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Archive for May, 2011

The Influential Marketing Book List – May 2011

Who has time to read books? We all should, but it's tough to know what is worth reading. As an author in the midst of writing a new book, I have a unique point of view on what I look for in great books. The Influential Marketing Book List will spotlight and review the best new books relevant for marketers, entrepreneurs and those interested in business with ideas worth learning and sharing. 

1. Brand Atlas

IMB_BookReview_BrandAtlas Authors: Alina Wheeler & Joel Katzhttp://www.brandatlas.info/

THE REVIEW: This book is the branding equivalent of a Swiss Army Knife, you'd never whip out all the tools at once … but they are damn useful when used individually. The first thing that caught my eye about this book was the structure, created to mirror how an actual geographic atlas might be laid out (hence the title). Carrying through Alina Wheeler's trademark of beautiful layout and design, the book takes you on a journey through just about every important element of branding you could think of, from passion to positioning. Each page uses visuals and curated quotes from thought leaders to get you thinking about how that might apply to your brand. The best way to read this book is to skip back and forth between pages and ideas, with a notebook at your side to jot down notes and ideas that you are sure to get as a result.

THE BOTTOM LINE: A goldmine of ideas and resources to help anyone faced with the real task of figuring out what a brand stands for.

IMB_BookReview_The-Idea-Writers 2. The Idea Writers

Author: Teressa Iezzihttp://www.theideawriters.com

THE REVIEW: I admit this book has been on my read list for months, and I only recently had a chance to read it – but it was worth the wait. In our world of instant content creation where anyone can become a "published" author – Idea Writers is a much needed rallying cry and inspiration for the professional writer. The author takes her considerable expertise at writing about brand marketing campaigns as Editor of Advertising Age's Creativity and delivers an inside look at how the role of advertising and the copywriter has evolved over the last 50 years. Deftly moving between the historical and modern perspectives, this book takes a sweeping look at advertising without becoming too academic or encyclopaedic. Many of the book's stories offer overdue credit to unheralded writers like Bob Cianfrone – the copywriter on CP+K's Subservient Chicken campaign for Burger King. For the sadly shrinking group of marketers and content creators who describe themselves first and foremost as writers, the author's takeaway message is clear: "if you're calling yourself a writer, you should be a strong writer first; you should be reading all you can and writing for all you're worth. If doing that doesn't appeal to you, maybe you should pursue some other creative path."

THE BOTTOM LINE: A much needed manifesto for the importance for high quality writing in marketing, advertising and our culture as a whole.

3. BOLD: How To Be Brave In Business And Win

IMB_BookReview_BOLD-How-To-Be-Brave-In-Business Authors: Shaun Smith & Andy Milliganhttp://www.boldthebook.com

If you believe everything you read, you might conclude that the biggest problem facing organizations today is the innovation gap … most need to find a way to innovate more as an entire organization to drive their products or services. The premise of this book is that often innovation matters less than simple bravery. Through sharing the stories of 15 brands as case studies of companies who are bold and brave, it is only the last chapter of the book that is dedicated to sharing an analysis of what makes a BOLD brand and how you might go about creating one. Those last 15 pages are a guidebook to transforming an organization through 8 principles which are presented simply and clearly – they make this book an essential read.

THE BOTTOM LINE: An entertainingly unique marketing book that uses 14 well presented case studies as stories which lead to 8 core principles for how to create a BOLDER organization.

IMB_BookReview_15-Minutes-Included-Q-A 4. 15 Minutes Including Q&A: A Plan To Save The World From Lousy Presentations

Author: Joey Asherhttp://www.speechworks.net/blog/

Most of us (myself included) avoid books that seem published simply to provide another piece of marketing collateral for a professional consultant. If that sounds familiar, you could be tempted to skip this little book by executive speaking coach Joey Asher, but that would be a mistake. In about 100 sh
ort pages, Asher shares some of the tips and tricks that have made him a successful consultant on professional speaking and presenting. While some of the tips in his book will seem quite obvious (eg – make sure to have 3 key takeaways from any presentation), the methodology he uses is useful for anyone who needs to present in front of a group. Packed together, this book is a quick read that delivers on its promise to offer ideas for how to make your presentations (and your delivery) stronger – and at just $3 for the Kindle version, it is a bargain.

THE BOTTOM LINE: A quick read of tips from a professional speaking coach on how to make your presentations 1000 times simpler and more compelling.

Review Philosophy (Why These Reviews Matter):

All the books that are reviewed in this series are worth your time. That's why you won't find any negative book reviews on this blog. As a Author myself, I have hundreds of book on my shelf and have researched hundreds more. I dozens of invitations to preview books and search online as well as looking at pitches to choose the 5 best books for marketing and busines readers every month to share here on this blog. Read my other book reviews at http://rohitbhargava.com/book-reviews/. 

Disclaimer: I have personally purchased many of the books reviewed in this blog, however many others are provided by publishers or an author for review purposes. In each case, the reviews of every book represent my honest and unbiased opinion about the book and are not paid or compensated for in any way apart from recieving a review copy or advance galley copy of a book at no cost. I have also used affiliate links for Amazon throughout this post.

To recommend a book to be featured in the Influential Marketing Book List, send an email pitch to influentialmarketing@gmail.com.

How Sharing Your Secrets Can Transform Your Business

How Sharing Your Secrets Can Transform Your Business

Colonel Sanders has a trade secret. His special blend of herbs and spices is supposedly the secret formula that makes his chicken taste the way it does. When Pfizer releases a new drug, they spend considerable effort to protect their manufacturing process and are even more secretive about particular formulations that they are testing in their R&D division. Yes, when…Read More >>

How Oprah Became Oprah (And What It Should Teach You About Marketing)

How Oprah Became Oprah (And What It Should Teach You About Marketing)

In 1986, there were certain rules of television that pretty much everyone followed. You expected news anchors to be buttoned up and serious when presenting the evening news. Television programs (as they often still do) presented a distorted view of reality that only slightly resembled real life, but still allowed you to escape into other worlds. And whether you looked…Read More >>

How The Inventor of OREO Cookies Changed Marketing

How The Inventor of OREO Cookies Changed Marketing

In the book The End Of Overeating, former FDA Commissioner Dr. David A. Kessler delves deep into the food industry and talks extensively about how the industry has developed, marketed and promoted products to the American people. One of the stories he describes is the one of Roger Smith who was at one time the Vice President for Research and…Read More >>

Interruption Marketing 2.0 – How Engagement Can Be The New Dirty Word Of Marketing

Interruption Marketing 2.0 – How Engagement Can Be The New Dirty Word Of Marketing

The renaissance of marketing over the last decade has generally left certain things behind. We no longer count on loud billboards or long print ads, for example, to tell our story in a way that people will actually read. TV, while still important, is now a smaller part of the marketing mix. The art of marketing as an interruption has…Read More >>

Likeonomics: A Book About Believability

Likeonomics: A Book About Believability

This past weekend at the Mashable Connect conference in Orlando, I offered a sneak peek at my next book project which I recently signed a deal to complete with a new publisher (Wiley). The working title for the book is "Likeonomics" – a book on how to be more believable in the affinity economy. What Is Likeonomics?Likeonomics is a term…Read More >>

6 Lessons From Jim Collins On Becoming Great

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One of the most dynamic speakers you will ever hear at a live event is legendary business thinker and author Jim Collins. Through is best selling books and many talks at some of the world's largest business events, he often shares wisdom that is driven by his vast experience, but also easily understood and implementable by people in businesses of…Read More >>

What I Learned From An Eccentric Norwegian Millionaire

What I Learned From An Eccentric Norwegian Millionaire

By anyone's measure Christian Ringnes would have to be described as an odd man. He is a millionaire in Norway thanks to his real estate investments and well known thanks to his funding of philanthropic projects such as a $300 million sculpture park in Oslo. His wealth and noteriety has also afforded him the luxury to also create a monument…Read More >>

What Is The ROI Of A Conversation?

What Is The ROI Of A Conversation?

Most students of any business course are taught constantly about the importance of having a good Return on Investment. Whether that "investment" is measure in dollars or in time that you or your employees spend trying to do something, we are taught that the benefit must be tangible when it comes back to your business. The problem that many businesses…Read More >>

The Campaign To Save NBC's Outsourced Ignites Racial Debate

The Campaign To Save NBC's Outsourced Ignites Racial Debate

Having moved from a city where political correctness barely exists (Sydney) to one where it was invented (Washington DC) qualifies me as something of an expert. The idea of the importance of being politically correct is good in principle … because there are many things that people can unintentionally do to marginalize or demonstrate an ignorance for another culture or…Read More >>