I’ve had a lot of fun this week putting together a list of some of the best marketing articles I’ve ever read. The initial list had over 30 articles. Here are the 8 that made the final cut:

#1: 1,000 True Fans – Kevin Kelly

This article is aimed mainly at “creators” (e.g. authors, artists), but has implications for any service business. (And even some product sellers):


#2: The Most Important 9-Word Sentence in Marketing History – Gary Bencivenga

Why this is important: many marketing failures have nothing to do with marketing. This article – by one of the most successful direct response copywriters of the last 50 years – explains what really determines marketing success:


#3: Hidden Secrets of the Amazon Shopping Cart 2.0 – Bryan Eisenberg

This article shows how Amazon’s Add to Cart button has changed over the years. As well as being interesting (if you’re a fellow web usability geek), the tests give an idea of what Amazon was thinking at each step – i.e. what problem they were trying to solve with each interation – as their business model was developing:


#4: Does optimization ever end? How we grew Crazy Egg’s conversion rate by 363% – Conversion Rate Experts

An excellent case study that explains some of the techniques used in conversion rate optimisation – including deciding what to test (and where that information comes from), and the importance of visitor value.


#5: Your Intuition is Wrong – A/B Testing Results that Surprised the Experts – Justin Rondeau

A collection of surprising split-test results. Good for ideas to test. Also a clear reminder that you really need to split-test your web pages because, if you simply assume you know “what works”, you’re hurting your sales:


#6: Confessions of a Marketing Chauvinist Pig – Clayton Makepeace

The key section in this long article is the section titled, “How Smart Companies Can TRIPLE Revenues and Profits In 12 Months or Less”.

Although the example uses direct mail, the same principles are fundamental to online marketing success. I used a pared down version of this approach to increase a client’s Adwords profits by 643% in 7 months. (You can read that case study here.)


#7: The $300 Million Button – Jared Spool

A case study of how changing a web form added $300,000,000 to an ecommerce company’s annual revenue. As well as giving the logic behind the change, it’s a reminder that your website can be just one small change away from massive success (in this case, 45% higher sales):


#8: 13 Damn Good Ideas from 13 Dead Copywriters – Demian Farnworth

The title says it all – except there are a lot more than 13 good ideas in this article:


Happy reading,

Steve Gibson

Categories: Marketing

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