McCLELLAN: Summer reading that helps your business grow
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve loved to read. I read to escape. I read to explore, and I certainly read to learn.
As an adult, business owner and marketing guy, I’ve added another reason for reading. To stay fresh. Our world is evolving so fast, and there are so many incredible authors out there, sharing their wisdom, insights, stories and best practices. I don’t dare stop reading!
Whether you prefer audio books, hardbacks or your e-book device of choice, I highly recommend you pick up one or more of these books as you round out your summer reading list.
“Double, Double” by Cameron Herold
Double your revenue and profit in three years or less. That’s a bold promise and one most authors wouldn’t dare make. But Cameron Herold earned his chops running high-growth businesses such as 1-800-GOT-JUNK? where in his six years as chief operating officer the company roughly doubled in size every year, growing from $2 million to more than $106 million in sales.
What I appreciated most about Herold’s book is that it’s practical “how to” stuff, not theory.
“Tell to Win” by Peter Gruber
We are, by our very nature, storytellers AND story absorbers. And yet in our business communications, all too often, we blather on about facts, figures and bullet points rather than letting the stories connect us to people who are drawn to them. Which is why I really want you to read this book.
Gruber says “more and more, success is won by creating compelling stories that have the power to move partners, shareholders, customers and employees to action. Simply put, if you can’t tell it, you can’t sell it.”
“Launch” by Michael Stelzner
The basic premise of Stelzner’s new book is that companies have to shift from telling customers “buy this” to asking “how can we help you?” He goes on to advocate giving away your content (knowledge) or sampling to create familiarity, trust and eventually demand.
This book is full of good ones and stories that will bring his “how to” tips to life.
“The Accidental Creative” by Todd Henry
According to Henry’s book (and my own experiences), there exists a creative rhythm deep in the heart of every individual that is “independent of the pressures and expectations you face each day.”
Establishing this rhythm will unlock your creative potential, provide you with the stability and clarity to tackle challenges, create and let your best thinking flow.
“The Hidden Power of Your Customers” by Becky Carroll
It’s cheaper and easier to get more (and more profitable) business from our existing clients – and yet, our “new business” efforts are always aimed at strangers, rather than our friendly customers.
One of the best aspects of this book is the collection of case studies. Becky tells tales of customer-loving companies like Nicor National, Salon Radius and Sanuk. (Nope, I’d never heard of any of them either.) You’ll find the examples fresh and something you can replicate.
There you have it – a little light reading. I’d love to hear your reaction to these selections.