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Resources  /  Books

We’re so lucky. We live in a world filled with excellent books on marketing and writing. Here are a few favorites.

The Business Romantic

by Tim Leberecht

The subtitle of this book explains its value well: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself. In 2015 I believe great businesses must do much more than generate revenue and profits. In the 21st century successful businesses serve a bigger purpose than profits. Tim provides real-world examples of businesses and organizations that know how to best engage customers today. One of my favorite quotes from the book is: "Being a romantic company is not synonymous with being purpose driven or socially responsible. To the romantic, social purpose matters, but learning, excitement, and adventure matter just as much if not more."  

Content Rules

by Ann Handley & C.C. Chapman

This poor book. I have underlined so much in it and written so many notes it's tattered and worn. Handley and Chapman do a great job not only explaining the rules of social media but also filling you up with many great real life examples. For anyone who wants to improve the content they post on the Internet this book's a gem.

The Elements of Business Writing

by Gary Blake & Robert W. Bly

This slim volume (140 pages) is full of business writing wisdom with lots of real world examples. Principles of composition, organization, wording, tone, grammar, and format are all covered.

Woe Is I

by Patricia T. O'Conner

At least three things make me love this grammar book: 1) it covers what writers often glaze over and regret later; 2) O'Conner makes grammar humorous, readable, and fun; and 3) it lives on next to my left elbow as a reference book.

The Cluetrain Manifesto

by Rick Levine, Christopher Locke, Doc Sears, and David Weinberger

Okay, okay, you my think of many of my books as old. I consider them classics. This classic first appeared in 2000 and was updated in 2010. There's a large website devoted to it. Cluetrain explains why business as usual has ended. It's written by four web provocateurs that cut through the clutter with key insights about where the Internet is taking us. We're on a wild, crazy business ride and Cluetrain provides a seatbelt and helmet.

Business Writing and Communication

by Kenneth W. Davis

I started underlining the cool parts in this step-by-step business writing guide and used up all my pencils. Davis delivers key essentials like focusing on the reader, evaluating your writing process and writing wrong the first time.

The Elements of Persuasion: Use Storytelling to Pitch Better, Sell Faster & Win More Business

by Richard Maxwell and Robert Dickman

Here’s a compelling case for the importance of storytelling. I love the authors’ definition of a story - “a fact, wrapped in an emotion that compels us to take an action that transforms our world.”

Love Is The Killer App: How To Win Business And Influence Friends

by Tim Sanders

Looking like singer Roy Orbison on the book cover, Sanders croons about the importance of gaining knowledge, networking and showing compassion in business.

Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die

by Chip and Dan Heath

The Heath brothers use lots of real life examples to support their S.U.C.C.E.S. (simple, unexpected, concrete, credible, emotional, story) formula for business communications that work.

Never Eat Alone: And Other Secrets To Success, One Relationship At A Time

by Keith Ferrazzi

Ferrazzi delivers a soothing jazcuzzi of relaxing prose. He will never eat alone after writing this business networking book. He will fight off paparizzi instead.

Spunk & Bite: A Writer’s Guide to Punchier, More Engaging Language & Style

by Arthur Piotnik

Walk through the jungle of writing with a guide who transforms that jungle into a beautiful and orderly garden path.

Writing Tools: 50 Essential Strategies for Every Writer

by Roy Peter Clark

If a book can make you fall in love with writing and language, this one will. Through Clark speaks mainly to journalists, his strategies also work well in business writing. Filled with examples of writing so great they should hang on museum walls.

Startle. Shock. Write with impact.