Ricky Garvey

Music | Marketing | Transparency

Category: Recommended Reading

4 Lies You Tell Yourself About Reading Books

Reading books is easily one of the best investments you can make in yourself. I spent last year increasing the amount of books I read as one of my goals for the year. 

I sometimes get asked for book recommendations, but I hear some common statements about the “difficulties” of reading thrown at me.

Reading Books - Stack of Books

“It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines what you will be when you can’t help it.” – Oscar Wilde

Some of these statements are outright silly. I want to address some of these misconceptions and myths about reading to hopefully encourage you to start making the investment in yourself.

Reading Books Is Too Time Consuming

This is probably the most common statement I hear. “I don’t have the time, Ricky. How do you find the time?”

Spending MORE time reading is something I’m focusing on in 2016. Just for perspective, I read over 25 books in 2015. Which isn’t a whole lot. But to make my point, I only spent about 10-20 minutes each day reading. Not a lot of time at all.

Do you ride the train to work? Read. Have a 10 minute morning break at your job? Read. Take your lunch in the office? Read.

And let’s be real. Use the bathroom and usually spend it browsing Instagram? Read instead.

It’s Expensive

The infamous marketer and author Ryan Holiday is big on reading. And he discusses the need for millennials to read a lot more. He’s one of the reasons I upped my reading game.

He talks about the need to purchase books whenever you get the chance. And he’s discussed that checking out books from the library is not effective.

But he’s wrong. Yes. Ryan Holiday is wrong.

You can still get a ton from reading even if you can only afford to check out books from your local library. Don’t let the stress of buying books hold you back from the investment in yourself.

With that in mind, you can still order books on Amazon for a dollar or two per book. Extremely inexpensive. So your excuse is invalid no matter how you view it.

It’s Boring

What? No. No, it’s not.

It’s Not Necessary

I come across some people who simply feel that reading is not necessary. As I’ve mentioned before, it’s easily one of the best investments you can make in yourself and your future.

Learn the art of critical thinking. Learn about US history and how some leaders in the past overcame certain obstacles. Learn about philosophy and ask yourself some of life’s most intriguing questions. Learn how to improve your performance at work.

The list goes on. And on. And on.

My challenge for you is to find one book that you’ve been meaning to read. And set aside 15 minutes each day to make it happen. And then when you finish that, do it all over again. You won’t regret it.

And when you’re finally convinced that reading isn’t optional and is worthwhile, tweet me to let me know what you’re reading and what you’re learning.

Now get out there and read a book. You have no excuse.


Lessons From Purple Cow – A Decade Later

It’s been well over a decade since Seth Godin published Purple Cow: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable. I decided to give it a read again too see how relevant the lessons remain.

Seth Godin Purple Cow

Seth Godin’s Purple Cow

For those of you who may be out of the loop (for whatever strange reason), Seth Godin is an extremely respected author, marketer, and public speaker. He is known for books such as Purple Cow, All Marketers are Liars, and The Dip. AdPage also awarded Godin with the number one marketing blog out of the nearly 1000 tracked.

So what is Purple Cow all about?

Godin discusses his idea that we’ve reached a point where we can no longer market directly to the masses. In addition to offering a product in a remarkable way, marketing must play a role in offering and creating a truly remarkable product.

So what do we have left? We need to stop treating our marketing departments as simple advertising units and start treating them like innovators.

Alternative methods aren’t a fun novelty any longer. In fact, they’re all we’ve got left. The fact remains – consumers have more available choices and much less available time. Because of this, traditional marketing like television and print advertising is no longer effective.

The old system consisted of a making a profit, buying ads, widening distribution channels, selling more, and continuing this cycle. It worked years ago. As of 2003 (and definitely in 2015), it no longer works.

Why do so many businesses fail? They try to make a product for everybody. This leads to advertising to anyone and everyone. When you were the first company to introduce aspirin, this worked. Today, it doesn’t. Marketing for the sake of marketing is one of the most unhealthy things a business can do.

So what is the biggest take away from the book?

Today, more than ever, we’re seeing successful businesses understand the importance of introducing marketing into the development stages. Marketing needs to be the act of inventing the product. Marketing needs to be involved in designing it. Marketing needs to be there when the producing it. A Purple Cow company must be run by a marketer.

If you’re part of a marketing department and want your company to understand your need to be more than an advertising unit making pretty pictures, you need to purchase them this book. It could make your job a whole lot easier.

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