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The #ArtofSocial Interview with @GuyKawasaki and @PegFitzpatrick #SEJBookClub

Want to see what other books we’ve covered? Read our other reviews in the SEJ Book Club archive.

This instillation of #SEJBookClub is really exciting. Not only did I get to read The Art of Social Media: Power Tips for Power Users (affiliate link), but I got the opportunity to speak with authors Guy Kawasaki and Peg Fitzpatrick.


The book guides you through the steps of building your foundation, amassing your digital assets, going to market, optimizing your profile, attracting more followers, and effectively integrating social media and blogging. For beginners overwhelmed by too many choices, as well as seasoned professionals eager to improve their game, it’s full of tactics that have been proven to work in the real world.

Guy is currently the chief evangelist of Canva. He was formerly the chief evangelist of Apple and special advisor to the CEO of the Motorola business unit of Google. Other books he’s penned include The Art of the Start and Enchantment.

Peg is a social media strategist that has spearheaded successful social-media campaigns for Motorola, Google, Audi, Canva, and Virgin. When she dies and meets Saint Peter, the first thing he’ll say is, “I follow you on Pinterest.”

Despite their hectic schedules, I truly appreciated Guy and Peg taking the time to jump on the phone with me to discuss the book itself, how it was marketed, and some specific questions from the books’ contents.

The Art of Social Media was rolled out by allowing social media influencers to access the book ahead of time and leave reviews on Amazon.

Although some authors are scared of this tactic (leaving the potential for poor reviews), Guy has done it with other books in the past and it has proven successful. Within the first few weeks, there were already 154 reviews on Amazon. Peg also created a pinboard with all the views to allow people easy access.

Giving power to their audience is something Guy and Peg regularly employ. In coming up with the book’s subtitle, they crowdsourced via Google+. They had multiple ideas, some of which were conflicting, and put them out to their audience to see what was most well liked. “Power Tips for Power Users” was fitting as most people aspire to be a power user, so, even though they may not yet be and subsequently some of the content is more beginner-oriented, it tagline serves both novices as well as those aspiring to enhance their social media prowess.

In the first chapter, the duo talk about creating a mantra, similar to Nike’s “Just Do It,” for example. Guy himself boasts the mantra, “I empower people.” When attempting to figure out a mantra, Guy suggests it should be a combination of how you want to be perceived and also has be true, unique, believable, and make sense.

Another salient point made is consistency among your name across social networks. This is something I’ve struggled with since I have such a common name, so the option to utilize it for my handles and customized domains has been limited. The other layer of this is people attempting to figure out whether to go by their real name, or a brand they’ve created. Many mommy bloggers take the persona of their brand name, for example.

Peg advises against this approach, though, since it can be fleeting. What about when the kids grow up? “In social media, I use my name. In 15 years, it’s still going to be my name.” Peg noted. Guy expanded upon this point pointing out if he’d have gone with an online alias like “MacGuy” when he was working for Mac, that would no longer be applicable. So, when launching your online persona, make sure it’s something that is long-lasting.

In terms of his own social media presence, Guy does have people who post from him, bit he mans all his own interactions and engagement. One section of the book discusses bringing value to your audience.

 “If you’re not pissing people off on social media, you’re not doing it right.” – Guy

Shifting to content marketing, the book outlines “feeing the content monster.” Similar to the way Gordan Ramsey would have to come up with recipes, social media marketers and bloggers need to calculate their content, or feed the content monster. It requires a strategic approach: “you can’t rest on your laurels. Today something can go great, then the next day not so much. Every day you’re starting over.”

 “It’s a big process. We spend time finding things and figuring out where and how to share it.” – Peg

In a more unique approach to spreading content, Guy relies primarily on Google+ and LinkedIn to leverage content. Having abandoned his former blog, he relies on LinkedIn for posts less than 250 words, and LinkedIn for posts longer than 250 words. Guy mentioned if he were starting a blog today, he would elect to post on LinkedIn verses having his own.

Contrarily, Peg pointed out that there is one caveat to this approach: you own your blog, but you don’t own the content on LinkedIn. Guy elaborated and compared the situation to shopping. If you’re a retailer, you can put your store in a big shopping center that is already better trafficked. That’s what blogging on LinkedIn is like.

[pullquote]If you have your own blog, it’s like you have a stand-alone store in the middle of nowhere and you have to hope your merchandise is so fantastic that people will come. Both have benefits, so decide which is best for you.[/pullquote]

In looking forward to 2015, the dynamic duo think Skillshare and LinkedIn will continue to rise, along with the influence of Pinterest’s promoted pins and native uploads to Facebook as opposed to uploading a link from Facebook.

Don’t miss Guy’s keynote at several industry events including Social Media Marketing World, Hubspot’s Inbound Marketing Conference, and SXSWi.

Want to see what other books we’ve covered? Read our other reviews in the SEJ Book Club archive.

This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

Category News Social Media
Debbie Miller Social Media and Content Marketing Professional | Writer at Social Hospitality

Debbie is a marketing communications specialist that has worked in digital marketing, content development, and social media for over 10 ...

The #ArtofSocial Interview with @GuyKawasaki and @PegFitzpatrick #SEJBookClub

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