An overall assessment of the book "The never cold call again Online Playbook" Written by Writer: Frank J.Rumbauskas Jr.
1. Purpose of the book
“The never cold call again online playbook” is an informative book that shows how to create a targeted, web-based sales and marketing strategy that fits small as well as well large enterprises. It systematically deals with all important aspects of creating a platform, its branding and marketing that involves increase of online presence through e-mail campaign, building buzz online, social media marketing and search engine optimization, traffic generation, website planning in order to turn traffic into sales and generation of back-end profits etc.
1.1 Author’s goal
The author in a very simple language explains the facts and strategies that he applies to his own online business. He shares his experience and how his business turned out to be one of the well known success stories of present time. Through this book, he aims to impart knowledge related to online marketing strategies involving creation of an online business platform, its branding and marketing. Before entering into details of the strategies that he has developed over a period of time through his own involvement in an internet based business, he warns the reader not to expect overnight results by simply creating a website. He further explains that good profit and results can be achieved only through a well-planned strategy and consistent online efforts through branding, building buzz online, generating highly targeted high value traffic, turning traffic into sales and getting backend profits.
1.2 Target readers
The book deals with a variety of subject matters related to online marketing, branding, media coverage, buzz building through blogging, podcasting, vodcasting, tweeting, use of social network, traffic generation, e-mail marketing, use of craiglists and other internet classified sites, youtube, affiliate programs and joint ventures, creation of viral effects and website planning and development with a view to increase profit and sales and make use of online identity to generate offline income. Therefore, it serves as a reference book for students, academicians, practitioners, business managers, entrepreneurs as well as knowledge seekers with interest in the internet and online marketing.
Although the book is not specifically designed to be used as a text book, it contains considerable amount of usable information. The book has been written in a narrative and story-telling form and its simple language makes it more readable and easy to understand. The use of “you” to explain the facts and figures not only makes the language more informal, but also helps the reader to quickly understand the given explanations and relate them with his or her own realities. The reader is easily able to understand that only creating a website is not enough, it is rather the first step towards the intended goal of achieving larger sales and profit. After creation of a well-planned website, it becomes mandatory on the part of the owner to design and develop online marketing strategies, build trustworthy online followers, build a durable brand over a period of time through continuous online marketing while using mass mails, traffic generation, back linking, effective use of various social media channels like Google, Facebook, Youtube, Itunes etc.
The content of the book is divided into six sections/areas, namely:
1. Online marketing today
2. Building a brand online
3. Building buzz online
4. Generating highly targeted, high-value traffic
5. Turning traffic into sales
6. Unlock hidden back-end profits.
Each section is further divided into respective chapters that systematically explain the situation, define problem areas, and suggest solutions through examples followed by case studies of success and failures that the author has encountered while trying to build his online enterprise.
This strategy of dealing with practical issues by citing real examples renders the book useful.
2. Strong Points
The book is written in an easy language. It is systematic and covers all topics defined in the proposed course namely:
a) Online marketing
b) Bulk e-mailing and spam filters
c) Social media marketing
d) Search engine optimization (SEO)
In addition, the book also covers the strategies to turn traffic into sales and maximize profits. Further, the author also explains how to monetize through affiliate promotion while building online brand. In addition, it is of great interest to know that the online identity can generate offline income. The author has explained these aspects in detail thus, providing valuable additional information and knowledge to the reader.
A person with very limited knowledge related to information technology can easily understand the basic fundamentals of online marketing as the description has been presented in a graded manner. The author initially defines simple issues followed by more complex issues which helps the reader fully understand the importance of creating a solid platform, durable branding followed by online marketing to finally increase sales and profits.
All major areas related to internet based activities have been explained through examples of real issues, encountered by the author, on his way to creating a successful online venture. For example, while trying to explain the importance of online marketing, the author explains how cold calling is dead, and it annoys people and is frequently illegal.
3. Weak points
The informal writing style and the manner of presentation clearly demonstrate that the book is not specifically designed as a teaching manual. Although the book has been divided into six broad sections followed by specific chapters within respective sections, they neither clearly define the specific learning objectives, nor the general learning objectives.
The book does not give an opportunity to solve problems, as it does not have any exercises where the student can learn through problem-based learning activities. The book provides only surface learning experience to students and as a result, it fails to motivate students who are yet to enter the professional world. It demands a teacher’s intervention to provide additional inputs and make use of teaching strategies in order to motivate students for achieving intended learning outcomes through cognitive activities.
Also, it is important to mention that the book does not provide any supplemental materials in the form of task based activities. This absence may become a hindrance in developing self-directed learning skills of students.
The book does not cover the mass mailer called “sendblaster”, an integral part of the proposed course.
Moreover, many times, the author ends up self-praising his success without giving any concrete proof and data.
4. Overall assessment
Although the book is quite informative, its simplicity of language and detailed description of internet marketing and social media in a systematic and progressive manner has given considerable commercial success to the book and world fame to the author, it cannot be used as a standalone course manual.
The author’s main focus is to give factual as well as conceptual knowledge. The book fails to provide procedural as well as meta-cognitive knowledge. Therefore, the absence of these may act as a hindrance in developing the self-directed learning skills of students. It becomes mandatory for the teacher to provide supplemental materials for cognitive activities and deep learning process. The absence of problem-based learning exercises, further poses a challenge to the teacher as well as the students in developing self-directed learning skills.
In the absence of course materials specifically designed for translators on the given course module, “Information Technology Integration: Online Marketing and Social Media”, the identified book, “The Never Cold Call Again Online Playbook”, serves as a ready reference for teachers as well as students. The book is concise and informative that broadly covers all aspects of the course content. However, at the same time, it certainly also demands a careful approach to achieve a general objective, a specific objective and an intended outcome learning defined in the course module.
This book can further help in developing a customized course manual for professional development of translators by specifying cases related to translation profession. The development of problem-based learning course manual is very important to develop self-directed learning skills, especially when translators are ready to enter into the professional world.