Best Business Books: 50+ Marketing Experts Will Make You Smarter

Best Business Books Recommended by Marketing ExpertsWant to improve your marketing?

Of course, you do.

Beyond learning about the latest marketing trends, the best thing that you can do is to improve your understanding of business more broadly.

The best way to accomplish this is to read the top business books.

To help you choose the best business books, I asked 50+ top marketers to recommend their favorite business books.  This way you get the inside scoop from trusted sources.

You may also be interested in their favorite marketing books.


Top business books for marketers

Take the time to read through the entire list of top business books for marketers. You’ll be surprised by their choices. There’s lots of variety including fiction.

These are books to study for their business acumen as well as for their power to inspire your peers.Best Business Books Recommended by Marketing Experts


Hana Abaza – Shopify. Also, speaker, blogger and self-proclaimed podcast junkie 🙂 Her podcast is Flip the Switch.

The Hard Thing About Hard Things, Ben Horowitz – I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this book. It’s got this no-BS narrative that rings true. Probably one of the best business books I’ve read in a while.
Switch, Chip & Dan Heath – This book provides great examples of how change happens when it seems impossible. It’s packed with interesting stories from areas of life and the overarching lessons can be applied both personally and professionally.
Radical Focus, Christina Wodtke – Since the problem with most teams isn’t the lack of ideas, it’s a lack of focus. This book provides a framework for zeroing in on the things that matter.


Scott Abel – Founder, CEO, and chief strategist at The Content Wrangler, Inc. Author of The Language of Content Strategy and Intelligent Content: A Primer. Co-Founder of Intelligent Content Conference. His alter ego, The Audio Wrangler, is a popular DJ and dance music mashup artist.

Impossible to Ignore: Creating Memorable Content to Influence Decisions, Dr. Carmen Simon – How to make content memorable and why audiences can’t remember 90% of what we think they can.
Smart Machines: IBM’s Watson and the Era of Cognitive Computing, John E Kelly III & Steve Hamm – How the coming cognitive computing revolution will change how we learn, work, and live. It has critical lessons that are important to content creators, managers and marketers.
Unique Ability® 2.0: Discovery – Define Your Best Self, Catherine Nomura, Julia Waller, & Shannon Waller – This book teaches you how to focus on doing what you love and do best so you can create the most value for others.


Ardath Albee of Marketing Interactions, author of:Digital Relevance and eMarketing Strategies for the Complex Sale.

The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell – This book helped me to apply a more intent application to character. A lot of the methodology I developed for creating buyer personas came from thinking spawned by Campbell’s ideas. Especially the idea that we can learn to understand ourselves better through the stories we choose to read or view.


Mike Alton – Content Marketing Practitioner for The Social Media Hat and Chief Marketing Officer for SiteSell.

The Lean Startup, Eric Ries – Teaches manufacturing companies and startups how to launch new products in an agile way. This process of testing and evaluating can be applied to content marketing.
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Covey – While lessons can be taken with regard to marketing, simply “being” a more effective person will make you a better marketer.
Europe In The Twentieth Century, Dr. Paxton – This is part of my broader collection and education on history in general. It helps me to remain grounded in my marketing approach and views. To steal a quote from Battlestar Galactica, “All of this has happened before, and will happen again.” While there are always new developments and ‘shiny objects’ to chase, the roots of marketing will always be about relationships and providing value. Studying great books is always good advice!


Syed Balkhi – Founder and CEO of Awesome Motive Inc. His company is best known for OptinMonster.

The Hard Thing About Hard Things, Ben Horowitz
The Talent Code, Daniel Coyle
Power of HabitCharles Duhigg


Robbie Kellman Baxter – Head of Peninsula Strategies. Author of The Membership Economy: Find Your Superusers, Master the Forever Transaction & Build Recurring Revenue. (Check Baxter’s video summary of The Membership Economy.)

Getting to 50 50, Strober & Meers – This book shows how to be successful in business while being a married, working mom.
Stumbling Upon HappinessDaniel Gilbert – Shows you how to find what really makes you happy.
The Enneagram Made Easy, Renee Baron and Elizabeth Wagele – Shows you how to understand people who are motivated by very different things.
Million Dollar Consulting, Alan Weiss – Shows you how to build a consulting practice you love.


Jonah Berger – Wharton Professor. Author of Invisible Influence and Contagious: Why Things Catch On.

Stumbling Upon HappinessDaniel Gilbert
The Mind Club, Daniel M. Wegner   – It’s interesting to see how our minds work and what makes us happy


Toby Bloomberg – Bloomberg Marketing/Diva Marketing. Read her free e-book: Social Media GPS: 40 Interviews with Marketing Professionals About Social Media Conduct On Twitter

Accidental Genius, Mark Levy – It’s too easy and too often that we loose our creative focus. Mark shares an interesting way to get out of the mud with ‘freestyle writing’ tips.
Share of Mind, Share of Heart: Marketing Tools of Engagement for Nonprofits, Sybil Stershic – Although this book was written for nonprofits, the concepts hold true for any industry. The author reminds us that it’s the personal touch that matters and makes a difference. And can be your point of difference. Sybil’s writing is easy to read and includes workflow exercises.
Oh, The Places You’ll Go!, Seuss – This seemingly simple children’s book holds so many truths for people of any age. It’s a source of inspiration and creativity.


Susan Borst – Led the IAB Task Force to develop the IAB Native Advertising Playbook, an industry framework. Borst was involved with the pro-bono “Girls Go Tech” initiative .

Einstein’s DreamsAlan Lightman – This fiction book covers various views on the theory of time. It’s hard to explain all that this book covers, but it has had a profound impact on me as I evaluate opportunities and people I meet.


Tim Bourquin – Co-founder,

The Upside of Irrationality, Dan Ariely – I think this is a fantastic resource for building websites and landing pages that convert prospects into leads.  By understanding how people think and make decisions, you can capitalize on those motivations and design your marketing material in a way that speaks to them and gets them to pay attention.
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