24 Quotes to Inspire Any Marketer, Plus One of Mine

Have you ever had your name mentioned in a sentence with someone you admire? Like you’re being compared to them, or included with them? And not, “Is Erik Deckers older than Jason Falls?”

It happens occasionally for me, where someone includes me in a list of people I’ve only read about, and who wouldn’t know me from Adam. Every time it does, I want to say, “Wait, I think you made a mistake.” It’s terribly exciting and a real honor. It’s also something I struggle to accept.

People from Indiana are taught to be humble, and to not brag. (We’re America’s Canada.) We don’t take compliments very well, because we’re supposed to be humble and not appear boastful.

So when someone includes my name or mentions something I’ve done/said in a list of people I’ve looked up to, quoted, and read regularly, part of my brain ducks its head, says “aw, shucks,” and kicks at the ground. And another part squeals like a 12-year-old girl meeting Justin Bieber.

It happened yesterday after someone pointed me to a slide deck of “25 Quotes to Inspire Any Marketer” from ezanga.com. It included quotes from Dan & Chip Heath (Made to Stick), Seth Godin (Purple Cow, Tribes, and Linchpin), John Jantsch (Duct Tape Marketing), David Meerman Scott (Real-Time Marketing & PR), and David freaking Ogilvy.

And me.

The line is from Branding Yourself, a book that Kyle Lacy and I wrote in 2010, and finished a second edition in 2012. I can’t remember who we learned it from (we cited him in the book), but it was used to illustrate the idea that, just like people have emotional reactions to their most-loved and most-hated brands, people have the same reaction to us.

I thought, “this must be a mistake. Or it’s one of those ‘Daily Paper.li’ pages where 87 different people get included and tweeted.” But then I looked and saw that it was neither of those things. It really was something I said, and it was good enough to be included in a list with the Johnson Brothers, Seth Godin, David Meerman Scott, and David freaking Ogilvy.

People think it’s odd that the personal branding guy has difficulty in accepting compliments or stating simple facts like, “I wrote a book,” especially when he wrote a book that told people “get over yourself.” But I do. I get red in the face when I get complimented. I still don’t like telling people, “I wrote a couple books,” because it seems like bragging. And I still feel like a fake when someone asks me to sign their book.

I have to fight that urge to not say anything about what I’ve done and, you know, actually do the things I tell other people to do.

So, here it goes:

“I had a quote about marketing included in a slide deck and blog post that included a lot of really smart people.”

You have no idea how hard that just was.

I Just Received My Copies of the Branding Yourself Book

Two hours ago, I opened up something I thought I would never see: a carton of books with my name on it.

And not just because I bought them.

Copies of the book Branding Yourself by Erik Deckers and Kyle Lacy

In all my years, this is the 5th most beautiful sight I have ever seen.

Because I wrote it.

My good friend, Kyle Lacy, and I just co-authored Branding Yourself: Using Social Media to Invent or Reinvent Yourself, and Que BizTech (Pearson Education) published it. The book will officially be released on Thursday, December 30, 2010, and will be in the major bookstores, as well as on Amazon.com.

As much of a wimp as this will make me sound, I got more than a little choked up looking at something I never imagined as possible until last year (it also didn’t help that Mumford and Sons’ “Little Lion Man” was playing on the radio at that moment either).

Last year, Kyle and I wrote Twitter Marketing for Dummies. We had such a good time that we decided to do it again.

That’s where Branding Yourself came from.

This project has lead to several other projects and other opportunities. And now that it’s been released, I can only hope it leads to bigger and better things (it already has: 2011 is already filling up with some awesome new projects that I’ll be sharing in Q1 and Q2 2011).

If you would like to come to the launch party, we’ll be holding it on Tuesday, January 25 at Scotty’s Brewhouse Downtown (1 Virginia Ave., Indianapolis, IN 46204). You can register for the book launch party at the Eventbrite page.

There are so many people to thank for this — some people whose influence stretches back as far as five years ago — that I don’t even know where to begin. The most notable ones who deserve special recognition are:

  • Paul Lorinczi: My business partner in Professional Blog Service. He makes sure I get my work done here so I can focus on outside projects like this.
  • Lorraine Ball: She was my networking mentor and Kyle’s first employer. She taught me how to network and showed me how to claim my niche and grow it better than anyone else. Her lessons on building a niche lead to this book. (She even gets a couple mentions.)
  • Katherine Bull: Our editor at Pearson/Que BizTech. She’s just awesome, and has become a real friend. Plus, she can spot some real talent and nurture them along. Anyone who has the chance to work with her needs to leap at it.
  • Brandon Prebynski and Leslie O’Neill: Our Tech Editor and Development Editor. I don’t know how many times I got irritated with them at 2:00 in the morning as I was going over their edits, and wrote snarky, smart-ass comments in response to their questions, only to realize the next morning that they were right and I was an idiot. They made this book so much better.
  • Kyle Lacy: To be honest, I learned more from him in the last three years than I realize, and I owe him more for this success than I could ever say.

This has been such a great event in my life, I still can’t believe it’s real. I have to keep looking over at the box of books to make sure they’re really there. I’m looking forward to 2011, and what that’s going to bring. If it’s even half as great as 2010, it’s going to be freaking awesome!