The original inbound marketers, the Grateful Dead, began their song “Althea“:Original Inbound Marketers - The Grateful Dead

I told Althea I was feeling lost
Lacking in some direction
Althea told me upon some scrutiny
My back might need some protection.

I wonder if the Grateful Dead’s inspiration for those lyrics were the people responsible for marketing at independent school’s during the last two years? I’m writing to offer some direction, as well as protection, for those brave marketers. I’m writing to highly recommend a book entitled, Inbound Marketing: Get Found Using Google, Social Media, and Blogs (New Rules Social Media Series)ir?t=schneidcom 20&l=as2&o=1&a=0470499311 by Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah, the co-founders of HubSpot. There’s a great description at Amazon.comir?t=schneidcom 20&l=as2&o=1&a=0470499311:

Stop pushing your message out and start pulling your customers in

Traditional “outbound” marketing methods like cold-calling, email blasts, advertising, and direct mail are increasingly less effective. People are getting better at blocking these interruptions out using Caller ID, spam protection, TiVo, etc. 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.

Inbound Marketingir?t=schneidcom 20&l=as2&o=1&a=0470499311 is a how-to guide to getting found via Google, the blogosphere, and social media sites.

Why You Should Read Inbound Marketing

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There are three reasons that I think you should read this book:

1. Education

If you’re involved in any capacity with marketing at your independent school you need to understand the concept of inbound marketing. This book does a masterful job of defining and explaining inbound marketing though the use of concrete examples and real-world case studies. I often feel that the hardest part of learning a new technology is understanding the vocabulary and terms. Dharmesh and Brian write in a very non-technical style that appeals to technology experts and novices alike. While you will be introduced to many new terms and concepts, they approach their explanation from the basic to the advanced and in my opinion, help the Luddite to the “rocket scientist.”

2. How-To Guide

I enjoy reading and most often choose books concerning topics centered around my passions: social media, branding, inbound marketing, and technology. I must admit that I’m frequently becoming disappointed with books in these categories because they usually focus on either theory or are simply a how-to guide but never both. Inbound Marketing is different! This book tackles the theory and background behind inbound marketing AND then becomes a how-to guide with action items for you to complete at the end of each chapter. Books that try to do both, theory and action, usually end up doing neither thing well but where other books have failed in this regard, Inbound Marketing succeeds. Brian and Dharmesh balance the theory and action in such a way that ultimately lead you to success.

3. Reference

I’ve read this book three times already and have consulted different chapters numerous times. In short, this book serves as a reference for me in my work with inbound marketing. I’m amazed at the amount of material Dharmesh and Brian packed into this book and found that every chapter, except maybe the chapter concerning hiring a PR agency, applies to our work at independent schools. Inbound Marketing will never collect dust on my bookshelf and I am confident that it won’t on yours as well.

I hope you can tell from my review that I highly recommend you read Inbound Marketing: Get Found Using Google, Social Media, and Blogs, especially if you work in the admission or marketing offices at your school. I would love to hear other people’s reaction to the book by commenting below. I am also eager to hear reactions from people who’ve implemented inbound marketing at their school.

Creative Commons License photo credit: Debs (ò?ó)?

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