Robert R, Updegraff, 1889-1977, authored numerous magazine articles -- Obvious Adams was the first, appearing in the Saturday Evening Post in April, 1916 -- and four major books. He was a business counselor and advised the top management of many leading companies, including General Foods, John Hancock Mutual Life, Kellog, Lever Brothers and Westinghouse. He also wrote for Reader's Digest under various pen names.
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Whenever I travel around the world, I’m often asked the same question: “What are your favorite books?”
Well, I’m going to let you in on a secret. The best book that I have ever read on marketing is one that was written 90 years ago, in 1916. And here’s the good news: It is only 40 pages long, and it contains no jargon or graphs or complex research. In fact, it’s more like a pamphlet. Now the bad news: It’s not easy to find and could be called a collector’s item.
The book is titled Obvious Adams: The Story of a Successful Businessman. It’s written by Robert R. Updegraff. The book was an instant hit. The New York Times wrote, “The young man who is going to seek his fortune in the advertising business should have Obvious Adams for a handbook." - Jack Trout, NYT Bestselling Author of several Marketing Classics, including The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing