If you’re like us and don’t have time to waste reading a book that’s either uninteresting or not useful, a good book recommendation is gold.
Here are 7 must-read books for marketers, chosen by some of Linden’s staff.
1. Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert E. Cialdini, Ph. D
Linden’s account executive, Stacey, recommends this book for marketers, but it’s a useful book for any industry. Influence is about how humans predictably react to each other, sometimes without thinking! When you understand what influences other’s choices and actions, you can adjust what you say and do to improve getting others to like and work with you.
2. Humans of New York by Brandon Stanton
As both a digital marketer and photographer for Linden, I chose this book since it beautifully merges photography and storytelling.
This book is a testament to the power of stories, and how they can connect us to each other. I’m personally drawn to the honesty and vulnerability that Stanton consistently captures. Storytelling is the heart of great marketing and photography, and whether I pick this book up for 5 minutes or half an hour I’m always inspired by his work.
3. The Fire Starter Sessions by Danielle LaPorte
It wasn’t surprising that Ali, Linden’s copywriter and creative manager, chose a book that’s bold – both in color and in subject matter! “Everything about this book is LOUD, from the cover to the format to its innate championing of you, the reader. Its confidence – in the author and in her message to you – is far from understated, and that’s refreshing. It’s like, ‘hey girl, you know you’ve got this, I know you’ve got this, now go out there and create.’ I think its biggest influence on me, as a marketer, is its ability to be bold and make zero excuses for its volume. It encourages me to just create, just DO, because it’s all really up to me.”
“As people with the creative spirit, we’re obsessed with possibility. We live for the rush of turning a tough — an abstract idea — into something real, tangible, touchable, readable, effectual, profitable. We feel empowered, generous even, in the making of our art. We have a practical indignation for mediocrity. We love to get things done.” – Danielle LaPorte
4. Visual Harmony: Proportion in Graphic Design by Gingko Press
When asked what her favorite book was, Megan was quick to answer! This book dissects the science behind what makes logos and brands visually appealing. Even if you aren’t a graphic designer like Megan, you’ll find yourself unable to stop looking at the beautiful brands Gingko Press has carefully curated.
“Often the logic and framework behind the creation of branding and other design elements goes unnoticed, but when a design falls out of proportion it’s easily spotted, and can even evoke negative feelings and connotations. The golden ratio and Fibonacci Sequence help designers avoid these problems; as they are founding and based on nature, they are a universal tool for balancing proportions.”
5. Pantone Guide to Communicating with Color & Color: Messages and Meanings
Shawna, our production manager, chose two books by the industry leader in color: Pantone.
“Of all the forms of non-verbal communication, color is the most instantaneous method of conveying messages and meanings. Before humans learned to appreciate the aesthetics of color, there were far more practical aspects of communicating with color. Our very survival depends on the ability to identify necessary objects and /or warning signals whether they are animal, vegetable, or mineral and color is an integral part of the identification process.
Corporations have spent millions of dollars establishing a corporate identity, image and brand equity through their logos, advertising, websites, and signage; the company must convey an instant message of who they are and what they stand for. IBM will forever be known as the Big Blue: trustworthy and dependable. Coke is red: energy and exuberance. The colors not only identify, they idealize.”
6. Ogilvy on Advertising by David Ogilvy
“David Ogilvy stands alone as creative king of the advertising world.” –Advertising Age
After over 20 years in the marketing industry, our founder and fearless leader, Susie, had a hard time picking only one book. Susie says, “This book helped me at the beginning of my career. David Ogilvy was the godfather of modern advertising, he changed the way advertising was done. Great book – even today.”
While much as changed since this book was written, many of the basics of advertising remain true, making this a must-read for anyone in the industry.
7. In The American West by Richard Avedon
Kelly, our Publications Manager, chose this iconic book. She says, “Ahhh, Avedon. After so many decades, Richard Avedon is still one of the most influential portrait photographers in the world. In The American West was originally published in 1985 and is still on the market decades later.
Every portrait in this book was done outdoors, in front of a white backdrop, with white paper or sheets above and to the sides of the model. His simple lighting technique and large-format camera captured every detail and I just feel like I’m standing right next to him, taking the picture myself.
It’s a great reminder that even the most difficult problem can usually be solved the best with the simplest answer. In advertising, crisp design and clean copy draws you in and keeps you interested.”