No matter if you are a free-lancer, consultancy owner, or an account manager, there is one secure way to elevate your work to the next level – learning constantly. Digital marketing techniques change almost every month, there are updates on algorithms, settings, targeting options. What the key difference is the approach –some things seem to tick with human nature, others don’t.
Here is a list of my top ten books on marketing which I believe every professionalist must read.
1. Breakthrough Advertising by Eugene M. Schwartz
Yes, I know advertising is different from marketing. But, writing good ad copy makes a big difference in radio, TV, outdoor banners, Facebook or Google ads. There are principles which have been applied by marketers since the Mad Man years and this books talks about them. Believe me, this book is worth the £1225 it is currently sold for on Amazon. It is very old and there are no new editions.
2. Contagious by Jonah Berger
This book explores the different ways restaurants create value out of nothing, why some YouTube videos go viral and others don’t. It is full of great examples of how certain patterns make humans tick and gladly watch the same thing again and again, buy a product just because of an association and make it. Easy read and a lot of great examples.
3. Influence: Psychology of Persuasion by Robert. B. Cialdini
This is an all-time sales and marketing classics. You will learn six rules which are so deeply coded in our psychology, that we are pretty much disabled to act in a different way. For example, the rule of reciprocity, or why after you receive a gift, you are much more likely to buy a product worth ten times the cost of the gift. Many of these have been severely abused by marketers and salespeople, but they are likely to get a much more sophisticated
4. Crossing the chasm. Marketing and Selling Disruptive Products to Mainstream Customers by Geoffrey Moore
This book explains the big challenges in front of marketers who sell a disruptive or new product. It divides the stages of adoption into different target groups and outlines ways to approach each one of them.
5. Riveted: The Science of Why Jokes Make Us Laugh, Movies Make Us Cry, and Religion Makes Us Feel One with the Universe by Jim Davies.
This is another exploration of the human interest and what provokes strong reactions in us. It shows how deceptive our brains are and to what extent heredity determines what we like.
6. Blue ocean Strategies by Renée Mauborgne and W. Chan Kim
This book is a real delight to read and is a true eye-opener about the world of competition. It is not only about marketing but entire business strategy. The book shows examples of companies which managed to open their product for a target audience which was neglected by their competitors and creating “blue ocean”, away from the bloodbath of hard competition.
7. Crushing it by Gary Vaynerchuck
This author is considered an online marketing legend, one of the first to create a profitable YouTube channels and market his father’s local liquor store into a multimillion dollar business. His book goes into all the major social media channels, giving practical tips on how to manage them (no ads) and get attention for your product. It also talks about the opportunities to turn your passion into a profitable online business. Easy and light read, but a lot of value.