Monday, 23 August 2010

Wikipedia+Mentor+Superpower = #Micromktg

DISCLOSURE: As a Twitter follower of Greg Verdino I was one of 10 tweeps who offered to provide a review on Amazon for receiving a free (and signed) copy of his new book Micromarketing. I honestly think you should check out the book, because it was a page turner and so I post here the extended version of my Amazon review.

Starting off with an introductory experience that every marketer can relate to delivers the implied presumption that you will proceed to read a manifesto, where Greg Verdino dismantles sticking with the traditional mass approach as a winning marketing strategy. He eloquently constructs his propositions that small is the new BIG, and micro is the new MASS, neither of which are new ideas, but are ample incentives to make you read on.

As any good 'guru' his value add comes via a new spin on micro marketing - re defining it as a sum of micro cultures, explosion of microcontent and the rise of insidious micro mavens that build (and kill) brands in real time. Yes! it's dramatic stuff, and in the light of the recent double rainbow and bed intruder Gregory Brothers music phenomena (as reported by Reuters) his very first viral example in the book "sasquatch" dancing man is spookily apt and validates that he's on to something.

The chapter titles, section headers and buzzwords earn and maintain your attention (my favourite coming from chapter 4 "Feed Me, stream me, like me, link me" (inspired by a U2 song title perhaps?) . Verdino initially romances you with charm, passion, sweetish words of wisdom, and subtle tones that leaves a twinkle in the eye.

Yes he's that good - and with skepticism now subdued his arguments lead further away from the comfort zone/status quo (antiquated safe plays of the 4P's traditional marketing blah blah). For example, the replacement for reach and scale is depth - and the commensurate new desire to establish lengthy rich engagements with small audiences.

Each of these propositions transform into sexy stealthy epithets that pummel you into a state of acceptance, anticipation and eventual awakening. In addition, Verdino perpetually ladens the book with multiple experiences and emotive examples where micro strategies and real time mindsets trump macro tactics, and in doing this introduced several that I was completely unaware of most notably of a fellow Brit called Lauren Luke.

This leads to the only gripe I have with this book; namely that it is (over)jam packed with proof points, examples and cases with corresponding web links. Perhaps they were planted to overwhelm 'uber-skeptics', or to futureproof the content, but to a 'micro' convert such as myself it left me feeling that the pace and vitality of the main message was being constrained . Perhaps, an interactive eBook/vook version would be the immaculate solution and premium priced masterstroke ! STOP PRESS on page 220 you will find a link to enhanced content ( and of course for free) ...

I lie, one other trivial gripe is that on page 200 he misspells Procter & Gamble (incorrectly using Proctor) - bound to aggravate all P and G readers!

I had fun writing this review, and it proved as effortless as absorbing the multiple micro messages that Verdino seeds. If you're a brand manager, social media expert, CEO or even small business owner who thinks you've seen and heard it all for free (in multiple blogs) just might be right, and good luck on cataloging and synthesizing it all. But if you truly truly believe you don't need another social media/marketing book - I urge you to think again.

Think of #micromktg as 1/3 'grown up' Wikipedia, 1/3 nurturing mentor (uniquely poised, respected, and with a bountiful repository to deliver persuasive democratizing and honest wisdom) and 1/3 (not so) secret superpower in rendering 'old school' thinking impotent.

Armed with a hugely disarming writing style I found that Verdino was as provocative as business(ish) authors such as Gladwell and Godin, but wasn't as polarizing. I recommend Micromarketing as THE go to book that bridges marketing and social media, a book you urge your VP or CMO to place at the top of the reading list for your team, and the book you reference in agency meetings whenever 'one-upmanship' is necessary. To repeat myself yes this book is that good !


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