SmallBizLady’s Summer Reading List 2012

SmallBizlady's Summer Reading List 2012

For those of you who follow this blog, you know that I love reading books about running a business. To be successful in business, you must be a lifelong learner. Reading is a great way to sharpen your personal skills to run your business better. If you’re counting down to your summer vacation, (even if you’re staying on Porchville) I wanted to provide you with some suggestions for reading material. These books could make all the difference in your business in the last half of this year. Here are my 12 picks for SmallBizLady’s Summer Reading List 2012.

Go Mobile; Location-Based Marketing, Apps, Mobile Optimized Ad Campaigns, 2D Codes and other Mobile Strategies by Jeanne Hopkins and Jamie Turner (J. Wiley & Sons 2012) Not having a mobile strategy these days is like not having a website years ago. Everyone needs to become more familiar with mobile marketing as a competitive advantage in their small business. Jeanne Hopkins and Jamie Turner provide all the tools to understand and leverage mobile marketing–the future of commerce. Even if you only read Chapter 21, this book will change your business.

Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World by Michael Hyatt (Thomas Nelson 2012) This is a great book for small business owners who have started to use social media and are not yet seeing results. Michael Hyatt teaches you how to build a platform to sell anything using content, social media and traditional media outlets. Hyatt breaks down all the easy-to-replicate formulas. What I like best about this book is that he explains how it worked in his business and how you can do it, too.

The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Social Media Marketing, 2nd Edition by Jennifer Abernethy (Alpha 2012) Social media marketing is no longer an option for small business owners–it’s a must. Jennifer Abernethy does a great job laying out how to get started on all of the social media networking sites (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Google+ and Pinterest and more.) If you’ve been wondering how to get started with social media marketing this is a great starting place.

Small Town Rules; How Big Brands and Small Businesses Can Prosper in a Connected Economy by Barry J. Moltz and Becky McCray (Pearson Education Inc. 2012) Technology has changed the nature of business. Now your only competitive advantages are your personal relationships in local communities and the reputation you earn with real customers.  This book explains how to leverage being a small business in a small town to win big business and compete strong. All businesses can learn by watching how business gets done in America’s small towns.

Click Millionaires: Work Less, Live More with an Internet Business You Love by Scott Fox (AMACOM 2012) I like this book because it is helpful guide for start-up entrepreneurs who want to create a solid business on the internet. Scott Fox focuses on how to take full advantage of the best opportunities and tools for building a personally and financially rewarding online business.

Export NOW: Five Keys To Entering New Markets by Frank Lavin & Peter Cohan (J. Wiley & Sons 2011) The world is flat. American companies must go global or perish. While the strategy is clear, often the tactics are not. This book fixes that problem. Frank Lavin and Peter Cohan offer a succinct guide for small businesses to tap into the purchasing power of global consumers. If you need a plan to go global, this book is what you need.

For Better or Work: A Survival Guide for Entrepreneurs and Their Families by Meg Cadoux Hirshberg (An Inc. Original 2012) This is a good book for all entrepreneurs to read so that you can have some perspective on what your families go through as you build your empire. I believe it will save many small business owners from becoming divorced, by heeding the lessons from what life in a startup looks like, to the sometime painful process of session planning.

By Invitation Only: How We Built Gilt and Changed the Way Millions Shop by Alexis Maybank and Alexandra Wilkis Wilson (Penguin 2012) This is a great tell-all book about how was started and grew to a billion dollar valuation in just four years. This intriguing book not only gives a bird’s-eye-view into the world of online selling, membership sites and the fashion industry, but it is also an inspirational tale about two friends who turned their passion for hitting sample sales into a business that made their dreams come true. You will enjoy this book.

The Seven Pearls of Financial Wisdom; A Woman’s Guide to Enjoying Wealth and Power by Carol Pepper and Camilla Webster (St. Martin’s Press 2012) If you want to start a business, the money to launch your dream will come from your right or left pocket. Camilla Webster and Carol Pepper offer an impressively comprehensive guide that tells you how to make, grow and protect your money so that you can have options at every stage of life to launch a small business. This is a guide to complete financial freedom.

Own Your Niche: Hype-Free Internet Marketing Tactics to Establish Authority in Your Field and Promote Your Service-Based Business by Stephanie Chandler (Authority Publishing 2012) What I like best about this book is that is straight-forward, practical advice on internet marketing. Author Stephanie Chandler cuts through a lot of the internet hype. This book is full of actionable step-by-step advice to become the guru in your industry. Own Your Niche is exactly what you need if you are trying to figure out your niche focus for your small business.

Spark & Hustle; Launch and Grow Your Small Business Now by Tory Johnson (Penguin 2012) If you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, you’d do well to read this book. What I like best about Tory Johnson’s book, is how she helps readers explore their motivations to profit from their passion. I strongly believe in making sure your passion has a profit center, and her tactics are helpful for creating a plan for business success.

How They Started; How 25 Good Ideas Became Great Companies by Carol Tice and David Lester (Crimson Publishing Ltd. 2012) Success leaves clues everywhere! This book tells the amazing stories of how 25 companies have become global powerhouses. Prepare to be inspired. Carol Tice and David Lester have gathered the inside scoop on the launches and growth patterns of companies including Twitter, Spanx, Gatorade, eBay, Dropbox and Groupon.

DISCLOSURE: I am an affiliate at and I may make a modest commission if you purchase the books through the links above.

Do you have any other books worth reading this summer?

For more tips on how start or grow your small business subscribe to Melinda Emerson’s blog

Melinda F. Emerson, known to many as SmallBizLady is America’s #1 small business experts. As CEO of Quintessence Multimedia, Melinda educates entrepreneurs and Fortune 500 companies on subjects including small business start-up, business development and social media marketing to fulfill her mission to end small business failure. She writes a weekly column on social media for The New York Times. Forbes Magazine named her #1 woman for entrepreneurs to follow on Twitter. She hosts #SmallBizChat Wednesdays on Twitter 8-9pm ET for emerging entrepreneurs. She also publishes a resource blog Melinda is also the bestselling author of Become Your Own Boss in 12 months; A Month-by-Month Guide to a Business That Works.


  1. says

    I love to read and you have prepared some great business books. I will be printing this and downloading them to my nook.

    Thanks :o)

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