10 of the best personal branding books to read in 2020

Personal branding is the art of how you present yourself so people remember you.

As Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, once said:

“Your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room” – Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder

Do you know people are saying about your personal brand online and off?

Are you taking steps to build, polish and refine it?

Are you branding yourself in everything you do and developing and refining your personal brand?

“All of us need to understand the importance of branding… we are CEOs of our own companies: Me Inc. … our most important job is to be head marketer for the brand called you” — Tom Peters in Fast Company.

Here are 10 books to help you get started on building a strong and memorable personal brand.

1. Personal Branding For Dummies

Personal Branding for Dummies BookAuthor: Susan Chritton

Why should you read this book? In this book, you’ll discover that a personal brand is more than just a business card and a resume. Learn how to expand your personal brand through social media, digital job boards, and online communities, using the proven methods of traditional personal branding.

Whether you are searching for a new job, considering a career change, or be more successful in your career, you’ll have the step-by-step information you need to start to distinguish yourself from the competition, help you stand out in a global talent pool and successfully establish a professional presence with a clear and concise image and reputation. The book provides critical information, tips, and techniques you need to develop a personal brand the right way.

2. BrandingPays: The Five-Step System to Reinvent Your Personal Brand

Branding Pays BookAuthor: Karen Kang

Why should you read this book? In this book, you’ll learn how too refocus your skills and experience so you become one of the best candidates for your dream job, grow in your career, and obtain the business opportunities you desire.

The author builds upon concepts and techniques used by the legendary marketing firm who launched the Apple brand.

Discover the step-by-step BrandingPays methodology that has been proven in Fortune 500 companies and leading business schools.

Branding Yourself BookAuthor: Erik Deckers

Why should you read this book? In this book, you’ll how to reinvent yourself to land a new job and demonstrate more value to your current employer.

Use today’s hottest social media platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram and SnapChat, this book is packed with new techniques and ideas that are practical, easy, and effective.

The authors explain how to choose today’s best social media tools for your personal goals, how to build an authentic storyline, how to find yourself on search engines and then optimize your personal online presence, how to take advantage of online and offline networking to get more from both and how to utilize your expert status to become a published author or public speaker.

4. Reinventing You, With a New Preface: Define Your Brand, Imagine Your Future

Reinventing You BookAuthor: Dorie Clark

Why should you read this book? In this book, you’ll about your career and yourself. Are you where you want to be professionally?

Whether you want to get a promotion at your company, find a new job, or change careers, this book is a step-by-step guide to help you assess your strengths, help you create a compelling personal brand, and make sure that your colleagues and your network recognize your value and the contributions you make. The author mixes stories with interviews and examples from popular leaders to show you how you should think about your professional goals and live the life you really want.

5. Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen

Building a Story Brand BookAuthor: Donald Miller

Why should you read this book? In this book, the New York Times best-selling author Donald Miller explains the key elements of powerful stories. The goal: to help you transform the way you talk about who you are, what you really do, and the unique value you bring to your customers and others.

The author’s process helps you see the seven universal story points all humans respond to, the reason customers make purchases, how to create a simple brand message, and how to create persuasive messaging for your digital presence.

6. The Breakthrough Speaker: How to Build a Public Speaking Career

Break Through Speaker BookAuthor: Adam Smiley Poswolsky

Why should you read this book? In this book, you’ll how to get paid to speak to others. This book is a follow-up book to the author’s popular book on the quarter-life crisis The Quarter-Life Breakthrough,. This book focuses on how to build a successful speaking career.

The author shares the lessons he learned in his journey from an unpaid speaker to a successful paid storyteller. The author regularly gets paid $10,000 for a 30-minute presentation and he wants to help you do the same.

With public speaking becoming an essential life skill, this book will help you “break into” the speaking industry and help you increase your online exposure, build your personal brand, and make a greater impact on the world.

7. Talk Triggers: The Complete Guide to Creating Customers with Word of Mouth

Talk Triggers BookAuthors: Jay Baer and Daniel Lemin

Why should you read this book? In this book, you’ll the concept of talk triggers. What are talk triggers? They are business choices and a shareable element that increases word-of-mouth, which is directly responsible for 19% of all purchases and can influences up to 90%.

Every human on earth relies on word of mouth to make buying decisions yet fewer than 1% of companies have a strategy for encourage better word of mouth conversations.

This book is a practical guide on how to use your differentiators to create better conversations. Learn from a companies such as Doubletree Hotels by Hilton, The Cheesecake Factory, Five Guys Burgers, and Penn & Teller on how they differentiate themselves.

8. This Is Marketing: You Can’t Be Seen Until You Learn to See

This is Marketing BookAuthor: Seth Godin

Why should you read this book? In this book is from number one Wall Street Journal bestseller author Seth Godin who takes a unique approach to marketing, sales, and advertising.

He is the originator of great ideas that have made their way into mainstream language. His previous books include Permission Marketing, Purple Cow, Tribes, and The Dip.

The author offers the core of his marketing wisdom in one book: use marketing to solve other people’s problems. This book uses a blend of insight, observation, and memorable examples to help you learn the art of positioning, why the best way to achieve your goals is to help others become who they want to be, and how marketing is at its core about the stories we tell ourselves about our social status.

9. Influencer: Building Your Personal Brand in the Age of Social Media

Influence BookAuthor: Brittany Hennessy

Why should you read this book? In this book, you’ll lear how to become an influencer. The author paints the picture that every one of your favorite influencers started with zero followers.

The author has seen has seen the role of influencers evolve as a nightlife blogger, social media strategist, and a senior director of influencer strategy and talent partnerships at Hearst Magazines.

This book will show you how to build an audience, how to package your brand and monetize your influence, including how to much to charge. You’ll also learn how to secure an agent, how to get the interest of top media publications and websites and praise a brand without alienating their competitors. You’ll learn how to elevate your online profile, understanding the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) rules around influencer marketing, and how to make money doing what you love to do.

10. Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die

Made to Stick BookAuthors: Chip Heath and Dan Heath

Why should you read this book? In this book, you’ll learn why some ideas thrive, why other ideas die on the vine, and how to improve the chances of your ideas.

“A lie can get halfway around the world before the truth can even get its boots on,” said Mark Twain. His observation rings true in today’s “fake news” era where conspiracy theories and bogus news stories have become mainstream. Meanwhile, people with important ideas are struggling to make their ideas “stick.”

The authors explain how to make ideas stickier, such as how to apply the human scale principle, how to use the Velcro Theory of Memory, and how to create “curiosity gaps.” This book will help you communicate better and provide you with stories to help you such as the Nobel Prize-winning scientist who drank a glass of bacteria to prove a point about stomach ulcers. This book shows us the key elements of great ideas and how we implement them to make our messages “stick.”

What personal branding books would you add to this list?

Is your favorite personal branding book missing from this list? Leave a comment below so you can share your thoughts on personal branding books that are a must read.

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