AMACOM Books to publish groundbreaking book on building business relationships online

Scott Allen and I are happy to announce that we have signed with AMACOM Books, the publishing arm of the American Management Association, to publish our forthcoming book on doing business with online relationships—-in other words, how to win friends and influence people online. The tentative title is: The Virtual Handshake: Opening Doors and Closing Deals Online. (If you have any other suggestions, please contact us!) The book will be on the shelves in Summer 2005.

We would like to thank our able agents, David Fugate and Danielle Jatlow of Waterside Productions, for making this deal happen. For an overview of the book, take a look at the slides from some of my recent speeches.

Here’s the elevator pitch:

The Virtual Handshake will be the first book ever published which guides businesspeople with everything they need to help them find their next client, their next job, and their next business partner—online! Rather than another theory book or academic book, The Virtual Handshake is designed to be easy to read with practical, useful information. It includes short, focused chapters with dozens of success stories from this new technology, and contains extensive how-to information.

We’ll discuss how to use the new “social software” tools that have emerged in the last few years: blogs (Web journals), social network sites, relationship capital management software, and biography analysis software. On a typical day, 5 million Americans communicate with other people by blogging or publishing some other kind of material online—not to mention the 58 million Americans who use email every day. We’ll also discuss older tools, including contact management software, personal Web sites, e-mail lists, instant messaging, and Web conferencing.

Among the topic we cover:

• The seven keys to building business relationships, online and offline. This is a systematic way to analyze, value, and increase the power of your social network.

• How to pick an online community or tool that works for you

• How to set up your profile so that the people you want to connect with will find you

• How to respond to other people’s profiles in an appropriate and professional manner

• How to avoid common online turnoffs

• How to manage your e-mails rather than have your e-mails controlling you

The top three reasons why we expect the Book to become a bestseller are:

• the topic of online social networks is extremely visible in the mass media, with heavy coverage of such companies as Meetup and LinkedIn, and the pending introduction of major social networking systems by Yahoo!, Microsoft, and other dominant players;

• we have planned an extremely aggressive and broad marketing online and offline campaign; and

• these technologies really work! We have dozens of stories and studies demonstrating that you can be dramatically more effective in business by using the techniques we discuss.

To see a blog, sample chapter, and more information about the book, visit TheVirtualHandshake.com.