Book Review: Social Media Marketing All-In-One For Dummies


Social media should be a big part of your freelance writing marketing efforts. If it’s not, you’re missing out.

That’s why I was excited to receive a copy of the new book from Jan Zimmerman and Deb Ng, Social Media Marketing All-In-One For Dummies.

In this post, I’ll outline some of my thoughts about this new resource. I’ll especially cover how I think that writers ought to use this book.

Incidentally, I have known Deb Ng (one of the book’s co-authors) for some time and once wrote for her blog. I also received a review copy of this book, and I do not have affiliate links in this post.

I’ve also reviewed Deb Ng’s earlier book, Online Community Management for Dummies.

My opinion here is my own and was not influenced in any way by knowing Deb.

Now that the disclosures are out of the way, it’s time to get on with the review.

First Impressions

This book sat on my desk for nearly two months. Every time I’d pick it up to review it, I’d end up putting it right back down–for good reason, this book is over 700 pages long! The prospect of reading it was a bit overwhelming.

But then I noticed the phrase “9 Books in 1” on the cover. When I started looking at it as nine smaller books instead of one giant one, I found reviewing it to be a more manageable task.

What You’ll Find Inside

This book is good guide to many aspects of social media. Here’s a brief outline listing each of the nine “books” that you’ll find in this book and a description of each:

  1. The Social Media Mix. This is an overview of social media from marketing perspective. This is a good place to start if you’ve all you’ve ever done with social media is send personal statuses. Basically, it covers topics like social media ROI and developing a marketing strategy.
  2. Cybersocial Tools. If you love social media tools, this is the book for you. This section discusses dozens of tools and other resources. It also covers the use of e-commerce, SEO, and social bookmarks.
  3. Blogs, Podcasts, and Video. This is the section bloggers will love. Not only does it give a good overview of blogging. It also covers the use of podcasts and videos. The final topic of this book is an overview about the use of images for blogs.
  4. Twitter. This entire book is devoted to the use of Twitter as a social media marketing tool. I’m a pretty heavy user of Twitter, so I found most of this to be review. However, it does cover the Twitter chats, which many writers probably have not done.
  5. Facebook. To be perfectly honest, I’m not a big user of Facebook for my freelance writing business. However, I looked at this chapter anyway and found lots of helpful information. This covers many Facebook features that you probably aren’t aware of.
  6. Google+. The Google+ book will be helpful for anyone who is new to using Google+ for business. However, some of the newer Google+ features (such as communities) are missing. I was also hoping for an explanation of Author Rank. Google+ Hangouts are covered, though.
  7. Pinterest. One of the books included here covers Pinterest. This section is a good overview of Pinterest, a social media tool that allows you to share and comment on images. There are also plenty of great marketing tools.
  8. Other Social Media Marketing Sites. I have to confess that I was a little disappointed to see LinkedIn shoved into this category when I would have preferred to see an entire book devoted to it. In addition to LinkedIn, this book covers a lot of smaller social media tools and communities. It also talks about location-based social media like FourSquare, covers some of the daily deal sites, and provides an overview of social games.
  9. Measuring Results; Building on Success. This entire section is devoted to analyzing and measuring your social media efforts. This is must-read if you are a serious social media marketer. You’ll find dozens of resources (free and otherwise).

How to Use the Book

Social Media Marketing All-In-One For Dummies is a great resource for freelance writers and I’m definitely glad that I have it on hand. Whether you’re just getting started or are already a seasoned freelancer, there’s something for you to learn in this book. I definitely recommend it.

However, be aware that this is not a book that you are likely to read cover to cover. Instead, I recommend using it more like a reference book. You’ll want to have it on hand to study particular aspects of social media marketing. When you’re ready for a particular topic, you can study the “book” within this book that deals with that topic.

Your Turn

Have you read this book too? What did you think?