Neal Schaffer’s Maximize Your Social is a primary text read for NSU’s MKT 3610 class in social networking. And when asked what book I recommend for those getting up to speed on social content marketing, this is the one I suggest. It covers everything needed to create and execute a social media strategy.
The book, in my opinion, qualifies academically as a primary reading for undergraduate level courses. The recommendation is based on the following:
- Neal is a social networking pioneer with a wealth of practitioner experience. But unlike many practitioners that harp on their client tactic successes, Neal is a masterful strategist that applies his client experiences to the entire process of creating and fine tuning social strategies for enterprise wide adoption.
- The book is perfectly organized for a course on social networking adoption. The sequence of topics starts with a status check on what’s going on in the world of social media. Mentoring is then provided on developing an overarching strategic framework after auditing your key social assets and enterprise objectives. Strategies for acquiring and engaging audiences are then covered one social platform at a time. This allows platform mastery for all stages of prospect courtship as opposed to mastery of a platform technical capabilities.
- After platform mastery, the book focuses on the ever needed subject of measurement and social business development. Neal provides as good an overview of social media ROI, onboarding and social team development as any publication devoted to the subject.
- The book is very well written in a direct, “how-to” style especially suitable for undergraduate upperclassmen.
What keeps the book, however, from qualifying as a primary text for MBA social media courses is the following.
- The book lacks rigorous cases, critical thinking exercises and some strategies related to audience development, entertaining engagement and mobile customer experiences.
- MBA students would applaud the ending chapters on ROI and social business development but likely see the rest of the book as a primer on social networking concepts and the fundamentals of social media marketing. Supplementary material would be required on topics like mid-funnel content marketing, storytelling, enterprise-wide campaigns for top-funnel growth, SoLoMo context marketing, influence marketing and community management.
Overall Evaluation of Social Media Book
Category: Highly recommended primary reading for an undergraduate course in social networking and social media marketing.
So what is your take on this book being qualified for higher education? Please share your own criteria or what disagreements you have with this book’s academic influence.