The Articulate Executive – Marketing Book Review #13

My 3 Take-Aways:

1. Write like you speak.

2. “The Navy found that in a classroom, presentation, or lecture environment, an audience’s ability to focus on what the speaker is saying, then remember what was said, drops off at 18 minutes like the continental shelf plunging straight down into the abyss.” pg. 93

3. Start with the conclusion.

My Take: This book is an excellent read and will immediately help in becoming a more effective communicator.

About: Granville gives the reader a glimpse into the mind of an effective communicator and the importance of being able to reach people clearly.

Book Notes:

Marketing Book Review: #13

Title: The Articulate Executive: Learn to look, act, and sound like a leader

Author: Granville N. Toogood

Published: 1996

Pages: 198

Theme: Communications, Clarity, Writing, Speaking, Leadership

Make Your Website Profitable

There’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to turn your website into a profit making machine. Usually, I see brands haven’t updated their website with their new information, they don’t have a clear call-to-action on their site, nor have they taken the time to declutter their messaging so that they’re not competing with themselves.

If they have updated information, it’s usually the case that the process of getting the customer what they want and allowing them to contact you is incredibly complicated.

Here are some simple principles to make your website profitable: 

#1: Don’t compete with yourself. Having too many messages, or trying to corner too many marketable categories, is a recipe for confusion. People do not have the time to figure out your message for you and they’ll promptly leave your site when there is just too much going on. So, think strategically about your main message and use your website to communicate that offering.

#2: Make it easy for others to contact you. They should be able to connect in 1 click.

#3: Make sure your brand aesthetics are beautiful. Simplicity and beauty go hand-in-hand. If your website is easy to navigate and your brand is cool looking, people will be impressed and they will want to do business with your brand.

There is a lot to getting your messaging organized and your presentation elements streamlined and beautiful. With these three principles, your brand will be on its way to a more profitable process. Best of luck!


Marketing Book Review #11: The New Rules of Marketing & PR

My 3 Takeaways:
1. “Marketing on the web is not about generic banner ads designed to trick people with neon color or wacky movement. It is about understanding the keywords and phrases that our buyers are using and then deploying micro-campaigns to drive buyers to pages replete with the content they seek.”

2. “You are what you publish.”

3. What are your buyers’ informational needs?

About: David tries to convince the traditional press release marketer that the rules of engagement have significantly changed – one should not market information exclusively to press agencies. They should reorganize their engagement methods to interact directly with buyers and supply them not with gimmicks and advertising but useful information that will establish a long-term, digital relationship.

My Take: This is my 3rd favorite book on new marketing following Contagious and Growth Hacking. David’s book is a great transitional piece that guides you into the new standards of communicating your services, product, and cause directly to people who want that information. 5 stars.


Marketing Book Review: #11
Title: The New Rules of Marketing & PR: How to use social media, blogs, news releases, online video, and viral marketing to reach buyers directly
Author: David Meerman Scott
Published: 2010
Pages: 270
Theme: Blogging, Press Releases, New Marketing, Web Navigation, Podcasting, Video Production, Search Engine Marketing,

Marketing Book Review #12: The Clarity Factor

Marketing Book Review: #12

Title: The Clarity Factor: The Four Secrets to Being Clearly Understood
Author: Ray DiZarro
Published: 2000
Pages: 107
Theme: Communication


About: Ray writes about the greatest way to achieve human connection: communication.
He doesn’t just write about the tips, he puts his tips into a socratic dialogue and story about a career woman who wants to have a smoother life and greater connection between her employees, her son, and her husband.


My Take: Clear communication is the real building block of effective marketing. If you are clear and your design is beautiful, you have a great chance of succeeding. I wasn’t prepared to read this book and just read about a story of a woman trying to communicate more effectively; however, this story will probably stay with me much longer than a long grocery list of things to remember before I write or say something.


3 Takeaways:
1. Talking to someone in terms of their interest is not some type of communication trick, it is a genuine way of getting past barriers and being able to connect with someone on their level. Indeed, people can only see the world that way.
2. Focus on the getting the task completed, not on all of the emotionality around that task.

3. Pay more attention to the subtle body communication one gives along with whatever they are saying. You are communicating more than you think, and if you keep getting the same response – it may be that your body language is louder than anything else you’re saying.

Marketing Book Review #10: Purple Cow: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable

Marketing Book Review: #10

Title: Purple Cow: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable

Author: Seth Godin
Published: 2003
Pages: 145
Theme: Marketing

About: Seth is a prolific book author. This book is about the new paradigm shift within marketing. Seth talks about the TV-Industrial complex: tv commercials mixed with mass production vs. remarkable products engineered by quality marketers for niche audiences.

My Take: I think Seth makes a good point about how new marketing is taking shape: remarkable products/services mixed with showmanship for a niche community that explodes with joy with every new adjustment the company makes.

3 Take Aways:
1. “After the early adopters embrace what you’re selling, they are the ones who will sell it to the early majority – not you. And they will sell it poorly.”
2. “The way you break through to the mainstream is to target a niche instead of a huge market. Then, create an ideavirus so focused that it overwhelms that small slice of the market that really and truly will respond to what you sell.”

3. “Kmart has plenty of awareness. So what?” – Sergio Zyman

Marketing Book Review #9: Growing Your Digital Business: Expanding Your Social Web

Marketing Book Review: #9

Title: Growing Your Digital Business: Expanding Your Social Web

Author: Colin Wilkinson
Published: 2013
Pages: 55
Theme: Digital Entrepreneurship, Business Finances, Customer Relations, Marketing

About: This is a short book within the Digital Entrepreneurship series that is focused on a few key items of startups and marketing.

Here is the Table of Contents:
I. The Finances of Doing Business
II. Growing Your Business, Inside and Out
III. How Your Customers Can Work For You
IV. Updates and Improvements: Keeping Customers Engaged
V. Moving Into New Markets

3 Take Aways:
1. “…often just fifteen minutes will be enough to record any expenses and revenue…” (pg. 9)

2. “It is also important to make your product easy for new customers to find.” (pg. 25)
3. helps manage feedback from customers.

Book Review #8: The Little Blue Book of Marketing: Build a Killer Plan in Less Than a Day

Marketing Book Review: #8
Title: The Little Blue Book of Marketing: Build a Killer Plan in Less Than a Day

Author: Paul Kurnit and Steve Lance
Published: 2009
Pages: 273
Theme: Marketing Plan, Collaboration, Consensus Building, SWOT

About: Paul and Steve go over the details of organizing all of the movers and shakers within an organization in order to get them to come up with their brand identity and how to effectively position it within a competitive market.

My Take: The first half of the book goes over the details of how to organize a group of people to create a marketing plan. I got a lot more out of the second half of the book (starting at pg. 97) that went over the details of creating a marketing plan.

3+ Take Aways:
1. Prioritize your strengths
2. List your key products and/or services in your line that fulfill your brand promise.
3. “Does the product line offer a strong complement of attractive price points to power customer usage and loyalty?”
4. “What unique and meaningful benefit does my brand extend to my customers?” (pg. 116)

5. “Without a crystal-clear and distinguishing position, you have no shot of building a workable Plan, let alone a successful business.”

Marketing Book Review #7: Growth Hacker Marketing: A Primer on the Future of PR, Marketing, and Advertising

Book Review: #7

Title: Growth Hacker Marketing: A Primer on the Future of PR, Marketing, and Advertising
Author: Ryan Holiday
Published: 2013
Pages: 144
Theme: Social media, marketing, growth hacking, growth, social media marketing, marketing strategies

About: Ryan is the bridge from old marketing to new marketing, which is based not on impressions and brand awareness but audience conversion through testing.

My Take: I loved this book. It spoke to me and has completely changed my worldview on marketing and how to create growth for companies and organizations.

3 Take Aways:
1. Start with a minimum viable product and improve on it through feedback, instead of launching with what we think is the final product, until it is white hot and will blow people’s minds.
2. Growth hackers believe that products, even whole businesses, and business models can and should be changed until they are primed to generate explosive reactions from the first people who see them.

3. You must match the way you market your products with the way your prospects learn about and shop for them.

Marketing Book Review #6: Increasing Your Tweets, Likes, and Ratings

Marketing Book Review: #6

Title: Increasing Your Tweets, Likes, and Ratings
Author: Suzanne Weinick
Published: 2013
Pages: 64
Theme: Social media, mobile marketing

About: This is a short book that goes over some of the basics of social media, blogging, and mobile apps. But it mostly goes over how to market your mobile app.

3 Take-Aways:
1. “The only way to stand out from your competitors is to do something different.”
2. “Don’t expand your business before you master what’s on your plate.”

3. “Social media is a great way to share information with your target audience without the traditional costly forms of advertising and marketing.”

Marketing Book Review #5: Contagious – Why Things Catch On

Title: Contagious: Why Things Catch On

Author: Jonah Berger
Published: 2013
Pages: 233
Theme: Viral Marketing

About: Jonah deconstructs the recipe that makes things not only go viral, but valuably viral. It is full of great stories and practical advice that you can begin applying to your marketing right away.

My Take: This has to be one of the best marketing books on new marketing. I like how fresh and relevant the content is and how valuable the strategies are that he gives. I think, overall, it’s a bit disjointed and a bit heavy to get through; however, almost every page is worth reading.

3 Take-Aways:
1. “If something is built to show, it’s built to grow.”
2. While traditional advertising is still useful, word of mouth from everyday Joes and Janes is at least 10 times more effective for 2 reasons:
a. it’s more persuasive
b. word of mouth is more targeted

3. The most powerful marketing is personal recommendation.