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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The Dragonfly Effect

The Dragonfly Effect: Quick, Effective, and Powerful Ways to Use Social Media to Drive social Change by Jenifer Aaker and Andy Smith incorporates useful ideas to make a lasting impact on society. The premise of the book is from the in sync movements that dragonfly wings make when flying. In fact, the dragonfly’s wings are 20 times more powerful than any other insect’s when they move together.

Similarly, Aaker and Smith contend that when using their four-step approach, you can create unimaginable social change for the better. The four sections include Focus, Grab Attention, Engage, and Take Action. Focus means that you must identify a single, concrete goal that provides guidance throughout the mission. Creating a hook that stands out in an information-overloaded society is the second wing. Engagement happens after people connect with your goal. And finally, the public will take action after responded to the audiences’’ reactions.

The authors further split the “wings” into sub-sections by using acronyms and case studies to exemplify their points. For example, Focus can be split into five elements by using HATCH: Humanistic, Actionable, Testable, Clarity, and Happiness. The most useful message from the book is simple: you must act together to create an impact, similar to the wings of a dragonfly. Overall, I found the book useful for any public relations professional and anyone trying to make an impact on society. For further information on the book, visit

Erika Block
University of Minnesota
Jour 3279
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