Book Review + Giveaway: The End of Business as Usual is Unusual
Brian Solis is known for his attention to detail and his latest book, The End of Business as Usual, is no exception. This is not a light book nor one meant to be read in one sitting. Instead I found it to be a true business textbook, a real resource for anyone looking to understand the changes they’re seeing in consumers. Because what you’ll need from this book will vary, I thought it would be most helpful to outline a game plan for getting the most from this book.
Reading from Beginning to End: Optional
There are clear relationships that Solis builds on from one chapter to the next, but don’t let that stop you from reviewing the table of contents first. Covering everything from how building brands has changed to the impact of Millennials, End of Business is chock full of valuable data, but trying to absorb it all at once isn’t realistic. Unless you’re starting from scratch, I recommend prioritizing the table of contents and tackling one to two sections at a time. Come prepared with a notebook (of either the paper or electronic variety) and plan to take notes, think really hard, and review later.
The Data Supports the Premise
During my first pass through the book, my brain had a hard time absorbing all the numbers that Solis packed into this book. While it can make for some technical reading, End of Business provides a level of research that’s often missing in other business books. If you’re having a hard time convincing “management” (whoever that is anymore) about the validity of your recommendations, Solis provides all the data backup you’ll need in one spot. The level of supporting material in this book is somewhat awe inspiring. One issue I had with the book was the choice to make red the dominant color for the figures, charts, etc. Depending on the image, the quality was hit and miss.
Business Has Changed
To be clear, anyone actively engaged in marketing, either to businesses or consumers, has a choice to make. Do you adapt or do you flounder? How we interact with each other, let alone with businesses, has changed. To pretend that we don’t need to give consideration to these changes is foolish in the extreme. Solis makes a strong case that not only have these changes happened, but how business can adapt and succeed. In this case, Solis doesn’t spout opinion and instead makes logical and thoughtful arguments throughout the book. It’s a pleasant change from the pontificating of so-called gurus and experts who speculate with great enthusiasm, but provide very little actionable information.
Apply as Needed
I strongly suspect that The End of Business as Usual will be the go-to reference book for smart marketers for months, if not years, to come. That said, for you to get your money’s worth you’ll have to be committed to actually reading and analyzing its contents. I commend Solis for asking more of us as readers even as he tells us that attention is fragmented. You may end up going through this book once, twice, or even more, and with every pass, you’ll gain something new to refine your technique and help you be the business that adapts instead of flounders.
We’re Giving Away Books
To help you get started, we’re giving away two copies of The End of Business as Usual. Just leave a comment on this post about why you need the book, we’ll put your name in a hat, and draw two winners. The giveaway ends December 1, at 12 p.m. PT and we’ll announce a winner.