Social media are bull, says Potsdam author on CNN, CNBC
Friday, October 5, 2012 - 11:52 am

POTSDAM – SUNY Potsdam graduate student Brandon Mendelson is promoting his provocatively titled book “Social Media Is Bullshit” at a book signing at SUNY Potsdam’s College Store at 1 p.m. Oct. 11.

Mendelson has appeared on CNN and CNBC to explain that Facebook, Twitter and other online social media are overrated and overly hyped, and as a tool for success, they are very limited.

He told about his experience with them.

“I took all the strategy, tips, and advice I had received from prominent social media marketers and tried to apply it to a cross-country tour where my ex-wife and I were promoting the early detection and prevention of breast cancer,” he said in an email message in answer to our questions.

“Not a single one of those tactics worked, and when I came back and questioned those marketers about it, the response universally was, ‘Well that's not how social media works’ even though the stuff I tried to apply is exactly how they said it worked in their books, speeches, and other material. In addition to this, my Twitter profile, @BJMendelson, was featured on the original suggested user list on Twitter and had, at one point, over a million followers. This happened during the breast cancer tour, and not a single one of those million followers donated to the organization or participated in any meaningful way.

“The following year I took the tour and re-engineered it so that it would work better for Wounded Warriors Family Support,” the author went on. “I removed all the social media components and focused on good old fashioned marketing and PR. It worked. The tour is now in its third year and last year they brought in almost a million dollars operating it. As a funny side note: Wounded Warriors Family Support (not to be confused with Wounded Warrior Project) ran a Facebook campaign and spent $3,000 to attract a well targeted group of people within the appropriate demographics of those who donate to the organization. Although they brought in over 12,000 fans, not a single one of them donated to the organization.”

The book, published by St. Martin’s Press, will be available in the U.S., U.K., and Canada, and will be displayed in all major Barnes & Noble stores. It is listed on and

Mendelson has written a list of “frequently asked questions” about the book, which can be seen at