Although social media has become a mainstream business strategy, there are few ‘how-to’ books that you can hand business owners who are eager to get started with social media. The newest of these is Likeable Social Media by David Kerpen.
At more than 140 characters, the title of Dave Kerpen’s 2011 social media handbook may be too long to tweet, but the book is definitely worth talking about. Officially titled Likeable Social Media: How to Delight Your Customers, Create an Irresistible Brand, and Be Generally Amazing on Facebook (and other social networks), Kerpen’s book shares 18 strategies for effective Facebook marketing and provides an overview of the most popular and effective social media networks for business.
Kerpen binds social media strategies together with ‘likeability’. “Just be likeable, ” he said. “Succeeding on social networks amounts to your ability to be likeable. Create and share stories, text, photos, videos, links and applications that you as a consumer would want to like, comment on, and share. To be likeable, you must always respect and add value to your community.”
The book offers helpful examples, useful tips, marketing insights and a good index. It’s a book that’s easily recommended and unlikely to offend. Anyone who’s new to social media will want to pick up a copy of the book for themselves. Experienced social media marketers may want to pick up a dozen copies of Likeable to distribute to everyone around them.
Likeable gives ‘by the book’ instructions for achieving likeability — which may be its only shortcoming. Compared with Guy Kawasaki’s search for ‘enchantment’ and Scott Stratten’s battle cry to ‘be awesome!’, a quest for ‘likeability’ seems unintentionally bland, dispassionate and forgettable.
Likeable is a stand-out book, but it doesn’t stand alone.