Book Review: Buzz Marketing – Read It

Many social media success stories are built on the same marketing fundamentals that have been around for many years.  This is a great book for any marketer to read about how to “get people talking about your stuff“.

This book is definitely worth a read.  While this review covers a lot of the key points it is at a high level.  Many of the best social media marketers use these principles to draw attention to their brands in relevant and meaningful ways via social media.

Buzzmarketing is a powerful concept that is highly relevant in social media and internet marketing.  Many social media success stories are built off of the same principles of word-of-mouth marketing and buzz marketing.  What makes this book so powerful is that it spells out in a clear and simple fashion how to create campaigns that are Buzzworthy.

Whether you work for a large branding company or a small startup with limited budgets, mastering buzzmarketing is essential to creating truly breakthrough growth.  Basically the premise is that typical marketing will give you typical results; buzz marketing will give you breakthrough results.

Summary of book and key learnings

The 6 Secrets of Buzz:
The First Secret: Push the 6 buttons of buzz

The 6 things push people’s buttons and get conversations started:

  1. The taboo
  2. The unusual
  3. The outrageous
  4. The hilarious
  5. The remarkable
  6. The secrets (both kept and revealed)

The Second Secret:  Capture Media

To get media attention position your news as one of the 5 Most Frequently Written Stories:

  1. The David and Goliath Story – media loves the underdog and the “big guy” taking advantage of him.
  2. The unusual or outrageous story – Renaming a town to half.com
  3. The controversy story – John McEnroe the “bad boy” of tennis
  4. The celebrity story – Find creative ways to get their endorsements
  5. What’s already hot in the media – Find a genuine way for your product to participate in a pre-existing trend.

The Third Secret: Advertise for Attention

There are now more products than ever vying for attention and more marketing in more channels trying to tell us about them.  Traditional channels are cluttered, consumers are exposed to over 1,000 marketing messages a day making it difficult for your message to get through.

Use Clutter-Free Media to Capture Attention – Look for opportunities of unique places that you can advertise where you will be the only brand.  Examples: peanut bags at ball games, urinal filters, in fortune cookies.  Look for the new medium that isn’t currently tapped.  The key to success? Select a medium where you have their attention – where you know they will take note.  Don’t be one of the billion sponsors on a nascar.

The Fourth Secret: Climb Buzz Everest

Essentially, “Buzz Everest” means the pinnacle of buzz marketing – transform your brand by doing what others thought was impossible in a creative and buzzworthy way.  Find the consumer insights that will generate buzz.  Be creative.  Spend time in one-on-one situations with your target audience.  Doing something new is inherently risky.  You can’t eliminate risk and have breakthrough growth.  You can’t get high returns without high risk.

The Fifth Secret: Discover Creativity

To create effective buzz you need creativity.  This book includes 7 strategies to create creativity (haha).  Seriously – this is a great chapter for those who are not naturally creative.

The Sixth Secret: Police Your Product

You need to monitor your product to know when and why it isn’t living up to expectations.  Nothing kills buzz like a bad product.  Consumers evangelize only for great products.

Interesting Stats:

  • Word of moth marketing is 10 times more effective than TV or print advertising (according to a study by Euro RSCG)
  • Ad clutter is rising to intolerable levels in America (a 283 index on the “clutter curve”)
  • David Ogilvy discovered that about 6 times as many people read the average news article than the average advertisement – people buy content, not ads.
  • Viewers don’t watch more than 63% of TV ads (in 2005).
  • According to a study by the American Academy of Advertising, when a TV commercial comes on 92% of us change the channel, mute the TV or ignore the commercial.
  • 25% of all TV time is ad related – there is too much clutter!
  • People are inundated with over 1000 ads per day
  • Magazine study in Sunday papers: The more advertising in a given medium the less effective it is.
  • America spends more on advertising than the entire GDP of Mexico ($230 billion each year).
  • In an average night of prime-time TV the American viewer sees approx. 128 commercials.