marketing-agency-books

The Top Marketing Books Every Agency Owner Should Read in 2022

Here's a comprehensive list of the all the top books for marketing agency owners. Including classics by Seth Godin, The Power of Agency, This is Marketing and more.

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What do all the top digital marketing agency owners have in common? They all read a ton of books. And they apply actionable insights into growing their businesses. They never stop learning and they don’t have to learn from their own mistakes, they like to learn from other peoples’ experiences.

So we thought - why should we make you search for all these awesome insights? Let’s make a place where you can find all the info on the best books to grow your marketing agency. Here is our list of the top marketing agency books for both beginners who are starting out on this journey and for seasoned marketers who are looking to up their game.

The Marketing Agency Blueprint

The Handbook for Building Hybrid PR, SEO, Content, Advertising, and Web Firms

the-marketing-agency-blueprint

The Marketing Strategy Blueprint is a great book for anyone starting out and creating their own marketing agency. It was written over a decade ago in 2011 when marketing agencies were just starting to blossom, but the principles in it still ring true.

This book helped marketing agency owners generate more qualified leads, win clients, set their packaging pricing correctly, and create effective management systems for their teams (which is probably the biggest challenge in the agency game). There is also a really great chapter on pricing that’s helped a lot of people.

Published: 2011

Author: Paul Roetzer

About the author: Paul Roetzer is the founder and CEO of Marketing AI Institute and PR 20/20. He has written numerous books including the Marketing Agency Blueprint and Marketing Artificial Intelligence (2022). He has consulted with hundreds of organizations, from startups to Fortune 500 companies to traditional firms.

Get the book on Amazon.


The Power of Agency - 7 Principles to Conquer

The 7 Principles to Conquer Obstacles, Make Effective Decisions, and Create a Life on Your Own Terms

the-power-of-agency

This is a very interesting read. It doesn’t talk about managing a marketing agency specifically but deals with the psychological skills and attitude changes required to manage your own business.

Most business owners, especially agency owners, feel stressed out and overwhelmed. There is a lot to juggle - different clients, team members, conflicting priorities, and deadlines. This book helps give business owners the skills to deal with it and decrease the overwhelm.

Published: 2019

Authors: Dr. Paul Napper and Anthony Rao

About the authors: Paul Napper leads a management psychology and executive coaching consultancy. He has consulted for Fortune 500 companies, universities, and startups. He holds a fellowship position at Harvard Medical School. Anthony Rao is a cognitive-behavioral psychologist who has practiced psychology for over 20 years at Boston Children’s Hospital. He also teaches at Harvard Medical School.

Get the book on Amazon.


The 7 Figure Agency Roadmap

How to Build a Million Dollar Digital Marketing Agency

seven-figure-agency-roadmap

This is one of the most practical books on building your own agency. Josh has actually built and still manages his own agency and in this book, he breaks down in detail the process to follow to build a solid foundation for your business.

Most agencies hit a certain income ceiling and give up and what’s lacking is not the mindset but the model. So this book gives you a step-by-step process to follow to set up your model correctly and to make sure your agency is scalable.

Published: 2020

Author: Josh Nelson

About the author: Josh started his own agency called Plumbing & HVAC SEO back in 2011 and has grown it to over $4M in annual revenue. He is also the founder of Seven Figure Agency, a site that’s dedicated to helping agency owners improve their marketing performance and scale their businesses.

Get the book on Amazon.

How to Start a Successful Creative Agency

Essential Business Guide for Graphic Designers, Copywriters, Filmmakers, Photographers, and Programmers

how-to-start-a-successful-creative-agency

This book is geared more toward the creatives that are running a graphic design or content writing agency. It’s written by an agency veteran of 30+ years and covers literally every aspect of starting the agency from how you should work with your clients to finances. It even discusses legal and insurance. It provides lots of really great examples that you can adapt to your own creative team.

Published: 2021

Author: Andy Strode

About the author: Andy is a copywriter and creative director that has founded three creative agencies in Toronto. He founded Fireworks Creative, grew it from 2 to 30 people, and later sold it for $3 million.

Get the book on Amazon.


The Agency: Build - Grow - Repeat

How to Build a Remarkable Digital Agency Business that Wins

the-agency-build-grow-repeat

Here’s another great book to read on growing your own agency. It’s more inspirational and motivational than the other ones on our list. It gives the reader a lot of high-level strategies and not a lot of the detailed tactics that you would find in other books. But it covers a wide array of topics and really everything you need to get started.

Published: 2019

Author: Luca Senatore

About the author: Luca is a director at a multi-award-winning digital agency called Genie Goals. He was previously a former Mixed Martial Arts athlete who went from speaking no English and being fired from a kitchen porter job to growing seven successful businesses. He’s been ranked as the top five international marketing experts.

Get the book on Amazon.


The Advertising Agency Business

The Complete Manual for Management & Operation

the-advertising-agency-business

This is the classic textbook guide on managing and operating an advertising agency. It’s really good for people that want to learn about the financial management of their agency and how to structure billing properly, how to create the right management structures, excel at client relations, and manage finances.

It’s a little bit outdated and doesn’t cover any of the practical advertising tactics that have drastically changed in the last 2 decades but it does a really good overview of the operational side of the business.

Published: 1998

Author: Eugene Hameroff

Get the book on Amazon.


Agency: Starting a Creative Firm in the Age of Digital Marketing

agency-starting-a-creative-firm-in-the-age-of-digital-marketing

This one is a fun read. It’s a practical guidebook full of humor that inspires agency owners to keep going. It’s not geared for those that are just starting out but is more focused on practical strategies of how to scale your agency and survive the tough spots ahead. It deals with every topic under the sun, from how to manage the people, to the process, the money, how to bootstrap, manage the operations, grow the client list, billing, and cash flow.

Published: 2016

Author: Rick Webb

About the author: Rick Webb is a veteran agency owner. He founded an award-winning digital ad agency called the Barbarian Group in 2001 and was its COO for ten years. He is also a venture partner at Quotidian Ventures and an avid blogger on all things technology, advertising, and economics.

Get the book on Amazon.


Digital Marketing Strategy: An Integrated Approach to Online Marketing

digital-marketing-strategy-an-integrated-approach-to-online-marketing

Every digital agency owner that wants to scale needs to know digital marketing strategy in order to help their clients scale. So here’s the textbook on marketing strategy. It covers a variety of topics like SEO, paid search, email marketing, and lead generation and has real-world case studies from the likes of Coca-Cola, Spotify, Adidas, and Airbnb.

Published: 2022

Author: Simon Kingsnorth

About the author: Simon Kingsnorth is a digital marketing expert with over 20 years of experience. He was previously the Global Head of Digital Marketing at CitiBank and has worked with other leading companies like Vodafone and Google.

Get the book on Amazon.


Get Rich in the Deep End

Commit to Your Niche, Own Your Market, and Audaciously Scale Your Agency.

get-rich-in-the-deep-end

This book reads like a novel (and in fact it is). It’s a story of Heather Carlyle who is a business owner and it describes some of the strategies she used to grow her business. It takes all the theories and strategies you would learn in a regular business book and make them really practical and applicable to your business.

The book follows the 5-A Framework that the author created which stands for - Audience, Awareness, Attract, Authority, and Acquire. And it has a chapter on each one. Definitely not your average marketing book.

Published: 2020

Author: Brent Weaver

About the author: Brent is on a mission to help 10,000 digital agency owners achieve success. He is the founder and CEO of UGURUS, a training and education company for digital agencies and advertising executives. Brent also hosts the podcast The Digital Agency Show.

Get the book on Amazon.


This is Marketing by Seth Godin

You Can't Be Seen Until You Learn to See

this-is-marketing-seth-godin

Seth Godin is epic! He is a super captivating author with a special talent for breaking down complex topics into a simple actionable approach. This book talks about the art of positioning, how to build trust with your target market, and how to tell stories in your marketing. It’s a must-read book for any digital marketing agency owner that is looking to grow. It also has a nice audiobook edition.

Published:

Author: Seth Godin

About the author: Seth Godin is the bestselling author of 18 international bestsellers that completely revolutionized the way people think about marketing. He is also the founder of the altMBA, an alternative online MBA program for executives, and the former VP of Direct Marketing at Yahoo!

Get the book on Amazon


The PR Agency Handbook

pr-agency-handbook

Public relations is a really complex discipline within marketing and it’s hard to get it right. A lot of agency owners are too busy growing their businesses, getting more clients, and managing their teams that they often neglect to get recognition from the public.

This book helps agency owners get their heads around PR. It contains practical real-world examples from the field, numerous interviews with industry professionals and publicity agencies, and lots of tools and templates to help agencies get started.

Published: 2018

Authors: Regina M. Luttrell and Luke W. Capizzo

About the authors: Regina is an assistant professor of Public Relations and Social Media Marketing and the director of the graduate program in Public relations at the S.I Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. She has written numerous books and has led multiple rebranding campaigns, site redesigns, and PR campaigns. Luke is an instructor in the Department of Communication at the University of Maryland.

Get the book on Amazon.


Crossing the Chasm, 3rd Edition

Marketing and Selling Disruptive Products to Mainstream Customers

crossing-the-chasm-3rd-edition

This book is known as the bible for bringing cutting-edge products to the market. It has a really great explanation for audience targeting that explains the way different audience segments adopt products and services differently. The chasm refers to this gap in adoption between the early adopter and innovators to the majority of the market.

This book teaches companies how to market their products to cross that chasm in the market. It’s one of the most influential books on marketing strategy and it’s a must-read for every agency owner.

Published: 2014

Author: Geoffrey A. Moore

About the author: Geoffrey Moore is a well-known author, speaker, and advisor to some of the most established high-tech companies including Salesforce, Microsoft, Autodesk, and Google. His most famous book, Crossing the Chasm, has sold more than 1 million copies around the world.

Get the book on Amazon.


HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategic Marketing

hbr-10-must-reads-on-strategic-marketing

If you never heard of HBR or the Harvard Business Review, it’s a collection of the latest and most cutting-edge research on business and management. They often publish their top-read articles in book form and here is the one on Strategic Marketing.

It’s an incredible guide that teaches business owners how to properly position their business their way, target the right customers, and utilize their brand’s strengths to the fullest.

Look, it’s not going to help you create a 1-page marketing plan, but it will help you learn how to think about your business, predict your customer behavior, and gain a competitive advantage.

Published: 2013

Authors: HBR

About the authors: Harvard Business Review papers are published by some of the world’s leading experts on business with decades of experience including people like Clayton Christensen, Theodore Levitt, and Philip Kotler.

Get the book on Amazon.


All Marketers are Liars

The Underground Classic That Explains How Marketing Really Works--and Why Authenticity Is the Best Marketing of All

all-marketers-are-liars-seth-godin

Here’s another great read from Seth Godin in which he focuses on the super important skill of storytelling. Every agency owner needs to be able to tell their brand’s story as well as their personal story in an authentic way.

The art of telling a good story isn’t reserved for content marketers and it shouldn’t be hiding in some obscure corner of the page like your customer ratings. It should be communicated through all the various marketing channels you use.

Storytelling could take many forms including social media, podcasts, interviews, you name it. This popular book includes some really great examples of brands that were successful in communicating their stories.

Published: 2009

Authors: Seth Godin

Get the book on Amazon.


Beyond the Agency Box

The Phoneless, Meetingless Digital Marketing Agency That Creates Lifetime Happy Clients Without Facebook Ads, Webinars, Google, or SEO

beyond-the-agency-box

Now, here’s a special treat. This isn’t your regular run-of-the-mill on how to build an agency book. This practical book presents an entirely different and somewhat unconventional approach to marketing - a way to grow your agency without ads or inbound marketing but through relationship building.

The author, Franki Fihn, describes the very specific ways he picks his clients and nurtures those relationships. Give it a read.

Published: 2020

Author: Frankie Fihn

About the author: Frankie Fihn started an SEO agency when the market crashed in 2007 and he quickly grew it into a successful business. He leads a successful online community helping marketing agency owners grow their businesses.

Get the book on Amazon.


Recap

We hope you enjoyed our list of must-read books about growing your marketing agency. We hope it wasn't too overwhelming for you. We know there are thousands of authors and "marketing gurus" to choose from. The key is to isolate your use case and pick a book that can help you grow your business (and marketing team) to the next level.


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The Top Marketing Books Every Agency Owner Should Read in 2022

Here's a comprehensive list of the all the top books for marketing agency owners. Including classics by Seth Godin, The Power of Agency, This is Marketing and more.

No items found.

What do all the top digital marketing agency owners have in common? They all read a ton of books. And they apply actionable insights into growing their businesses. They never stop learning and they don’t have to learn from their own mistakes, they like to learn from other peoples’ experiences.

So we thought - why should we make you search for all these awesome insights? Let’s make a place where you can find all the info on the best books to grow your marketing agency. Here is our list of the top marketing agency books for both beginners who are starting out on this journey and for seasoned marketers who are looking to up their game.

The Marketing Agency Blueprint

The Handbook for Building Hybrid PR, SEO, Content, Advertising, and Web Firms

the-marketing-agency-blueprint

The Marketing Strategy Blueprint is a great book for anyone starting out and creating their own marketing agency. It was written over a decade ago in 2011 when marketing agencies were just starting to blossom, but the principles in it still ring true.

This book helped marketing agency owners generate more qualified leads, win clients, set their packaging pricing correctly, and create effective management systems for their teams (which is probably the biggest challenge in the agency game). There is also a really great chapter on pricing that’s helped a lot of people.

Published: 2011

Author: Paul Roetzer

About the author: Paul Roetzer is the founder and CEO of Marketing AI Institute and PR 20/20. He has written numerous books including the Marketing Agency Blueprint and Marketing Artificial Intelligence (2022). He has consulted with hundreds of organizations, from startups to Fortune 500 companies to traditional firms.

Get the book on Amazon.


The Power of Agency - 7 Principles to Conquer

The 7 Principles to Conquer Obstacles, Make Effective Decisions, and Create a Life on Your Own Terms

the-power-of-agency

This is a very interesting read. It doesn’t talk about managing a marketing agency specifically but deals with the psychological skills and attitude changes required to manage your own business.

Most business owners, especially agency owners, feel stressed out and overwhelmed. There is a lot to juggle - different clients, team members, conflicting priorities, and deadlines. This book helps give business owners the skills to deal with it and decrease the overwhelm.

Published: 2019

Authors: Dr. Paul Napper and Anthony Rao

About the authors: Paul Napper leads a management psychology and executive coaching consultancy. He has consulted for Fortune 500 companies, universities, and startups. He holds a fellowship position at Harvard Medical School. Anthony Rao is a cognitive-behavioral psychologist who has practiced psychology for over 20 years at Boston Children’s Hospital. He also teaches at Harvard Medical School.

Get the book on Amazon.


The 7 Figure Agency Roadmap

How to Build a Million Dollar Digital Marketing Agency

seven-figure-agency-roadmap

This is one of the most practical books on building your own agency. Josh has actually built and still manages his own agency and in this book, he breaks down in detail the process to follow to build a solid foundation for your business.

Most agencies hit a certain income ceiling and give up and what’s lacking is not the mindset but the model. So this book gives you a step-by-step process to follow to set up your model correctly and to make sure your agency is scalable.

Published: 2020

Author: Josh Nelson

About the author: Josh started his own agency called Plumbing & HVAC SEO back in 2011 and has grown it to over $4M in annual revenue. He is also the founder of Seven Figure Agency, a site that’s dedicated to helping agency owners improve their marketing performance and scale their businesses.

Get the book on Amazon.

How to Start a Successful Creative Agency

Essential Business Guide for Graphic Designers, Copywriters, Filmmakers, Photographers, and Programmers

how-to-start-a-successful-creative-agency

This book is geared more toward the creatives that are running a graphic design or content writing agency. It’s written by an agency veteran of 30+ years and covers literally every aspect of starting the agency from how you should work with your clients to finances. It even discusses legal and insurance. It provides lots of really great examples that you can adapt to your own creative team.

Published: 2021

Author: Andy Strode

About the author: Andy is a copywriter and creative director that has founded three creative agencies in Toronto. He founded Fireworks Creative, grew it from 2 to 30 people, and later sold it for $3 million.

Get the book on Amazon.


The Agency: Build - Grow - Repeat

How to Build a Remarkable Digital Agency Business that Wins

the-agency-build-grow-repeat

Here’s another great book to read on growing your own agency. It’s more inspirational and motivational than the other ones on our list. It gives the reader a lot of high-level strategies and not a lot of the detailed tactics that you would find in other books. But it covers a wide array of topics and really everything you need to get started.

Published: 2019

Author: Luca Senatore

About the author: Luca is a director at a multi-award-winning digital agency called Genie Goals. He was previously a former Mixed Martial Arts athlete who went from speaking no English and being fired from a kitchen porter job to growing seven successful businesses. He’s been ranked as the top five international marketing experts.

Get the book on Amazon.


The Advertising Agency Business

The Complete Manual for Management & Operation

the-advertising-agency-business

This is the classic textbook guide on managing and operating an advertising agency. It’s really good for people that want to learn about the financial management of their agency and how to structure billing properly, how to create the right management structures, excel at client relations, and manage finances.

It’s a little bit outdated and doesn’t cover any of the practical advertising tactics that have drastically changed in the last 2 decades but it does a really good overview of the operational side of the business.

Published: 1998

Author: Eugene Hameroff

Get the book on Amazon.


Agency: Starting a Creative Firm in the Age of Digital Marketing

agency-starting-a-creative-firm-in-the-age-of-digital-marketing

This one is a fun read. It’s a practical guidebook full of humor that inspires agency owners to keep going. It’s not geared for those that are just starting out but is more focused on practical strategies of how to scale your agency and survive the tough spots ahead. It deals with every topic under the sun, from how to manage the people, to the process, the money, how to bootstrap, manage the operations, grow the client list, billing, and cash flow.

Published: 2016

Author: Rick Webb

About the author: Rick Webb is a veteran agency owner. He founded an award-winning digital ad agency called the Barbarian Group in 2001 and was its COO for ten years. He is also a venture partner at Quotidian Ventures and an avid blogger on all things technology, advertising, and economics.

Get the book on Amazon.


Digital Marketing Strategy: An Integrated Approach to Online Marketing

digital-marketing-strategy-an-integrated-approach-to-online-marketing

Every digital agency owner that wants to scale needs to know digital marketing strategy in order to help their clients scale. So here’s the textbook on marketing strategy. It covers a variety of topics like SEO, paid search, email marketing, and lead generation and has real-world case studies from the likes of Coca-Cola, Spotify, Adidas, and Airbnb.

Published: 2022

Author: Simon Kingsnorth

About the author: Simon Kingsnorth is a digital marketing expert with over 20 years of experience. He was previously the Global Head of Digital Marketing at CitiBank and has worked with other leading companies like Vodafone and Google.

Get the book on Amazon.


Get Rich in the Deep End

Commit to Your Niche, Own Your Market, and Audaciously Scale Your Agency.

get-rich-in-the-deep-end

This book reads like a novel (and in fact it is). It’s a story of Heather Carlyle who is a business owner and it describes some of the strategies she used to grow her business. It takes all the theories and strategies you would learn in a regular business book and make them really practical and applicable to your business.

The book follows the 5-A Framework that the author created which stands for - Audience, Awareness, Attract, Authority, and Acquire. And it has a chapter on each one. Definitely not your average marketing book.

Published: 2020

Author: Brent Weaver

About the author: Brent is on a mission to help 10,000 digital agency owners achieve success. He is the founder and CEO of UGURUS, a training and education company for digital agencies and advertising executives. Brent also hosts the podcast The Digital Agency Show.

Get the book on Amazon.


This is Marketing by Seth Godin

You Can't Be Seen Until You Learn to See

this-is-marketing-seth-godin

Seth Godin is epic! He is a super captivating author with a special talent for breaking down complex topics into a simple actionable approach. This book talks about the art of positioning, how to build trust with your target market, and how to tell stories in your marketing. It’s a must-read book for any digital marketing agency owner that is looking to grow. It also has a nice audiobook edition.

Published:

Author: Seth Godin

About the author: Seth Godin is the bestselling author of 18 international bestsellers that completely revolutionized the way people think about marketing. He is also the founder of the altMBA, an alternative online MBA program for executives, and the former VP of Direct Marketing at Yahoo!

Get the book on Amazon


The PR Agency Handbook

pr-agency-handbook

Public relations is a really complex discipline within marketing and it’s hard to get it right. A lot of agency owners are too busy growing their businesses, getting more clients, and managing their teams that they often neglect to get recognition from the public.

This book helps agency owners get their heads around PR. It contains practical real-world examples from the field, numerous interviews with industry professionals and publicity agencies, and lots of tools and templates to help agencies get started.

Published: 2018

Authors: Regina M. Luttrell and Luke W. Capizzo

About the authors: Regina is an assistant professor of Public Relations and Social Media Marketing and the director of the graduate program in Public relations at the S.I Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. She has written numerous books and has led multiple rebranding campaigns, site redesigns, and PR campaigns. Luke is an instructor in the Department of Communication at the University of Maryland.

Get the book on Amazon.


Crossing the Chasm, 3rd Edition

Marketing and Selling Disruptive Products to Mainstream Customers

crossing-the-chasm-3rd-edition

This book is known as the bible for bringing cutting-edge products to the market. It has a really great explanation for audience targeting that explains the way different audience segments adopt products and services differently. The chasm refers to this gap in adoption between the early adopter and innovators to the majority of the market.

This book teaches companies how to market their products to cross that chasm in the market. It’s one of the most influential books on marketing strategy and it’s a must-read for every agency owner.

Published: 2014

Author: Geoffrey A. Moore

About the author: Geoffrey Moore is a well-known author, speaker, and advisor to some of the most established high-tech companies including Salesforce, Microsoft, Autodesk, and Google. His most famous book, Crossing the Chasm, has sold more than 1 million copies around the world.

Get the book on Amazon.


HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategic Marketing

hbr-10-must-reads-on-strategic-marketing

If you never heard of HBR or the Harvard Business Review, it’s a collection of the latest and most cutting-edge research on business and management. They often publish their top-read articles in book form and here is the one on Strategic Marketing.

It’s an incredible guide that teaches business owners how to properly position their business their way, target the right customers, and utilize their brand’s strengths to the fullest.

Look, it’s not going to help you create a 1-page marketing plan, but it will help you learn how to think about your business, predict your customer behavior, and gain a competitive advantage.

Published: 2013

Authors: HBR

About the authors: Harvard Business Review papers are published by some of the world’s leading experts on business with decades of experience including people like Clayton Christensen, Theodore Levitt, and Philip Kotler.

Get the book on Amazon.


All Marketers are Liars

The Underground Classic That Explains How Marketing Really Works--and Why Authenticity Is the Best Marketing of All

all-marketers-are-liars-seth-godin

Here’s another great read from Seth Godin in which he focuses on the super important skill of storytelling. Every agency owner needs to be able to tell their brand’s story as well as their personal story in an authentic way.

The art of telling a good story isn’t reserved for content marketers and it shouldn’t be hiding in some obscure corner of the page like your customer ratings. It should be communicated through all the various marketing channels you use.

Storytelling could take many forms including social media, podcasts, interviews, you name it. This popular book includes some really great examples of brands that were successful in communicating their stories.

Published: 2009

Authors: Seth Godin

Get the book on Amazon.


Beyond the Agency Box

The Phoneless, Meetingless Digital Marketing Agency That Creates Lifetime Happy Clients Without Facebook Ads, Webinars, Google, or SEO

beyond-the-agency-box

Now, here’s a special treat. This isn’t your regular run-of-the-mill on how to build an agency book. This practical book presents an entirely different and somewhat unconventional approach to marketing - a way to grow your agency without ads or inbound marketing but through relationship building.

The author, Franki Fihn, describes the very specific ways he picks his clients and nurtures those relationships. Give it a read.

Published: 2020

Author: Frankie Fihn

About the author: Frankie Fihn started an SEO agency when the market crashed in 2007 and he quickly grew it into a successful business. He leads a successful online community helping marketing agency owners grow their businesses.

Get the book on Amazon.


Recap

We hope you enjoyed our list of must-read books about growing your marketing agency. We hope it wasn't too overwhelming for you. We know there are thousands of authors and "marketing gurus" to choose from. The key is to isolate your use case and pick a book that can help you grow your business (and marketing team) to the next level.


The Top Marketing Books Every Agency Owner Should Read in 2022

Here's a comprehensive list of the all the top books for marketing agency owners. Including classics by Seth Godin, The Power of Agency, This is Marketing and more.

What do all the top digital marketing agency owners have in common? They all read a ton of books. And they apply actionable insights into growing their businesses. They never stop learning and they don’t have to learn from their own mistakes, they like to learn from other peoples’ experiences.

So we thought - why should we make you search for all these awesome insights? Let’s make a place where you can find all the info on the best books to grow your marketing agency. Here is our list of the top marketing agency books for both beginners who are starting out on this journey and for seasoned marketers who are looking to up their game.

The Marketing Agency Blueprint

The Handbook for Building Hybrid PR, SEO, Content, Advertising, and Web Firms

the-marketing-agency-blueprint

The Marketing Strategy Blueprint is a great book for anyone starting out and creating their own marketing agency. It was written over a decade ago in 2011 when marketing agencies were just starting to blossom, but the principles in it still ring true.

This book helped marketing agency owners generate more qualified leads, win clients, set their packaging pricing correctly, and create effective management systems for their teams (which is probably the biggest challenge in the agency game). There is also a really great chapter on pricing that’s helped a lot of people.

Published: 2011

Author: Paul Roetzer

About the author: Paul Roetzer is the founder and CEO of Marketing AI Institute and PR 20/20. He has written numerous books including the Marketing Agency Blueprint and Marketing Artificial Intelligence (2022). He has consulted with hundreds of organizations, from startups to Fortune 500 companies to traditional firms.

Get the book on Amazon.


The Power of Agency - 7 Principles to Conquer

The 7 Principles to Conquer Obstacles, Make Effective Decisions, and Create a Life on Your Own Terms

the-power-of-agency

This is a very interesting read. It doesn’t talk about managing a marketing agency specifically but deals with the psychological skills and attitude changes required to manage your own business.

Most business owners, especially agency owners, feel stressed out and overwhelmed. There is a lot to juggle - different clients, team members, conflicting priorities, and deadlines. This book helps give business owners the skills to deal with it and decrease the overwhelm.

Published: 2019

Authors: Dr. Paul Napper and Anthony Rao

About the authors: Paul Napper leads a management psychology and executive coaching consultancy. He has consulted for Fortune 500 companies, universities, and startups. He holds a fellowship position at Harvard Medical School. Anthony Rao is a cognitive-behavioral psychologist who has practiced psychology for over 20 years at Boston Children’s Hospital. He also teaches at Harvard Medical School.

Get the book on Amazon.


The 7 Figure Agency Roadmap

How to Build a Million Dollar Digital Marketing Agency

seven-figure-agency-roadmap

This is one of the most practical books on building your own agency. Josh has actually built and still manages his own agency and in this book, he breaks down in detail the process to follow to build a solid foundation for your business.

Most agencies hit a certain income ceiling and give up and what’s lacking is not the mindset but the model. So this book gives you a step-by-step process to follow to set up your model correctly and to make sure your agency is scalable.

Published: 2020

Author: Josh Nelson

About the author: Josh started his own agency called Plumbing & HVAC SEO back in 2011 and has grown it to over $4M in annual revenue. He is also the founder of Seven Figure Agency, a site that’s dedicated to helping agency owners improve their marketing performance and scale their businesses.

Get the book on Amazon.

How to Start a Successful Creative Agency

Essential Business Guide for Graphic Designers, Copywriters, Filmmakers, Photographers, and Programmers

how-to-start-a-successful-creative-agency

This book is geared more toward the creatives that are running a graphic design or content writing agency. It’s written by an agency veteran of 30+ years and covers literally every aspect of starting the agency from how you should work with your clients to finances. It even discusses legal and insurance. It provides lots of really great examples that you can adapt to your own creative team.

Published: 2021

Author: Andy Strode

About the author: Andy is a copywriter and creative director that has founded three creative agencies in Toronto. He founded Fireworks Creative, grew it from 2 to 30 people, and later sold it for $3 million.

Get the book on Amazon.


The Agency: Build - Grow - Repeat

How to Build a Remarkable Digital Agency Business that Wins

the-agency-build-grow-repeat

Here’s another great book to read on growing your own agency. It’s more inspirational and motivational than the other ones on our list. It gives the reader a lot of high-level strategies and not a lot of the detailed tactics that you would find in other books. But it covers a wide array of topics and really everything you need to get started.

Published: 2019

Author: Luca Senatore

About the author: Luca is a director at a multi-award-winning digital agency called Genie Goals. He was previously a former Mixed Martial Arts athlete who went from speaking no English and being fired from a kitchen porter job to growing seven successful businesses. He’s been ranked as the top five international marketing experts.

Get the book on Amazon.


The Advertising Agency Business

The Complete Manual for Management & Operation

the-advertising-agency-business

This is the classic textbook guide on managing and operating an advertising agency. It’s really good for people that want to learn about the financial management of their agency and how to structure billing properly, how to create the right management structures, excel at client relations, and manage finances.

It’s a little bit outdated and doesn’t cover any of the practical advertising tactics that have drastically changed in the last 2 decades but it does a really good overview of the operational side of the business.

Published: 1998

Author: Eugene Hameroff

Get the book on Amazon.


Agency: Starting a Creative Firm in the Age of Digital Marketing

agency-starting-a-creative-firm-in-the-age-of-digital-marketing

This one is a fun read. It’s a practical guidebook full of humor that inspires agency owners to keep going. It’s not geared for those that are just starting out but is more focused on practical strategies of how to scale your agency and survive the tough spots ahead. It deals with every topic under the sun, from how to manage the people, to the process, the money, how to bootstrap, manage the operations, grow the client list, billing, and cash flow.

Published: 2016

Author: Rick Webb

About the author: Rick Webb is a veteran agency owner. He founded an award-winning digital ad agency called the Barbarian Group in 2001 and was its COO for ten years. He is also a venture partner at Quotidian Ventures and an avid blogger on all things technology, advertising, and economics.

Get the book on Amazon.


Digital Marketing Strategy: An Integrated Approach to Online Marketing

digital-marketing-strategy-an-integrated-approach-to-online-marketing

Every digital agency owner that wants to scale needs to know digital marketing strategy in order to help their clients scale. So here’s the textbook on marketing strategy. It covers a variety of topics like SEO, paid search, email marketing, and lead generation and has real-world case studies from the likes of Coca-Cola, Spotify, Adidas, and Airbnb.

Published: 2022

Author: Simon Kingsnorth

About the author: Simon Kingsnorth is a digital marketing expert with over 20 years of experience. He was previously the Global Head of Digital Marketing at CitiBank and has worked with other leading companies like Vodafone and Google.

Get the book on Amazon.


Get Rich in the Deep End

Commit to Your Niche, Own Your Market, and Audaciously Scale Your Agency.

get-rich-in-the-deep-end

This book reads like a novel (and in fact it is). It’s a story of Heather Carlyle who is a business owner and it describes some of the strategies she used to grow her business. It takes all the theories and strategies you would learn in a regular business book and make them really practical and applicable to your business.

The book follows the 5-A Framework that the author created which stands for - Audience, Awareness, Attract, Authority, and Acquire. And it has a chapter on each one. Definitely not your average marketing book.

Published: 2020

Author: Brent Weaver

About the author: Brent is on a mission to help 10,000 digital agency owners achieve success. He is the founder and CEO of UGURUS, a training and education company for digital agencies and advertising executives. Brent also hosts the podcast The Digital Agency Show.

Get the book on Amazon.


This is Marketing by Seth Godin

You Can't Be Seen Until You Learn to See

this-is-marketing-seth-godin

Seth Godin is epic! He is a super captivating author with a special talent for breaking down complex topics into a simple actionable approach. This book talks about the art of positioning, how to build trust with your target market, and how to tell stories in your marketing. It’s a must-read book for any digital marketing agency owner that is looking to grow. It also has a nice audiobook edition.

Published:

Author: Seth Godin

About the author: Seth Godin is the bestselling author of 18 international bestsellers that completely revolutionized the way people think about marketing. He is also the founder of the altMBA, an alternative online MBA program for executives, and the former VP of Direct Marketing at Yahoo!

Get the book on Amazon


The PR Agency Handbook

pr-agency-handbook

Public relations is a really complex discipline within marketing and it’s hard to get it right. A lot of agency owners are too busy growing their businesses, getting more clients, and managing their teams that they often neglect to get recognition from the public.

This book helps agency owners get their heads around PR. It contains practical real-world examples from the field, numerous interviews with industry professionals and publicity agencies, and lots of tools and templates to help agencies get started.

Published: 2018

Authors: Regina M. Luttrell and Luke W. Capizzo

About the authors: Regina is an assistant professor of Public Relations and Social Media Marketing and the director of the graduate program in Public relations at the S.I Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. She has written numerous books and has led multiple rebranding campaigns, site redesigns, and PR campaigns. Luke is an instructor in the Department of Communication at the University of Maryland.

Get the book on Amazon.


Crossing the Chasm, 3rd Edition

Marketing and Selling Disruptive Products to Mainstream Customers

crossing-the-chasm-3rd-edition

This book is known as the bible for bringing cutting-edge products to the market. It has a really great explanation for audience targeting that explains the way different audience segments adopt products and services differently. The chasm refers to this gap in adoption between the early adopter and innovators to the majority of the market.

This book teaches companies how to market their products to cross that chasm in the market. It’s one of the most influential books on marketing strategy and it’s a must-read for every agency owner.

Published: 2014

Author: Geoffrey A. Moore

About the author: Geoffrey Moore is a well-known author, speaker, and advisor to some of the most established high-tech companies including Salesforce, Microsoft, Autodesk, and Google. His most famous book, Crossing the Chasm, has sold more than 1 million copies around the world.

Get the book on Amazon.


HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategic Marketing

hbr-10-must-reads-on-strategic-marketing

If you never heard of HBR or the Harvard Business Review, it’s a collection of the latest and most cutting-edge research on business and management. They often publish their top-read articles in book form and here is the one on Strategic Marketing.

It’s an incredible guide that teaches business owners how to properly position their business their way, target the right customers, and utilize their brand’s strengths to the fullest.

Look, it’s not going to help you create a 1-page marketing plan, but it will help you learn how to think about your business, predict your customer behavior, and gain a competitive advantage.

Published: 2013

Authors: HBR

About the authors: Harvard Business Review papers are published by some of the world’s leading experts on business with decades of experience including people like Clayton Christensen, Theodore Levitt, and Philip Kotler.

Get the book on Amazon.


All Marketers are Liars

The Underground Classic That Explains How Marketing Really Works--and Why Authenticity Is the Best Marketing of All

all-marketers-are-liars-seth-godin

Here’s another great read from Seth Godin in which he focuses on the super important skill of storytelling. Every agency owner needs to be able to tell their brand’s story as well as their personal story in an authentic way.

The art of telling a good story isn’t reserved for content marketers and it shouldn’t be hiding in some obscure corner of the page like your customer ratings. It should be communicated through all the various marketing channels you use.

Storytelling could take many forms including social media, podcasts, interviews, you name it. This popular book includes some really great examples of brands that were successful in communicating their stories.

Published: 2009

Authors: Seth Godin

Get the book on Amazon.


Beyond the Agency Box

The Phoneless, Meetingless Digital Marketing Agency That Creates Lifetime Happy Clients Without Facebook Ads, Webinars, Google, or SEO

beyond-the-agency-box

Now, here’s a special treat. This isn’t your regular run-of-the-mill on how to build an agency book. This practical book presents an entirely different and somewhat unconventional approach to marketing - a way to grow your agency without ads or inbound marketing but through relationship building.

The author, Franki Fihn, describes the very specific ways he picks his clients and nurtures those relationships. Give it a read.

Published: 2020

Author: Frankie Fihn

About the author: Frankie Fihn started an SEO agency when the market crashed in 2007 and he quickly grew it into a successful business. He leads a successful online community helping marketing agency owners grow their businesses.

Get the book on Amazon.


Recap

We hope you enjoyed our list of must-read books about growing your marketing agency. We hope it wasn't too overwhelming for you. We know there are thousands of authors and "marketing gurus" to choose from. The key is to isolate your use case and pick a book that can help you grow your business (and marketing team) to the next level.


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