The Groundswell by Josh Bernoff and Charles Li is one of the most influential books regarding marketing in the world of web 2.0. Unlike most books that focus on technology and “how to” use it, The Groundswell offers tremendous insight into the “why to” with a focus on relationships instead of the technologies.
As always, Phil, Karin and Aaron start with an introduction of the authors and book and then go right into some key points into the book including the social media ladder, the POST method (one of Aaron’s favorite part of the book), more on the technologies in the groundswell including social media sites (SNSs), wikis, blogs, and forums.
The three get into some discussion about advertising on the web. In particular, the three discuss impressions, click-throughs, and conversions. They also discuss the issue with pay advertising inside sites like Facebook.
Groundswell asks PR and marketing professionals to really consider the audience and how we want our relationship with our audience to change before technologies are even considered. Aaron mentions far too many people approach web 2.0 simply because “everybody’s doing it” without fully understanding the potential ramifications.
At one point, the three take a brief aside to discuss the Kindle and how Phil and Aaron are leveraging their new e-readers.
The three then get back to business and discuss a few case studies of how other companies have leveraged web 2.0 technologies. The three also talk about personal experience with blogs, Facebook, and podcasts. Aaron brings up Facebook Connect and the likely trend of ease in participating in the groundswell.