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The Ultimate Reading List: Top 13 SaaS Marketing Books You Can’t Afford to Miss

Toni Koraza
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January 24, 2024
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The Ultimate Reading List: Top 13 SaaS Marketing Books You Can’t Afford to Miss

Entering the SaaS field has become easier than ever. 

But competing against similar products in the battle for survival? That is becoming more challenging by the day.

You can no longer rely on age-old methods to keep you afloat. Instead, you have to learn from different SaaS entrepreneur’s marketing mistakes and experiences and let that information guide you. One way to gain these insights is by reading the best SaaS marketing books.

As a SaaS SEO agency, we have referred many great books, and in this guide, we’ll share our favorites.

What We'll Cover:

Top 13 Recommended Reads for SaaS Marketing

These top 13 books will provide you with different marketing insights on how to win customers, how to deal with a high churn rate and what you should focus on while creating marketing campaigns. 

Let’s get started.

#1 Product-Led Growth: How to Build a Product That Sells Itself - Wesley G. Bush

Product-led growth by Wes Bush book cover

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Product-led growth has been an often talked about term in the SaaS world. This book explores the concept and defines it as an innovative approach to growing a SaaS business.

It heavily focuses on go-to-market strategy and creating a strategy where your product can attract, acquire, and retain customers. The book also provides real-life examples and practical tips on building a product-centric organization and garnering sustainable growth in a competitive industry. You also get many frameworks to test and experiment with in this book.

About the author: Wesley Bush is the founder and president of ProductLed and is considered the world’s leading expert on product-led growth.

Who should read this book: SaaS founders who want to focus on product-led growth and learn from people who have already researched and experimented with this model.

#2 Crossing the Chasm - Geoffrey A. Moore

Crossing the Chasm by Geoffrey Moore book cover

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While this book was written nearly 26 years ago, its ideas and knowledge still stand the test of time. It describes the challenges startups and innovative products face when transitioning from early adopters to the mainstream market.

The book provides the insights and strategies SaaS entrepreneurs need to cross the chasm and achieve widespread adoption.

While this book may be old, its recent edition covers a lot of case studies, examples, and practical advice that help marketers, entrepreneurs, and digital business leaders to drive sustainable growth.

About the author: Geoffrey Moore is an organizational theorist and management consultant who has worked with companies like Google, Microsoft, Salesforce, and others.

Who should read this book: If you’re starting out and are stuck in the early growth stage, this book is a must-read.

#3 Obviously Awesome: How to Nail Product Positioning so Customers Get It, Buy It, Love It - April Dunford

Obviously Awesome by April Dunford book cover

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This book is your definitive guide to getting your product positioning right. A well-crafted positioning strategy can help you put your product in a good light in the customer’s minds. 

The book also dispels common myths and shows how to communicate your product’s unique value and features to get inbound sales and drive customer engagement, understanding, and loyalty.

The best part about the book is it shows you real-life examples and practical exercises to help nail your positioning strategy and uncover hidden insights.

About the author: April Dunford is a positioning consultant and speaker with 25+ years of experience bringing successful B2B products to market.

Who should read this book: It’s great for early-stage founders and startups who want to attract more customers with a solid positioning strategy.

#4 Inside the Tornado: Strategies for Developing, Leveraging, and Surviving Hypergrowth Markets - Geoffrey A. Moore

Inside the Tornado by Geoffrey Moore book cover

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This book builds on the previous work by Geoffrey Moore and provides strategies for navigating hypergrowth markets, focusing on the critical transition from early adoption to mainstream acceptance. 

He outlines how companies can develop and leverage their positions in the market, offering insights into surviving the intense competition and challenges of hypergrowth. The book emphasizes the importance of adapting marketing, sales, and business strategies to effectively ride the "tornado" of market expansion. 

Like his other work, this book provides practical examples and real-life case studies to help businesses survive in hypergrowth markets.

About the author: Geoffrey Moore is an organizational theorist and management consultant who has worked with companies like Google, Microsoft, Salesforce, and others.

Who should read this book: It’s a must-read for everyone in the SaaS field as the business world is constantly changing, and you must be prepared for it.

#5 The Hard Thing About Hard Things - Ben Horowitz

The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz book cover

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This book by Ben Horowitz is a candid and practical guide to navigating the challenges of running a startup. He draws from his experiences as a successful entrepreneur and venture capitalist and offers invaluable insights into leadership, decision-making, and overcoming adversity. 

The book emphasizes the harsh realities of business, providing actionable advice on managing crises, making tough choices, and building a resilient company culture. The one thing we love about this book is its candid storytelling and no-nonsense approach, which makes it an interesting and inspiring read.

About the author: Ben Horowitz is a businessman, investor, blogger, and author. He is also a co-founder of a venture capital firm.

Who should read this book: It’s an essential read for entrepreneurs facing the complexities of building and leading successful organizations.

#6 The Lean Startup - Eric Ries

The Lean Startup by Eric Ries book cover

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This book introduces a transformative approach to entrepreneurship, emphasizing iterative development, validated learning, and rapid experimentation. It can revolutionize the way you approach innovation and product development.

The book calls for a systematic method to create and manage successful startups in an uncertain environment. It advocates for a lean and flexible approach, encouraging entrepreneurs to build a minimum viable product, measure its success through customer feedback, and adjust their strategies accordingly. 

It also has practical insights and case studies to illustrate how this methodology can foster innovation, reduce wasted resources, and increase the likelihood of building a sustainable and customer-focused business.

About the author: Eric Ries is an entrepreneur, blogger, and author who has worked with great firms like Toyota, General Electric, etc.

Who should read this book: This book is a must-read for every SaaS founder who wants to succeed and grow their business.

#7 From Impossible to Inevitable: How SaaS and Other Hyper-Growth Companies Create Predictable Revenue - Aaron Ross & Jason Lemkin

From Impossible to Inevitable by Aaron Ross & Jason Lemkin book cover

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This book explores strategies employed by hypergrowth companies, particularly in the SaaS industry, to achieve predictable revenue. Co-authored with Jason Lemkin, the book provides actionable insights into scaling SaaS sales, marketing, and customer success functions. 

Emphasizing a systematic and scalable approach, it covers topics like outbound sales, building a predictable sales pipeline, and creating customer success models. Drawing on real-world examples from some SaaS companies like Salesforce, Zenefits, and Echosign, the book is a practical guide for entrepreneurs seeking to navigate the challenges of scaling their businesses and establishing a sustainable path to inevitable success.

About the author: Aaron Ross is a sales advisor, and Jason Lemkin is a founder, venture capitalist, and SaaS enthusiast.

Who should read this book: It is a great read for people looking to create sustainable revenue streams and accelerate the growth of their SaaS startup.

#8 Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It…and Why the Rest Don’t - Verne Harnish

Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It…and Why the Rest Don’t  by Verne Harnish book cover

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Want to grow your business 10X in size? This book can help you do that. It is a comprehensive guide for entrepreneurs aiming to grow their businesses successfully. 

Drawing on practical experience, Harnish provides a framework for scaling operations effectively. The book covers key aspects such as strategic planning, execution, people management, and cash flow. Harnish emphasizes the importance of alignment, communication, and a relentless focus on priorities. 

The book aims to help companies navigate challenges and achieve sustainable growth by offering actionable insights and tools. 

About the author: Verne Harnish is the founder of the Young Entrepreneurs’ Organization (YEO) and co-founded multiple other firms.

Who should read this book: If you want to drive growth with sustainable strategies and insights, this book is for you.

#9 Start with Why - Simon Sinek

Start with Why by Simon Sinek book cover

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"Start with Why" by Simon Sinek explores the concept that successful leaders and organizations should begin by clearly understanding and communicating their "why" — the purpose and beliefs that inspire them. 

Sinek argues that instead of merely focusing on "what" and "how," this approach creates a powerful and lasting impact. The book uses compelling and real-life examples, like Apple and Martin Luther King Jr. It also delves into the importance of purpose-driven leadership and its ability to inspire and motivate individuals and teams. 

This book will encourage readers to find and articulate their "why" for meaningful personal and professional fulfillment.

About the author: Simon Sinek is a popular motivational speaker at many TED Talk shows covering topics like leadership.

Who should read this book: This book is for someone about to start a business and needs clarity and purpose.

#10 Everybody Writes - Ann Handley

Everybody Writes by Ann Handley book cover

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"Everybody Writes" by Ann Handley is a practical guide to effective writing in the digital age. Geared toward SaaS marketers, entrepreneurs, and anyone looking to improve their writing skills, she covers essentials like clarity, storytelling, and creating valuable content. 

Emphasizing the importance of writing in today's communication landscape, the book offers actionable tips, real-world examples, and best practices to enhance written communication. It also helps you win customers and your audience with highly impactful content.

Her approach demystifies the writing process, making it accessible for everyone, regardless of skill level. 

About the author: Ann Handley is a digital marketing pioneer, writer, and speaker who inspires marketers to create marketing magic that gets results.

Who should read this book: This book is a must-read for marketers, content creators, and anyone who wants to improve their writing skills.

#11 Traction: How Any Startup Can Achieve Explosive Customer Growth by Gabriel Weinberg and Justin Mares

Traction: How Any Startup Can Achieve Explosive Customer Growth by Gabriel Weinberg and Justin Mares book cover

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"Traction" by Gabriel Weinberg and Justin Mares is a comprehensive guide for startup founders on achieving explosive customer growth. The book introduces the Bullseye Framework among 18 other customer acquisition frameworks that provide a systematic approach to finding the most effective channels for customer acquisition. 

The authors emphasize the importance of experimentation and testing across various marketing channels to identify what works best for a specific business. Through insightful case studies and over 40 interviews with successful entrepreneurs, the book provides a toolkit for startups to navigate the challenges of scaling. 

About the author: Gabriel Winberg is the founder and CEO of DuckDuckGo and Justin Mares is the CEO of Kettle and Fire.

Who should read this book: Best for founders who are trying to find different ways to boost their user base.

#12 They Ask You Answer - Marcus Sheridan

They Ask You Answer by Marcus Sheridan book cover

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"They Ask You Answer" by Marcus Sheridan is a transformative marketing guide that advocates transparency and customer-centric content. The author shares his journey of turning around a struggling business through the power of addressing customer questions openly. 

The book emphasizes the importance of creating valuable, honest content that addresses customer concerns, ultimately building trust and driving sales. With a focus on inbound marketing and digital communication, Sheridan provides actionable strategies for businesses to connect with their audience authentically. 

About the author: Marcus Sheridan is an entrepreneur and business owner known for his excellence in inbound and content marketing.

Who should read this book: It’s a must-read for content marketers and marketing professionals.

#13 Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion - Robert B. Cialdini

Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert B. Cialdini book cover

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One of the most popular books on this list, "Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion" by Robert B. Cialdini, explores the principles of influence and how they shape human behavior. Drawing on psychology research, Cialdini identifies six key principles – reciprocity, commitment, social proof, authority, liking, and scarcity – that guide decision-making and trigger automatic responses. 

Through engaging anecdotes and practical insights, the book delves into the art of persuasion, offering a deeper understanding of why people say 'yes' and how to ethically apply these principles in various contexts. 

About the author: Robert Cialdini is an esteemed psychologist and professor who has written many books on psychology.

Who should read this book: This book is for anyone seeking to comprehend the psychology behind influence and enhance their persuasive abilities.

Your SaaS Marketing Library Awaits You!

Now, you’re all set to get lessons from some of the most successful people in the world, all from the comfort of your home.

You can experiment with these strategies in the books and see how they resonate with your audience.

If you need further help with your SEO or marketing strategy, get in touch with MADX.

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