Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Social Media But Were Afraid to Ask

To be perfectly arrogant about it, I didn’t really think there was anything more I wanted to know or needed to know about social media.  And if there were, I certainly wasn’t afraid to ask.

But when I was asked to review “Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Social Media But Were Afraid to Ask,” I gave an enthusiastic “Yes!”  I thought it might be a great book to recommend to my social media newbie clients and friends.

Well, after reading through this book I can tell you that I was wrong and I was right. First let me explain where I was wrong. While I was already familiar with a lot of the material in the book, there were several useful social media applications that were new to me. And even for the applications I was familiar with such as Plurk or hi5, I enjoyed reading more about these tools and how to successfully use them.

Now I’ll tell you where I was right. This little book is a WONDERFUL resource for anyone who wants to have a handle on and a description of what tools are out there and how to use them. Social media newbies and veterans alike will love the short chapters and the easy-to-read-and-understand style.

It’s a Social Media Encyclopedia!

Don’t get the wrong idea – this is a short paperback book – exactly what you’d want for this topic. It measures about 5″ X 7″ and can easily fit inside your computer carrying case. I mention this in a book review because this is a book you’ll want to put in your case or purse and carry with you. It’s the ideal companion for a business trip where you’re stuck in an airport or on an airplane or even when you’re early for a meeting and have a few minutes to play around and learn a new social media application.

The author doesn’t waste or mince words (and I love that). There are 31 chapters in this book and each one is anywhere from 5-10 pages or so. Each chapter is dedicated to a social media application.  So you don’t have to read the whole book to find what you’re looking for. Just let your fingers glide down the chapter names, pick the one you want to learn about and read. I’d also recommend that you use this book in conjunction with the actual application because you will get basic guidance through the sign-up process and how to get the most out of the app.

At the end of each chapter you get the author’s “2 Cents” and this is simply a short paragraph where she gives a short opinion on each application. She’ll tell you how she uses it, what she likes, how the application in the chapter relates to other similar social media sites and other useful information a friend or colleague might share.

About the Author

At first, Hilary J.M. Topper (@Hilary25) was like the rest of us – she didn’t know much about social media and she wasn’t sure she understood what the benefits were. But soon enough, after her son put her on Facebook as a joke, she learned the potential power for growth social media held for small businesses. When she didn’t find a good resource for small business owners that distilled the basics of social media options, she decided to create one. And this book is the fruit of her labor.

What Social Media Sites are Covered?

While this book covers many social media sites, there are whole chapters devoted to the following:

  • BrightKite.com
  • Bebo.com
  • Bx.Businessweek.com
  • Facebook.com
  • Flickr.com
  • FriendFeed.com
  • Hi5.com
  • Indenti.ca
  • IncBizNet.com
  • Koornk.com
  • Plaxo.com
  • Plurk.com
  • Spoke.com
  • Tumblr.com
  • Twitter.com
  • Yammer.com
  • YouAre.com
  • YouTube.com
  • SecondLife.com

Who the Book is For

Is this book for you? Here’s how to tell.

Take this short quiz and see how you rank. Go through the list above.  Circle the ones you haven’t heard of or don’t know much about.  That’s it – a very simple quiz.

Here’s how to score the quiz.  If you circled:

  • Fewer than 5: You’re a maven.  Pick up a few copies and share them with your newbie friends.
  • 5 – 10: You’re the norm. You’ll want this book so you can check out a couple new sites that could benefit your business.
  • More than 10: Read this book, pick a few sites you’d like to explore, and start seeing the benefits social media can bring your business.

Read: “Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Social Media But Were Afraid to Ask

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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.

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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."