Trust Agents by Chris Brogan & Julien Smith could also be called the Miss Manners Guide to Social Media. For long-time bloggers and heavy social media users there is not a lot that’s new here but it’s still an interesting read. What I really like about the book are the various recommendations on how to behave online. Not only do they cover what you CAN do with social media but they always say what you SHOULD do.
“That Guy” can be a man or a woman, but we all know a version of That Guy. He’s annoying. He handed you his business card immediately but barely looks at yours. His attitude is “hand them all out”, which is the business equivalent of carpet bombing … In your business, you shouldn’t ask for anything almost ever. Asking for favors, getting people to blog things for you, these are things that make people go out of their way and make them feel uncomfortable.
I have met new friends, business partners and clients with social media, and like the authors, I would say that a “no sales” approach works best in the long run. The chapter called the Human Artist covers online etiquette in detail and should be read by any self-described social media guru. Also, three of the book’s chapters reflect The Law of the Few – how small groups of people enable social change or the transmission of new ideas.
Connectors: They talk about the idea of being Agent Zero, or the person who connects groups where no previous connection exists.
Mavens: They also discuss creating value, or doing things that people need, one small bit at a time. In Make Your Own Game, the premise is to find a niche and become an expert in it.
Salespeople: In Build an Army, the authors show the promise and pitfalls of crowd-sourcing and social networks for business.