The Anatomy of Buzz Revisited – A Review

Anatomy of Buzz RevisitedIt shouldn’t surprise any of you that I’m reading and reviewing Emanuel Rosen’s “The Anatomy of Buzz Revisited:  Real-Life Lessons in Word-of-Mouth Marketing.” Any book that’s going to get the word out and get me and my clients chosen over another alternative is very high on my reading list.

I read the “Anatomy of Buzz” years ago and thought that this version might be the same thing with a few updates here and there. But it isn’t. There is actually so much updating, that I experienced this book in a whole new way.

So, if you’re like me and have the previous version — don’t overlook this one.  There are a ton of new insights and updates for today’s economy, technology and culture that will make the re-reading time well spent.

My original “Anatomy of Buzz” was a hardback. This one is a paperback and VERY portable. It’s just about 300 pages with 24 chapters. Here’s a sample:

  • Chapter 1: Trigger: “Delight your customers and they will talk about you…”
  • Chapter 3: The New Buzz: “Text based buzz has reached a massive scare…”
  • Chapter 6: Insight and Buzz: “Understanding what customers want to talk about is a key factor in stimulating word of mouth.”
  • Chapter 18: Uneven Distribution: “By giving exclusive information to a select group of people before an official launch, you’re likely to get some extra mileage out of the news.”

There are actually FULL descriptive paragraphs in the table of contents. I just LOVE that.

You’d think Rosen wrote this book for search engines, because the descriptions are so tantalizing.  If you had picked up the book at the book store or on Amazon and just saw the table of contents — you would be ready to buy and dig in.

This is a book you will want to read from start to finish — in order.   Rosen references stories and examples early on that he builds on and refers to throughout the book.  So if you miss the beginning, you’ll miss the point.

I really would recommend having some sticky notes or tabs that you stick on the pages that you’ll want to come back to because you WILL want to come back to them to use them in your strategies.

How to Get the Most Out of “The Anatomy of Buzz Revisited”

Like many business books, this one is full of example after example. What I would challenge you to do is read the book, highlight or mark the examples that sound “doable” to you and concentrate on how you will adapt them for your product or service.

One of my favorite examples is in the section called “Should Microsoft Cancel its MVP Program?” Microsoft has recognized that the power behind their MVPs is their technical expertise. People follow MVP’s NOT because they are associated with Microsoft, but because they are perceived as thought leaders on computing. This is why Microsoft is open to MVP’s panning their products now and then — because it enhances the experts’ credibility in the eyes of their audience.   For buzz to work it has to be authentic and the last thing that Microsoft wants is to have their experts perceived as having sold out.

This is a wonderful example of how you can identify power-users of your product or service and use their expertise and network to effectively build a community around your offering. But beware — manipulating or even being perceived as manipulating will do more harm then good.

Who Will Benefit the Most?

I hate to say everyone will benefit from this book, but because we’re all involved in buzzing, gossiping and generally sharing our experiences about people, products, services and companies – it’s hard not to say that anyone will benefit from the book.

Needless to say, we sales and marketing types will get the most out of it. Anything that gives us ideas about how to get the word out about our products and services for the least amount of money carries a lot of weight.

If you’re still confused about the whole social media thing and how to make money using social media, you can add this book to your education. I can’t tell you how often people ask me how social media makes them money. This book will give you concrete examples of how to mix and match the different social media tools and methods with real 3-dimensional life to build authentic word of mouth marketing strategies that will drive customers to you.

It used to be the “buzz” and word-of-mouth was a strategy option. Today, buzz is happening.  People are talking about you, your product and your company.  You really can’t afford to treat buzz as something interesting, but optional. It’s a requirement for your marketing strategy.

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Ivana Taylor About the Author: Ivana Taylor is CEO of Third Force, a strategic firm that helps small businesses get and keep their ideal customer.  She’s the co-author of the book “Excel for Marketing Managers” and proprietor of DIYMarketers, a site for in-house marketers.  Her blog is Strategy Stew.

Ivana Taylor Ivana Taylor is the Book Editor for Small Business Trends. She is responsible for directing the site’s book review program and manages the team of professional book reviewers. She also spearheads the annual Small Business Book Awards. Ivana publishes DIYMarketers, where she shares daily do-it-yourself marketing tips, and is co-author of "Excel for Marketing Managers."