When the office interns approach me each year and ask where I learned this marketing schtuff, there’s no short response.

With a hodge-podge of a background in social, SEO, content, community, growth, websites, emails, and things-that-do-not-scale, my answer is the nondescript, “It depends.”

I learned some of it in college, some of it in practice, and some of it online. One lesson built on another until I had an arsenal of facts available at a moment’s notice.

To showcase it all, I’ve compiled The Beginner’s Stack.

Not only were they useful resources as as a beginner, but they continue to deliver meaningful information over time.

From marketing technology tutorials to landing a job to getting paid what you deserve, here are the tired-and-true resources that first taught me what I know now.

Blogs for startups & marketing

Buffer Open + Social Blogs

When I ran a sports marketing group in college, I used the principles of team building and culture that the Buffer founders outlined. They worked and I grew the team from me to a dozen people. More on their salary calculator later.

Suggested read: The Power of Every Word: Why I Stopped Using “But” and “Actually” in My Customer Service Emails

First Round Review

Learn the hard lessons of entrepreneurship the easier way with longform articles from the prominent professionals on how they built something — a company, a career, or a product.

Suggested read: “Give Away Your Legos” and Other Commandments for Scaling Startups

Moz Blog

If you want to see marketing geeks start feuds, it’s usually over SEO on Twitter. This blog covers beginner topics all the way to advanced methods.

Suggested read: Beginner’s Guide to SEO

Email Newsletters

The Hustle

A conference and newsletter built for non-technical founders, now more heavily focused on tech business headlines.

Belle B. Cooper

Writer and developer, her writing delves into productivity and learning hacks (that aren’t hacky at all).


How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

The book is approaching 90 years old and it still works like a charm. It’s so effective it’s scary.

The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer

How and why to ask for what you want. She was doing things-that-do-not-scale way before startups commoditized it.

Overwhelmed by Brigid Schulte

Scrap the old mantra that hustle is everything and working 20 hours a day is worth it. This book shows the data explaining why leisure is healthy.

Blockbusters by Anita Elberse

Do you know the long tail theory? Anita debunks it in one read that’s well worth it.

Gender, Branding, and the Modern Music Industry by Kristin Lieb

Your music tastes are probably predictable; mine are. After learning the lifecycle of a female pop star, you’ll never listen to music the same way again.

Ignore Everybody by Hugh McLeod

His sex & cash theory shows up again and again. In a nutshell, if you make your passion your day job, it won’t be fun anymore.

The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg

If you want to change your life, change your habits. Cue, routine, reward, and repeat.

Resources to Salary Negotiation & Benchmarking Compensation


This is employer reported data and is more comprehensive than most salary estimates available online. It’s even recommended by negotiation coaches.

Buffer’s Transparent Salary Calculator

Calculate yours by role, city, and seniority level.

How I negotiated for an additional $15k at Yammer by Anna Marie Clifton

If you need a script for negotiating, follow this to the letter.

The hourly wage needed to rent a 2 bedroom apartment

For those thinking of relocating and new to the rental markets, this gives you benchmarks of what you can afford. Rent should be approximately 1/3 of your monthly take-home salary, so you can do the math from there.

The gender wage gap in silicon valley by Rasty Turek

It exists and he crunched the numbers to verify it.

Networking & Conferences


Online and in-person, these events bring together technical professionals from AI engineers to digital marketers alike.


An online community connecting newcomers interested in tech and veterans who are working in the industry. These people are so impressive, I want to be a “newcomer” just so I can pick their brains.

BostonTweetUp — Boston-based

While this is a newsletter, it’s event-specific for Boston and Cambridge.

Growth Hacking Breakfast — Boston-based

Held every few months at the Cambridge Innovation Center in Kendall Square, this event hosts a growth marketer once every few months for a event over breakfast. You’ll be back to the office by 10AM.

Young Women in Digital — Boston-based

Boston-based events centered around all topics of digital marketing careers

FutureM — Boston-based

During the fall in Boston, this event brings together local speakers to showcase, you guessed it, the future of marketing

INBOUND — Boston-based

Competing with FutureM, INBOUND is HubSpot’s annual marketing conference that draws 10,000+ people to Boston each autumn

Job Boards & Hiring


A job board for startups and talent to connect. I found my startup role here.


The generic, catch-all job board where I found a gig in digital marketing.


Social network and job board. It’s worth investing some time in updating yours — it’s one of the first places recruiters and you future coworkers search for you.

Young Women In Digital

For those local to Boston, you might have a contact in the group who can make an introduction to a role you want.


From the big wigs of tech to the scrappy startup, this group’s weekly newsletter hands you the job opening and the point of contact.


Receive weekly or monthly job postings in your inbox. It’s a great way to keep tabs on the job market, even if you’re not actively looking.

Use this stack, share it, and tell me what you think. How’d you learn to be a marketer?

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