The Zen of Social Media Marketing – Shama Kabani

The Zen of Social Media Marketing: An Easier Way to Build Credibility, Generate Buzz, and Increase Revenue

The Zen of Social Media Marketing: An Easier Way to Build Credibility, Generate Buzz and Increase Revenue
This is an excellent book if you are entering into the world of Social Media Marketing, or if you really can’t see how Twitter and LinkedIn are advantageous to your marketing efforts (like me).

With social media it’s almost the polar opposite of traditional marketing, instead of ‘pushing’ information towards people you draw people to you with interesting content and then you interact with your readers/customers/clients. It’s not as simple as starting a blog, a facebook group, a twitter account, and waiting for people to come to you. Unless you already have a following, chances are, they won’t. It takes time, but seems to be worth the effort.

Of all the social networking sites it seems both Shama and the people she interviewed all agreed that the most important ones were

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn

Even more important is having your own website and/or blog. Your social media presence should be mainly to lead people to your site, and to give you their email addresses in case the social site ever closes, or you get kicked out for breaching terms (advertising). Also key is that people aren’t really customers on facebook and blogs, they are consumers in that they take your gifts of information and advice, but they don’t pay you. You get money through your site. Shama is an advocate of video blogs because, apparently, the majority of people would rather watch and listen than read. I am not one of those people. My time is valuable and I’d rather skim read than have to sit though someone explaining something. Hints:


Never push products or serviceson Facebook. Your goal on Facebook should always be to attract people to your website, build trust, and gain visibility—all things that inevitably lead to sales.

We create profiles that reflect who we are as human beings.We don’t ‘like’ a page or join a group if it doesn’t fit into the image of ourselves that we want people to see. You might join a page about Coke or Human Rights, but probably not your gynecologist’s.

When choosing between starting a group or a page Shana says “A group is a great way to build a closed community that you nurture over time, whereas a fan page is a public platform for reaching more people, and it provides more visibility for your brand.” If you are promoting a film then a page, if you’re building a community of filmmakers then a group.


I never really understood Twitter, it always seemed a bit too one way for me, but Shana explains how you can go about meeting people, joining in relevant conversations, and boosting your followers. One way which may be obvious, but wasn’t to me, is to search for people talking about something you are interested in and respond to their tweets. Other recommendations are:

  1. Share valuable content.
  2. Ask genuine questions, and welcome feedback.
  3. Put a button on your blog or website inviting people to follow you.


If I didn’t understand twitter I REALLY didn’t understand LinkedIn. When I first joined I though, wow, big deal, my resume is on the web,but since searching and adding some people, and then searching for groups that match my interests and projects I’m starting to buildup a real network. The jury is still out as to whether I can make it work for me, but I’m getting there.

Theses are just a few ideas I liked, there are a lot more in the book, and also in her blog and web site. You can check out Shama’s site here:

And she is on facebook with her blog in her notes.


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