When I first encountered Michael
I first met the work of Michael Stelzner about 3 years ago, when I purchased the book Writing White Papers: How to Capture Readers and Keep Them Engaged. Before buying the paperback, I downloaded the free write paper entitled How To Write A White Paper.
Michael presented enough info in the white paper to show you the high points and whet your appetite. He used this write paper to launch his book, start a white paper summit series and secure big name corporate clients to write white papers for.
Michael and Social Media
Then Michael discovered social media and I – a traveler attempting to zoom through the social media maze – found Michael again at Social Media Examiner and subscribed to the blog. Some time passed and Michael announced he has written a new book called Launch: How to Quickly Propel Your Business Beyond the Competition.
This enticed me to wish to review this book. You see, Michael was a copywriter for many years. This book title follows a technique borrowed from the direct response copywriting school. It makes a promise in the headline.
Now the big question is this: Will this book keep the headline promise made – How to Quickly Propel Your Business Beyond the Competition?
My first impressions and the evidence presented.
As I read the book, I met the story of Michal following a famous Internet marketing guru’s system. While he followed it to the letter – guess what? It didn’t work for him. But giving away valuable content for free did.
He cites many examples in this own life, starting with his earlier work with white papers and continuing with his current social media endeavors. Currently Michael has over 50 writers providing social media blog content.
But that wasn’t the only evidence presented. One of my favorite examples is the sharing of Hubspot, which is a social media company in Massachusetts.
Hubspot has several blog posts about social media content each day. They also give away many valuable e-books and seminars on Inbound marketing. In fact, they even have free training and certification.
But Michael doesn’t stop there. There’s also the Man of the House series of articles launched by Procter and Gamble. Or the even more amazing Ree Drummond, who started the Pioneer Woman website, recipes and insights into rural life – cowboy style. Yet Forbes ranked here in 2010 as one of 25 top web celebrities. And she has over 22 million monthly page views.
What are we launching?
Now I wondered about the word Launch and looked it up on Free Dictionary. It defines the word ,“to throw or propel with force; hurl: launch a spear”, or ,”to set or thrust (a self-propelled craft or projectile) in motion: launch a rocket; launch a torpedo.”
Now I know why Michael like to talk about different types of fuel through out the book. Perhaps we need to look at the various chapters and what we gain from each one. Then we can get into a social media, Star Trek mindset.
|Rockets don’t fly themselves – here we learn about the evaluation principle. It’s a simple formula, really. But it’s quite powerful – like E = MC**2. I won’t review the formula, except to say this. Mac Rumors uses this formula to predict what Apple is up to. And to say content is your rocket fuel and people are the rocket fuels fire starters.|
|Starting Your Mission Plan – You need one, folks. As Lewis Carol once say, “If you don’t know where you are going, any road will take you there.” Here we learn about turning out – looking to other people and the content they share. And we learn how to create a proper mission plan, to propel us forward.|
|Finding inspiration by looking outward – This chapter’s premise is very simple. You grow by servicing others. But Michael shares the steps to successfully do this.|
|Leveraging the power of other people – Michael sums it up nicely – You grow by serving others. But we also learn how to do it.|
| Actively engaging other people– Here it’s about social proof, gift giving and strong calls to action.
|Making content the fuel of your marketing – If you learn nothing else, then take away this important message. But if you read this chapter, you learn how to correctly do this.|
|Creating and using primary fuel – What is it? As Michael mentions, it’s “regularly produced free content that meets the needs of your read base.” But here we learn the important components to make to work well!|
|Creating and using nuclear fuel – Here Michael defines nuclear fuel as, “carefully designed content that has a lasting impact on significant numbers of your ideal reader base.” And Michael goes into stunning detail how to do his – both from his own business experience and from other pertinent business examples.|
|How to employ marketing – Here’s where we look at when and how to use traditional marketing…getting back to the evaluation principle’s core goal – great content. And we get into the velocity launch principle.|
A Little Secret that helped me
I’ll always be grateful to Michael’s book for two amazing tips. I host an Internet golf radio show called Teeing It Up on Web Talk Radio. But how do you find interesting and informative guests to interview? The secrets are on pages 55 and 76.
Summing it up
Gee, Michael! Why didn’t you write this book 3 years ago? It would have saved me countless hours in finding the truth about business success. I realize I had great guides to help me, like the Hubspot blog and the one you produce. I have to give this book five out of five stars. The language is very simple, the work is easy to understand, and I love all the business examples from your own life – plus all the amazing other examples you found. When can we look forward to a sequel?
Get a copy of Launch contest
As part of the conditions for being one of 50 bloggers to review this book, I must give away a copy. Now I don’t want anyone accusing me of being biased.
- So let me come up with a very simple and objective contest. During the month of July 2011, just send a Twitter tweet to this effect:@randylewiskemp – I would like to win a copy of Launch by Michael Stelzner #LaunchBook. The person who does this and has the most Twitter followers by the end of July 2011 CST, will win the book.
- In case of a tie, I will give the book away to the first Twitter tweet entered with the most followers. The winner must present me with a valid mailing address, to get the book copy.
- If no one should enter the contest, then I’ll attempt to give a copy to either the Carol Stream Public Library or the College of DuPage Library.
- If both libraries want the book, I’ll draw a random number via randomness. COD library gets the odd number and Carol Stream public library an even number.
- If neither library wants it, I’ll get the adult reference librarian’s recommendations who to give it to.
- How Content Can Fuel Your Rocket Ship & Launch Your Business to New Heights w/ Michael Stelzner [@InboundNow #25] (hubspot.com)
- Stelzner’s Launch Presents Solid Ideas For Business Success (socialmediaexplorer.com)
- Launch. How to quickly propel your business beyond the competition. Michael Stelzner. #content marketing (regnordman.com)
- White Paper Cost – How much can you get one for? (imittcopy.com)
- 7 Reasons Your Blog Isn’t Growing (hubspot.com)
- White Paper Marketing – Is It Necessary? (imittcopy.com)
- Assaulting the Ivory Tower: The HE white paper and the ‘Free Market’ (mattpearson.org)
- Understanding your White Paper Audience – Is it Necessary? (imittcopy.com)
- What is a White Paper? (imittcopy.com)