This weekend's 'Five Best' series in the Wall Street Journal focuses on the "secrets of selling": Steve Cohn lists the top five books about selling. #1? Marshall McCluhan's Understanding Media. Named the patron saint of Wired Magazine, media theorist Marshall McCluhan coined the phrases "the medium is the message" and the "global village". According to Cohn:
...the most brilliant marketing mind of all belonged to Marshall McLuhan. "Understanding Media" is a timeless analysis of how language, speech and technology shape human behavior in the era of mass communication. The book is a cautionary tale for marketers today who hear the Web's siren call and ignore the power of the spoken word. Whether heard onstage, over the phone, or on radio or TV, McLuhan says, the spoken word is ultimately much more powerful than the written. Part anthropologist, part psychologist, part behavioral scientist, McLuhan ponders many other aspects of how we connect, such as the persuasive powers of typography. He was a genius who understood why mass media holds us in its grip and never lets go.