Third Wave Book

social media campaign

A best-selling effort to Inspire the next revolution in technology and entrepreneurship.


There are few people on earth as synonymous with entrepreneurship as Steve Case. Since founding and selling AOL in the biggest merger in history, Steve has become a prominent investor and an outspoken advocate for startups. In 2015, Steve decided to synthesize his vision of the future of entrepreneurship and technology into his first book. The first wave brought the internet to the masses. The second wave brought mobile apps and social networks to connect the world. The Third Wave answers the question, “what’s next?”

Having partnered with his firm Revolution on two successful Rise of the Rest tours already, Sculpt jumped at the chance to support Steve Case’s debut as a sure-to-be best-selling book author.

key challenges

  1. Awareness: A Medium post announcing the book was the extent to which the project was promoted. The subject matter had the power to change the world. The world just needed to know about it.
  2. Excitement: A successful launch campaign is influenced by a successful pre-launch effort.
  3. Engagement: Once the book was released, things were going to pick up fast. Steve’s team and PR firm lined up an ambitious tour schedule, and social needed to follow every move.
  4. Momentum: Success was not being measured in sales alone. Success meant adoption. The community had to reference the concepts. We had to ignite a movement.

brand goals

We rallied around several, specific goals:

  • Generate traffic to book retailers.
  • Generate significant awareness around the book release.
  • Put the Third Wave concepts “on the map” of business culture.
  • Drive attendance at book tour stops and sponsored events.
  • Cultivate conversation around Third Wave themes.
  • Support earned media (influencer/PR) impact through owned social channels.

creative brief

When we were handed the assignment to launch Steve Case’s new book, The Third Wave, we only had one piece of creative for the piece:

The cover.


We developed a visual direction for social creative that would stand out in feeds, inspired by the visual elements found on the marketing site. Cohesion between social, web, and offline collateral was key.

our approach

In addition to testing and selecting content that resonates with our audiences, we deployed thumb-stopping creative, emerging platforms, and savvy tactics to build momentum. Some examples included:

  • Developing graphic templates to allow for swift background image or text swapping.
  • Using video and animation to stand out in crowded, static image timelines.
  • Following a targeted segment of followers in each relevant market.
  • Cross-promoting Facebook LIVE appearances to drive engagement.
  • Amplifying event awareness by tagging venues, local startup organizations, sponsors, and hosts in promo graphics.
  • Supporting marketing promos by developing graphics and sample posts for partners to share on their social networks.

We had full responsibility over Steve Cases’s Facebook Page, and Third Wave Book and Rise of the Rest‘s Twitter accounts to make it happen.

campaign phases

Beginning our execution two months before the book’s launch, we structured our engagement in three phases:


Our first phase of outreach sought to introduce the topic of the “Third Wave” of the internet and generate excitement and pre-orders for the launch on April 5. Without giving away too much of the book’s highlights, we provided sneak peeks into Third Wave concepts to give a taste of what was to come.

launch week

For the two weeks surrounding the launch, we kicked into high gear to maximize frequency, engagement, and excitement. Supporting Steve’s media efforts and event appearances, we coordinated with the Revolution team to give behind-the-scenes snippets of the book tour, including live video feeds with a new Facebook integration and optimizing a sizable ad spend across channels.


Once we built a network of engaged followers, we set our sights on integrating book concepts into conversation about innovation and entrepreneurship in the future. One-on-one engagement with influencers and book readers help continue momentum of making Third Wave a part of the general zeitgeist.

Between February and June 15th, our Facebook posts achieved more than 1 million organic impressions and post engagements, our tweets generated nearly two million organic impressions, and social was the leading driver to the marketing site encompassing 54.6% of all traffic. Most importantly, The Third Wave hit its business goals, achieving the lucrative #1 Best-Selling Business Book of the Month title from the New York Times. Mere months after the launch, the world is still talking about the Third Wave.

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