"Get Content - Get Customers"* by Joe Pulizzi and Newt Barrett - what this book does well is explain why a strategic content marketing program is important and show how to accomplish compelling content. Connecting with customers by providing useful information goes a long way toward gaining their trust. Examples and instruction included.
"Linchpin - Are You Indispensable?"* by Seth Godin - I find this book so compelling that I presented copies to colleagues at a meeting last summer. Godin posits that many of our habits and even mandates in school, work, and life are habits because it's assumed they are the only way of getting work done. In fact, the evidence shows quite the opposite. I've read it through a couple of times and refer back often.
"Business Stripped Bare: Adventures of a Global Entrepreneur"* by Sir Richard Branson - the man has great ideas for providing products and services people will clamor for and isn't afraid to bare it all for publicity. Really. It's a fun read and made me feel that perhaps I could afford to take a few more risks in life.
"Trust Agents"* by Chris Brogan and Julien Smith - this is one I'm still reading. I've followed Chris Brogan for a while, read his blogs and newletters daily, and have recently begun paying attention to Julien as well. "Trust Agents" provides ways to use the web to grow your sphere of influence and trust. Chris and Julien provide thoughtful guidance on how to handle customer service issues, what to put on your business card, why the word "friend" can now be used as a verb and so much more.
I find these authors and their books particularly engaging because they account for human elements within their business strategy. A "strictly business" business book is of no use to me - these writers share with the reader a real sensibility as to how people are motivated, which can be adapted to fit your industry, business or even your personal life.
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