Crushing It!

Crushing It!: How Great Entrepreneurs Build Their Business and Influence—and How You Can, Too by Gary Vaynerchuk

In his 2009 international bestseller Crush It, Gary insisted that a vibrant personal brand was crucial to entrepreneurial success, In Crushing It!, Gary explains why that’s even more true today, offering his unique perspective on what has changed and what principles remain timeless. He also shares stories from other entrepreneurs who have grown wealthier—and not just financially—than they ever imagined possible by following Crush It principles. The secret to their success (and Gary’s) has everything to do with their understanding of the social media platforms, and their willingness to do whatever it took to make these tools work to their utmost potential. That’s what Crushing It! teaches readers to do.

In this lively, practical, and inspiring book, Gary dissects every current major social media platform so that anyone, from a plumber to a professional ice skater, will know exactly how to amplify his or her personal brand on each. He offers both theoretical and tactical advice on how to become the biggest thing on old standbys like Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, and Snapchat; podcast platforms like Spotify, Soundcloud, iHeartRadio, and iTunes; and other emerging platforms such as Musical.ly. For those with more experience, Crushing It! illuminates some little-known nuances and provides innovative tips and clever tweaks proven to enhance more common tried-and-true strategies.

Crushing It! is a state-of-the-art guide to building your own path to professional and financial success, but it’s not about getting rich. It’s a blueprint to living life on your own terms.

I REALLY enjoyed this book! I haven’t read much this year so it’s maybe less significant when I say this is my favorite book I’ve read this year, but I’ll say it anyway: this is my favorite book I’ve read this year.

If you’re a business owner, content creator, influencer, or desire to be any of those things, I think Crushing It! is absolutely required reading for 2018.

I didn’t read Crush It! until September of 2016…basically seven years after it came out. While I liked Crush It!, it did feel dated at that point in time. I suspect how I feel reading Crushing It! now is how some people felt who read Crush It! soon after it came out.

The first half of Crushing It! reads like a motivational, personal development/business book. I highlighted so many great nuggets in this section. It’s like listening to one of Gary’s podcast episodes except that it’s laser focused because someone took an editing pen and applied a tight structure to it. The second half drills down into specific platforms and gives ideas on how you can use them and where those platforms are going. So if you want to know how to kill it on Instagram, Gary’s got advice for you. Want to be a podcaster? That’s in here, too.

Crushing It! also includes many case studies of people who were able to put into practice the things Gary wrote about in Crush It! and have been able to really dominate with their brands and companies. One of the things I think that’s really important in the personal development and business space, whether it’s a book, blog, video, or podcast, is to give examples of real people who are doing the things you’re teaching about. It’s easy to assume one person’s success is a fluke, but once you start giving examples of others who have had success, it’s hard to argue it away as, “Well, you’re Gary Vaynerchuk. That would never work for me”.

Aside from this book being pure Gary Vaynerchuk (meaning if you don’t like Gary, don’t read this book), the thing I found most significant about Crushing It! is that whenever I stopped reading, I felt really inspired and motivated. One of the things that most excites me about with my new business (Minute Marketing) is the chance to experiment and try new things to create better and more impactful content. And that’s true not only for Minute Marketing, but for my clients and even this blog! I had some great thoughts while reading this book about both of my brands and I’m looking forward to getting back to being creative and playing around with content.

I wanted to share one quote I really liked from the book with you:

“When you really own it, and you put yourself out there and be you, your vibe is going to attract your tribe, and you’re going to be able to make change in this world.”

So here’s my commitment to you: to be really authentic and unapologetically myself. To be less strategic and more focused on putting out the best of the best. To crushing it in all spaces and places.

Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook

Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk

When managers and marketers outline their social media strategies, they often plan for the “right hook”-their next highly anticipated sale or campaign that’s going to put the competition out for the count. Even companies committed to jabbing-patiently engaging with customers to build the relationships so crucial to successful social media campaigns-still yearn to land the powerful, bruising swing that will knock out their opponent or their customer’s resistance in one tooth-spritzing, killer blow. Right hooks, after all, convert traffic to sales. They easily show results and ROI. Except when they don’t.

In the same passionate, street-wise style readers have come to expect, Gary Vaynerchuk is on a mission to improve marketers’ right hooks by changing the way they fight to make their customers happy, and ultimately to compete. Thanks to the massive change and proliferation in social media platforms in the last four years, the winning combination of jabs and right hooks is different now. Communication is still key, but context matters more than ever. It’s not just about developing high-quality content, but developing high-quality content perfectly adapted to specific social media platforms and mobile devices-content tailor-made for Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and Tumblr. A mash-up of the best elements of Crush It! and The Thank You Economy with a 2013 spin, here is a blueprint to social media marketing strategies that really works.

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First things first: even though this book was put out in 2013 and it’s now almost 2017, this book is still relevant. Ok, Tumblr might not still be relevant, but the other platforms are very much in play. And Gary’s message that underlies the whole book can translate to any platform: lay out a series of great jabs that are native to the platform to sink them with a spectacular right hook and close the sale.

The breakdown of each social network may feel a little dry, but the real life examples of social media posts and Gary’s analysis of them (the good, the bad, and the ugly) makes this book worth it. This is a great book to keep on hand as a reference item if you’re trying to get serious about social media. It’s one thing to hear the theoretical aspect of how to do social, it’s another thing to be gifted with a variety of examples across industries that you can really get your arms around.

I really love Gary’s message and strategies because they align with my own approach to social. I hear the same questions from people over and over – How do I get people to convert? The question you should be asking is – How can I consistently give the most value so that when people are ready to buy from me, they won’t even think of going to a competitor? That’s the message behind Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook. It really is that simple, so stop trying to make it difficult!

Also, I have to give kudos where kudos are due: the publishers of this book hit a homerun with how they put the book together. I’m not sure if there even is a paperback version, but you should spring for the hardcover anyway. The paper feels amazing in your hands. I’m a nerd about paper to begin with, but trust me when I say this a book you just want to keep touching. The paper is like velvet. The size of the book is also big enough that you know right away this is a reference book, not a novel, but it’s also small enough that it’s not obnoxious. It’s currently forming the base of my business reference book pile on my desk and it looks amazing doing it.

 

Crush It!

By Gary Vaynerchuk

Do you have a hobby you wish you could indulge in all day? An obsession that keeps you up at night? Now is the perfect time to take that passion and make a living doing what you love. In Crush It! Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion, Gary Vaynerchuk shows you how to use the power of the Internet to turn your real interests into real businesses. Gary spent years building his family business from a local wine shop into a national industry leader. Then one day he turned on a video camera, and by using the secrets revealed here, transformed his entire life and earning potential by building his personal brand. By the end of this book, readers will have learned how to harness the power of the Internet to make their entrepreneurial dreams come true. Step by step, Crush It! is the ultimate driver’s manual for modern business.

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If you work in the social media and marketing world and you don’t know who Gary Vaynerchuk is, clearly you haven’t gone deep enough into learning about your craft. Gary is a thought leader in that arena and in business in general. You’ve probably seen his videos on Youtube or read his articles on Medium at the very least. If you’re like me, you’ve gobbled down his Ask Gary Vee podcast like candy. Gary is energetic, enthusiastic, intense, and incredibly focused. His work is something you need to check out if you have a business, want to own your own business, or need someone to give you some clarity on this whole internet age.

That said, this book is pure Gary. It sounds exactly like him. So if you’ve listened to his show, watched his videos, or read his articles, and don’t like him and his message, you aren’t going to like this book. Crush It! has all the same energetic hyperbole that listening to an episode of Ask Gary Vee does, now in convenient book form!

Crush It! is a fairly short book, but it packs a lot in. In summation, the steps to Crushing It are:

  1. Find Your Passion
  2. Create Great Content
  3. Choose Your Platform
  4. Keep It Real
  5. Build Your Community
  6. CARE
  7. Make the World Listen
  8. Start Monetizing
  9. Enjoy the Ride!

Sounds easy enough when you put it down on paper! But most people can attest that while #1 is totally doable, things kind of go off the rails during #2-7. And those are the real areas you need to put in work. Something’s going wrong in between, it’s up to you to figure out exactly what that is and fix it.

Crush It! was written in 2009. So in some ways, it feels a tiny bit outdated. Some companies have lost attention, others are on the way out (Sadly looking at you Tumblr. You were what my early college years were made of and now I don’t even remember my password). But this also gives you a chance to witness Gary’s oracle skills in action. He made mention several times throughout the book about a combination cell phone and FlipCam hybrid coming to consumers everywhere in the near future. If you don’t know what a FlipCam is, it was a handheld, easy-to-use, easy-to-afford camera. Its relevancy faded as the capabilities of our cell phones increased and in 2016 we saw the broad rollout of live video…exactly as Gary predicted several times over in Crush It!

Crush It! is a great introduction to Gary Vaynerchuk and his message. If you’re a Gary Vee fan like myself, you will also love this book because at this point you’re probably drinking in everything he says like a plant during a desert rainstorm.

I’ll leave you with one great quote from this book:

“No matter how big or small you want to go, your authenticity will be at the root of your appeal and is what will keep people coming to your site and spreading the word about your personal brand, service, or whatever you are offering.”