I think this is a great question! My answer will probably not be for everyone, so take it for what it's worth...
I've been golfing seriously for 15 years, or so. I did my own thing without taking any lessons for the first 6 years. When I finally did take lessons, I got really frustrated because it made me worse, so I simply abandoned lessons.
About 3 years ago, I decided to really work on my game. I basically decided to make golf my hobby (I was not married at the time). I read many instruction books, watched countless instructional videos online, and even built an indoor hitting area in my house to hit balls into. The weird thing is, doing all these things, while fun, actually put WAY too many things in my brain to think about and I didn't see any immediate improvements.. I went through a period of time where I hopped from one awesome thing I read to another. I was basically spinning my wheels.
Now that it's been a few years, I am really glad I learned as much as I did and with I would have done it 15 years ago. I now better understand how the different parts of a golf swing work and am much better at understanding what things I need to improve on. I've also gotten past the phase of wanting to try every tip I learn about. I have specific things I want to work on and concentrate on just those one or two things...
With that, my recommendation for a beginner golfer would be (in no particular order):
1. Read a half dozen, or so, instructional books (Five Lessons, Golf My Way, The Impact Zone, etc). You don't need to necessarily adopt any one of these books as your guide, but try to gain an understanding of the principles of a sound golf swing.
2. Buy the Tour Tempo application and work with it. It's helped my game and I know of no other resource that helps you work on proper tempo.
3. Buy a full body mirror for the house. It's amazing how slow motion swings and seeing your positions in a mirror can help.
4. Regularly study the 5 Simple Keys and the SandTrap forum. I am a firm believer that the 5 Simple Keys is spot on. Make sure you get each one right before you go onto the next. If you can become proficient with the first 3 keys, you'll be one heck of a good golfer already. Also, the forum provides so much great information! I've learned a bunch just from being on the site.
5. Practice with a purpose and play as often as you can.
6. Take lessons from a local pro or Evolvr (for me, I was much more receptive to lessons once I understood the golf swing a little better).