There are two things that I particularly love in life: reading and marketing. This leads me today to share with you the best books I have read in the field of marketing. They made me question myself and sometimes changed my perception of marketing. I also invite you to follow these authors closely on social networks in order to follow the evolution of their thinking.
1. All marketers are liars, Seth Godin
First of all, I must point out that Seth Godin is one of my favorite authors. I love the way he writes and his way of questioning things. “All Marketers are liars” is the first book that I’ve read by Seth Godin and absolutely loved it. What I take away the most from this book is that everyone has their beliefs and it’s better to talk to people who believe in your company than to try to convince those who don’t. People will buy according to their perception of the world. Their brains will lead them to act according to the stories to which they believe. Also, what Seth Godin makes us realize in his book is that once someone believes in something, they will be much more inclined to experience it. For example, if someone deeply believes that Nike makes the most comfortable shoes in the world, that will most likely be what they will experience once they wear them. He does suggest, however, not to lie to your audience about your products and services, because eventually it will hurt you!
2. Purple Cow, Seth Godin
The last time you walked past a field full of cows, there’s a good chance there wasn’t one that particularly caught your attention. This is because none of them were noteworthy. In his book “Purple Cow”, Seth Godin refers to cows to show us that if your product is not new, unique or remarkable, it will be very difficult to stand out from your competition. In support of his remarks, he mentions several examples of remarkable companies such as Starbucks, IKEA, Krispy Kreme, Google, etc. Chances are, just by reading these names, you guessed how distinctive each one was. There is no doubt that Starbucks stands out for the experience it offers its customers, which goes beyond a simple coffee shop. If you want to build your business or make yourself stand out with your target market, ask yourself what your competition is doing and what more can you do to get people to notice you and talk about you. It can be in your design, your packaging, your price, the format of your products, the speed of your products, your innovation, etc.
3. Jab jab jab right hook, Gary Vaynerchuck
Although this book is now several years old, I believe it still has a good message for us. Through his book, Gary Vaynerchuck insists that companies should above all add value to their audience on social media and not just try to sell. They should generate conversations, entertain and inspire people. He says that not every platform should be used the same way. You have to adapt its content to each of them in order to benefit as much as possible. For example, he invites companies to post on Facebook as if it was a magazine, while on Instagram, he recommends betting on images of the reality. On Twitter, hashtags are particularly important, while Pinterest is positioned as a useful and inspiring platform. He explains the importance of staying on top of the major trends of the moment using different tools like Google Trends and creating contextual content.
4. Building a Storybrand, Donald Miller
I don’t know about you, but I sometimes have difficulty writing texts for my company. Donald Miller’s “Building a Storybrand” book has helped me a lot to tell stories that will capture people’s interest. One of the very important points that we sometimes forget is that it’s not your company that is the hero, it’s your customer. Your company supports it through its transformation. Our first instinct is often to focus on the external problems we notice in our customers. However, many times you will be more successful in reaching people by addressing their internal problems, which are deeper and more personal. Show your target customers how you can solve their internal problems with a specific plan. Show them what situation they should avoid and what they will gain by choosing your company and challenge them to take action now. Finally, this is what your story should be made of:
- A problem
- A guide
- A plan
- A call to action
- A successful ending
- A failure avoided
5. To sell is human, Daniel H. Pink
It had been a very long time since I bought this book and I had never read it before Covid-19. It turns out that this book is very good and that I probably should have read it a long time ago. In his book, Daniel H. Pink first of all makes us understand that selling is now part of our daily life. Contrary to what many people think, it’s no longer just salespeople who have to sell, but health workers, teachers, etc. In other words, everyone who influences the people around them must know how to sell. Daniel H. Pink strongly believes that selling can very well be done in an honest, natural and sustainable way. He points out that several companies, like Atlassian, have managed to generate millions of dollars in sales without even hiring a single salesperson. According to him, since everyone today has access to pretty much the same information, the best way to sell is to serve others (improve their lives) by being honest and transparent.
Finally, there are plenty of good marketing books, but these 5 books are among those that have marked me the most, in addition to having been written by authors I love. I invite you to let me know in comment your book recommendations or comments on those mentioned in this article. Good reading !
Marketing is an important strategy to ensure the growth of your business. While your current customers should always be your main priority, marketing efforts can help you expand this base. Little efforts like social media posts and email campaigns can not only engage existing consumers but spread the word to new potential customers. In essence, marketing secures your business’s future through new and old customer engagement.