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Trust Agents: Using the Web to Build Influence, Improve Reputation, and Earn Trust Paperback – August 23, 2010
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From the Back Cover
The revised and updated edition of the breakthrough bestseller
Trust Agents has been widely acclaimed for its new approach toonline marketing. Now, in this revised and updated edition, social media veterans Chris Broganand Julien Smith show you how to tap into the power of social networks to build your brand'sinfluence, reputation, and profits. Combining high-level theory and practical advice, they deliveractionable strategies and real case studies that show how social media can positively impact your business. Let Trust Agents give you the keys to building customer loyalty online so your business can succeed in new markets and channels today!
Praise for Trust Agents
"Wow! Every once in a while you find a book that is a sit up in your chair, take notes, tell yourfriends, change your life breakthrough. This is that book. No kidding, you can trust me."
—Seth Godin, author of Tribes
"Social media may be a phenomenon, but it's not a fad. It has forever changed the waycompanies communicate with their customers. Trust Agents is the blueprint for doing it right."
—David B. Thomas, Social Media Manager, SAS
About the Author
Chris Brogan is a leadingauthority on blogs, highly ranked by Technorati.com. With over ten years of blogging and media making under his belt, Chris is one of the most widely read and respected bloggers on social software and methods out there today.
Julien Smith has been involved in Web communities for the last ten years. He was among the first adopters of podcasting and nowactively works with startups to help build a trusted audience on the Web.
Top customer reviews
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If I had to sum this book up it would be Dale Carnegie (his book - "How to make friends and influence people") meets the Godfather (remember the line paraphrased: "I will do this for you now - and someday I will ask you for a favor which you cannot refuse", and Goodfella (remember the line: "he is a Goddfella, one of us").
On the positive side - it is a very easy read (somewhat wordy and obvious in places though) - and the best part are the specific "Action Steps" which I did find valuable. Good intro to nuts'n-bolts of Web 2.0.
A decent read but would like to have been a little more amazed with new concepts from these two Trust Agents.
The book is structured around the six main features of a Trust Agent:
1. They make they own game. Nothing to do with ego packaging. They are the people who set new rules and provide a novel or interesting perspective on things.
2. They are "one of us." The expression "social media" maybe somewhat redundant, except that the Web can also be the playing ground of antisocial nerds and weirdos. Trust Agents are people we can relate to and care about others.
3. They understand the principle of the lever - or the Archimedes effect ("Give me a place on which to stand, and I will move the earth") and empower others.
4. They are marvel-ous connectors -- they have the power of an "Agent Zero." "No matter where they go, trust agents have a desire to connect good people together." They are not mere networkers and are more like relationship facilitators.
5. They are human artists. On the Web, we are deprived on 93 percent of all the human signals (38 percent vocal tones and 55 percent body movement), which exposes anybody to a number of blunders. They understand the subtle aesthetics and the etiquette of communication.
6. They know how to "build an army." You can't do it alone. But how can you best convince thousands of ronin and lone rangers to join in and follow? The loyalty of people is first and foremost your loyalty, as a Trust Agent, to them. The Kmart incident let the authors realize that "there are agreements, often implicit, between people and that these social contracts need to be clear and understood at all times."
The chapter "Build an Army" ends with an interesting statement: "Most of the meat of the business isn't in using these [social media] tools, but rather in how they are applied uniquely to your organization." The how requires a new type of skill, and tellingly enough, the conclusion of the book starts with an interesting statement: "Business, it feels, is becoming an art," the art of humanizing people that you may never see, and at looking at a random collection of people as real human beings emotionally connected by what the authors often call a "social contract." Push marketers are doomed to belong to another age, and social media marketing, still kind of a sidekick in marketing organizations, will be the cornerstone of the next marketing age - one governed by a completely new understanding of the value of customer service.
I like this book for many reasons. It's pragmatic and offers actionable advice to individuals and business leaders. I like the underlying assumption of a good-natured, transparence-driven popular sovereignty of digital natives that trust agents must respect to remain trust agents - and not turn into a body of traders controlling the social media business. I was interested by the fact that it is written by two authors who end up complementing each other as they express the complexity of a social media scene, the strange confluence of behaviors that we have caught from living on the Internet for the last 15 years, playing computer and video games (from the first SimCity to MMO games), reading American comic-books while still breathing in the real world.
El uso comercial que se les da "no hace click", cuesta medir el ROI (se cuestiona mucho si hay o no), se usan y después se botan (y con ello la comunidad que se formo), en resumidas cuenta: "son moda".
"Trust Agents" abre los fuegos diciendo algo similar, pero a medida que avanzaba en la lectura, me dio esa sensación de "haber estado ahí". Eso si, Brogan se enfoca en las personas, en los agente zero (aquellos que vinculan y conectan a otras personas), en el ROI y en aspectos mucho más micro, pero relevantes a la hora de levantar campañas, construir lovemarks y vincular al vendedor con el consumidor.
Al menos yo, estoy masticando y pensando mucho en el micro marketing. El marketing de nicho, aquel que se preocupa de las pymes y devuelve la competitividad a los almacenes (en la medida que tengan algo bueno que ofrecer). Y en ese campo, el libro acierta; baja los conceptos, establece vínculos y da directrices acerca de cómo establecer vínculos, generar lazos y armar puentes.
Aparte (como buen anglosajón) Brogan lista pasos a seguir los cuales me parecen altamente pertinentes si se quiere jugar de manera correcta:
- Crea tus propias reglas
- Sé uno de los nuestros (estornudadotes)
- Logra el efecto Arquímedes (no partas de cero, usa las cosas que ya existen).
- Agente zero (conecta a personas, haz favores, networking)
- Artista humano (RRPP. Si vas a una fiesta baila, si vas a un funeral, llora).
- Construye ejércitos: Busca afinidad con otros.
Otro punto alto del libro (y en particular, de mis favoritos) son los casos. Siempre muy realizables, pero a la vez inspiradores. Las buenas ideas jamás serás desplazadas.
En resumidas cuentas, "Trust Agents" viene a empujar la materia en otros rumbos. En serio que se me hacia muy necesario reflexiones así.