At the end of each episode, Joe asks each of our expert guests this question, "What's the one book that's made the biggest impact on your business and why?"
The books mentioned on the podcast are all worth reading and deserving of recognition. Learning about the takeaways and the reasons why these books have made such an impact on these world-class entrepreneurs has been super valuable. There are some awesome examples of these books in this episode, featuring past interviews with Daniel Daines-Hutt, Matthew Woodward, Jonathan Kiekbusch, Todd Brown, and Maxwell Finn.
Daniel Daines-Hutt 1:10
You always ask for a book recommendation, right. And I was trying to like this so many books, but that I would say scientific advertising, which is like a really simplified version of learning direct response. read that book. And if you learn that, you'll learn why people do the things they do, and how to get them to do an action and how to measure that result. And then you can apply it to your content, to your emails, to your ads, to your sales page, and stuff like that. The more you understand your audience, the easier it is to make a product that they want. And to sell it, you know, like, it's not just because it does this thing, like our sales pages change four times, same product, but like understanding the angle better of what the audience needs, and then improving in from there. So yeah, if you, I would recommend reading that book. super cheap. I think you can even get it on PDF for free now. And then understanding your audience, the more time you spend there. As crazy as those people are, you know, like, the better you'll understand and the easier Your job will be.
Joe Troyer 2:11
Yeah, fantastic. That's great. I always talk about just being a curious, a curious prospect, right. And that if you're interested in going into a vertical, like you should be having conversations with that niche all the time. And it doesn't matter how you get the conversation started, if you got an ask for a favor an introduction to somebody else, like it doesn't matter. But you should be very, very curious. And you got to know them. So that book recommendation is very timely. And I think it also ties in very well with with what we talked about today. So thank you very, very, very much for that. Daniel, as you look at your businesses, and you look at your success, is that the one book that you think that has made the biggest impact on your business? Not like, you know, it was great, but I didn't do anything with it. Obviously, you took that book, and you applied it. But I feel like there's so many books that people toss around that are like, yeah, that was a fantastic book, it's a must read. And then you look at their business and their life, and they didn't apply anything from it.
Daniel Daines-Hutt 3:10
So that was probably the biggest one that helped me understand my audience. It's weird, because it's like what book at different stages in your journey, I would say like, the biggest one for me is a book by Ryan Holiday called the obstacle is the way which is about stoicism and learning how to deal with difficult situations, but also how to deal with success. Because like, at one point, we're a small business, and then we're like a huge business. And then when you know, we didn't always handle it well, and things like that my weight I put on like 30, kgs, stuff like this, you know, because you're trying to do like 14 hour days and three red balls and things. So reading that and helping me reset my brain. Now, like, you know, we get links by huge companies, which is great. We also get people talking smack to us in Facebook ads, which is fine. Both things, I hold an equal regard in that it's, you know, it's cool. I can focus on the process and just keep doing the thing. So that book, he's got a third one coming out, I think called stillness is the key. But they're like those books that are handed down about stoicism so helpful as entrepreneur. Because sometimes, you know, we don't always have people to talk to or, you know, sometimes you can be super successful and go batshit crazy, you know, and spend money everywhere or do something stupid, you know,
Joe Troyer 4:31
but a lot of people ask, like, what are your favorite three books, which I think is great. I'm a reader. I like books, but I like practical books. There's a lot of books that I read that I'm like, Yeah, that's great, but it wasn't very practical. Like I read it. I thought it was a good book. And it made me think but it had no impact on my business. Okay, and it really had no impact on my life either. And so I like to ask from like a practical standpoint, when you look at your business, when you look at your blog, you look Your your agency, what's the one book that you think you could point to and say, This is the one book that made all the difference?
matthew woodward 5:10
The book that I've read the most times, and I've revisited many times, and each time I revisited took over lessons that each time I've read read it, I've been like, Oh, yeah, I've been using that. You know, I was like, Ah, yeah, that's where that came from, you know, was Napoleon Hill Think and Grow Rich? The classic, right? Absolutely classic. And that's really being the one that that every time I read it, I'm like, Yeah, cool, okay. And it gives me a different direction. You know, it's like, it's like, there's a new series of the book every time but it's the same book, it's not actually a new series, it's just my life's moved on to a different season, you know, and new loans, everything else. And that changes the way that I interpret the lessons and everything else. You know, that that books greatly rooted in essentially you taking control and deciding where or what, where you want to be or what you want to do. And it just happens. And it does seem to be that's how a lot of things have come about in my life. So that would be the book, the book.
Joe Troyer 6:16
Wonderful. I appreciate that. And, and it's funny you saying that at the end, like just you grasping control and deciding where you want to go like that as a takeaway, when when you said that? I think my favorite books are that takeaway, right? When I think about my favorite books and and books that I've read, that that's definitely a common thread and a common core. And it's the ultimate reinforcement to always be reading those types of books, because it keeps you thinking in that manner. And I would see why Napoleon Hill Think and Grow Rich would be that way, but also why you keep reading it and it would be kind of new and new lessons to take away as your life. Yeah.
matthew woodward 6:55
Yeah, it basically boils down as Look, when when you get in your car, you decide where you're going to go and you drive there. Same thing. Literally, success is the same thing. get any car, decide what you want, go on driver. That's That's it, people make it a lot more complicated. Granted, you might be on the you might be driving there, and there's a tree in a road and you can't get past, but just take a different route. I mean, we've got Sat Nav, you know, that's it, like, decide where you want to go and go there. That's it. That's what that's what most books boiled down to right? taking control of that mindset. And understanding that you do have that decision making ability in your life, you do just decide. And if you want it, everything will will gravitate towards that. But you got to decide where you're going first, before you can start gravitating towards it.
Joe Troyer 7:45
And that's just, I think just to spending time having that conversation with yourself often so that you don't forget where you're going and what right and plans change your priorities change where you're going changes. But often, we just kind of head down sprinting and we look up and like, oh. Right. Like you're driving down the road. You're thinking you're thinking and like yeah, just missed my turn shit. Yeah. Uh huh. Uh huh. But, and that happens all the time in life. And I think it happens way too often. Because we don't we forget to look up. Yeah, of course. Yeah, definitely. Very similar to what people do a lot on podcasts. I like to ask for a book recommendation. But we do things a little bit different here, digital triggers, and show me the nuggets. So ultimately, what we're looking for is what's the one book when you look at your business or businesses has actually made the biggest impact on the way that you do business? Not like it was great mindset wise, but nothing changed in the business or it was great. It got me to take responsibility, but nothing changed in the business. Like what's the one book that has made the biggest actual impact on on on your business?
Jonathan Kiekbusch 9:00
Okay. Oh, man, it's, it's, it's really a tough one. I think that the biggest shift in my business came when I read a book called leaders eat last by Simon Sinek. It changed my perspective of my role within the business and what I could do to enable the people that worked with me to reach their full potential, which is so so powerful.
Joe Troyer 9:37
That's awesome. Can you expand on that just a little more? Sure. So. So that was brilliant in the book, the book has been recommended on the podcast before. So I like to I like to get everybody's that comes on. I like to really get everybody's outlook on the book and why they think it made such an impact. And so that was a great explanation, but could you take it kind of one step further, if you will,
Jonathan Kiekbusch 10:01
yeah, of course. So in leaders eat last, Simon Sinek covers the the partially the thoughts of the infinite game strategy, right? So finite and infinite games. And he kind of talks a little bit about, you know, the diff, like how you build teams, that, that can that can really reach their full potential. And by the way to achieve that, and this is super paraphrase, is by the leader, working for the team and the team serving the customer. And so instead of standing on a pedestal, and being the boss, and being the CEO, you're actually doing what you can to enable people. And what it triggered in me is the realization that the, the ROI, and the business and all of that is fantastic. But really, it comes second to the people that make it all happen. And once you start treating people with and this is super important empathy, that you're able to actually have a good time. enjoy what you're doing, have your team have a good time, have them enjoy what they're doing, and actually live a happy and fulfilled life. Then it led to small tweaks of how we do things. So, you know, some of the geekier stuff, we switched all of our tables to sit stand desks, we allowed writers and like academic staff to work, just what is it seven hours instead of eight, because we noticed that there was a huge drop off after like, you know, the seventh hour, because it's really hard to just analyze a lot of content or write a lot of content. We started having flexible working hours. So now the office is open from like, six in the morning until like, seven at night. And people show up when when they need to show up and everybody gets stuff done. And they have the understanding that we all need to show up when we need to show up. So like when Black Friday hits, and SEO Butler, Butler absolutely gets hammered. People come in on Saturday, you know, I mean, you order pizza, we have a party, and we get stuff done. But for me, as you know, the business owner, one of the things that became very important through this book, is wanting to understand how people are doing past the shallow sort of top level stuff of like, well, I'm dragging my story as to work and I'm surviving through the day, and actually caring how they are like, how are their relationships at home going right? How are they doing financially? Like, is everything okay? Do they need some help. And by doing so, starting to find out like different issues or things that we as a business could do to enable those people to do better. And, you know, it's actually quite easy to achieve this in such a small business, because all you have to do is actually care. And it's a lot harder when you have you know, 500 people or 1000 people, and you need to have all these HR managers, and then find the ones that actually do care, etc. But in a small business, like I was like, it really doesn't cost anything to just take one of your staff and go to, you know, have lunch or have coffee and just go like, Hey, man, how are you? You know, and that is just all the difference. I really recommend that book. Another book that I recommend, and I know I'm breaking the rules here is the Thank You Economy by Gary Vee. It's I think it's one of his better books. And it's actually quite old now. And it's hilarious to read today, because he predicts a lot of the things that are happening in social media and in tech in this book. And so reading it today is kind of hilarious because it sat makes it sound like he knows what the future holds.
Joe Troyer 14:35
That's awesome. I'll definitely have to check out that book and you have delivered so much gold. I just want to thank you first and foremost, and then want to wrap up with one more question, man. Instead of asking you to recommend three books, like I feel like every podcast does. I'd love to ask you a little bit of a twist on that question. What's the one book that when you look at your business has made that biggest actual impact Like, oh, it changed my mindset a little bit. But you look at your business and you're like, Man, this one thing, right is the most practical thing that I got.
Todd Brown 15:09
Oh, my gosh, that is under a lot of pressure here, Joe. Let me think for one second. You know, it's time I'm gonna, I'm gonna give an answer. But then I'm gonna give a second answer. So the the answer really, for me, breakthrough advertising was a complete game changer. You know, it really like as a complete game changer. But I'm going to give an oddball recommendation that I haven't given in a while there's a book by Brian Tracy, I believe it's just called goals. And for me, it was it was a game changer. It's also it's a book that I read, not every year, but probably every other year for sure. It just helped me to really stop thinking small and stop playing small and stop, you know, stop settling. For me, it was just it's a very tactical book tactical on goal setting, like tactical on thinking about your goals and whatnot. And it's just a great book, if you've ever found yourself, like, if you ever feel like at any point where you're just playing below your potential like that, you feel like there's more for you. You can't maybe put your finger on it, but you just feel like there's more for you. And you don't understand why you're not kind of you're not you're not grabbing the bull by the horns. That's a great book to really read and ponder, man.
Joe Troyer 16:27
Fantastic. I'm gonna wrap this thing up by asking one question that gets asked on podcast a lot. But I think a little slight tilt with it. So instead of asking you to recommend your three favorite books, I always ask at the end of podcasts, like what's the one book where if you look at your business, you can say this has had the biggest impact on my business, not like this was a great book. And there's a bunch of theory that I liked. And I remember that, but when you look at your business, like what's the one or two books that's made the biggest actual impact?
Maxwell Finn 16:57
Yeah, so you know, I looked this question when you send it over, and you know the answer I give you man, like, but it's going to be the the answer. So what I would say is, I honestly can't pick that there's not a single book because I like to read about so many different things. Like I think a lot of people pick like a very specific business book, right, a Jim Collins book or something like that, you know, Harvard Business Review type book, and, but then I also I love history. You know, D days when I favorite books about Normandy, I'm a big history buff, big world war two buff. So instead, I would say like from an author perspective, I think one author has probably, like, mood, hasn't driven my business world, but has had the greatest impact in the way I think about things. And that's Malcolm Gladwell. I think like every book, Malcolm Gladwell puts out and his newest one just came out talking to strangers, which I read in like two days, it was one of the best I absolutely loved it are just so incredibly well written and entertaining. Right. So from tipping point all the way to talking strangers, like he's able to educate through entertainment. Right? So he has a clear thesis through each of his books and like talking to strangers is all about why us as humans, right, we're all humans, so terrible at talking to people we don't know, essentially, right, judging people we don't know and talks about, you know, Bernie Madoff talks about Amanda Knox talks about all these big events that have happened, where it showcases that. But it does, it teaches that central thesis through really engaging stories, and I think from a marketing perspective, we've grown our agency, being able to entertain and and engage is like the most effective way to sell, right? If you can get somebody's attention and you can suck them in and get them hooked. You can you can really sell right and so for Malcolm Gladwell, it's like him selling his his thesis, his viewpoint. And I think that's something we've done with a lot of our businesses. So yeah, I would say as an from an author perspective, his books are probably entertaining gauge and educated me the most throughout my career. Love it.