Trust Agents: A Book Review
The economic collapse coupled with vibrant technological advances have changed the face of marketing forever. And the specifics of marketing gadgets will continue to change rapidly for the foreseeable future. Trust Agents by Chris Brogan and Julien Smith was first publish in 2009 and then revised in 2010. You could call it an modernization of How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie, but it is so much more than that. Brogan and Smith tell us, in a very readable prose, that the entire marketing landscape has changed with the explosion of social media on the Internet.
Ever since the industrial revolution companies that made products and companies that provide services have used radio, television, billboards and print media to tell us what they make, what they do and how great they are. At some point consumers buy in to the spiel, develop loyalties and purchase products and services. Expect this model to be lost in the future. No more than ever, people buy products and use services because of trust, not because of a sales pitch. And people know who to trust for the most part, because they trust the opinions of their friends.
Trust Agents at individuals who have gained the trust of their peers, their Facebook friends, their LinkedIn and Plaxo connections, their followers on Twitter, and the extended relationships with the myriad of venues we have available to associate with others. Brogan and Smith give us six characteristics or Trust Agents.
- They Make Their Own Game
- They Are One of Us
- They understand and use the Archimedes Effect
- They become Agent Zero
- They become Human Artists
- They Build an Army
After discussing these characteristics in detail Trust Agents explains and encourages readers to follow process that well help them to become Trust Agents. In face to face meetings only 7% of what is transmitted is textual. Body language, facial expressions, tone and inflection make up 93% of an in-person communication relationship. Learning how to become nice, to become liked and to become trusted in the large context of the Internet are key to marketing success.
Trust Agents is and excellent book and I recommend it to anyone whose business has anything to do with public interaction, or product sales. But don't just read it. Accept the challenge offered by Brogan and Smith and act on what you've read.
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