With just about every “social media guru” getting a book deal these days, it can be hard to filter out the business awesome from the marketing duds. In the past few months, I’ve been on a quest to read and devour the best of the best business books. From community management tips to social media best practices and digital analytics, here are three of my absolute must-reads.
It’s worth noting, I am not being compensated in anyway to promote these books. These books are that awesome that I want everyone to know about them.
By: Scott Stratten
“No amount of social media or marketing help would ever trump crappy product and a crappy attitude.”
Admittedly, I’ve been a fan of Scott’s since I discovered his blog and awesome Twitter account way back when he was still writing his first book, UNmarketing. Let’s just say, his second book, The Book of Business Awesome//The Book of Business Unawesome doesn’t disappoint. His no-nonsense, often times comical approach, makes for a honest, quick and informative read.
One of the things I really admire about this book as well as UNMarketing is that he uses lesser-known case studies. Yes, Southwest Airlines and Jetblue have killer customer service and Dell and Gatorade have awesome start of the art social media command centers, but I want to hear about the innovative concepts other companies are trying out that aren’t every single industry blog and book already. From mini case studies of Grand Rapids, Michigan campaign to Magnum Ice Cream and Virgin Airlines, these are just a few of the examples that Scott uses in his book.
By: Alistair Croll and Benjamin Yoskovitz
“Today’s leader doesn’t have all the answers. Instead, today’s leader knows what questions to ask.”
Do you know the difference between vanity and actionable metrics? What about lagging v. leading?
Regardless on what you are doing today, I strongly believe community managers need to get way more comfortable with compiling and analyzing data if they want to be employable in five years. A little harsh, yes? But, I really believe it’s the future. Creating engaging branded communities is all well and good, but if you can’t track it to some hardcore business metrics you have nothing.
The reason why I would recommend this book over more digital marketing analytics books is that Alistair and Benjamin take a no-fluff, business approach to the metrics. They don’t waste a ton of time going over “feel-good” or vanity metrics- like follower counts, pageviews, impressions, etc. It’s about figuring out and learning how to effectively measure the things that really matter to a business’s bottom line (revenue, churn, retention, etc.)
By: Mitch Joel
“The new consumers are not linear. They are scattered. They are squiggly. They are connected- not only to one another, but also to the world- and their connectivity and engagement are highly untethered.”
I figured I would save the best for last. Ctrl Alt Delete elevates the bar of what makes an exceptional read. Mitch Joel is essentially part digital magician and part life-coach (the inspirational, good kind). His concept of “embracing the squiggly” or non-linear path is so dead-on.
Nothing I can write here can do his book justice. So, I’ll leave you with my favorite quote from his book.
“The future of business isn’t about what’s written in a contract, it’s about what we do with every waking moment to make it count.”
What’s the best business book you have read lately? Please share below in the comment section.