research to discover answers to questions that no one had previously known. It has been thought that a good product experience will provoke you to tell 2-3 people while with a negative experience, 4-5 people. He did surveys along with many of his colleagues to find out that this is not true. The product varies differently based on factors like price, necessity, and how often is it purchased.
The author definitely conveyed his objectives very well and exceeded them in my perspective. He began with an original goal, which was to explain Buzz and then he slowly broadened it into a way that made more sense and gave example by example of how each process happened. He never left out a detail and always fully explained himself with simple examples and vivid details. He seemed to dumb the content of the work down to the perfect extent that any business owner could get the jest of what message he was trying to convey. For example, right from the start he talks about the positive and negative effects of Buzz and how Endnote grew because of positive effects. He gave a personal example where his mother in law from Israel called to tell him about bad Tylenol capsules that were getting people sick. This was a great explanation of negative Buzz. Most importantly he showed that what one person says to another about a product is always more influential than any commercial or poster. I realized how many times in my life I have called a family or friend before buying something because they had valuable information on the topic.
My ending conclusion on this book is that it was great. I never once have to tell myself to pick it up and read. He kept the reader engaged throughout with great examples that would hold interest because they were about products we use everyday. It was very persuasive in the way that it made me realize that companies should put less into marketing campaigns and more into R&D to make a better higher quality product. I would recommend this book to any business owner or business student. I honestly believe that this book should be a part of the marketing curriculum at some point. I told my father to read the book as it addresses people like him. It addresses the business owner or marketer of a company. It definably reached them and gave them many ways for heir business to be successful. I was very happy I chose this book and grateful for this assignment at the end of the day. I feel that after reading this book I now have the opportunity to become even more successful of a businessperson.
Now that we are hyconnected through all kinds of devices and buzz can travel so much faster, transposing to this new context the systematic face-to-face approach the book defends has become all the more more necessary.
Not to say Rosen's book is without merit. I was fascinated by Gladwell's research and thought 'Buzz' would be a good complement to that. With those expectations, I enjoyed the book and found it to be a worthwhile read. I'll keep it on my bookshelf (for me, that's the litmus test of a book's worth).
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It's packed with lots of great examples, for example I discovered the history of the term...Read more