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The ContentCal team's recommended reading list

Sophie Thompson
18th March 2021

It's World Book Day! And while people around the world share their love of reading, we thought it was only appropriate to share what Team ContentCal is getting stuck into right now - as well as some best-selling marketing books you should definitely get your hands on.

Here's what the ContentCal team are reading right now:

Disrupted: Ludicrous Misadventures in the Tech Start-up Bubble by Dan Lyons

Katie, Content Marketing


"Disrupted is about a tech journalist who loses his job at the publication he has worked at for years, and moves into the world of tech startups, joining Hubspot in its relatively early days. It’s a reminder of how crazy the world of startups can be, what happens when CEOs and Execs don’t put their people first and how it is possible to successfully restart your life at 50."

How to Build a Healthy Brain by Kimberley Wilson

Kirsty, Marketing Exec

how to build a healthy brain

"How to Build a Healthy Brain is a really research-backed book that explains what you can do in your everyday life to create healthy habits to reduce anxiety and depression as well as future-proof your brain. Considering the current events of the world, I think it’s a great time for us all to make more of a conscious effort to take care of our mental health. I love how all the information in the book comes from a completely credible source (the author is a chartered psychologist) and you can completely trust that all of the advice is proven to work."

The Road by Cormac McCarthy

Ed, Marketing Consultant

the road

"The Road is a vivid portrayal of a dying world, with the only light being the love and companionship between father and son. I loved it for the complete absorption into a terrifying loss of civilization but with the hope for the individual characters."

A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara

Jas, Head of Customer Service

a little life

"This book follows four men over the course of their lives, from their twenties to their sixties. They initially meet at university and then move to New York to chase big careers. It’s lengthy, heartbreaking, gut-wrenching, and full of endurance. It’s one of those books, where the characters stay with you - it's powerful and moving. A Little Life reminds us to be in the moment and appreciate the good things while they last and my biggest takeaway is simple: life is what you make it."

Lucky Man: A Memoir by Michael J. Fox

Dan, Sales

lucky man

"One of my favorite books is Michael J. Fox's autobiography. He got diagnosed with Parkinson's in his prime, late 20's, but explains that the years since have been the best. It really puts life in perspective and made me appreciate what I have."

Women Don't Owe You Pretty by Florence Given

Sophie, Marketing Exec

women dont owe you pretty

"This book is a self-love bible by Instagram illustrator and activist Florence Given about all the things she’s been taught in a patriarchal society about being a girl and how to behave, how she should expect to be treated, and how she’s challenging that narrative now. It's a lot of self-reflection about what’s damaging you and what's limiting you, but also holding yourself accountable in order to be the best version of yourself. It's very easy to read, full of Instagrammable graphics and quotes - a great coffee table book."

Born To Run by Christopher McDougall

Becca, Product Designer

born to run

"Born To Run is a non-fiction book written by a journalist, who has a love for running. The author goes on a journey to Mexico to find a reclusive tribe, the Tarahumara, to unlock their running secrets - they can run for hundreds of miles, without rest or high-tech science. I’m loving it so far because it’s allowing me to appreciate running in a different way!"

While we are big advocates of reading to relax, take your mind off work and broaden your content creativity, there are also tons of amazing marketing books ready to help you level-up your marketing campaigns too. We've also recommended books that include some solid advice from marketing experts on how to navigate your way through the industry and the challenges you might face.

ContentCal's recommended marketing reading includes:

She Said; A guide for Millennial Women to Speaking and Being Heard by Patricia Seabright

she said

She Said addresses that the current gender balance in organizations is proving hard to achieve, and offers tips to navigate challenges for career success as a woman. Many women find it challenging to speak and be fully heard. Have you been ignored or interrupted in meetings? Have you avoided giving a speech or presentation? Have you spoken out and felt that people (especially men) are not listening? This handbook for millennial women is designed to help them speak, to help them navigate the challenges, and fast forward their careers.

Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content by Ann Handley

everybody writes

In Everybody Writes, top marketing veteran Ann Handley gives expert guidance and insight into the process of content strategy, production, and publishing, with how-to advice designed to get results. If you have a website, you are a publisher. If you are on social media, you are in marketing. And that means that we are all relying on our words to carry our marketing messages. We are all writers. This book covers topics from best practices, to how to write different types of content dependent on your target market, and how to hate writing less.

This is Marketing: You Can’t Be Seen Until You Learn To See by Seth Godin

this is marketing

This is Marketing is the first time Seth Godin has opened up and shared his wisdom in one concise package. No matter what your product or service, this book will help you take a step back and look at how it's presented to the world, in order to meaningfully connect with potential customers. Expect to learn a lot, including how to build trust and permission with your target market, why the old approaches to advertising and branding no longer work, and the surprising role of tension in any buying decision.

Marketing 4.0: Moving from Traditional to Digital by Philip Kotler

marketing 4.0

Marketing 4.0 is for marketers past and present, experiencing the shift towards more digital-first approaches. Written by the world's leading marketing authorities, this book helps you navigate the ever-changing consumer landscape to help you market more effectively. Today's customers have less time and attention to devote to your brand—and they are surrounded by alternatives every step of the way. You need to stand up, get their attention, and deliver the message they want to hear. It's time to rip up the rule book of marketing that you once knew.

The Choice Factory: 25 behavioural biases that influence what we buy by Richard Shotton

the choice factory

The Choice Factory takes a deep dive into the psychology behind our decisions. There are trivial choices like what we're going to eat, but there are also life-changing career moves, all influenced by psychological shortcuts. The focus throughout is particularly on ad marketing campaigns and how the smartest people in advertising play on our behaviors to influence us to buy.

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