A few weeks ago, I interviewed David Kaupp of Consilium Global Business Advisors, who was kind enough to give me feedback and insights related to a podcast series I intend to launch. As a consequence of that call, I poked around the Consilium site and found an ebook on B2B marketing. Clicking through, I found that the book wasn’t available yet, but if I left an email address, the company would alert me when the book was published.
This morning I got the alert. Here’s the landing page it directed me to:
Perhpas I’m out of the loop, but I haven’t seen this kind of gate before. In an interesting twist, the exchange of value has shifted; instead of asking for the usual lead-gen contact info, Consilium is asking for social media love.
With all due and genuine respect for Dave, I have some misgivings about this:
- In essence, Consilium is asking for a “thumbs-up” review BEFORE I’ve had a chance to read the book. I just don’t feel comfortable committing to an opinion I might regret later.
- Even though I’m not a heavy social media user, I already feel overwhelmed by the amount of stuff I have to slog through. A couple of years ago, I wouldn’t have hesitated to click a “like” button. Today, I’m much more circumspect, recognizing that every millisecond impulse to push the “like” button may be rewarded with years of the social media equivalent of junk mail.
- THREE likes? One I can see, and two…well, okay. But three? With three commitments, I become not merely a casual fan, but an active advocate of the company. Do I really want to play that role?
I think a strong argument could be made that since Consilium is offering something of considerable value — the equivalent of a 250 page book — it’s only fair the company get something of value in exchange. But they’re also asking me to commit my reputation before I have the opportunity to assess the value of the book itself.
What might they do as an alternative that would be fair for all involved? (And, by the way, more likely to be shared and socially distributed.) Since I’ve already declared my interest, why not just send me either a condensed, preview ebook OR the first 10 – 20 pages as a sample? Or ask me to download the same? Then, after evaluating the preview/sample, I can make an informed judgment call about whether or not I’m willing to exchange three of my social media “likes” for the remainder of the book.
I think that’s a reasonable deal — and probably a more successful way to market the book, too.
For more practical thoughts on content strategy, consider my content strategy workshop.