The best books about word of mouth marketing

The Books I Picked & Why

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

By Jay Baer, Daniel Lemin

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

Why this book?

It had been a few years since a book on word of mouth marketing hit the new release shelf. Jay Baer and Daniel Lemin broke it with 2019’s Talk Triggers. This is the most current great book about word of mouth marketing and the first to really dive deep into how social media plays into good WOM. Backed by original research, Baer’s brilliance, and Lemin’s insightful analyses, you can’t put this book down not having learned something that will make you smarter.


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Fizz: Harness the Power of Word of Mouth Marketing to Drive Brand Growth

By Ted Wright

Fizz: Harness the Power of Word of Mouth Marketing to Drive Brand Growth

Why this book?

It’s hard not to put Fizz on the list because there’s proof in the pudding. Ted Wright and his team at Fizz (the agency) are responsible for probably half of the top 10 gold-standard word-of-mouth case studies. Period. Almost every brand they work with winds up with an army of raving fans and a bottom line with more than a few more digits than before. If anyone can draw up a great WOM playbook, it’s Wright. So, the book has to be here.


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Brand Hijack: Marketing Without Marketing

By Alex Wipperfürth

Brand Hijack: Marketing Without Marketing

Why this book?

This was the book that inspired me to switch careers. Wipperfürth details the rise of brands like Doc Martens, Napster and Pabst Blue Ribbon, all of which were WOM success stories. But he did so before the practice of word-of-mouth was openly practiced and promoted by agencies and consultants around the world. Still, you can see the brilliance behind the power of turning your brand over to your customers and how engineering that can happen.


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Brains on Fire: Igniting Powerful, Sustainable, Word of Mouth Movements

By Robbin Phillips, Greg Cordell, Geno Church, Spike Jones

Brains on Fire: Igniting Powerful, Sustainable, Word of Mouth Movements

Why this book?

I was so inspired by the “movement” approach Brains on Fire (the agency) presented in this eponymous title, I reached out to work with them. What resulted is an incredible amount of learning beyond the book and another amazing WOM case study for them (and for a non-profit I served). If I hadn’t seen the positive results of the advice doled out in this book myself, I would describe it as the manual on how to build cults … but the good kind.


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The Anatomy of Buzz: How to Create Word of Mouth Marketing

By Emanuel Rosen

The Anatomy of Buzz: How to Create Word of Mouth Marketing

Why this book?

This might be the original word-of-mouth marketing book, appearing in 2000, long before other titles focused on the discipline. (In fact, Rosen has followed it up with The Anatomy of Buzz Revisited which came out in 2009.) Rosen, a former marketing executive, interviewed dozens of colleagues to diagnose how to get products in front of early adopters, push consumers to engage, and talk about a product and beyond. While certainly dated, it is still highly relevant and full of idea-sparking stories and examples.


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