August 9, 2019

Our Favorite Digital Marketing Books

One of the first things you’ll see when you enter the PHOS studio’s doors is our digital marketing library. Our team loves to read! We regularly discuss and debate ideas from authors who are thought leaders in marketing, business development, and personal growth. 

August 9th is National Book Lovers Day, so in this article, we’d like to share our favorite books with you!

We’ve compiled a list of our favorite books, both from our CEO, Brandon West (the most prolific reader at PHOS), and from the entire team.

Here’s what you’ll find on our bookshelves and bedside tables:


Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business

By Gino Wickman

In the past year, this has been the number one, most impactful book in my leadership. As the author explains, every business, as it grows, regularly hits various ceilings. And, when that happens, the business has three choices: revolutionize, stagnate, or die. Gino does a fantastic job of outlining an operating system you can adopt in your business that will help you regularly break through those ceilings. Adopting this Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS) has brought whole new levels of clarity, passion, commitment, and engagement at PHOS.


Talk Like TED: The 9 Public Speaking Secrets of the World’s Top Minds

By Carmine Gallo

This book has shaped how I present to clients. The book is not just for those who want to be a TED speaker, but for those who want to become a more effective presenter in their everyday business lives. “Talk Like TED”  is divided into three parts that reveal the three components of an inspiring presentation: emotional (those that touch one’s heart), novel (those that teach us something new), and memorable (those that present content in ways one will never forget.) This book has helped me master the art of storytelling and has taught me how I can bring stories into my design presentations that resonate and touch the hearts of our clients.

If you believe business is built on relationships, make building them your business. – Scott Stratten


Unmarketing Second Edition: Everything Has Changed and Nothing is Different 

By Scott Stratten and Alison Stratten

This original version of this book was a favorite of mine in 2009. It was updated recently to reflect the many changes which have occurred in the online space in the last decade. Stratten’s fun, irreverent style of writing makes “Un-marketing” an approachable read for anyone, regardless of their level of digital marketing experience. His overall message to readers is that marketers need to focus on building relationships with customers rather than simply push out marketing messages and hope for the best. This book encourages me to market to customers in ways that I would want to be marketed to myself. 


Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t

By Simon Sinek

I love this book because the book’s lessons can be applied to both professional and personal growth. Much of the book tackles viewpoints on how to view and treat people. Though used interchangeably, there’s a difference between managers and true leadership. Real leaders are willing to sacrifice their own comfort for another.


The Ideal Team Player: How to Recognize and Cultivate The Three Essential Virtues

By Patrick M. Lencioni

Hungry, humble, smart…

This the mantra of Patrick Lencioni’s “The Ideal Team Player.” It’s set as a fictional story of a new CEO in the midst of a hiring season. I enjoyed this book even though I’m not in a position of hiring. This book illuminates what it takes to be the perfect team player (humble, hungry, AND smart.) You learn how to identify what part of the equation you struggle with and how to improve in order to be an asset to your organization as well as your team

“Marketing is the generous act of helping someone solve a problem: their problem. It’s a chance to change the culture for the better. It’s a chance to serve.”- Seth Godin


This is Marketing

By Seth Godin

I highly recommend this book, and anything by Seth Godin, really. Whether you are a marketer, business owner, or just want to make a difference it’s a great (quick) read. “This Is Marketing” was based on insights from Godin’s “The Marketing Seminar, a $745 intensive course on the essentials of modern marketing. I found it to be a great summary of many of the major marketing themes from his previous books and blog. Personally, it made me proud of my role and excited to be a better marketer. A few quotes and take-aways from this book that line up with our core values at PHOS were:


Giftology: The Art and Science of Using Gifts to Cut Through the Noise, Increase Referrals, and Strengthen Retention

By John Ruhlin

Ruhlin explores how you can strategically give gifts to make you and your business stand out from the crowd. Rather than traditional gifts or trinkets saturated with logos and your own agenda, Ruhlin recommends surprising and delighting recipients with personal gifts that are unique, best in class, lasting, practical, in line with core values, and what they would want to give themselves. Giftology provides a reciprocity filled way of life that will drive referrals and make your clients your biggest sales team.

Have a book that we really need to read?

Send it our way!

Jennifer Dempsey

Jennifer Dempsey

As an Inbound Marketing Executive, Jennifer helps her clients reach, inspire, and educate their target audiences online. She loves helping clients tell their story in a compelling way that stands out in a crowded digital space.