As the second subtitle states, author Michael Hyatt lays out “a step-by-step guide for anyone with something to say or sell.” Clearly, concisely and in easy-to-understand prose, Hyatt gives instructions from product development, launch, and marketing.
Hyatt’s overall message is simple: you need a compelling product and a way to capture people’s attention so you can tell them about it. Chapter by chapter, he lays out ways to develop that compelling product, create a brand, and successfully market your product through social media and other channels.
I found the chapters on using social media especially helpful. Every other day I stumble on another so-called social media expert who has the magic formula for generating sales through facebook or twitter. Do these people really know what they are talking about? One contradicts another, and a third has yet another opinion.
In Platform, however, Hyatt shares what worked for him and gives helpful guidelines. For example, the twitter chapters start with the value of twitter, and proceed through how to set up an account, find followers, and how to efficiently use twitter to your advantage.
Few people go into such detail, or offer such practical details such as how often to tweet or what kind of content to include or how to automate and schedule your tweets.
To be sure, Hyatt had a head start on most of us when it comes to building a platform because of his long career in publishing, including eight years as CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishers. But that doesn’t diminish his success in using social media to promote his books, or mean that his advice won’t work for an average person.
A key point in Platform is that social media is all about giving back, and that social media marketing is not about the quick sell. Rather, by consistently giving value to your followers and fans, you are building a relationship with them. The online conversation you have with them creates a tribe, a community of people with shared interests.
I can’t recommend this book highly enough. Every page offers useful information; the chapters are short and to the point. Avid followers of Hyatt’s blog may not find much new in the book. True social media experts may also feel the same. But for new authors or speakers, or people like me who have been struggling for a few years, Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World is a book that makes sense of the new wild world of social media and gives hope that success is in reach.
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