Book Review – Social Paranoia by Dane Cobain
As a blogger and someone who has a professional background in communications and marketing, I have a real interest in social media. Both from a personal perspective and its social impact, but also in a professional capacity as both a blogger as someone who works in digital marketing. Therefore, when Social Paranoia came up for review, I was immediately interested.
Social networking sites can be scary places. When the whole world is connected, anything can happen and it can happen at lightning speed.
Social paranoia is the feeling you get when you hesitate before posting an update. It’s the feeling you get on a Saturday morning after drunkenly texting your ex the night before. The feeling you get when your friends won’t stop posting about their perfect lives, making your own life look boring in comparison.
Social Paranoia: How Consumers and Brands Can Stay Safe in a Connected World is the true story of how sometimes the updates that you post come back to haunt you. Filled with real case studies and practical advice, it’s a guidebook for everyone who has an online presence from consumers to massive corporations.
Sometimes, people really are out to get you. Be afraid. Be very afraid.
First, I can’t help but get the impression that this was originally written as an academic piece such as a study or dissertation. I think this comes from the fact that it is very statistic and survey driven and as a result at times it lacks a narrative voice. Almost like it’s providing facts rather than telling us a story, and wow does it provide facts.
Surveys, statics, charts, case studies and definitions: Social Paranoia certainly provides information. I can’t help but feel that it’s at the cost of Dane’s voice though as I am not always sure who he is talking to. Sometimes pitched to brands, other times to marketing professionals and other times to the lay person with no previous knowledge. This is where it misses the mark a little for me as by trying to cater for everyone, it almost ends up catering for none of them.
That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy the book. I think it’s a great introduction to the world of social media and the impact it can have. I thought the practical application hints and tips at the end of each chapter were a great idea and the inclusion of real life examples gave great context. It will make any reader think about their online presence and its impact before posting which will always be a good thing.
In terms of who I think would benefit from it, I think those people leaving school / college / university would get a lot from reading this book as would anyone who is not particularly experienced with using social media beyond a personal capacity, but who wish to potentially start using it for a small business perhaps or in a more public manner.
However, I do think any reader would take something from it. For example, I personally thought there was some really useful information and advice around creating a plan for crisis response, for the management of social accounts and the evaluation of risk vs. reward. It made me think which is what I am always looking for when reading a reference book such as this. Therefore in that way it was a big hit for me.
This is where I get a little pedantic though as there are a few formatting issues on some of the pages where the alignment wasn’t quite right at the time of going to print. Something that did not affect the quality of the content but didn’t look great when you came across it when reading.
If you are experienced in marketing then the likelihood is that this will not teach you much that you potentially do not already know. However, it’s always interesting to see a new perspective on digital marketing and pick up a few ideas along the way so it’s still worth a read. Where I think it will really make a difference though is with people who need to consider the impact of using their voice through social media. Perhaps those that who maybe have set up a business account or public community online, or those that use social to promote themselves or a brand they are trying to sell. Social Paranoia is currently available online from Amazon from £3.28 for a kindle edition.
Therefore considering the price, I think this is a great buy.
The author has very kindly offered one lucky Tippytupps reader with a signed copy of Social Paranoia. To be in with a chance to win, you just need to enter via Rafflecopter below and follow the usual social accounts.
This giveaway is open to UK residents only, is powered by Rafflecopter and will close on Sunday 19th November 2017. The winner will then be chosen at random using the tool. For full terms and conditions for the giveaway, please visit the Tippytupps terms and conditions page.
DISCLOSURE: I was provided with this book in return for my honest review. As always though, all opinions expressed in this post are my own.