Presumably, most of you reading this site “get it” about social media. You understand that it’s about the conversation. You understand that transparency is important. You get the power of raises voices in bringing about change, and how these new tools deliver these abilities to individuals and organizations alike. Sure, you might learn the occasional thing here, but for the most part, you’re the expert that people turn to in your own personal circle for information on how this all works.
Sometimes, explaining all this is difficult. We’ll hear something that makes sense when we read it or watch it on a video, but when we turn around to explain it to others, some of the words and ideas are lost in translate.
To that end, here are some resources you can pass on to people, to help them understand:
Watch this video from Common Craft about blogs:
RSS (really simple syndication) is perhaps the single most important technology commonly referred to as a “Web 2.0” technology, and yet it’s so rarely given the credit it’s due. Another Common Craft video:
And yes, they cover social networking, too!
Do you have a boss or colleague who doesn’t believe it unless she sees it in writing? Share this list of books (and feel free to add your favorites — or books you’ve written — in the comments area, to add to the list):
This is the granddaddy of all social media texts, revered by some and considered horrible by others. It has my vote as part of the story that brought a lot of this social media to the party. I should also point out that you don’t even have to buy this book, if you don’t want. The authors released the entire book for free on their site.
Both Shel Israel and Robert Scoble continue to do so much for demonstrating how organizations might interact with their customer base, but this book makes a great point-in-time capture of some of their ideas on the topic. An excellent read and definitely a classic in explaining social media to others.
David Meerman Scott has done an excellent job of sharing great bridging ideas from the old world of marketing into the new. His concepts are understandable, backed up by good information, and useful to the larger story of explaining how a marketing or PR group might better understand the new landscape.
I just finished reading this excellent book by Geoff Livingston and Brian Solis. It’s chock full of interesting points, good case studies from the real world, supporting posts and references, and a great deal of useful information. It’s packed into a very slim volume, perfect for those who have a lot to do and little time to do it, and yet excellent in dispensing the important information to be covered.
For the media makers into podcasting and videoblogging, Greg Cangialosi and Michael Geoghegan have released this book recently to cover this space. It’s pretty hefty, but there was lots to cover. It’s definitely built for the business perspective on podcasting, and has lots of information and case studies. For the how-to, there are plenty of other books I’d recommend to accompany this, but for a good view of the realm of business, this is a great guide.
Many Other Books
There are plenty of other books out there that I could recommend, written by excellent authors, some of whom are my friends and occasional visitors to this site. Feel free to plug your book in the comments section if you feel it would help someone convince their organization to get into social media, or understand the landscape, the tools, and the spirit behind it.
And Finally, Blogs and Podcasts
I truly believe that you are the experts. You who come by my blog and spend time with me, and give me your attention, your wisdom, and your excellent posts. So, for those of you seeking further information and corroboration to the story, look no further than the Rockstars page, where I list the blogs and RSS feeds of people who come by this site and make their own media. YOU. Simply find other like-minded folks from the list and refer these blogs on to your colleagues and employers, as watching a few ongoing sites do what they do best is perhaps the best way to show a “living” example of how social media can work.
What Else Would YOU Recommend?
As always, it’s about the conversation. What do you think is a great site to help others understand the value of social media? Do you have favorite haunts or specific blog posts or podcast episodes that really put this in perspective for you? Share with the others here, as it’s all with the hope of promoting understanding.
The Social Media 100 is a project by Chris Brogan dedicated to writing 100 useful blog posts in a row about the tools, techniques, and strategies behind using social media for your business, your organization, or your own personal interests. Swing by [chrisbrogan.com] for more posts in the series, and if you have topic ideas, feel free to share them, as this is a group project, and your opinion matters.
Get the entire series by subscribing to this blog.