Think Like Zuck – 5 Questions with Ekaterina Walter

Posted on January 9th 2013

Think Like Zuck – 5 Questions with Ekaterina Walter

Think Like Zuck, Ekaterina WalterYou've seen the movies, read the books, and shared the infographics about the rise and success of Facebook. But you may not be applying the business lessons of the Facebook story to your own marketing activities. Now you can with Think Like Zuck: The Five Business Secrets of Facebook's Improbably Brilliant CEO Mark Zuckerberg, the upcoming book by global marketing strategist Ekaterina Walter. I sat down with Ekaterina for some Q&A in anticipation of our January 10th webinar Engaging Your Customer Base on Facebook.

Who should read Think Like Zuck? What should a reader expect to get from the book?

Anyone who has a passion for innovation and disruption. Those who have an entrepreneurial streak, whether they are an intrapreneur (a person who drives change within a large company) or an entrepreneur (someone who owns his/her own business). And just anyone who wants to learn from other successful leaders. 
Packed with examples of Facebook’s success principles in action—as well as those of Zappos, TOMS, Threadless, Dyson, and other companies—Think Like Zuck gives you the inspiration, knowledge, and insight to make your own mark in the world, to build a business that makes a difference, and to lead your organization to long-term profitability and growth.

Are the elements that made Facebook successful applicable to all businesses?

Absolutely. I talk about 5 Ps, five secrets of success: Passion, Purpose, People, Product, Partnerships. Those can be extended into whatever business/product/project you creating, building or leading. Within each chapter there is a number of lessons to be learned clearly marked and backed by the relevant stories and examples. 

You talk about both entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs (someone with the entrepreneurial streak who aligns their talent in a large company). Do you think this mindset is critical for every employee to have?

It is very important, yes. But it isn't always present because we don't do great job aligning peoples' passions with the jobs we give them or projects we align them with. Those who are passionate about something are the ones who will lead true change (within a company or beyond). I talk about the fact that there are more entrepreneurs out there than we think there are. You might not think about yourself as one unless you encounter something you care about, your true purpose, then watch out - you will become an entrepreneur, you will make your vision happen and you will probably do it creatively and with the limited resources. 
So yes, I believe that every one of us has a hidden entrepreneur within him/her. And it is our responsibility as organizations, as leaders to create an environment where people's internal entrepreneur would thrive.

In your upcoming webinar Engaging Your Customer Base on Facebook, you specifically cite Intel for their fan engagement. What caused you to single them out?

Well, 2 reasons. First, I work there and I led the growth of our global communities of over 23 million people on Facebook. Second, while I do cite examples of other brands and what they did right, I can share internal knowledge and struggles we had at Intel to help others either follow in our footsteps or avoid our mistakes.  

Facebook has been pushing more options for brands to pay for engagement. Do you think brands will be forced to use these paid options or will they be able to successfully build engaged communities within Facebook without utilizing paid options?

There are a lot of ways to increase your community organically and I talk about that in my webinar. But the fact that not all of your fans see your posts (if you are lucky, 5-15% of your fans see your posts organically due to the NewsFeed algorithm) is a reality. As marketers we need to work hard on making sure our content stands out and people engage with it regularly (that's what will boost our organic exposure), but we also need to consider investing in Sponsored Stories to ensure some of our critical content is seen by more fans and their friends. This isn't any different than what we had to do in traditional advertising. 

Bonus question: How can others connect with you?

I am always available on Twitter (@Ekaterina) and anyone can reach me on my blog www.ekaterinawalter.com

For more insights from on standing out, be sure to attend the upcoming webinar: Engaging Your Customer Base on Facebook. You can also download a free chapter of Think Like Zuck: The Five Business Secrets of Facebook's Improbably Brilliant CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

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Mike Lewis

About me? That’s easy… I’m a Father/Husband, Son/Brother, Friend, Coach, Advocate, Sports fan, Author, Executive… In that order. If you are interested in what I do for work I’m an entrepreneur and marketing guy at heart. I speak at around 20 or so conferences a year, authored “Stand Out Social Marketing” (published through McGraw Hill), am active on Twitter (@bostonmike) and blog at StandOutSocialMarketing.com, Social Media Today, Socialnomics, The Customer Collective, Business to Community, BostInno and others. I work with brands to help implement social media as part of their marketing mix and define marketing, demand generation and communication strategies that incorporate multiple new media channels. Reach out anytime at lewis_mich@yahoo.com (GO SOX!)

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