• Oleg Voronko

What Marketing Books to Read?

The other day, I was discussing with a friend, about how many of the marketing books we’ve read over the years didn’t have any real case studies to support the claim that they were making.


As far as the discussion went, it was agreed that there were two types of books in the “Marketing” category.


Type #1: Books that had case studies to support the claims that it was making.


Type #2: Books that had no case studies to support the claims that it was making.


Let’s start with the first type:


Books that had case studies to support the claims that it was making.


These books had real case studies that the authors had worked on. They had stories of how they had used the tactics and strategies to get the results that they got.


Now, as you’d expect, these books were really good in that their ideas, strategies, and tactics were validated by the actual case studies.


But the problem with these books is that they are hard to come by. Because most of the marketers that I know don’t have case studies to back up their claims.


All they have are anecdotes of how they had used the tactics and strategies that they’ve learned from the books.


And that’s where the second type of marketing books comes in:


The second type of books are books that have no case studies to support the claim that it’s making.


Now, for all the books in this category, there’s no way for you to validate whether what they’re saying is true or not.


No, it’s not because the authors are lying. It’s just that they can’t prove if what they’re saying is true or not.


For example, let’s look at the book I’m reading right now by Ryan Holiday.


Here’s what the book is about:


The first line of this book says, “How to build your audience, create a brand, and turn your idea into a million-dollar company.”


Imagine if I were to go by this book’s claims, that’s how my business will look like.


But I was thinking if I were to go by this book’s claims, how do I know that what they’re saying is true or not?


Now, you might say, “Well, you can try them out first and see if they work.”


Yes, I can.


But if I’m doing that, that means that I’m going to be spending a lot of time and money on testing out the tactics and strategies in the book to see if they work.


And that doesn’t make sense to me.


Long story short:


If the tactics and strategies in the book are not validated by case studies, then the book is only a theory.


And if it’s just a theory, then the book is of no use to me.


That’s why, when I’m choosing a marketing book to read, I’ll only pick the books with case studies.


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