Marketing isn’t easy.
It’s always evolving to meet the demands of new technology.
And that means if you want to be an expert in it, you need to know what you’re doing:
You have to study it.
Where the problem comes is that for every change in new technology or search engines like Google, there are 50 blogs sites, books, and podcasts talking about it.
So, who do you trust?
Where do you find the best information to educate yourself on the broader aspects of marketing AND the hyper-specific?
Here are 11 Marketing Resources That Will Transform You Into a Guru in No Time.
- Books -
Building a Story Brand
Everything has a story. Even brands. It’s how we process complex information.
Look at our lives. We see the trajectory of our lives and careers in chapters, the people in them as characters, and the events that occur as developments. Story is in our blood. And the key to capturing your audience’s attention is to give them a story to care about—their own.
Building a Story Brand by renowned copywriter Donald Miller is about reframing the messaging of your products and services to be about the journey of your client. How will your product/service be used to serve their needs, get them where they want to go, and ultimately bring them a better life?
That’s the foundation of a story brand, and that’s how you’ll win more customers.
Pre-Suasion, Robert Caldini’s sequel to Influence, is a master class in understanding the way humans make decisions. Using real psychology and experiential anecdotes, Caldini dives into the why of persuasive marketing, and how to capitalize on it to make your audience more receptive to your messaging before you even deliver it.
If you want your customers and clients to simply say “yes,” this book is a must-read.
Hacking Growth, by Sean Ellis and Morgan Brown, is a book about growth hacking.
What the heck is growth hacking, you ask?
Growth hacking is a technique of using rapid testing to figure out the best marketing message/product/service combination out of multiple variants. It’s been used to build great teams, develop irresistible products, and determine what works and what doesn’t fast.
Want to retain more customers? Great.
Want to improve your business results? Awesome.
Want to make more money? Even better.
Pick up this book and start growth hacking.
They Ask You Answer
They Ask You Answer is by Marcus Sheridan, otherwise known as the Sales Lion. Sheridan is famous for using content marketing to revitalize his failing pool company. How’d he do it? He answered questions. In his seminal book, he speaks on how to put this strategy to work for your own business, gain the trust of your prospects, turn them into fans, and improve your online presence overall.
- Platforms & Technology -
MailChimp (Email Marketing)
If you’re a business with an online presence, you need to be doing email marketing.
It’s that simple.
Why? Because to this day, email marketing is one of thecheapest and most effective forms of digital marketing there is.
Build a subscriber list and leverage it for years to come to market to your warm leads.
This is where MailChimp comes in. It’s an email platform that allows you to build a subscriber list, send mass emails, and check the analytics of who’s opening them and responding.
And the best part is that it’s free for up to the first 2,000 subscribers.
Trello (Task Management)
Do you work with a team?
Do they have various tasks and projects within their day?
Then welcome to Trello.
Trello is a task management software that allows users to create task-lists and projects and share them with other users. This creates a greater share of transparency when working on projects solo or in a group, and can greatly improve your business’s efficiency overall.
Google Analytics (Tracking & Analytics)
Let’s start here:
Google Analytics is free.
And here’s why that’s important:
Google Analytics is an internal system that tags itself to your website and studies the traffic you're generating—and more specifically, whether your visitors are engaging (clicking links to other pages) or converting (filling out a contact form or buying).
The ability to track these stats compared to a previous practice of operating in the dark can mean a night and day difference in decision-making.
Is that landing page failing to convert but showing strong traffic?
Change the copy.
Do you have a high-performing blog that’s killing it?
Great. Be sure to repost it often.
The most important thing about Google Analytics is that it gives you the power of choice, in knowing what’s working and what’s not, allowing you to make better decisions for your business and bottom line.
Google Keyword Tool (SEO)
If you’re doing pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, you’ll definitely want to use Google’s Keyword Tool.
So, what is it?
It’s a tool that allows you to see the search volume of a given set of search terms (“salted caramel ice cream near me”) and see what the cost per click is (what you pay when someone clicks on your ad). Its value comes from the ability to check the popularity of a given search term.
For example, if 1 million people are using search terms like “how to increase reading speed” and there are no blogs on the subject, then write one. It’ll help you rank higher in search, draw visitors to your website, and increase your potential of converting them into a sale.
When it comes to PPC, however, Google's Keyword Tool is vital for helping you determine the best search terms (based on search volume) will bring you the highest return on clicks versus dollars spent.
- Blogs -
HubSpot is a powerhouse in the digital marketing world, so it should come as no surprise that they’ve got some useful insights on being more effective in the industry. With a lens that specifically examines inbound marketing (free messaging meant to draw customers in), this a great blog to read on improving your marketing strategy at a lower cost.
Seth Godin is a bit of a wunderkind in the digital marketing community. He’s written a New York Times Best Seller on the subject (along with 17 other books), has been spoken at TED, and is frequently requested for a quote on anything marketing-related.
Check out Seth Godin’s blog. It’s jam-packed with bite-sized tidbits you can begin implementing into your business today.
What is content marketing?
Content marketing is the technique of using informative or entertaining content to develop a relationship or audience with prospects.
And if you want to improve in content marketing, a great resource is the Content Marketing Institute.
This site offers articles, whitepapers, e-books, and other helpful information created to help readers create more effective content, and a distribution plan that will bring a better return on their time.
If reading isn’t your thing, that’s fine. Check out our blog post on the best marketing podcasts on the planet and give one a listen.
Marketing may be an ever-changing field, but it’s not impenetrable. With a little research and self-study, you can learn the basics and make some noticeable improvements to your digital marketing efforts to help you win more clients and revenue.
Or, if you want to ensure you’re getting the best outcomes from your digital marketing campaigns, it may be time to start working with a professional partner who has proven and consistent results.