Yes, 2013 isn’t over yet, but after going through a mountain of ebooks published this year, I couldn’t wait until December to share the best of the best.
Blog posts and tweets are great, but the ebook format allows for more depth and examples, and gives a holistic perspective. As a topic, social media is broader and more complex than it was even a few years ago, and glossy overviews and simple mantras just don’t cut it any more. Publishers have responded to these trends with some excellent content.
On the whole, I’m thoroughly impressed with the free ebooks produced by companies and social media groups over the last year. They are sharing creative, new ideas for how to integrate social media into a larger marketing strategy and basing their recommendations on concrete examples and mounds of data.
Without further ado, here are the top 15 ebooks of 2013 (so far):
This ebook outlines social ad types, targeting options, and ad measurement. The examples feature larger companies, but this is still a helpful guide for small businesses new to social advertising.
This ebook gives you a step-by-step introduction to small business Facebook strategy, highlights the tools available to page managers, and shows how you can use a Facebook page for lead generation. If you are new to Facebook or want to get more from your page, this ebook is for you.
Although a miscellaneous collection of ideas and social media tactics, 58 Social Media Tips has something for everyone, whether you are a social veteran or newbie.
This ebook an inch deep and a mile wide, but it’s a great place to find a few social media role models and see how other companies use social media.
While technically a white paper and not an ebook, this is a good read. It introduces a social selling model where sales reps take a much more active role in finding and interacting with potential customers. Implementing this strategy might be a big change for your business, but it’s definitely worth considering.
This ebook is a good high-level overview of LinkedIn for individuals, and tells how you can build cloat on the network with regular posts and endorsements.
Likeable branded this ebook for dentists alone, but the content is applicable to doctors and anyone else with a local practice. It’s fairly basic, but it’s a good place to start if you want to attract patients with social media.
This ebook highlights major changes Facebook has made to its News Feed, and shows how to optimize posts and images for the new format.
While technically not an ebook, this report is a fascinating look at how the social media industry is maturing and becoming more established part of interactions between companies and individuals.
This is a solid introduction to how Facebook and Twitter can be used as a lead and customer source for small businesses.
This ebook analyzes the types of content that are effective on Facebook, and has solid suggestions on how to use these insights for your business.
This ebook highlights Pinterest’s potential as a business tool and lays out the logistics for using it. All the suggestions are outlined in a very easy-to-consume format.
Google+ is still ignored by a lot of business, but this ebook will introduce the vocabulary of Google+, how to create a page and how to add Google+ plugins and content to your website or blog.
This ebook makes a great case for Instagram business profiles. Solid design and great content.
This ebook introduces the concept of “puzzle promos,” Facebook promotions that require entrants to like more than one Facebook page before entering. It includes some great example of how other businesses have used this technique, so it’s definitely worth reading.