Summer is here and vacation is around the corner. It’s finally time to wind down, go to the beach and get absorbed in a good book. Here are some ...

Summer book recommendations from Spoon Academy

Summer is here and vacation is around the corner. It’s finally time to wind down, go to the beach and get absorbed in a good book. Here are some of our top picks. Which book do you want to read this summer?

It can be a struggle to choose what to read, which is why we have compiled a list of books that we often recommend to others. They’re full of insight, knowledge, and inspirational know-how that will make you a better content marketer. The book recommendations are split into two categories:

1. Strategy
2. Storytelling

Enjoy reading!

Books on strategy

Are you positioning your content so it covers the entire customer’s journey? Your content strategy should have an editorial perspective that is relevant for your brand. Armed with the knowledge in these books, you’ll create a strategy that will help you reach your business goals.

Pre-Suasion by Robert Cialdini

Robert Cialdini’s latest book, Pre-Suasion, is all about setting the right context for the sale. In other words, it shows why content marketing works. You’ll learn about the different stages of “pre-suasion” and how you can use mystery to keep an audience engaged.

Cialdini also uncovers a “new” principle called Unity, which is the experience of a shared identity and values. This principle reinforces that customers buy more based on what they believe in.

Good strategy/Bad strategy by Richard Rumelt

Strategy is one of the most popular buzz words in business. But the topic can be confusing. Richard Rumelt lays out a clear framework on how to craft a good strategy (and how to recognise a bad one!).

Download our strategy guide or read more about the book here.

Blue ocean strategy by W. Chan Kim and‎ Renee Mauborgne

Most successful companies have created a blue ocean. Apple did it with their iPhone. Cirque de Soleil pulled it off in the entertainment industry. And [yellow tail] did it in the wine industry. They defeated ”best industry practice” and made the competition irrelevant.

What these companies have in common is that they’ve managed to create a unique offer for their customers. They’ve found an innovative way to reach both customers and non-customers.

In their book Blue Ocean Strategy, authors W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne show how companies can create a blue ocean strategy that leads to new markets.

On telling better stories

Great stories are at the heart of successful content marketing. They attract the right customers to your business, and help build an emotional connection to your brand. Spoon Academy recommends these three books on storytelling.

Story driven: You don’t need to compete when you know who you are by Bernadette Jiwa

Bernadette Jiwa offers an insightful and compelling read on how companies can tell better stories. Story Driven gives a framework to help you consistently articulate, live and lead with your story. What do you stand for? Where are you headed and why? What’s been the making of you (and your organisation)?

The book’s main message is to be brave and tell real stories.

Steering the craft: a 21st century guide to sailing the sea of story by Ursula K. Le Guin

Steering the craft is filled with insights and tips on the writing process from one of America’s greatest authors. You’ll for instance learn how to review your own and others’ texts. The book is aimed at professional writers who want to take their writing to the next level.

(If you’re a beginner’s writer, we recommend Ann Handley’s Everybody Writes instead.)

The hero with a thousand faces by Joseph Campbell

Joseph Campbell’s classic cross-cultural study of the hero’s journey has inspired millions of people, including Bob Dylan and George Lucas. Originally published in 1949, the book hit the New York Times best-seller list in 1988.

Content marketers have applied Campbell’s concept to the customer’s journey. Like a hero, customers encounter a problem they need help with. They meet a mentor (hint: that’s you and your content!), who help them overcome the obstacle and succeed. Study Campbell’s book to find new ways to engage your audience.

Bonus books

Other books worth reading are The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot, When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi and Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman!: Adventures of a Curious Character by physicist and Nobel laurate Richard Feynman.

Which book(s) will you read this summer?

Share your favourite books with us on Twitter @spoon_content. We’d love to hear your suggestions!

If you want more book recommendations, check out 7 books every content marketer needs to read.

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