As a social media marketing speaker, author and professor, I often get asked at the many social media conferences I speak at what are the top social media books I recommend. The barrier of entry is so low for anyone to pretend that they are an expert and publish on Kindle that it is an important question worth asking: For someone that doesn’t know better, how would they know what the best social media books are?
I have published many annual social media books lists in the past, and it has been a long time since I revised my most recently published one. Over the years, some of the authors on previous lists have revised their books to maintain their relevance while other new experts have emerged on the scene.
I recently started publishing my list of recommended marketing books, so I have tried to keep this list organized into the must-have categories of content that one would consider for their social media marketing.
In order to provide some semblance of balance, I have also tried to make the following limitations to improve the quality of this list:
- Limit of 2 social media books for each categories
- Limit of one book per author (with exceptions), usually (but not necessarily) their latest offering (although there are exceptions)
- Placed preference on social media books that exist in hardcover and/or paperback over Kindle-only
- Preferred books that have been published or revised in more recent years
I have lots of friends who are also social media authors so it was impossible to include everyone I would have liked to, but if you feel that I made a mistake and/or feel that your book should be included, please comment below. Thanks!
Now I have not simply selected the newest of social media books because some of the “older” social media books are still relevant, especially those that focused more on concepts and less on specific tactics. For that reason, don’t be afraid to buy a book if it wasn’t published recently. Remember, many of these social media books are either textbooks being used in universities or are often talked about amongst social media professionals, so you’ll want to play “catch up” if you haven’t read some of the older social media books.
Without further adieu, here’s the list of best social media books, which I have “narrowed down” to 28 (PHEW!) . Where possible, I’ve also added videos of the book trailers or of the authors speaking about their social media books to give you a further introduction and background to each book: (note that all links to Amazon are affiliate links that help cover admin costs of running this blog)
SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING
It was really hard to limit myself to only two books in this broadest of categories, but I feel these two books stand out as continuing to be revised, talked about, and read today.
The New Rules of Marketing and PR: How to Use Social Media, Blogs, News Releases, Online Video, and Viral Marketing to Reach Buyers Directly
The classic book that was originally published back in 2008 (where were you in social media in 2008?!?!?) is now on its 7th edition that was published in 2020 to maintain its freshness. This book deserves to be on every social media bookshelf. A book that covers both marketing and public relations and emphasizes the directness of marketing to your customers over the social web, it includes a plethora of case studies and is all encompassing in scope. Indeed, social media marketing is about the “new rules,” and one of the established thought leaders in social media reminds us of his relevance with this work. Informative, conversational, and entertaining, The New Rules of Marketing and PR is a pleasant and satisfying read for all.
On my Maximize Your Social Podcast interview, David mentioned that this book has sold 400,000 copies to date! Listen to the interview then check out his video below!
Likeable Social Media: How to Delight Your Customers, Create an Irresistible Brand, and Be Generally Amazing on Facebook (And Other Social Networks
In 2019, Dave published his 3rd edition of this New York Times Bestseller.
If you need your business to be “likeable”, Dave Kerpen will teach you how. Through his experience and work as the CEO of the social media agency Likeable Media, he teaches us how to engage fans and followers alike, offering up actionable tips that will greatly improve your company’s social media presence. What I like about Dave is that he really talks the talk: whatever he teaches in the book, he also applies in real life to grow his own social media following.
SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY
Once you understand the landscape for social media marketing, you need to build a social media strategy for your business. Social media strategy is where my career started in social media marketing and still something I speak passionately about, and I believe a social strategy is often the solution to the biggest problems that social media marketers face, yet most companies either don’t have a comprehensive one or don’t have a social strategy that is aligned with business objectives.
Social Media Strategy packs a wallop, with information about virtually every facet of the field. Keith Quesenberry’s comprehensive guide to social media marketing is filled with in-depth information, ranging from a definition of social media marketing and strategy, an updated overview of jobs involving social media marketing and strategy, and the many ways in which social media influence and inform modern business practices. Quesenberry’s book is a wonderful resource for anyone looking into social media marketing, from novice to professional, and can be used as a guidebook, textbook, and resource for practical tools to improve social media marketing.
Maximize Your Social: A One-Stop Guide to Building a Social Media Strategy for Marketing and Business Success
Yes, I am the author of this book. Through my own social media consulting, I wanted to create a resource that will allow the reader to create their own social media strategy. I obviously wouldn’t put my own book on this list if I didn’t think it would add value to your business, and being encouraged by the reviews I’ve received so far on Amazon, I’m taking a deep breath and adding it. Once again, this is a subjective list, but if I wasn’t writing a book that I would recommend to others, why write it, right?
Full Disclaimer: This book is one of the older books on this list, and there are some chapters which are irrelevant today, but the main concepts and recommendations from this book remain intact today.
Facebook should need no introduction ;-)
The Beginner’s Guide to Facebook Advertising: How to Create Effective Ads, Generate Leads, and Increase Your ROI
As its name suggests, Ainworth’s Beginner’s Guide to Facebook Advertising takes you through the steps of creating effective Facebook marketing campaigns from A to Z. Ainsworth goes over what Facebook marketing can involve, what it entails, and which forms of Facebook advertising are most effective, in addition to covering how to create effective and compelling Facebook ads, and how to create legitimate sales leads from the ads you place. Ainsworth’s background as the head of an online marketing company qualifies her to speak to the potential impact of Facebook advertising campaigns, and it is through her role that she is able to help guide even the least familiar reader through the Facebook advertising process. This book’s focus on Facebook and step-by-step guide makes it ideal for anyone who is new to Facebook marketing, or who has used Facebook advertising in the past, with little to no success.
Its 4th Edition being published in 2020, The Ultimate Guide to Facebook Advertising helps today’s leading minds pinpoint the Internet’s most profitable audiences. Then, it helps readers discover new outreach tactics, promotional benefits, conversion tools and fan-fostering approaches. Keeping Facebook customers for life is difficult, but the Ultimate Guide to Facebook Advertising, written by several successful digital marketing providers, circumnavigates the industry’s pressing issues.
Focusing on customers, profits and in-clicks, the guide helps readers create their own campaign, garner customer attention, spread awareness and generate leads on a sales-number basis. The guide is similarly useful to those wishing to avoid fatiguing audiences with News Feed Ads, presenting modern solutions to historical Facebook advertisement difficulties.
Similar to Facebook, in 2021 Instagram also should need no introduction ;-)
The “For Dummies” series of books has long been regarded as a staple in basic education, and Instagram for Dummies is no different. That being said, one of the co-authors of the book, who has also blogged here, Jenn Herman, is one of the world’s leading experts on Instagram marketing, so this book is an essential primer for any Instagram marketer.
Focusing on how to use Instagram, and how to increase your following, Herman takes readers through the ins and outs of creating an Instagram account, styling photos for a visually-appealing feed, and connecting with people through your photos, Instagram Live, and daily Instagram Stories. Although Herman’s book is not specifically geared toward marketing, it offers invaluable insights into how to more effectively use Instagram to grow a following and build an online community—two components of social media marketing that are essential to continue driving traffic and growing your brand. Herman’s book is perfect for those who are new to the Instagram platform, but offers plenty for anyone familiar with Instagram, but struggling to gain (and hold onto) followers.
Now in its 2nd edition (published in 2019), Instagram Power might be about the platform’s marketing opportunities, but it packs a punch where direct e-commerce solutions and cross-channel marketing is considered. Jason Miles, author of Instagram Power, utilizes intensive studies to present the world’s newest generation of intelligent marketers—as well as their innovations.
Instagram monetization isn’t new, but it’s become increasingly complex in recent years. Instagram Power slows the process down, dissects viable marketing options and helps marketers strategize for future opportunities. The book covers everything you need to know to begin your Instagram marketing journey, spanning across platform setup, monetization strategies and cross-platform marketing integration.
LinkedIn is and will continue to be the King of B2B social media marketing. Period.
No matter what you do on LinkedIn, all roads link back to your LinkedIn profile. That’s why it’s important for every outward-facing sales and marketing professional to have an optimized LinkedIn profile based on their personal branding. Fortunately, there is a book that helps the reader do exactly that!
Updated for 2021, Sandra Long’s LinkedIn for Personal Branding is unique on its take, as it positions LinkedIn as a powerful branding tool, rather than merely a networking tool. Although LinkedIn is often left out of social media marketing instructionals, Long identifies why this is doing your brand or business a great disservice, and demonstrates the immense value in leveraging LinkedIn to improve your social media marketing strategies and audience reach. With in-depth guides on how to use LinkedIn to build a compelling profile, market yourself or your brand, and improve your likelihood of coming up first in Google and LinkedIn searches, this is a great read for anyone who currently uses LinkedIn or is new to the platform, and is searching for a way to carry their branding further than standard social media markets like Facebook and Instagram.
Maximizing LinkedIn for Sales and Social Media Marketing: An Unofficial, Practical Guide to Selling & Developing B2B Business on LinkedIn
First, an obvious disclaimer: As you might have noticed, I’m actually the author of this book. And I wouldn’t add my own book to this list if I didn’t have the confidence to tell you that it unlocks the mysteries of how to generate business from LinkedIn that no other book does. If you think LinkedIn is only for professionals and job seekers, think again. If your business markets and sells to other businesses, LinkedIn should be your top social media marketing priority, even above Facebook. Attract more leads, become an industry leader and improve your online reputation: you can accomplish all these things and more through this book. Includes more than 15 case studies to help you see exactly what others have done to see positive ROI from their LinkedIn investment.
This book was also published several years ago, so while the user interface has changed, the central concepts to the book are still intact today.
While many still feel Twitter has no future, it is still a vital channel for social media marketing and for social customer service. If you haven’t been leveraging Twitter as part of your social media strategy, start with this:
I could not write a post on social media books without including a work from my “cousin” and prolific marketing author Mark Schaefer.
True to its name, Mark’s Tao of Twitter takes you through the ins and outs of Twitter, including why it can be a powerful social media platform for your business or brand, how to make it work for you, and how to stand out among the crowd of businesses and people currently tweeting. Schaefer walks you through the purpose of using Twitter for your business, how to create content that is engaging, authentic, and useful for your audience, and how to use Twitter hashtags and searches to keep yourself relevant in Twitter conversations, Google searches, and more. Schaefer’s refreshing take on Twitter is great for those who are not sure how or why to use Twitter in their business and brand marketing, or those who are currently using Twitter without success.
While Pinterest was often left out of a lot of social media marketing strategies, coronavirus brought a flood of new users and increased traffic to the site to the point where it is now home to 442 million active monthly users. If you’re ready to pin to win, you’ll want to check out:
After working directly with bloggers, brands, and companies, Kerrie Legend compiled the tips she found most useful into Pinterest Marketing: 80k to 14+ Million in 3 Months. Although Legend does not guarantee these same results, she does take her audience step by step through the process of expanding the reach of Pinterest marketing materials, in order to not only increase monthly visits, but to also increase the likelihood of visitors to set up camp and stick around long enough to become a solid customer. Legend goes beyond the standard Pinterest advice, such as using appropriate descriptions, creating dynamite images, and linking to like-minded accounts, and advises readers on how to most effectively increase the audience you are able to reach each and every day, and how to automate your Pinterest posts to make the most of your time. Pinterest Marketing is a powerful read for anyone looking to improve their Pinterest stats and grow their online reach.
Social media was made for people to connect on, and there are a variety of ways that we as people – and representing our businesses – can leverage the “relationship” aspects of social. From improving your social networking, finding decision makers, engaging with influencers, turning customers into “fans,” or merely reminding ourselves that marketing comes down to relationships, these social media books will give you unique insight on the “human” side of social and power of relationships to power your brand.
When writing my book mentioned below, The Age of Influence, I realized that the way most people defined influencer marketing was also much too narrow considering that your customers and employees might also be considered influencers in this world bubbling with nano influencers. That’s why I include brand advocacy AND employee advocacy in my writing, but for the purposes of this list I have broken them out for you in separate categories.
I liked this book so much I launched a new podcast together with the author Amanda Russell: The School of Influence. Enough said!
When I started writing this book, I had no idea how impactful influencer marketing can be for any company as well as the fact that it is the least understood form of marketing that often gets looked over or is thought of more as a short-term campaign.
I then embarked on a mission to write the book that would both redefine how businesses and marketers view influencer marketing as well as provide a playbook to help each reader plan, implement, and measure the effectiveness of their influencer marketing program.
If you’re interested, download a free preview here.
When working with influencers brands are realizing that relationships are often short-lived and transactional. On the other hand, brands have already amassed a potential army of social media users that can be activated to help their brand: Your own fans. Brand advocacy is all about creating a system to leverage the word-of-mouth power of your fans in social media.
Leveraging your fans who are nano and micro influencers is the latest rage in influencer marketing, and for good reason! While the following book wasn’t written specifically for influencer marketing, the takeaways are powerful for any marketer.
Pat Flynn’s Superfans has been hailed as an enormously important book in the world of social media branding and marketing, because he touches on one very important component in the process that many authors skip over: brand loyalty. Although it may be tempting to look at numbers as the sole window into success or failure, Flynn argues that a massive audience who merely clicks on your links occasionally is far less useful than a small audience of “Superfans,” who consistently share your brand and come back for more. Flynn offers the most effective strategies to leverage social media to encourage the growth of superfans, rather than followers, and does so in a way that is engaging, helpful, and straightforward—in the process, creating superfans of his own. This book is essential for anyone looking to build a brand that consistently delivers high-quality, engaging, and impactful content or products, and keeps audience members coming back for more.
One of the most powerful forms of influencer marketing is bringing your own employees into your influencer program. While the term “employee advocacy” has been around for some time, these days successful programs are treating employees as if they were influencers as part of an “employee influencer” approach.
Michael Brito’s Employee Advocacy is a strong voice for leveraging employee advocacy. Identifying the countless ways in which employee interactions outside of work impact the culture, connection, and marketing efforts of any brand or business, Brito provides actionable steps to improve your brand or company’s employee advocacy efforts, teaching you how to effectively use your employees’ interest and pride in their work to further your reach and improve your brand or business image. Participation Marketing is so named because Brito uncovers the reality of employee participation in marketing, whether it is intentional or not, and urges his audience to maintain a positive, engaging, and employee-driven culture, to improve not only the company’s reputation, but also their marketing targets and reach. Employee Advocacy is targeted toward companies with a dedicated staff, but can be useful for even a two-or-three person operation.
While Brito’s book on employee advocacy dives right in to how to use employee advocacy to your advantage, Jorgen Sundberg takes a step back and offers a comprehensive guide on what exactly employee advocacy entails, how to begin implementing employee advocacy programs, and why it is important for business owners and entrepreneurs to take into consideration. Employee Advocacy is a vital read for anyone who currently has or is looking into taking on employees, as it demonstrates how to effectively utilize your employees’ experiences and personal habits to improve your brand and business.
I made a special exception with this book as it is the only one on the list that is available only on Kindle. The good news is that it is free, and you have the added benefit of reading my Foreword on the subject ;-)
For me, social selling comes right after employee advocacy for this reason:
If your employees are influencers, the ones who can most often monetize their influence are usually your sales people!
While social selling programs, like the one I teach at Rutgers Business School, often begin with teaching salespeople how to operate in a digital world, social selling programs are often being the main driver for employee advocacy programs to launch and succeed, especially in B2B industries.
If your role in your organization is in sales, these social media books might just be your most valuable assets out of all of the social media books on this list.
Seven Figure Social Selling was created with the notion of freedom in mind. Brandon Bornancin’s book contains 400+ pages of content on how to create scripts to automize your social selling ability, how to network to effectively bring views to your LinkedIn page, and how to create relationships with prospective customers to create ongoing relationships that will utilize your services again and again. Coming from a company boasting over 1 million in sales, Bornancin provides step-by-step guidelines to create selling scripts that do most of your work for you, freeing you up to build your brand, create lasting partnerships, and “add” time to your day. This book is best for anyone new to social selling, or struggling in this arena, with or without a strong LinkedIn presence.
In Social Selling: Techniques, readers engage relationship-building exercises, a modern look at the decision-making process and touted social network solutions. Social Selling is a step-by-step guide for marketers intending to harness new skills, refurbish outdated ideas and obtain a high-quality community.
By building trust with online consumers, digital marketers can utilize Social Selling’s developmental points when furthering relationships. Unique to the book is a section on risk and governance—which steers digital marketers away from wasteful online maneuvers with a plethora of applicable examples. Social Selling is a definite “win” in the comprehensive seller’s guide section, and it’s a great choice for any digital marketer seeking evergreen advice.
SOCIAL MEDIA ANALYTICS
Once you create a social media strategy, you need to manage and continually optimize it through the application of social media analytics and social media metrics. Read these two selections to better familiarize yourself with how social media marketers are measuring their performance from a strategic business perspective, not through merely getting excited over vanity metrics.
Creating Value with Social Media Analytics is Gohar Khan’s contribution to the complicated subject of social media analytics. Khan offers an in-depth account of why social media analytics are valuable, and how viable information can be extracted from analytics to more effectively market to target audiences, whether that includes marketing campaign styles, the timing of social media posts, or even the best type of engagement with potential customers and followers. Khan’s book is a great tool for companies and brands who might feel overwhelmed by social media analytics, or anyone who is not sure how to dig through the numbers to find useful, applicable guides to marketing and engagement.
This is a new section I have added this year to this social media books list: How to you use social media to build up ones influence?
While The Age of Influence does also have a chapter dedicated to this subject, I have also blogged a few times about this subject that I recommend you check out in addition to the books below:
- How to Become an Influencer in Any Industry in 9 Easy Steps
- How To Become A Social Media Influencer and Make Money From It
In Influencer, Brittany Hennessy tackles the difficult topic of social media branding, and how to effectively leverage your life and lifestyle to build a following, maintain that following, and create a personal brand to attract the interest of your favorite companies, brands, and agents. Hennessy has worked in the field of social media from the first days of online influencers, and offers unique insights into how the industry has evolved—and continues to evolve—and teaches the most effective ways to fuse your passion for life and brand partnerships to create your own influencer brand. Hennessy’s book is perfect for those who are looking to build a personal brand, rather than a business-centric brand, and anyone seeking to leverage their existing lifestyle or social media presence.
Brendan Kane’s One Million Followers details the steps and practices Kane employed to grow his social media following to over one million followers in only 30 days. Filled with insights, practical tips, and success stories, Kane brings plenty to the table when it comes to building influence across social media platforms, engaging meaningfully with followers, and creating content that will continue to encourage traffic to your brand and help you grow your sphere of influence. One Million Followers is a great read for those who are looking to not only amass a following, but keep that following engaged and invested in personal branding, from a veritable master of the art, with big names such as Taylor Swift and Vice under his belt.
The importance of content in social media cannot be underestimated, and whether you want to brush up on your quality, or in the words of one of the authors featured on this page, Gary Vaynerchuk, to “triple down on content,” these social media books will help you create more, better, and differentiated content that will help you beat your competition and hopefully be heard above the noise.
The One Hour Content Plan by Meera Kothand is an updated take on blogging and how blogging can be used to build a brand, and keep customers, followers, and clients engaged. Kothand’s contribution to the genre details how to create a slew of content ideas in sixty minutes or less, in order to create an entire year’s worth of content ideas. Kothand’s intent in writing this book is to equip bloggers—or brands with a blogging platform—with enough ideas t fully flesh out a posting schedule with articles, ideas, and information that directly relate to products and services, and continue to drive traffic and inspire brand loyalty as a result. Kothand’s approachable window into the subject makes this book powerful for anyone struggling to maintain a steady blog, or anyone unsure of where to start, but eager to provide blogging content for an existing brand or business.
The Essential Habits Of 6-Figure Bloggers: 17 Secrets of Successful Bloggers You Can Use to Build a Six-Figure Online Business
Sally Miller’s Essential Habits of 6-Figure Bloggers reads part instruction manual, part interview session, part inspirational memoir, as she dives deeply into the real lives of people who have achieved success in blogging. At times a detailed account of how bloggers rose to prominence and at times a guide to applying those lessons to your own blog and brand, Miller has a little bit of something for just about everyone looking to start a blog or take their blog to the next level. Miller’s book is unique among blogging books, in that it offers insight into how actual 6-figure bloggers achieved their goals, and urges readers to consider what might light them up, rather than focusing entirely on current trends and learning how to follow them. Miller’s book will likely resonate with blog owners, writers, and aspiring entrepreneurs in one fell swoop.
Another major revision to my social media books list is the addition of podcasting. While I launched my own Maximize Your Social Influence podcast back in 2013, it really wasn’t in 2020 until I started getting serious about it.
And then I launched a 2nd podcast in 2021, The School of Influence.
Needless to say, I have seen positive business benefits from my own podcast, and thus I highly recommend it as a platform to build influence on. Get started with these two books on the subject:
So You Want to Start a Podcast: Finding Your Voice, Telling Your Story, and Building a Community that Will Listen
So You Want to Start a Podcast comes after Kristen Meinzer has successfully hosted 3 podcasts with over one million viewers. Her approach to beginning a podcast is robust, and encourages readers to delve deeply into their motivation behind starting a podcast, their goals and framework for their podcast, and the ways in which effectively describe, market, and structure podcast episodes. With plenty of insight gained through her own experience hosting a podcast, Meinzer provides her readers with applicable steps to take to begin the process of launching a podcast, armed with the know-how needed to appeal to target audiences and hold their attention. So You Want to Start a Podcast is a must read for anyone looking to break into the podcasting world, and offers a wealth of information for the novice and seasoned audio creator, alike.
Amanda Mayo’s contribution to the world of podcasting guides, apply titled “Podcasting,” is stripped down to the wires, and offers a driven focus on how to create a podcast that can be monetized and used as a steady source of income. In contrast to Meizner, Mayo focuses on choosing a podcasting idea that will drawn in target audiences with the original intent of making money, and includes practical tips and information regarding how to set the right length for your podcast, how to identify and target your desired audience, how to host, what equipment is best to purchase, and how to use social media to market your podcast. Absolutely brimming with simple tips and tasks, Mayo’s Podcasting is an essential how-to guide for anyone looking to start a podcast—including those with little to no experience or know-how in the field.
If you’re ready to launch your podcast, check out my video showing you how!
YouTube continues to become more powerful with time as a way to connect with your audience through the most engaging type of content that exists. Throw in the fact that YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine and you begin to see how strategic YouTube should be to your digital marketing strategy. These two books focus more on the building influence aspect of YouTube, but their advice can be equally used by businesses to empower their video marketing on the platform.
YouTube Secrets: the Ultimate Guide to Growing Your Following and Making Money as a Video Influencer
Designed to provide a comprehensive guide to YouTube monetization and use, Sean Cannell and Benji Travis have compiled a book that thoroughly examines all of the possible avenues to monetize content on YouTube, taking a peek into the lives and habits of people who have successfully created YouTube followings, and identifying how six and seven figure earners were able to make their way to the top of the YouTube food chain. Alternately explanatory and actionable, YouTube Secrets provides a wealth of information for those new to the platform and seasoned veterans of YouTube, and offers a window into the inner workings of successful, monetized YouTube channels while offering straightforward actions to set you on the path toward YouTube success.
In something of a deviation from the wide scope of YouTube Secrets, Joseph Hogue details his specific journey to YouTube success in Crushing YouTube. Hogue outlines his “late to the game” strategies for pursuing YouTube success, ultimately netting him income exceeding 35,000 dollars per month—and argues that you, too, can achieve success on the platform. Using both his personal experience and practical steps toward achieving followers, attracting brand partnerships, expanding your reach, and effectively using ads to generate income, Hogue tells you how you, too, can “crush” YouTube, whether you have yet to start a channel, or have been chipping away at YouTube for years.
Now it’s your turn: Were your favorite social media books included in this list? Any social media books that you would recommend missing? Please chime in. THANKS!
Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash
Social Media Books FAQs
There are 4 examples of social media based on their uses: social networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter; media sharing networks like Instagram, YouTube, and Pinterest; social blogging networks like Tumblr; and discussion networks such as Quora and Reddit.
If you’re looking to build a social media following for your book, you need to become a content creator through either blogging, podcasting, YouTube, or images. Then you need to publish and/or promote your content on the various social media sites mentioned above.
Even though e-reading devices like Kindle are becoming popular nowadays, books are still better than social media because they are the most reliable source of information. In fact, 81% of U.S adults are book readers. 65% of Americans still prefer printed books and only 28% of respondents read e-books.
Social media as defined by Merriam Webster are types of electronic communication used to share information, content, and ideas. Social media have different types based on their purposes. Some examples of social media are Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Reddit, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, and Tumblr.
The six types of social media are 1) Social networks used for connecting with other people; 2) Bookmarking sites that allow users to organize and save links to any websites; 3) Social news where users can post new links and other external articles; 4) Media sharing; 5) Microblogging; and 6) Blog comments and forum.