I love to read. I love to read books that challenge my thought, make my brain hurt and question my inhibitions. Last night I finished up ‘The Impact Equation’ by Chris Brogan and Julien Smith, which details a formula that is said to help readers create more valuable, sustainable content. This is not a social networking book, it even says so in bold letters on the first page. It’s a book about people, how they react, why they react and how to get them to react to you. The actual Impact Equation is formed from the acronym CREATE, as shown below:
How is your product (or at least its presentation) unique from the competition? Brogan and Smith delve into the importance of human emotion, and how to leverage that for the betterment of your brand. The Dollar Shave Club is an easy example of this: “Are our blades any good? No. Our blades are f**king GREAT.” Regular, boring razor blades marketed in a way that is absurdly different from their competition.
They said it themselves, the focus of Reach is to be a “little less ‘sniper rifle’ and a little more ‘giant freaking laser beam.’ Here, they offer up a dialogue that gives the reader a host of strategies on how to build your reach, as well as examples of brands who have done it successfully. They also speak on the importance of platform and the channels in your brand chooses to operate in.
First of all, what is exposure? And how is it different from reach? How do you gain exposure, and how do you go about doing it without making an ass out of yourself?
“Tell it to me like I’m six years old.” Chris and Julien hit on the importance of brevity, simplicity and creating ideas with longevity.
One of the meatiest parts of the book, but also provides a handful of tactical breakdowns of how to build trust, credibility and reliability. The big hitter here is C * R * I / S = TRUST model, described at length in The Trusted Advisor. Basically, trust requires Credibility, Reliability, Intimacy and Self-Interest. Trust is the core of any campaign, and likewise is the core of the Impact Equation.
So you’ve created some great content, reached the right people, articulated yourself clearly and build some level of trust among your audience. The next step is to really resonate your message with your community by relating yourself to them on some humanistic level. This section also profiles Adele, MC Hammer and Dead Mau5 to show how they’ve established an Echo with their following.
So to give an idea of the book, that (above) is the Impact Equation. Chris and Julien obviously go into a lot more detail on this, as well as bring in a ton of real world examples for every topic. The real beauty of the Impact Equation is that while it may seem specific, it can be translated to virtually any business imaginable, including branding yourself. If you had any light bulbs going off in your head while you read my outline, I highly recommend you pick this book up and give it a chance. At the very least, download a sample on your Kindle/Nook, and see what the first 30 pages are about.
Check out the authors on Twitter, or follow their blogs for more freshly pressed content.
I hope you guys enjoyed my review, I plan on doing more of them in the future. Like I said, I read a lot of marketing/advertising books, but I won’t be reviewing every single one. I won’t waste your time posting about books I didn’t enjoy, but every once in a while expect to see book review of something that really sparked my imagination.