In Blog, Personal Brand Basics

If you’re working to take your personal brand to the next level, here are 17 must-read books to help get your mindset, business, and brand on the right path.

One thing that almost all successful people have in common is that they are avid readers.

Have you ever studied an established personal brand and wondered how they could possibly come up with and create so much content? The secret ingredient is that they are consistently reading and consuming content from books like the ones below.

Your next breakthrough or teaching point could be an idea created from a combination of lessons from several books you read recently. If you read these 17 books in the next 17 weeks, your business will be in a completely different place, and it will be easier to create content because you will have more knowledge that, combined with your life experience, will create a completely unique perspective to offer to the world.

17 Must-Read Books When Building A Personal Brand.

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How To Win Friends And Influence People – Dale Carnegie

For more than sixty years the rock-solid, time-tested advice in this book has carried thousands of now famous people up the ladder of success in their business and personal lives.

Now this previously revised and updated bestseller is available in trade paperback for the first time to help you achieve your maximum potential throughout the next century! Learn:

  • Three fundamental techniques in handling people
  • The six ways to make people like you
  • The twelve ways to win people to you way of thinking
  • The nine ways to change people without arousing resentment
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Blue Ocean Strategy – W. Chan Kim

The global phenomenon that has sold 3.6 million copies, is published in a record-breaking 44 languages and is a bestseller across five continents―now updated and expanded with new content

In this perennial bestseller, embraced by organizations and industries worldwide, globally preeminent management thinkers W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne challenge everything you thought you knew about the requirements for strategic success. Recognized as one of the most iconic and impactful strategy books ever written, Blue Ocean Strategy, now updated with fresh content from the authors, argues that cutthroat competition results in nothing but a bloody red ocean of rivals fighting over a shrinking profit pool. Based on a study of 150 strategic moves (spanning more than 100 years across 30 industries), the authors argue that lasting success comes not from battling competitors but from creating “blue oceans”―untapped new market spaces ripe for growth.

Blue Ocean Strategy presents a systematic approach to making the competition irrelevant and outlines principles and tools any organization can use to create and capture their own blue oceans. This expanded edition includes:

  • A new preface by the authors: Help! My Ocean Is Turning Red
  • Updates on all cases and examples in the book, bringing their stories up to the present time
  • Two new chapters and an expanded third one ― Alignment, Renewal, and Red Ocean Traps ― that address the most pressing questions readers have asked over the past 10 years

A landmark work that upends traditional thinking about strategy, this bestselling book charts a bold new path to winning the future. Consider this your guide to creating uncontested market space―and making the competition irrelevant.

To learn more about the power of blue ocean strategy, visit blueoceanstrategy.com. There you’ll find all the resources you need―from ideas in practice and cases from government and private industry, to teaching materials, mobile apps, real-time updates, and tips and tools to help you make your blue ocean journey a success.

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Think & Grow, Rich! – Napoleon Hill

The most famous of all teachers of success spent a fortune and the better part of a lifetime of effort to produce the Law of Success philosophy that forms the basis of his books and that is so powerfully summarized and explained for the general public in this book.

In Think and Grow Rich, Hill draws on stories of Andrew Carnegie, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, and other millionaires of his generation to illustrate his principles. This book will teach you the secrets that could bring you a fortune. It will show you not only what to do but how to do it. Once you learn and apply the simple, basic techniques revealed here, you will have mastered the secret of true and lasting success.

Money and material things are essential for freedom of body and mind, but there are some who will feel that the greatest of all riches can be evaluated only in terms of lasting friendships, loving family relationships, understanding between business associates, and introspective harmony which brings one true peace of mind! All who read, understand, and apply this philosophy will be better prepared to attract and enjoy these spiritual values.

BE PREPARED! When you expose yourself to the influence of this philosophy, you may experience a CHANGED LIFE which can help you negotiate your way through life with harmony and understanding and prepare you for the accumulation of abundant material riches.

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The Four Agreements – Don Miguel Ruiz

In The Four Agreements, bestselling author don Miguel Ruiz reveals the source of self-limiting beliefs that rob us of joy and create needless suffering. Based on ancient Toltec wisdom, The Four Agreements offer a powerful code of conduct that can rapidly transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, true happiness, and love.

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Influence – Dr. Robert Cialdini

Influence, the classic book on persuasion, explains the psychology of why people say “yes”—and how to apply these understandings. Dr. Robert Cialdini is the seminal expert in the rapidly expanding field of influence and persuasion. His thirty-five years of rigorous, evidence-based research along with a three-year program of study on what moves people to change behavior has resulted in this highly acclaimed book.

You’ll learn the six universal principles, how to use them to become a skilled persuader—and how to defend yourself against them. Perfect for people in all walks of life, the principles of Influence will move you toward profound personal change and act as a driving force for your success.

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Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook – Gary Vaynerchuk

New York Times bestselling author and social media expert Gary Vaynerchuk shares hard-won advice on how to connect with customers and beat the competition. A mash-up of the best elements of Crush It! and The Thank You Economy with a fresh spin, Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook is a blueprint to social media marketing strategies that really works.

When managers and marketers outline their social media strategies, they plan for the “right hook”—their next sale or campaign that’s going to knock out the competition. Even companies committed to jabbing—patiently engaging with customers to build the relationships crucial to successful social media campaigns—want to land the punch that will take down their opponent or their customer’s resistance in one blow. Right hooks convert traffic to sales and easily show results. Except when they don’t.

Thanks to massive change and proliferation in social media platforms, the winning combination of jabs and right hooks is different now. Vaynerchuk shows that while communication is still key, context matters more than ever. It’s not just about developing high-quality content, but developing high-quality content perfectly adapted to specific social media platforms and mobile devices—content tailor-made for Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and Tumblr.

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The One Thing – Gary Keller & Jay Papasan

The ONE Thing has made more than 350 appearances on national bestseller lists, including #1 Wall Street Journal, NewYork Times, and USA Today. It won 12 book awards, has been translated into 27 languages, chosen as one of the Top 5 Business Books of 2013 by Hudson’s Booksellers and one of Top 30 Business Books of 2013 by Executive Book Summaries.Voted one of Top 100 Business Books of All Time on Goodreads. People are using this simple, powerful concept to focus on what matters most in their personal and work lives. Companies are helping their employees be more productive with study groups, training, and coaching. Sales teams are boosting sales. Churches are conducting classes and recommending for their members. By focusing their energy on one thing at a time people are living more rewarding lives by building their careers, strengthening their finances, losing weight and getting in shape, deepening their faith, and nurturing stronger marriages and personal relationships.

YOU WANT LESS. You want fewer distractions and less on your plate. The daily barrage of e-mails, texts, tweets, messages, and meetings distract you and stress you out. The simultaneous demands of work and family are taking a toll. And what’s the cost? Second-rate work, missed deadlines, smaller paychecks, fewer promotions–and lots of stress. AND YOU WANT MORE. You want more productivity from your work. More income for a better lifestyle. You want more satisfaction from life, and more time for yourself, your family, and your friends. NOW YOU CAN HAVE BOTH–LESS AND MORE. In The ONE Thing, you’ll learn to * cut through the clutter * achieve better results in less time * build momentum toward your goal* dial down the stress * overcome that overwhelmed feeling * revive your energy * stay on track * master what matters to you The ONE Thing delivers extraordinary results in every area of your life–work, personal, family, and spiritual. WHAT’S YOUR ONE THING?

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Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World – Michael Hyatt

Michael Hyatt, one of the top business bloggers in the world, provides down-to-earth guidance for building and expanding a powerful platform.To be successful in the market today, you must possess two strategic assets: a compelling product and a meaningful platform. In this step-by-step guide, Michael Hyatt, former CEO and current Chairman of Thomas Nelson Publishers, takes readers behind the scenes, into the new world of social media success. He shows you what best-selling authors, public speakers, entrepreneurs, musicians, and other creatives are doing differently to win customers in today’s crowded marketplace. Hyatt speaks from experience. He writes one of the top 800 blogs in the world and has more than 100,000 followers on Twitter. His large and growing platform serves as the foundation for his successful writing, speaking, and consulting practice.

In Platform, Hyatt will teach readers not only how to extend their influence, but also how to monetize it and build a sustainable career. The key? By building a platform. It has never been easier, less expensive, or more possible than right now. . .  The book includes:

  • proven strategies
  • easy-to-replicate formulas
  • practical tips

Social media technologies have changed everything. Now, for the first time in history, non-celebrities can get noticed―and win big!―in an increasingly noisy world.

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The Entrepreneur’s Solution: The Modern Millionaire’s Path to More Profit, Fans & Freedom – Mel Abraham

“The Entrepreneur’s Solution” reawakens the entrepreneurial spirit in us all: the drive to fulfill our highest potential-as individuals, as a country, and as members of a global community. “The Entrepreneur’s Solution” is required for the start-up and for the seasoned business owner to understand the new rules of the game. It is the new entrepreneurial manual.

It is filled with the very frameworks that were built through Mel Abraham’s decades of experience as an entrepreneur, advisor and mentor. He gives you the recipe that not only helps you build a business but to build a life and create an entrepreneurial journey of epic proportions. “The Entrepreneur’s Solution” is about harnessing your creative force, breaking free of your former state, and getting your life in alignment with your intention and purpose. It is through these frameworks (and the author’s stories) that you journey to a land where your team is connected, committed and loyal, your customers become raving fans and your life full with fulfillment because the business you are creating is in congruence with your values, operated in alignment with your higher vision and connected to all stakeholders at an emotional level As a result, your business serves them by transforming their lives. All of this will translate into more profits, fans and freedom. Welcome to The Entrepreneur’s Solution!

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The Slight Edge – Jeff Olson

The Slight Edge is a way of thinking, a way of processing information that enables you to make the daily choices that will lead you to the success and happiness you desire. Learn why some people make dream after dream come true, while others just continue dreaming and spend their lives building dreams for someone else. It’s not just another self-help motivation tool of methods you must learn in order to travel the path to success. It shows you how to create powerful results from the simple daily activities of your life, by using tools that are already within you.
In this 8th anniversary edition you’ll read not only the life-changing concepts of the original book, but also learn what author Jeff Olson discovered as he continued along the slight edge path: the Secret to Happiness and the Ripple Effect.
This edition of The Slight Edge isn’t just the story, but also how the story continues to create life-altering dynamics–how a way of thinking, a way of processing information, can impact daily choices that will lead you to the success and happiness you desire. The Slight Edge is “the key” that will make all the other how-to books and self-help information that you read, watch and hear actually work.

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The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck – Mark Manson

In this generation-defining self-help guide, a superstar blogger cuts through the crap to show us how to stop trying to be “positive” all the time so that we can truly become better, happier people.

For decades, we’ve been told that positive thinking is the key to a happy, rich life. “F**k positivity,” Mark Manson says. “Let’s be honest, shit is f**ked and we have to live with it.” In his wildly popular Internet blog, Manson doesn’t sugarcoat or equivocate. He tells it like it is—a dose of raw, refreshing, honest truth that is sorely lacking today. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k is his antidote to the coddling, let’s-all-feel-good mindset that has infected modern society and spoiled a generation, rewarding them with gold medals just for showing up.

Manson makes the argument, backed both by academic research and well-timed poop jokes, that improving our lives hinges not on our ability to turn lemons into lemonade, but on learning to stomach lemons better. Human beings are flawed and limited—”not everybody can be extraordinary, there are winners and losers in society, and some of it is not fair or your fault.” Manson advises us to get to know our limitations and accept them. Once we embrace our fears, faults, and uncertainties, once we stop running and avoiding and start confronting painful truths, we can begin to find the courage, perseverance, honesty, responsibility, curiosity, and forgiveness we seek.

There are only so many things we can give a f**k about so we need to figure out which ones really matter, Manson makes clear. While money is nice, caring about what you do with your life is better, because true wealth is about experience. A much-needed grab-you-by-the-shoulders-and-look-you-in-the-eye moment of real-talk, filled with entertaining stories and profane, ruthless humor, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k is a refreshing slap for a generation to help them lead contented, grounded lives.

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Published.: The Proven Path From Blank Page To Published Author  – Chandler Bolt

Are you tired of trying time and time again to successfully, write, market, and publish a book and not being successful? Are you looking for a map that will take you from blank page to published author as quick as possible? In this conversational and action-oriented book, Chandler Bolt presents a simple solution to the writing, marketing, and publishing process through a tried, tested, and proven book launch formula: The SPS 90-Day Way. In Published. you will find: -A step-by-step guide for the entire writing process -Four different book marketing and publishing methods that will best fit your personal situation -Inspirational Interludes from various best-selling authors around the world -Best-Selling Author Tips to ensure nothing slips through the cracks -A fresh, new mindset towards authorship paired with the foundation to make real life changes Published. brings to light one of Chandler’s largest core values: providing people with the ability to choose unlimited possibilities for their life, no matter their dreams. Published. equips readers with the key to unlock the story that has been burning inside them, calling them to share their wisdom with the world. Published. turns writers into authors. Don’t wait. Read this book and unlock the benefits of being an author today.

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Give: The Ultimate Guide To Using Facebook Advertising – Nicholas Kusmich

Most marketers concentrate on what they’re trying to get. The best marketers concentrate on what they have to give.

The way people consume media is changing, fast. Laptops, tablets, and smartphones keep us constantly connected to the web. This represents a huge opportunity for savvy marketers. The only problem: the old methods are no longer working. New media demands new advertising.

Facebook is the single most effective platform for marketing in the Internet era, and Nicholas Kusmich is the best Facebook marketer in the world. In GIVE, he will show you what differentiates Facebook from traditional advertising and explain why it’s so important to promote your business in a way that’s congruent with the norms of social media.

He’ll take you through a four-step process to pinpoint your market, master your message, create a magnet, and build a mechanism that both collects and helps you retain and develop those relationships. When used well, Nic’s Facebook advertising strategies can send your return on investment through the roof.

In GIVE, you’ll find the tools you need to share your authentic voice with the people who want to hear it and turn their attention into satisfying, meaningful sales.

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The Advertising Solution – Craig Simpson & Brian Kurtz

Distilling the wisdom of the world’s greatest advertisers, direct marketing expert Craig Simpson delivers an education on direct marketing and advertising copy that creates brand awareness, sells products, and keeps customers engaged. Walks readers through time-tested methods of creating effective ad copy that increases profits. Dissects the principles of legendary marketers like Robert Collier, Claude Hopkins, John Caples, and David Ogilvy.

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The Millionaire Messenger – Brendon Burchard

The #1 New York Times bestseller from world-renowned advice expert, Brendon Burchard, teaches everyday people how to share their story and wisdom with the world and build a lucrative business doing so.

In this game-changing book by Brendon Burchard, founder of Experts Academy, you’ll discover: Your life story and experience have greater importance and market value than you probably ever dreamed.

In The Millionaire Messenger, legendary expert trainer Brendon Burchard pulls back the curtains on the advice industry and shows you a simple ten-step plan for making an impact and an income with what you know.

Over the past decade, Brendon Burchard has built five separate brands into an 8-figure empire. This book is arguably the best book in the world when it comes to building a personal brand and getting paid for what you know.

The lessons you’ve learned in life and business are about to become your greatest asset—and your greatest legacy.

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Give And Take – Adam Grant

For generations, we have focused on the individual drivers of success: passion, hard work, talent, and luck. But in today’s dramatically reconfigured world, success is increasingly dependent on how we interact with others. In Give and Take, Adam Grant, an award-winning researcher and Wharton’s highest-rated professor, examines the surprising forces that shape why some people rise to the top of the success ladder while others sink to the bottom. Praised by social scientists, business theorists, and corporate leaders, Give and Take opens up an approach to work, interactions, and productivity that is nothing short of revolutionary.

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Essentialism – Greg McKeown

The Way of the Essentialist isn’t about getting more done in less time. It’s about getting only the right things done.  It is not  a time management strategy, or a productivity technique. It is a systematic discipline for discerning what is absolutely essential, then eliminating everything that is not, so we can make the highest possible contribution towards the things that really matter.

By forcing us to apply a more selective criteria for what is Essential, the disciplined pursuit of less empowers us to reclaim control of our own choices about where to spend our precious time and energy – instead of giving others the implicit permission to choose for us.

Essentialism is not one more thing – it’s a whole new way of doing everything. A must-read for any leader, manager, or individual who wants to do less, but better, and declutter and organize their own their lives, Essentialism is a movement whose time has come.

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Tools of Titans – Tim Ferriss

For the last two years, I’ve interviewed more than 200 world-class performers for my podcast, The Tim Ferriss Show. The guests range from super celebs (Jamie Foxx, Arnold Schwarzenegger, etc.) and athletes (icons of powerlifting, gymnastics, surfing, etc.) to legendary Special Operations commanders and black-market biochemists. For most of my guests, it’s the first time they’ve agreed to a two-to-three-hour interview. This unusual depth has helped make The Tim Ferriss Show the first business/interview podcast to pass 100 million downloads.

This book contains the distilled tools, tactics, and ‘inside baseball’ you won’t find anywhere else. It also includes new tips from past guests, and life lessons from new ‘guests’ you haven’t met.

What makes the show different is a relentless focus on actionable details. This is reflected in the questions. For example: What do these people do in the first sixty minutes of each morning? What do their workout routines look like, and why? What books have they gifted most to other people? What are the biggest wastes of time for novices in their field? What supplements do they take on a daily basis?

I don’t view myself as an interviewer. I view myself as an experimenter. If I can’t test something and replicate results in the messy reality of everyday life, I’m not interested.

Everything within these pages has been vetted, explored, and applied to my own life in some fashion. I’ve used dozens of the tactics and philosophies in high-stakes negotiations, high-risk environments, or large business dealings. The lessons have made me millions of dollars and saved me years of wasted effort and frustration.

I created this book, my ultimate notebook of high-leverage tools, for myself. It’s changed my life, and I hope the same for you.

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