6 December 2023

“Social Media – What a Mess!” Is it Worth the Risk?

By Ronald Smith

Have you ever wondered about the true nature of social media? Social Media – What a Mess! is an intriguing book that delves into the chaotic world of social media and uncovers insights that could be valuable to anyone, whether you’re an individual or a business.

Social Media – What a Mess! Is it Worth the Risk?

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When I’m choosing a book from a pile of reviews, one thing I really like is not knowing what to expect. Living in South Africa means I don’t know much about American business, so I can’t judge a book just by its name.

Social Media Sucks! (If You Don’t Know What You’re Doing) by Sebastian Rusk is the kind of book I love. It’s engaging and enjoyable. The author starts by sharing his early days in the business world. I think that’s a great way to begin a book because it helps the reader connect with the author. Personally, I enjoy reading about the experiences of other business people.

Social Media Sucks is a book written in a chatty style that’s meant for anyone in business, regardless of how much they know about social media.

Whether you already use social media or you’re unsure and hesitant about joining in, this book has something valuable to offer. As the author says,

In reality, using social media is no longer a choice, it’s a necessity.

All throughout the book, Rusk talks about important things to remember when using social media. He also gives examples from his own experiences and from famous companies and brands.

The Goal

Did you know that many companies and brands still don’t get it? They haven’t realized that social media platforms aren’t just for selling products or services.

Instead, these platforms should be used to connect with your customers and followers, building a relationship with them. The goal is to share helpful and interesting content, allowing your audience to get to know, like, and trust you.

If you do this well, something amazing will happen. You’ll become a trusted brand, and your loyal customers will see you as the go-to expert in your field of business.

“ Let me tell you something important. It’s not about bombarding people with your message and pushing it down their throats. That’s what advertising is for. Social media gives you a chance to share your brand and tell your story, not just constantly promote it. But hey, that doesn’t mean you can’t occasionally promote your brand on social media. It just means that the first priority should always be listening and engaging with your audience.”

Now, let’s talk about being accountable instead of being invisible. In the book Social Media Sucks, the author emphasizes that apart from using social media to communicate with your customers, it’s equally vital to give them a voice and listen to what they have to say. Some companies wrongly believe that by avoiding social media, they can avoid criticism of themselves or their brand.

But that’s completely wrong.

No matter if a company has a fancy website or not, people like you and me can still share our good and bad experiences in many different ways. Social media hasn’t changed one thing: the power of gossip. Even before the internet and social media existed, the saying went that the best way to spread the word about something was through gossip.

Well, guess what? Social media hasn’t changed that. In fact, it’s made it even louder. Ignoring social media is a big mistake. If a company has a social media platform, they can respond to criticism, show they care, and fix any mistakes they’ve made.

If you run a business and someone complains about your brand online, it’s crucial that you respond quickly and confidently. Stand up for your brand, or else the wrong message will spread through word of mouth. You can’t stop people from talking, but you can shape the message they share.

Daily Deals and Building a Brand with Purpose

When talking about the purpose and value of daily deals, Rusk advises not to focus on the profit margin you might lose. Instead, see them as an opportunity to gain loyal customers and brand advocates.

What you need to do is find ways to keep communicating with these potential customers, and make it easy for them to reach out to you.

I believe that mission-based branding is an effective way to connect with loyal customers and create brand advocates. When you have a clear mission for your brand, it shows people that you care about more than just your own success.

By having a purpose that goes beyond making money, you demonstrate to your audience that you are willing to give back and make a positive impact. This can make a big difference in how people perceive and connect with your brand.


I highly recommend reading Social Media Sucks. Just by reading the tone and style of the book, you can tell whether the author is truly passionate about their topic or if they are just writing for the sake of it. In Sebastian Rusk’s case, it is evident that he genuinely loves social media and wants to share his knowledge and passion with others.

If I had to give one small criticism, it would be about the chapter that talks about five brands that are doing social media right. It feels like every book mentions Starbucks, Zappos, and Oreo when it comes to companies using social media well. There have to be other companies and stories out there that can be mentioned, right?

And if not, I hope there will be more in the future. Maybe if they take the time to read and really absorb the information in Social Media Sucks, they’ll find new examples to talk about.

About the Author

Hi there, I’m Sebastian Rusk, also known as @sebrusk. I’m a Social Media Strategist, Author, Social Media Speaker, and the founder of SocialBuzzTV.com. If you want more information, check out my website!

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