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January 17, 2005

Jack Covert Selects: Jack Covert Selects--Marketing Playbook

By: Jack @ 9:21 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

The Marketing Playbook: The Battle-Tested System For Capturing And Keeping The Lead In Any Market by John Zagula and Richard Tong, Portfolio, $22.95, Hardcover, 288 Pages, October 2004, ISBN 1591840384
There are two basic types of business books - descriptive and prescriptive. I gravitate toward the prescriptive. I like books that give 10 ways to solve a problem. Many business book readers are the same. They want a "how to" book to get them started. The Marketing Playbook by John Zagula and Richard Tong fits into this category perfectly.
While at Microsoft, the authors noticed patterns in the marketing plans the company was implementing. The main thing was there weren't many variations to the plans. In the book, they describe five "marketing plays" that will works for any situation. They have given them easy to remember names (Drag Race, Stealth, Best of Both, High-Low, and Platform). They describe in detail how to run each play, how to identify which play to run, and what play to run if the current one starts to fail. As venture capitalists with Ignition Partners, they now use this technique with every company that comes through their doors looking for funding.
The authors of this book, Zagula and Tong, wrote it because they were told repeatedly by colleagues that there is a need for:
" a helpful, straightforward marketing guide rather than the hype, buzzwords, or academic theory they typically see. They told us that they would like to read a book that not only shows them how to gain and hold on to their rightful leadership position but also helps them repeat the process over and over, a book they could believe, a book whose methods and suggestions have been proven in the heat of battle, a book written by people who knew from experience how to attain and retain the lead in a market but who also knew how to make the process easy to follow and implement."
So if you want to play like the big dogs, here is your Playbook. It's obviously not only a great first read, but also a book that you will return to again and again.