Marketing Books You Should Read…

There are hundreds of books in the market place that are ‘guaranteed’ to make you a great marketer, a successful negotiator and even the IronMan of business… here is a list complied that I think should be on any marketers must read list.

Now I am not saying that if you read these books that you will be the greatest marketer to have graced the planet… but they are books that I have felt added value to my knowledge and growth.

Personal Branding for Brits

by Jennifer Holloway

I’m a big fan of Jennifer have been since I first met her two years ago at an event I hosted, so when this book came out I was so excited to read it, so much so that I read it again and again.

We all know the age-old phrase “People buy people… in this book Jennifer gives clear examples of how as individuals we can begin to understand who we are as individuals and how we translate that into a professional or even personal capacity. This book will make you laugh out loud at times with the witty personal stories… so you have been warned!

Blurb: Are you someone who wants to get ahead in your career or business? Perhaps you’re looking for a new job or want a promotion. Maybe you’re starting a business or want to grow your company. You might be going for interviews, pitching for a job or contract, getting new clients and keeping existing customers.

However you want to get on at work, people buy people…but what they’re really buying is your personal brand. Your brand lets people know who you are and what you bring to the table and most importantly, how you’re different from everyone else out there.

Best quote: “People buy people… and it’s your personal brand that tells them what they get when they buy into you”


Don’t Mess with the Logo: The Straight Talking Bible of Branding

by Andy Milligan and Jon Edge

My dad gave me this book and I found it really engaging whilst being humorous… it really is an overall look at everything you need to know about branding.

Andy Milligan is an expert on all areas of brand creation and has an ability to deliver with a great attitude and punchy content. It gives great advice and pulls you into line… the content sticks around how to create a great brand and identity, without playing with your logo and pantone, which holds no relevance.

It is what it says in the title “The Straight Talking Bible of Branding”

Blurb: Building a brand with impact is one of the most important tasks that any business faces. Few people understand how to actually go about creating an effective brand. This book is a no holds barred guide to what brand building is, what it isn’t and exactly what you have to do to build your brand.

 Be inspired by real-life stories from the people who did and didn’t mess with their logo and succeeded or failed as a result. Read the stories from big-name brands like Orange, M&S, Red Bull, Apple, Innocent, PwC and FCUK

Best quote: “The smart money these days is with brands that see value in delighting their customers with service, before, during, and after the sale.”


The Big Data-Driven Business: How to Use Big Data to Win Customers, Beat Competitors, and Boost Profits 

by Russell Glass and Sean Callahan

A mentor once told me that with the right data you could begin to make the right decisions.

Big data has not only become a buzzword but also a crucial tool to businesses. From understanding the consumer to competitor advantage understanding this data remains key, The Big Data–Driven Business provides straightforward practical guidance into making the data add real value.

Blurb: The marketplace has entered an era where the customer holds all the cards. With unprecedented choice in both the consumer world and the B2B world, it′s imperative that businesses gain a greater understanding of their customers and prospects. Big data is the key to this insight, because it provides a comprehensive view of a company′s customers—who they are, and who they may be tomorrow. 

The Big Data–Driven Business is a complete guide to the future of business as seen through the lens of big data, with expert advice on real–world applications.

Best Quote: “Big data doesn′t necessarily mean big expense. Every company is sitting on a goldmine of valuable customer and prospect data”


Guerilla Marketing

by Jay Levinson

This is by no means a new concept or new content… but Guerilla marketing is coming more common in SME’s as a unique way to to promote their products.. The book really is an easy read, but still packed full of information.

Jay Levinson shares some absolutely great tips and creates a real base for all entrepreneurs or marketers to start putting some campaigns/strategies in place.

Blurb: First published in 1983, Jay Levinson’s Guerrilla Marketing has become a classic in the field of business, revolutionising marketing for small businesses all over the world and creating a new way to understand market share and how to gain it.

In this completely updated and expanded fourth edition of Levinson’s first Guerrilla Marketing book, his take-no-prisoners approach to finding clients is on full display, as he offers hundreds of marketing ideas that really work and a new roadmap for small-business success in the global marketplace. Filled with leading-edge strategies for marketing on the Internet, putting new technologies to work, targeting prospects, cultivating repeat and referral business, and managing in the age of telecommuting and freelance employees, among others, Guerrilla Marketing will be the entrepreneur’s marketing bible for the twenty-first century.

 Best quote: “Guerilla marketing requires you to comprehend every facet of marketing, experiment with many of them, winnow out the losers, double up on the winners, and then use the marketing tactics that prove themselves to you in the battleground of real life.”


Buyology: How Everything We Believe About Why We Buy is Wrong

by Martin Lindstrom

Personally I have always found the link between marketing a psychology a really interesting one… there is certainly a link between how the human brain works and how as marketers we can effectively connect with consumers.

The book certainly demonstrates some thoughtful understandings and really gets you actively thinking.

Blurb: Convinced that there is a gulf between what we believe influences us and what actually does, Martin Lindstrom set up a highly ambitious research project that employed the very latest in brain-scanning technology and called on the services of some 2000 volunteers. Buyology shares the fruits of this research, revealing for the first time what actually goes on inside our heads when we see an advertisement, hear a marketing slogan, taste two rival brands of drink, or watch a programme sponsored by a major company.

 The conclusions are both startling and groundbreaking, showing the extent to which we deceive ourselves when we think we are making considered decisions, and revealing factors as varied as childhood memories and religious belief that come together to influence our decisions and shape our tastes.

Best quote: “If marketers could uncover what is going on in our brains that makes us choose one brand over another–what information passes through our brain’s filter and what information doesn’t–well, that would be key to truly building brands of the future.


Will it Make the Boat Go Faster?: Olympic-winning Strategies for Everyday Success

by Harriet Beveridge and Ben Hunt-Davis

I bet you are questioning how this book got on the list; after all it is not specifically marketing but trust me when I say it is a great book and full of examples that will question how you view daily success.

As marketers and in fact in any role we get caught up in all the menial jobs, doing bits and bobs because we feel we should but sometimes it is good to stop and ask yourself “will this help reach the target” or “will it help us reach our objectives” etc…

Blurb: Ben Hunt-Davis won Olympic Gold at the Sydney Olympics in 2000 as part of the Men’s Rowing Eight. He and Executive Coach Harriet Beveridge have teamed up to show you how to use similar strategies to improve your own life. The pair have been road-testing these methods for 10 years, with clients from all walks of life; managers, leaders, call centre staff, sales reps, athletes and shop assistants; whatever your challenges, whatever your goals, there are ideas that will help everyone. 

Simple and chatty, the book is a warts-and-all authentic account of a journey to success that will show you how you can succeed in whatever you want to do. It is aimed at readers interested in personal development and managers wanting to achieve corporate goals. It will appeal to sports enthusiasts, practitioners and coaches who will find the Olympic story compelling and learn plenty of techniques for improving their own game strategies.

Best quote: “‘Will It Make The Boat Go Faster?’ Living, working and training by this question ensured that every single thing the GB Men’s Rowing Eight were doing would lead to the result they wanted.”


 Huge thanks to other books recommended… Duct Tape Marketing by John Jantsch, Content Strategy for the Web by Kristina Halvorson and Melissa Rach, Losing my Virginity by Sir Richard Branson, To Sell is Human by Daniel H. Pink, How Brands Grow by Byron Sharp and Nudge by Richard Thaler.

If there are any that you feel we have missed please leave a comment and let us know if there are any books we need to add to our reading list.