As digital marketing trends continuously change, companies must innovate new strategies to keep their brand appealing to the audience. Hence, marketers need to always stay up-to-date with the latest news in the said industry.
One of the best ways to broaden your knowledge is by reading digital marketing books. In this article, I will recommend some of the best digital marketing books by popular authors. The range of topics includes, but is not limited to, SEO, content marketing, and social media marketing.
The 7 Must-Read Digital Marketing Books
With all of the great books available out there, getting started may be challenging and time-consuming. To narrow down your search, take a look at the following best books on digital marketing for aspiring digital marketers and business owners.
1. “Don’t Make Me Think, Revisited” by Steve Krug
With a 4.6 rating on Amazon and a #1 book in user experience and usability, Steve Krug’s book is easily one of the best digital marketing books to read in 2020.
This book stresses the importance of a website for marketing, as a great marketing campaign requires the support of a good, easily figurable website. A website is a major factor for potential customers to build trust in a business.
Steve Krug emphasizes three rules to help potential customers better interpret your site. First, people skim-read. As such, a marketer must always create skimmable content when delivering information on a page.
Secondly, we have to make sure that our site caters to the customers. Continuously researching what your target audience needs will give you insights to create the right content for them.
Finally, your site has to be as simple and understandable as possible to reach a broader audience. The author provides useful UX frameworks to create an easily navigable, user-friendly site.
2. “The Art of SEO”
The Art of SEO is written by Eric Enge, Stephan Spencer, Jessie Stricchiola, and Rand Fishkin, four of the most respected people in the SEO world. Having established their own SEO firm, they pour all of their knowledge and experiences into this book to help aspiring SEO and digital marketing experts.
More specifically, it focuses on discussing facts, theories, and implementations of search engine optimization techniques. The key topics of this book are keyword search, link building, and ways to measure the success of your SEO efforts.
This second edition book also includes all the recent search engine behavior changes, thus allowing you to optimize your website more effectively.
Since this book covers basic to advanced SEO tactics, it’s a good read for both beginners and seasoned SEO experts.
3. “Digital Marketing for Dummies”
Ryan Deiss is the CEO of DigitalMarketer, a community for digital marketing professionals to learn and consult on various strategies for growing a business.
Together with the company’s director of editorial, Russ Henneberry, Ryan Deiss published Digital Marketing for Dummies, a book intended for beginners in the digital marketing field and business owners who want to grow their companies.
Digital Marketing for Dummies covers everything about the customer journey, acquisition, to best practices for growing a personal brand and a business brand, like email marketing and content marketing. It also covers intricate subjects such as SEO and SEM.
One of the key takeaways from Digital Marketing for Dummies is how it teaches beginners to use content marketing to create sales leads in every step of the customer journey. Like in the awareness stage, it encourages the readers to create content explaining how their products and services can solve the market’s pain points.
In the evaluation stage, a marketer needs to go with a digital marketing strategy that makes their business stand out from the competitors. Creating product demos to highlight a product’s benefits is one of the many ways to do it.
Finally, in the conversion stage, a marketer is encouraged to design content that ensures that their company is the prime choice. Displaying customer testimonials will help secure potential leads and turn them into returning customers.
4. “Everybody Writes” by Ann Handley
Ann Handley is a content expert and a digital marketing specialist with decades of experience. She also manages her own company, MarketingProfs, which educates people with the nook and crannies of marketing.
With her years of experience, Handley deeply elaborates on how to produce and publish great content. Readers will learn how to be a great writer and the skills needed to craft words that win the hearts of customers efficiently.
Everybody Writes is a must-read digital marketing book for content writers, social media administrators, and bloggers who want to improve their content marketing skills. The topics are presented in a digestible format, making it suitable for beginners.
5. “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook” by Gary Vaynerchuk
Gary Vaynerchuk is an entrepreneur and a motivational speaker that knows how to tell a story through noisy social media. He currently manages his advertising agency, VaynerX, which has worked with many big brands like Pepsi and Budweiser.
The 4.5 Amazon rated book talks about content marketing and social media marketing in great detail. He compares his social media marketing techniques to wrestling as he covers the right combination of tactics to trigger the desired response.
Vaynerchuk also provides readers with blueprints on how to curate content to fit popular social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Additionally, he gives insights into the benefits of incorporating digital marketing content into the audience’s life. This is because potential customers usually pay attention to things that they find relatable.
Thus, the book emphasizes the importance of following the trends and producing content in response to them. By creating user-oriented content, you get to secure the audience’s attention and make them connect with your brand.
6. “Ultimate Guide to Google AdWords”
With a 4.4 Amazon rating, the Ultimate Guide to Google Adwords is one of the best books to understand Google’s various digital marketing campaign strategies. Perry Marshall and Mike Rhodes, experts in Google AdWords and international marketing consultants make sure it answers everything you need to know about Google advertising.
The latest edition provides more comprehensive learning materials, ranging from Google PPC ads, conversion tracking with Google Analytics, and best bidding strategies to learning Google Shopping campaigns and optimization practices.
When it comes to Google AdWords, Marshall and Rhodes emphasize the importance of learning by doing. It’s because a marketer can never predict accurately how certain combinations of keywords, ads, and campaigns work affect your conversions.
Hence, beginners may want to start their venture in this world with a small daily budget. You can set a higher budget only if you already understand how the platform works and what it takes to optimize the ad campaigns.
7. “Ogilvy on Advertising” by David Ogilvy
David Ogilvy is known as the Father of Advertising. He founded Ogilvy & Mather, one of the biggest advertising agencies in the world.
With decades of field experience in understanding consumer habits, his book becomes a staple to learn all the fundamental knowledge regarding online marketing.
Ogilvy on Advertising doesn’t specifically cover digital marketing. However, understanding the basics, traditional theories, and practices explained in this book will help you see through a marketer’s mindset.
The 4.6 Amazon rated book offers digital marketing tips and tricks for various levels of marketers. The book includes case studies from renowned advertising companies and practitioners to provide a better digital sense. The author also engages readers with questions and anecdotes.
The one rule that this book greatly emphasizes is the importance of research. In advertising, practitioners aren’t encouraged to create rules or formulas, as all campaigns are dependent on having a good grip on the current trends and market situation.
Hence, Ogilvy strongly recommends identifying the audience first before writing a copy or planning any advertisement campaign. Knowing potential customers’ preferences makes it easier to craft compelling content.
Bonus Round – Books That Make You a More Effective Professional
While having theoretical knowledge is great, it becomes void without knowing how to practice it. In practicing digital marketing, being an effective professional with the right mindset and attitude is crucial.
Below, I will list books that cover effective management, work ethic, and planning to further help you become a better digital marketing practitioner.
1. “The 10X Rule” by Grant Cardone
It’s one of the best motivational books for professionals looking to widen their perspective and have a better, more ambitious outlook in life.
Grant Cardone, the author, is a motivational speaker who worked his way to build Cardone Enterprises, a million-dollar sales training company. In his book, he talks about how his life philosophies brought him to success, emphasizing the right attitude to achieving life goals and aiming higher.
Living up to its name, The 10X Rule mainly focuses on the benefits of multiplying every goal by ten times. Cardone applied this rule to himself by having a bigger vision in life and escape from self-made limitations.
Hence, the book aims to motivate the readers to always set a goal ten times bigger than the achievable target. Doing so will grant you the motivation and challenge to figure out what you may think is impossible.
From there, it’ll be easier to get out of your comfort zone and stop being comfortable with smaller, safer results that stifle success.
2. “High Output Management” by Andrew S. Grove
High Output Management is a highly recommended read for new and experienced managers. Written by Andrew Grove, a former Intel CEO, the book scored a 4.6 rating on Amazon and was praised by notable figures in Silicon Valley, such as Mark Zuckerberg, John Doerr, and Bill Campbell.
What makes High Output Management is the fact that it’s not stuffed with theories, explanations are wrapped in the form of case studies while highlighting practical ideas and solutions.
Through case studies, Grove gives various frameworks on how to solve complex management problems across different sizes of companies and organizations.
Additionally, this book emphasizes how managers should prioritize increasing the productivity of people below or around them. A good manager ought to engage in activities that help their subordinates give more output and improve their work quality, such as providing clear instructions and hands-on assistance.
3. “Leadership Strategy and Tactics: Field Manual” by Jocko Willink
Jocko Willink, the author, was a soldier Navy SEAL for 20 years. Equipped with all the disciplines he has learned during his service period, he created the Echelon Front to train leaders beyond the military. With such broad experience, Willink decided to share his leadership ways with the world through this book.
The Leadership Strategy and Tactics: Field Manual is a guide for leaders and decision-makers at any organization and company size. In this 4.9 Amazon rated book, Willink goes into details about leadership theories and strategies and provides a thorough explanation of how to apply them in various situations and problems.
One of the essential takeaways from this book is how Willink suggests applying his combat leadership principle for general leadership. The strategy comprises four vital elements — “cover and move,” “simple,” “prioritize and execute,” and “decentralized command.”
“Cover and move” is about putting forth teamwork, which means encouraging leaders to take necessary steps to improve the work output. “Simple” refers to establishing effective communication between team members and having the leaders be open to questions.
“Prioritize and execute” is about how leaders should know which task is most important to execute first. Finally, “Decentralized command” focuses on how leaders must make every team member feel like a leader in their own task and have the freedom to be innovative in completing their work.
Everyone needs to keep on constant learning in this ever-growing world. Doing so will help you become a better professional in digital marketing and a better leader for your team and organization.
You have seen a list of some of the best books in marketing that can help expand your knowledge of the said field. These self-improvement books will supply you with all the insights you need to better manage your time and be a great leader.
Dedicating the time and effort to learn is crucial for improvement. For people who are always on the go, I recommend opting for the audiobook version. Participating in webinars, classes, and online courses will also help you further understand digital marketing.
Hopefully, this article inspires you to start learning more about digital marketing. For any questions, do not hesitate to leave them in the comments section below.