Ah, summer! Great time to catch up on some reading and learn how to build a brand, do better marketing, run a business, improve yourself, lead effectively, and think differently. Here are nearly 30 recommended business books that I’ve written up and talked with the authors about in my Brand Book Bites. All of the books are worth checking out, but I’ve featured one in each category in case you want a short list.
And because it’s summertime and the living is easy, I’m doing a book giveaway! You could win this amazing, unbelievable, fantastic three book bundle: Youtility by Jay Baer, Can’t Buy Me Like by Bob Garfield & Doug Levy, and What Great Brands Do by yours truly. Just let me know you’re interested in being entered to win by sharing this post on a social network using one of the buttons in the upper left hand corner (be sure to use my handle @deniseleeyohn so I am alerted of your post) or by emailing me (mail -at- deniseleeyohn -dot- com). One lucky person will be selected at random.
how to build a brand
- Brand-Building In a Digital, Social, Mobile Age by Joel Rubinson — is an informative and instructive resource for marketers who are trying to navigate the changing waters of today’s marketplace.
- Entrepreneur’s Guide to the Lean Brand: How Brand Innovation Builds Passion, Transforms Organizations and Creates Value by Brant Cooper and Jeremiah Gardner — takes readers through a methodical, multi-step journey of brand formation.
- Romancing the Brand: How Brands Create Strong, Intimate Relationships with Consumers by Tim Halloran — pulls back the curtain on some of the greatest brand stories including New Coke, Dos Equis’ Most Interesting Man campaign, and smartwater.
- Power Branding: Leveraging the Success of the World’s Best Brands by Steve McKee — is a fast, easy read that contains great takeaways about branding and marketing.
- Sticky Branding: 12.5 Principles to Stand Out, Attract Customers, and Grow an Incredible Brand by Jeremy Miller — has everything small and medium businesses need to grow a recognizable, memorable brand.
featured: Aaker on Branding: 20 Principles That Drive Success by David Aaker — is a resource all brand builders should have in their library.
how to do better marketing
- Absolute Value: What Really Influences Customers in the Age of (Nearly) Perfect Information by Emanuel Rosen and Itamar Simonson — relays a lot of eye-opening insight and helpful guidance for succeeding in today’s business context. But, do as I did — read it carefully and thoughtfully.
- Can’t Buy Me Like: How Authentic Customer Connections Drive Superior Results by Bob Garfield and Doug Levy — convincingly issues a manifesto to marketers: “In the Relationship Era, your every action, and inaction, is advertising.”
- Converge: Transforming Business at the Intersection of Marketing and Technology by Bob Lord and Ray Velez — shows how business is shifting from “one unique big-brand message that’s packed up into a set of ‘matching luggage’ to multiple ideas for multiple audiences based on a single coherent brand platform.”
- Monster Loyalty: How Lady Gaga Turns Followers into Fanatics by Jackie Huba — conveys Lady Gaga’s wildly successful strategies for attracting and keeping insanely loyal fans.
- Evolve: Marketing As We Know It Is Doomed by Daniel Newman and Hessie Jones — discusses what has changed in marketing, what hasn’t, and how marketers should — and can — respond.
- The Passion Conversation: Understanding, Sparking, and Sustaining Word of Mouth Marketing by the folks at Brains on Fire including John Moore — is a terrific primer on word of mouth marketing.
featured: Youtility: Why Smart Marketing Is About Help Not Hype by Jay Baer — will help you think about and do marketing in a completely different way.
how to run a business
- The Birth of a Brand: Launching Your Entrepreneurial Passion and Soul by Brian Smith — gives the inside scoop on how UGG became such a popular brand.
- How To Ruin a Business: Without Really Trying: What Every Entrepreneur Should Not Do When Running a Business by MJ Gottlieb — is for entrepreneurs who don’t know what they don’t know about the day-to-day of running a business.
- Organizations in the Face of a Crisis: Managing the Brand and Stakeholders by Dennis Tafoya — packed with helpful frameworks, lists, and exhibits to explain the concepts you’ll need to manage through a brand crisis.
featured: The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon by Brad Stone — is a fascinating read about a man and a company who influences the way millions of people shop and live today.
how to improve yourself
- Do Over: Rescue Monday, Reinvent Your Work, and Never Get Stuck by Jon Acuff — will give you a more hopeful attitude toward your work and how you can create an amazing career.
- Eat Move Sleep: How Small Choices Lead to Big Changes by Tom Rath — will change your life — and perhaps save it!
- Stressaholic: 5 Steps to Transform Your Relationship with Stress by Heidi Hanna — explains how you can actually use stress to your advantage.
- Procrastinate on Purpose: 5 Permissions to Multiply Your Time by Rory Vaden — shifts your paradigm about your time and gives you practical steps to making the most of it.
featured: How the World Sees You: Discover Your Highest Value Through the Science of Fascination by Sally Hogshead— will help you effectively and confidently share your message and develop relationships with the people you want.
how to lead effectively
- ENGAGED! Outbehave Your Competition to Create Customers for Life by Gregg Lederman — a practical guide about how to design and implement a sustainable culture and customer experience
- REMOTE: Office Not Required by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hannson — provides a perfect example of the authors’ philosophy ” “You don’t create a culture. Culture happens.”
featured: Do Lead: Share Your Vision. Inspire Others. Achieve the Impossible. by Les McKeown — is a handbook for anyone who wants to make a difference.
how to think differently
- 46 Rules of Genius: An Innovator’s Guide to Creativity by Marty Neumeier — is chockfull of counterintuitive insights to be challenging and inspiring.
- Business of Belief: How the World’s Best Marketers, Designers, Salespeople, Coaches, Fundraisers, Educators, Entrepreneurs and Other Leaders Get Us to Believe by Tom Asacker — is an investigation into the philosophy of business.
featured: A Beautiful Constraint: How to Transform Your Limitations Into Advantages and Why It’s Everyone’s Business by Adam and Mark Barden — will make you a smarter strategist, a more savvy brand-builder, a more inspiring leader, and a more resourceful person.
P.S. I would be remiss if I didn’t also suggest you read my book, What Great Brands Do: The Seven Brand-Building Principles That Separate the Best from the Rest. If you want to build a brand that increases your profit margins, inspires true customer loyalty, and fuels a sustainable business, this book is for you! Thanks!
Image via flickr