How to Make an Impact, Not Just Noise: My Video Review of The Impact Equation by Chris Brogan and Julien Smith

Impact Equation, Chris Brogan, Julien Smith, Trust AgentsDo you ever wonder how to make people truly care about what you have to say?

It sounds simple. It’s not.

In today’s era where literally anybody can have a platform in the form of a blog or a Facebook page or a YouTube channel, you need more than just a good idea to be heard and to move people to act.

I recently picked up a new book that breaks down into its component parts the nature of how to get attention.  In The Impact Equation (affiliate link), authors Chris Brogan and Julien Smith analyze the breakdown in the media landscape and explain the rules of the new Wild West.

There are four key elements to the Impact Equation, each of which is necessary if you want to have your ideas spread like wildfire. The four parts are:

  1. Goals
  2. Ideas
  3. Platform
  4. Network

The book is kind of like a cookbook for chefs who want don’t want to spend all day slaving away in the kitchen. It is full of pragmatic and specific tips — all aimed at helping you get a meal on the table so you can move on with your deal.

What I love about the book is it gets you thinking about how you must have each of these four elements in order to truly have an impact. The book is also stocked with countless examples and specific ideas about how to make these four elements work for you.

These guys know what they are talking about. They are both highly sought-after consultants and public speakers and they previously co-wrote the New York Times bestseller Trust Agents.

Rather than write about it, I figured I would record a quick video. So here’s my short video review of the book:

How the Impact Equation Has Affected Me

I feel like the Impact Equation landed at exactly the right time for me personally.  I have written previously about how one of my big, hairy goals is to build out this blog as a platform and a resource for entrepreneurs, but also to establish my expertise as an advisor to entrepreneurs.

But that’s just one piece of the equation. It is just as important to define clear goals for yourself (something I’ve worked on with my business coach), hone your ideas, and develop your network.

On that latter note, I have always been good at networking offline. In fact, my networking has opened huge doors for me in my life, including  a job working in the Clinton White House and in the California Governor’s office. But until recently, I’d have to say I failed at networking in a way that helped me to build my online platform.

That’s why I made the decision to attend at least two conferences in 2013 – the New Media Expo in Las Vegas in January and the World Domination Summit (which Chris Brogan spoke at last year) in Portland, Oregon, in July. I’m also putting more effort into interviewing interesting entrepreneurs for this blog – which allows you to make a personal connection with influential individuals, one at a time.  In other words: networking.

But the bigger point is this – the book gets you thinking about not just what you are doing well, but what you might not being doing well, or what you could improve upon.  And by focusing on the four elements, you can really take off.

Not Just Social Media

I should also point out that this is not a book about social media. Brogan and Smith go out of their way to say that while a lot of people have classified them as social media experts, the message behind The Impact Equation is intended to be relevant whether you are trying to spread a message online or in an old-fashioned town square. And that’s why I think the book works so well.

One final observation: Chris Brogan has written about going on a three book diet, which is a reaction to the tendency of so many people to read business books then move on without really implementing them. He’s said he’s going to focus on just three business books in the next year. I think that’s a great idea.

With its specific examples and concrete advice, I think The Impact Equation is exactly the type of book that I should revisit throughout the year to make sure I am truly implementing its ideas.

That’s what I plan to do. I hope you will join me as well.

What do you think?


Title: The Impact Equation

Authors: Chris Brogan and Julien Smith

List Price: $26.95 (or $16.00 on Amazon & $12.99 on Kindle)

Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble & local bookstores.