I think there’s a difference between having a bestselling book–meaning through marketing, PR and buying that first wave of customers–and writing a bestselling book. The second implies that the product propels itself to the best seller list. That’s not to say that I’m Tolstoy or the best writer, but I used Facebook and Twitter more for feed back as I was creating and refining the book than for the actual marketing itself. My main online tool for priming the pump for the launch of the book was the blog. That was the heartbeat and the nexus for all the different tools that I use.

Via Tim Ferriss On Facebook, Twitter And Building A Huge Web Brand – Steven Bertoni – Money Talks – Forbes. I also liked this quote:

SB: How can a magazine catch up to the Web?

TF: If I worked for a magazine that’s very behind the times, I wouldn’t reinvent the wheel. I’d use WordPress as a content management system which has very good SEO out of the box. Companies spend so much time trying to develop something proprietary it’s ridiculous–you have thousands of people already working on WordPress.

15 thoughts on “Tim Ferriss On Facebook, Twitter And Building A Huge Web Brand

  1. That’s right!
    I am trying to put together a small presentation, hoping to convince an international magazine to adapt WP. They are going with a ‘custom developed’ Joomla install (the s/w company probably had some really convincing sales guy!).

    WP rocks man. Too cool. Thanks. God bless you, Matt.

  2. Yeah I really love Tim’s “business” model too …

    Just to be a little more specific … here’s how you use a blog to move units in TimLand …


    So you get people to believe that buying your book is an “opportunity”. People are encouraged to buy in bulk … in a timed mass.

    “look … it’s a chart topper”

    James Arthur Ray was doing the same thing about 24 hours before 3 people died in his $10,000 per head self-help sweat lodge.


    Trying to get his participants to buy his new book in bulk early in the release cycle.

    And of course :: Tim doesn’t mention the massive email blasts that went out from everyone who’s anyone in the world of “great opportunity” selling. Cause one imagines that part of the story wouldn’t end up on ma.tt … cause me doubts ma.tt is in to such stuffs.

    Save the book business :: by converting readers into throw away slaves. Much Success!!

    1. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with asking your fans to pre-order your books, or order bunch of them. Many of my friends who are book authors do similar things with their core audience. I’m sure bad people have used the technique as well, perhaps like the James Ray person you point to, but that doesn’t make it intrinsically bad, or Tim bad by association.

      1. If it was just that then it would be just that. Almost nothing is “intrinsically bad”.

        But if it was just that then I wouldn’t have left this comment.

        See you around Tim.

    2. Completely agree with what Matt has been mentioning. There’s nothing wrong in launching campaigns to pre-order books. To add to this, there’s not even anything wrong to use Fb or twitter to promote things. But my only problem is don’t promote things which you know are inferior and then use social media to dump them off and get money in return.

  3. The internet is like one big salad with all the ingredients missing salad dressing….:)

    WordPress is hugely underrated though…

  4. I came to your blog via a link through my WP dashboard. I thought to myself this is one of the coolest WP themes I’ve seen. Then I read your “about” page and find out you’re a founding member of WP. No wonder this is a great theme!

  5. While I run my blog on Posterous (just easier for me) I love the sentiment of not reinventing the wheel. I work at a company where we use a proprietary CMS and wonder why we can’t develop better tools (here’s a hint? No one uses our tools, so you can’t hire for it.) I’ve advocated for WordPress but get the classic (it doesn’t scale, a myth) Anyway, keep pushing and kicking down doors.

  6. I think there’s a fine line between marketing and abusing it, well, pre-selling is “everything” in marketing, you can sell a million books with anticipation. Afterwards, that might down a bit, that’s all just part of marketing. Well, you just need to find the right medium, I don’t see anything wrong with pre-orders, that’s what makes the world go around, anticipation and viral marketing.

  7. I think that there is definitely no need for a huge proprietary system for news sites. We’ve done over a dozen news sites and WordPress handles it very well. You obviously have to go through optimizations steps if you deal with a high traffic site.

    However, there’s no reason a site like CNN (beyond the blogs) couldn’t be done with WordPress.

  8. I love Tim Ferris (and read his books), and he’s right, companies don’t need to develop each time a new platform or website. They can easily migrate to an open source project like WP or even drupal.

  9. I totally agree with WordPress being used as a magazine CMS. I used it on a magazine project I worked on a few years back and it worked superbly (urbangardenmagazine.com). The only caveat would be to watch plugin use, only rely on wordpress core features for mission critical aspects of the site.