I’m delighted to introduce Claire Burdett along for a chat about her latest book, Social Goodness, a trend spotting bible business book. “Nobody was expecting what happened in 2020, but amazingly, some businesses managed to thrive in the extremely challenging business climate that the pandemic produced.”
Claire is an entrepreneur, a founder, a businesswoman, a writer, marketing pro, social media aficionado. She always knew she would work in comms. Claire did a media degree in the 80s at the only university in Europe to offer it then. After graduating she worked in publishing, marketing, and the media.
She’s worked in digital and social media since its beginning and has founded three online businesses in that time, including The Media Marketing Co, which was the first dedicated Social Media Marketing Agency in the UK in 2009 (which is still going strong). They launched as a virtual agency and all still work at home. On trend again before it was actually a trend! She’s also a single mum and did it all single handed. “It doesn’t feel like that should be a ‘thing’ but people keep telling me it is a significant ‘thing’.”
Claire has been tracking sustainability and applying it in her own life and business since, well, forever – she was like Felicity Kendal in the Good Life in her 20s, with an allotment and making home produce before it was fashionable, always upcycling and crafting. Yet she also loved tech and analytics, drilling down into the data and the whys and wherefores of how things happen online. And she is always trendspotting, joining the dots to see the bigger picture to help people understand what is actually happening, and what action they should take to best support and grow their business or enterprise.
A prolific writer, Claire has written thousands of articles for magazines and blogs, edited hundreds more, and authored 10 books. Social Goodness is her tenth book and brings together everything she sees happening in the world today and where we need to learn and adapt to properly manage and utilise these new social challenges that this big-bang of tech growth has given us.
Claire admits it has been the hardest to write because it covers all the essential elements of the greater whole that we need to be socially conscious in this superfast-moving digital age. Every week throughout 2020 something else would happen that needed to be included! So, she feels confident in saying it is very much on trend!
Tell us a little about yourself. (How did you get started writing? What do you do when you’re not writing?)
I can’t remember not writing! I was editor of the school magazine at secondary school and again at a (different) 6th form, and ended up going into publishing as an editor after graduation, while always writing alongside that.
Is this your first book? How many books have you written prior (if any?)
Social Goodness is my 10th book. My first published book was Lumpy Loves Chocolate – a children’s book for my dyslexic eldest. I have written many others (mostly business & marketing guides), since then, including ‘WTF Can Social Media do for Your Business?’ in 2009.
What genre is it, and what is it about?
It’s a trend spotting bible business book. It is about the global trend towards working together collectively to tackle the world’s worst problems, highlighting how people are using social media to pressure businesses to do good not bad. To step up to help reverse climate change, ensure a farrier society, stop making the situation worse and – most important – stop lying and green washing.
It’s about how this is impacting businesses, and how most are being ignored if they aren’t seen to be caring and proactively doing good. Unfortunately this means that they become wholly invisible on social media and search (Google) because the algorithms stop showing updates to people if they don’t interact, and advertising is hated by most people and doesn’t work too well anyway and is about to be completely upended by Apple and data privacy, which leaves brands in a bit of bind.
Social goodness is the answer to this conundrum and the best bit is that being a good business is actually GOOD (as in profitable) business because it’s what people want. So it’s a win-win.
What or who inspired you to write this book?
The state of the world, how people have responded to that during the pandemic, and the way businesses have been – and are being – impacted. I could see that most businesses were completely unaware of anything beyond their own fence, so to speak, and wondering why they were losing visibility online or struggling to get heard and why people were attacking them or being scathing if they tried to show support for any of the major issues. On the other side, the world’s issues are HUGE and extremely challenging, more than I realised before last year. Lots of other people have come to that realisation and our patience is wearing very thin
with businesses or organisations who carry on doing stuff that wrecks the planet or is contributing to inequality in any way. People are coming together on social media to force change before it’s too late and businesses have to get up to speed very fast if they are 1) survive 2) thrive 3) become loved (the only true way for a brand to actually be successful). While I was writing it I realised that good business is actually GOOD business (as in profitable) so it’s a win win all round. Time to find that superhero cape and step up…
What writing advice do you have for other aspiring authors?
Understand that it’s a marathon and don’t get too disheartened, especially when it needs a 3rd edit!
What do you enjoy most about writing and why?
The potential to give joy, help someone see something differently and change their mindset and behaviour.
List three interesting facts about yourself
I launched the first WAH website AND the first dedicated social media marketing agency in the UK, both while raising my kids sole handed. I’ve just been shortlisted for Female Entrepreneur of the Year.
What is your least favourite part of the publishing/writing process?
I don’t have one.
What can readers who enjoy your book do to help make it successful?
Write a good review on Amazon and share it to anyone they think might also enjoy it!
What is your next project?
Updating the marketing guides, such as ‘How to get to the 1st page of Google’, and putting them on Amazon as a box set so they can help more people.
Then I have a book called Money Whisperer I have started researching.
Connect with Claire here:
Twitter – https://twitter.com/ClaireBurdett
LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/claireburdett/
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/claire_e_burdett/
Social Goodness Website – https://www.socialgoodness.co.uk/
Social Goodness is a guide to how your business can meet your customer’s expectations through your brand actions and so ensure you don’t just survive but thrive in the coming decade. Perfectly pitched for busy C-suite leaders and entrepreneurs it is a meticulously researched, comprehensive trendspotting business bible, which is an easy to read, enthralling, and engaging page turner.