Book review: Crush It! by Gary Vaynerchuk
I actually got the Vook version of Crush It!, which is essentially the text of the book on your iPhone along with a bunch of exclusive videos that Gary does just for the Vook to help illustrate points from each chapter.
Given Gary is a video blogging legend and by his own admission is not a gifted writer, the Vook version of Crush It! was the best of both worlds. Gary wisely keeps the chapters short and sweet, and then the Vook folks put together some really slick and entertaining videos that really drive home key points. My favorite is the one about the Internet being a teenager with super powers – you have to watch it to appreciate it. Gary and a graphics editor at their finest!
Crush It! is light on technical details – Gary wisely admits that by the time a print book gets into your hands many of the Social Media tools/trends might already be changing – though Gary does share which Blogging platform (Tumblr) he likes most, for instance. But the real value of Crush It! is Gary’s passion and “You can do this!” attitude. You can’t help but set down the book and get fired up. When I run off to the computer for a few more Tweets late at night, my wife now asks, “Are you going to Crush It?”
Key points of the book:
1. Do what you love. Because, as Gary says, you’re going to have to “work your face off” to be successful in Social Media like he is, you better make sure you’re doing something that is more fun, joy and passion than “work.”
2. Provide the best content in your niche. Play to your strengths (writing, video, photos) and pour your passion and talents into amazing content.
3. Talk to people. (Lots of people.) Find every single Blog posting, Tweet and other online mention in regards to your niche. And then comment. On. Every. Single. One. And don’t just cut and paste stock answers or self-promoting drivel – rather, offer helpful, insightful comments. Take the time to be personal in your interactions.
4. Build your personal brand. Forget paper resumes – your Blog, Tweets, YouTube videos and other online content is an online, organic, living, breathing testimony to your talents and skills. Your LinkedIn page or Blog or YouTube videos are far more likely to get you the job you dream of than a paper resume sent in the mail. Also, building your personal brand online sells YOU – your content, your expertise, your product. Whatever it is that you have to offer the people interested in your topic.
5. Family first. This was a hard one to figure – Gary is completely right in saying family first, and don’t become a psycho workaholic. At the same time, by his own admission, he works 12-15 hour days and suggests you and I have to do the same in order to get to where he’s at.
6. Don’t be in a rush to monetize. Don’t chase the money – build your brand, be patient and realize it doesn’t happen overnight. If you truly are providing amazing content and building a huge following in your area of interest, the $ will come, because eyeballs = money.
7. Be transparent. Be yourself. Be authentic. Always. This is huge – nobody wants a phony, and Social Media users can smell a self-promoting phony a mile away.
Overall this is an easy, fast read that will give you a kick in the pants to get out there and Crush It! (Pun intended) I’d highly recommend the Vook version because the videos are awesome.