It’s the first Friday of the month and that means it’s time for a book review!

Let me start out by saying, I receive a ton of books in the mail. Most of them are unsolicited and arrive without a note or a signature inside or any reason to compel me to read it.

Before Brand Against the Machine was published, I knew of John Morgan very peripherally so I wouldn’t have known about his book unless it’d been recommended to me by a friend.

But he did two things really well. He sent me a signed copy of his book. It is written specifically to me and you can tell he did his homework.

I love that.

Then he sent me a personal note (handwritten, none-the-less) about why he thought Spin Sucks readers would benefit from knowing about his book.

Score two points for John.

So, of course, I felt compelled to read his book.

Now the review.

The book sucks.

HAHAHAHA! Just kidding, John!

I just wanted to give him a little heart attack because I’ve been teasing him about this review for weeks now.

In all seriousness, the book is very good. For those of you who do a lot of branding work every day and have years of experience, you’re not going to learn a lot. But the stories he tells throughout are entertaining and keep your attention. So you’ll likely come away with three or four really good nuggets you never considered OR things you’d forgotten.

For those of you really active in social media, it won’t be earth shattering in terms of what works and what doesn’t work (video, not selling, having conversations). But you’ll learn how to take what you’re really good at and apply some strong marketing and branding techniques to help either your company or your clients.

He covers a lot of ground, from haters and brand ambassadors to perfecting your website and creating a conversation. I got the most out of the last three chapters of the book.

I don’t mind rules, John, and thought that last chapter was excellent. I also really enjoyed reading the reasoning behind what is killing entrepreneurs (and I agree).

The only thing I wish is that the measurement chapter had more meat to it. It’s the one thing we’re really missing in the bigger marketing, PR, advertising, and branding conversation and I thought that chapter was glossed over.

All-in-all, I definitely think it’s worth a read. It’s very easy to read, especially because he inserts hilarious stories throughout that, literally, make you laugh out loud.

So there you have it. Brand Against the Machine by John Morgan. Get it. YWRI.

P.S. Make sure you pay particular attention to page 66 when he talks about linking his social networks and what his mother-in-law discovered from his tweets because they were posted on Facebook. Holy. Cow.

Disclosure: The only thing I got out of this review was the free book. Geoff Livingston still holds the title for best bribe, with wine and bruschetta, for my review on Welcome to the Fifth Estate.

Gini Dietrich

Gini Dietrich is the founder, CEO, and author of Spin Sucks, host of the Spin Sucks podcast, and author of Spin Sucks (the book). She is the creator of the PESO Model and has crafted a certification for it in partnership with Syracuse University. She has run and grown an agency for the past 15 years. She is co-author of Marketing in the Round, co-host of Inside PR, and co-host of The Agency Leadership podcast.

View all posts by Gini Dietrich