20 Best Selling Social Media Marketing Books You Need to Read

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social media books

I was looking through the list I have read during the year and what I would like to read in the near future. In the process, I created this list of really great books about social media and marketing. The list includes such classics as The Cluetrain Manifesto and newer books (Guy Kawasaki’s Enchantment). I added the Amazon rating to the books but don’t worry about Cluetrain’s 3.8 rating it’s an important book. You will also find the links to my interviews with Seth Godin and Brian Solis.

Here goes in no particular order:

Book-The-New-Rules-of-Marketing-and-PRThe New Rules of Marketing and PR: How to Use News Releases, Blogs, Podcasting, Viral Marketing and Online Media to Reach Buyers Directly

by David Meerman Scott
Rating: 4.5/5
Though it may not yet have affected the value of 30 seconds of Super Bowl advertising, PR insider Scott argues that understanding the growing irrelevance of marketing’s “old rules” is vital to thriving in the new media jungle.

Book The Zen of Social Media MarketingThe Zen of Social Media Marketing: An Easier Way to Build Credibility, Generate Buzz, and Increase Revenue

by Shama Kabani (Author), Chris Brogan (Foreword)
Rating: 4.4/5
By becoming part of the conversation, you can start connecting directly to your customers, as well as finding new ones, easily and inexpensively spreading the word about your products or services. Let Shama Hyder Kabani teach you the “zen” of social media marketing: how to access all the benefits of social media marketing without the stress! The Zen of Social Media Marketing outlines the most popular social media tools, from Facebook to Twitter to LinkedIn, and teaches you how to use them, step by step. Get proven strategies for success from the businesses she works with every day, along with shortcuts and tips to help you make the most of your time and energy. This book is also the last social media guide you’ll ever need: with the physical book you also get access to the exclusive online edition, which includes regular updates and video extras to make sure you’re always on top of the latest in social media.

Book-The-Cluetrain-Manifesto-10The Cluetrain Manifesto: 10th Anniversary Edition

by Rick Levine, Christopher Locke, Doc Searls and David Weinberger
Rating: 3.8/5
Published 10 years ago this book is a foundation of the change in business around us. A powerful global conversation has begun. Through the Internet, people are discovering and inventing new ways to share relevant knowledge with blinding speed. As a direct result, markets are getting smarter—and getting smarter faster than most companies. These markets are conversations. Their members communicatea in language that is natural, open, honest, direct, funny and often shocking. Whether explaining or complaining, joking or serious, the human voice is unmistakably genuine. It can’t be faked. [UPDATE: Doc Searls pointed out that the new 10th Anniversary Edition is a better deal, so here it is].

Book-Inbound-MarketingInbound Marketing: Get Found Using Google, Social Media, and Blogs (The New Rules of Social Media)

by Brian Halligan, Dharmesh Shah
Rating: 4.3/5
Stop pushing your message out and start pulling your customers in. People are now increasingly turning to Google, social media, and blogs to find products and services. Inbound Marketing helps you take advantage of this change by showing you how to get found by customers online.

Book-EnchantmentEnchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds, and Actions

by Guy Kawasaki
Rating: 4.3/5
This book explains how to influence what people will do while maintaining the highest standards of ethics. The book explains when and why enchantment is necessary and then the pillars of enchantment: likability, trustworthiness, and a great cause. The next topics are launching, overcoming resistance, making enchantment endure, and using technology. There are even special chapters dedicated to enchanting your employees and your boss. Finally, because there are times you may want to resist enchantment, there’s even a chapter about how to do this too.

Book-eMarketing-Strategies-for-the-Complex-SaleeMarketing Strategies for the Complex Sale

by Ardath Albee
Rating: 4.7/5
The Internet offers an unprecedented opportunity for creating trusted relationships with your prospects and customers—before you ever “meet” them. Never before have marketers enjoyed such a wide-reaching and varied communication platform. Yet with all the noise, you have to stand above the crowd. The key is to converse about meaningful and relevant topics with your diverse audiences, to share your perspectives on what matters to them.

Book-The-New-Community-RulesThe New Community Rules: Marketing on the Social Web

by Tamar Weinberg
Rating: 4.4/5
Written by an expert in social media and viral marketing, this book cuts through the hype and jargon to give you intelligent advice and strategies for positioning your business on the social web, with case studies that show how other companies have used this approach. Explore blogging and microblogging, and find out how to use applications such as Twitter to create brand awareness. Learn the art of conversation marketing, and how social media thrives on honesty and transparency. Manage and enhance your online reputation through the social web. Tap into the increasingly influential video and podcasting market. Discover which tactics work — and which don’t — by learning about what other marketers have tried.

Book-SocialnomicsSocialnomics: How social media transforms the way we live and do business

by Erik Qualman
Rating: 4.4/5
Social Media isn’t just for the Next Generation – it’s for every generation. Whether you’re an entrepreneur, a media professional, a college student or a mom, social media will shape your future. Don’t be overwhelmed by it; read Qualman’s book instead.” – Jane Wooldridge, The Miami Herald.

Book-GroundswellGroundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies

by Charlene Li, Josh Bernoff
Rating: 4.3/5
Two of Forrester Research’s top analysts show you how to turn the force of customers connecting to your own advantage. Josh Bernoff and Charlene Li show how leading companies are gaining insights, generating revenues, saving money, and energizing their own customers.

Book-Here-Comes-EverybodyHere Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations

by Clay Shirky
Rating: 4.3/5
How do trends emerge and opinions form? The answer used to be something vague about word of mouth, but now it’s a highly measurable science, and nobody understands it better than Clay Shirky. In this delightfully readable book, practically every page has an insight that will change the way you think about the new era of social media. Highly recommended.” – Chris Anderson, editor-in-chief of Wired Magazine and author of The Long Tail.

Book-Trust-AgentsTrust Agents: Using the Web to Build Influence, Improve Reputation, and Earn Trust

by Chris Brogan and Julien Smith
Rating: 4.2/5
This book is your guide to a new form of power broker–web natives who trade in trust, reputation, and relationships using tools you may never even have heard of. You will learn what you need to look for in such an agent for your business or how to become one yourself. Trust Agents is your guide to the deep end of meaningful relationships on the web. Book’s goal is to help you build influence, improve reputation, and earn trust.

Book-Viral-LoopViral Loop: From Facebook to Twitter, How Today’s Smartest Businesses Grow Themselves

by Adam L. Penenberg
Rating: 3.9/5
Here’s something you may not know about today’s Internet. Simply by designing your product the right way, you can build a flourishing business from scratch. No advertising or marketing budget, no need for a sales force, and venture capitalists will flock to throw money at you. Many of the most successful Web 2.0 companies, including MySpace, YouTube, eBay, and rising stars like Twitter and Flickr, are prime examples of what journalist Adam L. Penenberg calls a “viral loop”–to use it, you have to spread it. After all, what’s the sense of being on Facebook if none of your friends are? The result: Never before has there been the potential to create wealth this fast, on this scale, and starting with so little.

Book-The-Social-Media-BibleThe Social Media Bible: Tactics, Tools, and Strategies for Business Success

by Lon Safko, David K. Brake
Rating: 4.1/of 5
The book will show you how to build or transform your business into a social media—enabled enterprise where customers, employees, and prospects connect, collaborate, and champion your products, your services, and your way of doing business.

Book-Social-Media-MarketingSocial Media Marketing: The Next Generation of Business Engagement

by Dave Evans
Rating: 3.7/5
How to implement social technology in business, spur collaborative innovation and drive winning programs to improve products, services, and long-term profits and growth. Details how to develop, implement, monitor and measure successful social media activities, and how to successfully act on feedback from the social web. Discusses conversation-monitoring tools and platforms to accelerate the business innovation cycle along with the metrics required to prove the success of social technology adoption. Connects the social dots more deeply across the entire organization, moving beyond marketing and into product development, customer service and customer-driven innovation, and the benefits of encouraging employee collaboration.

Book-EngageEngage, Revised and Updated: The Complete Guide for Brands and Businesses to Build, Cultivate, and Measure Success in the New Web

by Brian Solis
Rating: 3.8/5
Social media has democratized influence, forever changing the way businesses communicate with customers and the way customers affect the decisions of their peers. With platforms like Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook, anyone can now find and connect with others who share similar interests, challenges, and beliefs-creating communities that shape and steer the perception of brands. Without engagement in these communities, we miss major opportunities to shape our marketing messages.

Read my interview with Brian Solis: The End of Business as Usual.

Crush It!: Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion

by Gary Vaynerchuk
Rating: 4.5/5
This book isn’t interested in making unrealistic promises while glossing over the work involved. Making a living by building content around your passion isn’t simple and it doesn’t happen overnight. What it is, however, is fulfilling and in most cases just as profitable, if not more so, than your previous job.

Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us

by Seth Godin
Rating: 4.3/5
Tribes will make you think (really think) about the opportunities for leading your fellow employees, customers, investors, believers, hobbyists, readers. . . . It’s not easy, but it’s easier than you probably imagine. Read my interview with Seth Godin: Build a Tribe to Win.

The Social Media Marketing Book

by Dan Zarrella
Rating: 4.1/5
This book guides you through the maze of communities, platforms, and social media tools so you can decide which ones to use, and how to use them most effectively.

Social Media Marketing: An Hour a Day

by Dave Evans
Rating: 4.1/5
Put the buzz about your business to work for you. This comprehensive, perfectly paced guide will teach you how to make social media an active part of your marketing plan so that you can turn customer conversations about your brand, product, service, and company into a sustainable competitive advantage.

Secrets of Social Media Marketing: How to Use Online Conversations and Customer Communities to Turbo-Charge Your Business!

by Paul Gillin
Rating: 4.3/5
A handbook for marketers and business owners to use in deciding how to employ the new social media for online marketing.

Check out the related posts Top 10 Social Media Marketing Kindle eBooks and 10 Remarkable Content Marketing Books You Need to Read.

Image credit Zsuzsanna Kilian

Priit Kallas

Priit is the founder and CEO of DreamGrow Digital, an internet marketing and social media company. With his 20+ years internet marketing experience he is Helping companies to understand and use the digital marketing to reach their target audiences. He's also writing on a personal growth website FixWillPower.com. He has spoken at hundreds of seminars and conferences on different aspects of internet marketing. Priit is also the organizer of Digital Elite Camp, a leading traffic and conversion event.

10 Responses

  1. Drell Torres says:

    Surely these books would be a big help in Social Media Marketing! I love to buy ones of this. Great list. Helpful indeed.

  2. Anthony Colón says:

    Great! But one must consider their risks first … http://www.amazon.com/Social-Marketing-Management-Safety-Profit/dp/1453798935/ref=sr_1_37?ie=UTF8&qid=1344067691&sr=8-37&keywords=social+media+marketing

  3. Priit Kallas says:

    ClueTrain is great! I would say the Original talk-to-the-people-book. A while ago Amazon sold it for $4.99. I bought them just to give away to clients and friends…

  4. Varsha Peshavaria says:

    Hi Priit, I would recommend Putting Public Back in Public Relations for anyone in marketing or PR, its full of insightful and cases studies, and argues well the need for PR to adapt to social media. I would also add to the list ‘Cluetrain Manifesto’, although written some years back, its still relevant. Its my next read :-).

  5. Priit Kallas says:

    Thanks Varsha, Putting the Public Back in Public Relations seems really interesting. Socialnomics is in the list.

  6. Varsha Peshavaria says:

    Hi Priit

    I would also recommend:

    Putting the Public Back in Public Relations: How Social Media is Reinventing the Aging Business of PR by Brian Solis and Deirdre Breakenridge

    Trust Agents by Chris Brogan and Julien Smith

    Socialnomics by Erik Qualman is always a good start into social media.

    Best regards


  7. Erik Qualman says:

    Thanks Priit! I look forward to hearing what you think.

    Cheers, Erik

  8. Priit Kallas says:

    Thanks for your comment Erik. Just ordered your book last week.

  9. Erik Qualman says:

    Thanks for including me on such a great list!

    I have read and can recommend:

    Inbound Marketing by Brian Halligan, Dharmesh Shah

    Groundswell by Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff

    New Rules by David Meerman Scott

    Crush It! by Gary Vaynerchuk

    On my to read is Dave Evans book!

    Thanks again for the mention!

    Best, Erik Qualman
    Author of Socialnomics

  10. Joey says:

    Interesting… the books you mentioned seem good. I would like to read “Social Media Marketing: An Hour a Day”. Thanks for this useful post.

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