5 Books Every Financial Services Marketer Should Read

Posted by Doug Wilber on March 16, 2018

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As marketers in the financial services space, there’s always more for us all to learn — and read. We’ve got a list of titles to get you started.

We know, we know: working as a digital marketer in financial services can be an isolating experience. You probably work on a small team, your role is primarily internal-facing, and there just isn’t much collaboration across the industry or support from upper management. After all, CMO.com reports that just 9% of financial services company claim to be “digital-first.”

So like many of us do when we’ve got plenty of alone time, financial marketers should grab a good book and dive in! Books on marketing may not make for the easiest of beach reads, but they sure do come in handy.

Here are some of our favorites:

1. Epic Content Marketing - Joe Pulizzi

This book, which Fortune deemed “One of 5 Must-Read Business Books of 2013,” is a step-by-step guide to creating a robust social media marketing strategy and remains a must-read today.

Pulizzi focuses on the creation of relevant content, as opposed to the kind of shallow, attention-grabbing “popcorn” content that quickly wears out its welcome with readers. In Epic Content Marketing, he explains how well-executed, high-quality content is much better at captivating and engaging audiences. Complete with relevant case studies of major companies like Coca-Cola and LEGO, Pulizzi offers readers an in-depth view of how effective digital marketing can drive measurable results and increase sales.

Key Takeaway: Successful content marketing is all about consistency, which means having the right processes and tools in place to post new and engaging content at the same times every day, same days every week, and same weeks of every month.

 

2. Youtility: Why Smart Marketing Is About Help Not Hype - Jay Baer

Many digital marketing strategies measure success by metrics — how many likes, retweets, shares, and clicks your content receives. In Youtility: Why Smart Marketing Is About Help Not Hype, Baer encourages readers to reconsider these rudimentary measures of success.

He argues that a good approach to marketing strategy should focus less on numbers alone and more on the value of content, exploring how demonstrations of a brand’s utility and value can transform company-customer relationships.

Key Takeaway: It’s better to put out a lot of content that will actually help your users solve problems or educate them on the things that they need to know than it is to try over and over again to make a “home run” piece of viral content.

 

3. The Social Media Bible: Tactics, Tools, and Strategies for Business Success- Lon Safko, David K. Brake

A thorough guide to transforming your entire business through social media, The Social Media Bible has been praised by executives from the ranks of big brands like Levi Strauss and General Mills — as well as Vint Cerf, often called the “Father of the Internet.”

It offers one of the stronger and more helpful explainers on the origin and background of social media available in print or online. It also dives deep into more advanced insights, such as the ins and outs of establishing a connective and collaborative relationship between employees, customers, and prospective customers to champion your brand.

Key Takeaway: Social media marketing isn’t so much about branding anymore — it’s about empowering every member of your organization to contribute to sales and harnessing the collective skills of your entire institution.

 

4. Optimize - Lee Odden

Social media marketing is well beyond its infancy, and companies are always looking to innovate new ways to leverage this increasingly influential channel. Lee Odden’s Optimize moves beyond the basics by challenging readers to consider how they can optimize their online presence and address a number of issues they may be experiencing with their current marketing strategy.

Odden, thought leader and marketing consultant to some of the world’s largest brands, wants readers to know it’s not enough to be producing content, and lets them in on some social media strategies that will directly inspire action from their customers.

Key Takeaway: Use social media not just to send out your own message, but to learn from others. What problems do your audiences deal with that you might be able to solve? What questions do they have that need answering?

 

5. Audience: Marketing in the Age of Subscribers, Fans & Followers - David Rohrs

We all know that a social media strategy is useless if it doesn’t have an audience to market to, but David Rohrs believes businesses too often treat their marketing audiences as an afterthought when they should be treated as assets in and of themselves.

Complete with hard data and engaging case studies, Audience: Marketing in the Age of Subscribers, Fans & Followers explores how companies can increase the scope, value, and overall engagement of audiences over the course of years. Using Rohrs’ rule, “The Audience Imperative,” businesses can cultivate an audience-centric media marketing strategy that drives higher retention rates and bigger audiences while growing brand awareness in the process.

Key Takeaway: Simply having a presence on social media is no longer enough — companies need both great content and a highly organized method of delivering it in order to steadily grow their audiences.


While these titles offer great tips for cultivating a more influential social media marketing strategy for your financial services company, any tutorial can only represent a starting point. To reach your full social media potential and grow your brand, it’s important to get the tools you need to put strategy into practice.

Gremlin Social offers the widest range of marketing, analytics, and strategy-development services that can help your company start influencing customers on social media in the here and now.

With revolutionary tools like Gremlin Social GuardianTM, the only social media compliance platform endorsed by the ABA, we can ensure your social media strategy is not only effective, but 100% compliant with banking and finance regulations.

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