In this article, ten professionals, including CEOs and Founders, share their favorite marketing books and the valuable lessons they’ve learned from them. From Contagious: Why Things Catch On to All Marketers are Liars, these books offer a wealth of knowledge for anyone interested in marketing. Dive in to discover their top picks and takeaways.
- Selling the Invisible
- The Power of Moments
- The 10X Rule
- The Choice Factory
- The Copywriter’s Handbook
- The New Rules of Marketing and PR
- Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion
- All Marketers are Liars
The marketing book Contagious: Why Things Catch On, by Jonah Berger, is a favorite in the field of marketing. It explores the science behind why certain ideas, products, or messages become viral and spread like wildfire, while others do not.
Contagious provides insight into the power of crafting stories that evoke emotions and make people feel connected to a brand or message. It highlights the importance of creating shareable content that triggers social currency, encouraging people to share it within their networks. The book also emphasizes the significance of practical value, where content provides utility or solves a problem for the audience.
In conclusion, Contagious has shaped the approach to marketing by guiding the focus towards creating engaging, shareable, and valuable content that resonates with the target audience.
Selling the Invisible
One of my favorite marketing books is Selling the Invisible by Harry Beckwith. With over two decades of experience, Beckwith shares invaluable insights in this marketing book, using memorable examples to illustrate his points.
A key lesson I’ve learned from this marketing book is the significance of focusing on the customer experience in service marketing. Beckwith emphasizes building relationships, differentiating oneself, effectively communicating value, and maintaining a long-term perspective. These takeaways have greatly influenced my approach, guiding me to prioritize customer-centricity, uniqueness, clear communication, and sustained excellence.
The Power of Moments
The Power of Moments by Chip and Dan Heath is a marketing book that I found very impactful. It emphasizes the importance of experiences to humans, and how we feed off moments, both positive and negative.
As marketing professionals, understanding how humans process moments is crucial. The book explores why certain moments can surprise, elevate, or change us, and identifies four elements that dominate most memorable positive moments: elevation, insight, pride, and connection.
By embracing these elements, we can create more moments that matter at our events and in life. The Power of Moments shows marketers how brief experiences can change lives and achieve goals. It suggests that even if many of the most important moments in our lives are the result of accident or luck, we, as marketing professionals, can still create them.
The Power of Moments guides us on how to be the creators of these impactful experiences.
The marketing book Buyology delves into the science of neuromarketing and consumer behavior, discussing the factors that influence buying habits. Lindstrom presents insights from his marketing research.
This involves brain scanning to understand how consumers’ brains work. The book explains other scientific methods used to analyze consumer behavior, helping companies create strategies for advertising, branding, and product placement.
The book emphasizes the significant role emotions play in driving consumer behavior. Lindstrom believes that emotions often override rational thinking when it comes to purchasing something.
He discusses the power of sensory branding. Furthermore, the book explores the controversial concept of subliminal advertising, which involves subtle ways to influence consumers.
The 10X Rule
The 10X Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure by Grant Cardone offers a unique perspective on accomplishing business goals, written by someone who has developed into one of today’s most successful personas in the business and marketing world. In this marketing book, you’ll learn all about the 10X rule (also known as the 4th degree), which is related to the massive action you’ll need to take in order to reach your lofty goals and dreams!
Grant is a marketing expert and one of the most well-known business moguls of our generation, so anything he says should be listened to. This book is about reaching your general business goals and has a ton of references to marketing efforts, making it a valuable read for small business owners and leaders.
The Choice Factory
Richard Shotton’s The Choice Factory has changed the way I approach marketing. It’s an easy read with lots of real-world examples that are based on research.
One thing that I changed was a price list. I simply added more tiers of cost, and all of a sudden, my average sale went up. No longer were customers buying the most expensive on the list, but one of the cheapest! I know many people who have bought this marketing book, and all have implemented something into their business on the back of it.
The Copywriter’s Handbook
The Copywriter’s Handbook: A Step-By-Step Guide to Writing Copy That Sells, 4th Edition is a top recommendation for those interested in marketing. It’s particularly beneficial for introverted individuals who prefer writing to phone or in-person sales.
A key takeaway from this marketing book is the power of word choice and arrangement in achieving a higher click-through rate and boosting sales. Whether these words are spoken or written in a book description, their order and selection can significantly impact results, potentially marking the difference between profit and loss.
The New Rules of Marketing and PR
The New Rules of Marketing and PR: How to Use Content Marketing, Podcasting, Social Media, AI, Live Video, and Newsjacking to Reach Buyers Directly (8th Edition) by David Meerman Scott is one of two books that have had the biggest impact on my career. The other was Ogilvy on Advertising, which prompted me to become a Madison Avenue ad man in New York City in the 1980s after I got out of the Army.
After many years as an ad executive, I realized, with the rise of the internet, that the way buyers got information was changing. The dominance of advertising was in quick decline.
Feeling increasingly like a dinosaur, I stumbled upon an early edition of The New Rules of Marketing and PR and saw how that world was changing and how I could pivot my career and business.
Given how quickly marketing is changing, the author updates the book every two to three years, so read the latest edition and every subsequent one to keep up with the newest developments in marketing.
Douglas Burdett, Host, The Marketing Book Podcast
Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion
Reading Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion has been an eye-opening journey for me, unveiling the intricacies of marketing and the underlying psychological factors that shape human behavior. Throughout the book, I’ve gained invaluable insights into effective marketing strategies that I can now apply in my own endeavors.
One key takeaway has been the power of reciprocity, understanding that giving value to customers fosters trust and loyalty, leading to lasting relationships. I’ve also come to appreciate the impact of social proof, recognizing the significance of customer testimonials and endorsements in building credibility and trustworthiness.
Furthermore, learning about the concept of scarcity has shown me how to create a sense of urgency and drive customer action through limited-time offers and exclusive deals. Establishing authority and expertise in my field, as discussed in the book, has inspired me to showcase my knowledge and skills to gain credibility and attract a loyal
All Marketers are Liars
One of my favorite marketing books is Seth Godin’s All Marketers are Liars, which has made me a more responsible marketer, especially in a world where social proofing is judge and jury.
We’re all enticed by a good story, and we want to believe that most of the stories marketers tell us are true. But a good story only resonates when it aligns with our own beliefs, desires, fears, worldview, etc., and the fact is that many of the stories marketers tell us are less than accurate.
For example, many consumers want to believe a $100 bottle of wine is far superior to a $20 bottle. Why? Because there’s a fascinating story behind it, which many consumers are inclined to believe and eager to share: Higher prices equal superior quality!
But Godin has taught me that it’s not about bending the truth, it’s about weaving a narrative that rings true to your audience. This has helped me refine my approach to targeted storytelling.
Eddie Velosa, Content Marketer