This is a fun book to read. I believe it qualifies as the best on the subject of fan engagement. In his book “Think Like a Rock Star,” Mack Collier draws a perfect analogy for turning customers into fans much like the way rock stars treat their fans.
The book, in my opinion, qualifies academically as a supplementary reading for undergraduate level and MBA programs. The recommendation is based on the following:
- Few books give such adequate coverage to this part of the sales funnel. Mack offers numerous examples of how powerful fans can be when you relinquish control and let them advocate. The examples start with familiar rock stars for picture stories and progresses through examples of brands that lead the pack in customer advocacy.
- Some solid examples are given in later chapters on how to implement brand and customer advisory councils with practical approaches to getting buy-in.
- The book provides an excellent example of how employee advocacy can be adopted in the real world of social media skepticism and social business challenges.
- His concepts are tightly integrated around “drawing relevant insights from existing customer feedback and conversations, with the end goal of creating more connections with and better understanding fans.” He then explains the value of this customer understanding to the bottom line. Few books tackle this beyond its value in customer service. Instead, Mack ties his concepts to the power of brand ambassadors, employee advocacy and even influence marketing (to a point) in driving business.
- The book is highly current and very relevant to today’s challenge in adopting enterprise-wide programs to implement ambassador programs.
- The book is well organized around convincing first, then dealing with tactical issues and finally setting up an organization to mobilize and empower fans and employees.
What keeps the book, however, from qualifying higher as a primary text for MBA social media courses is the following.
- The subject matter applies to one or maybe two classes at the MBA and undergraduate level.
- It is tough to draw critical thinking exercises at the end of each chapter. It almost requires you to finish the entire book before assigning case oriented exercises. I believe this can be done, but it will take some work on the part of a professor.
- The last few chapters get highly instructional around the subject of creating and managing councils. Although beneficial to practitioners tasked with implementing ambassador programs, the detailed steps could lose a student audience more interested in strategy.
Overall Evaluation of Social Media Book
Category: Recommended supplementary reading for MBA/undergraduate in social media marketing or IMC.
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.