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Viral Loop: From Facebook to Twitter, How Today's Smartest Businesses Grow Themselves by Adam L. Penenberg (Oct 13, 2009)
Reading this book right now.
There are books and then there are books that have an impact. Books that you feel are like little gems you've found that both enlighten and broaden your view. Books that may change the course of how you think about everything else in the future. This is one such book. Virality – like pet rock fads – don't matter if they're inherently unfathomable, uncontrollable and totally based on luck and circumstance.
But, what if that weren't true. What if you could 'bake' virality into a product, a service or a web site? What if there were rules and tips and best practices? What if the pros could do it over and over again?
Well, then there's nothing more important.
This is a great book and you'll never think of business or marketing strategy the same again.
Nothing worth mentioning.
From Publishers Weekly
"In this clear-eyed collection of case studies, Fast Company contributing writer and NYU journalism professor Penenberg examines the engine driving the growth of web 2.0 businesses like Flickr, YouTube and eBay to Facebook and Twitter: the viral loop. The concept behind a viral loop is simple-in order to use the product, you have to spread it, thus creating massive, user-driven growth cycles-after all, Penenberg explains, social networks like Facebook are worthless to a user if one's friends aren't also using the products. Viral loops are nothing new, of course, and Penenberg has certainly done his homework, tracing the concept back through its analog roots via entertaining and enlightening anecdotes about companies like Tupperware, which used "parties" to turn ordinary housewives into an army of sales reps, to Charles Ponzi-yes, he of the Ponzi scheme, a viral scam recently taken to historic levels by Bernie Madoff. Penenberg truly succeeds, however, in showing how the viral loop has found its groove on the Internet, fueling a wave of billion-dollar companies all built on word of mouth-and, of course, user clicks. Solidly researched and briskly-written, Penenberg at once captures a great business and tech story, as well as a defining moment in our online culture.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved."
In case anyone is wanting a quick checklist for some of the elements that are involved in making an online company viral here it is.
Online Viral Loop Companies
- Web based
- Free to use
- Users create content
- Simple concept and intuitive to use
- Built in viarlity as users share or spread out of their own self interest
- Gaining exponential growth
- As more join, more want to join
- Stacking one business on top of another viral business
As easy as that …
Here's another book I love – 'Inbound Marketing'
The blurb further down below from Hubspot actually doesn't do it justice.
It's a great book about how marketing has changed; how we can't just interrupt people with marketing anymore but have to give them compelling reasons to want to frequent our blog or web site etc… and finding ways to add value (often through offering remarkable and free content) that will bring in 'inbound' links, traffic and – eventually – clients.
Read it. You won't regret it. It's 'mind altering'.
Inbound Marketing: Get Found Using Google, Social Media, and Blogs by Brian Halligan (Author), Dharmesh Shah (Author), David Meerman Scott (Foreword)
Inbound marketing-focused businesses have a 61% lower cost per lead.
Inbound Marketing is an actionable how-to guide to getting found via Google, the blogosphere, and social media sites.
- Improve your rankings in Google to get more traffic
- Build and promote a blog for your business
- Grow and nurture a community in Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.
- Measure what matters and do more of what works online
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