I'm a firm believer that you have to continuously improve upon your education and craft. Sure, you have a degree and you have 20 years of experience. You still need to be learning. That is, if you want to progress in your career.
While I wouldn't classify myself as a reader in any way, shape or form, I would certainly characterize myself as someone who is constantly learning. That's probably why you won't catch me with a fictional book in my hands...ever. That's what what movies are for... I know, I know. If you're an avid reader you want to close this article now... please don't.
Here are 3 of my favorite marketing books that I think you should aim to read by the end of the summer:
I'm sure you're shocked about this selection given my passion for Inbound Marketing! For businesses just starting to either A) Market themselves at all or B) Make the switch to Inbound, this book represents a modern look at how to effectively reach your best buyers in this day and age.
Written by the founders of HubSpot, a marketing automation software company that coined the term Inbound Marketing, this book clearly defines the ins and outs of Inbound. You'll read tons of tips about getting started. You'll also hear case studies of how businesses have become successful with Inbound.
Bottom line - Do yourself and your company a favor and read this short book. You'll be happy you did.
It's my belief that content marketing is one of the most important aspects of Inbound Marketing. If you want to attract high quality visitors to your website, convert them into leads, close leads into sales and delight existing customers into raving (and referring/re-buying) fans, you need content marketing.
This book by the founder of the Content Marketing Institute gives excellent examples of 'epic' content marketing that date back to 1800s. Using large AND small company examples, the author shows you how to create a competitive advantage with content marketing. He also covers how to get your content in front of the right audience with social media.
Bottom line - any online strategy should be tightly coupled with content marketing, and this book shows you how to do it, and do it effectively.
I've been a long-time fan of the Duct Tape Marketing blog and content, so when the founder released this book, I had to read it. So much is made of the way marketing has shifted today that the sales side of things is often left un-addressed. Fear not, this book covers it.
There's obviously a very symbiotic relationship between marketing and sales, and this book helps to guide salespeople and sales teams through the tactics that work today, especially with regard to online tactics and communication.
While the book covers topics like how to establish an awesome LinkedIN profile as a salesperson, it also goes into incorporating your sales team into your Inbound strategies, a vital piece of the Inbound pie.
Bottom line - The term Inbound marketing contains the word 'marketing', but surely needs to include your salespeople to be effective. This book ties today's salesperson's needed skill set to the Inbound Marketing process.
Don't Read? Me Either! Try Listening Instead.
As I stated above, I'm not a reader. In fact I don't own the physical copy of most of these books. I listen to them with Audible.
There are tons of times when I'm doing mindless activities at home (e.g., washing my car, mowing the lawn, doing yard work, exercising) that provide ideal times to consume educational content. Audible has been my answer! It could be yours as well.