Crushing It! is a book on how to build a personal brand. It covers both the mindsets, some success stories and the practical steps of doing it.
- Create lots of great content
- Be authentic
- Build partnerships with influencers in your niche
Gary says that building a personal brand has become a feat anyone can achieve. And Crushing It! is your guide to doing just that.
The 7 Essentials
Gary Vaynerchuk says there are 7+1 key factors in building a personal brand.
The 8th Essential: Content
Gary says you need to keep producing high quality content, with high consistency. And he highlights a key mistake people do: they care too much about the style.
Things such as design, camera angle, lighting, movements. That’s all secondary. When you are documenting your life, Gary says, aesthetics don’t matter. What matters is being authentic and speaking your truth.
Starting From Scratch
The very first step is creating a Facebook page.
Then you should list all the relevant hashtags for your niche and content and start promoting your content with them. Then look for partnerships. Gary advises to message people in your niche directly and give something back.
Gary tackles the major fears and excuses people have before starting their personal branding.
- Fear of Failure
- Fear of Wasting Time
- Fear of Seeming Vain
Possibly the most interesting and concrete part of the book is Gary reviewing the major social platforms out there:
This platform is very popular among teenagers and it’s mostly suited for entertainers. If you’re a singer, dancer, comedian… Start using those hashtags and collaborate over to Musical.ly.
For those who know Gary, he’s big into Snapchat. And he’s been saying for a while that it’s one of the most underestimated medium available.
Snapchat is perfect to show your truest self, your rawest and unfiltered personality.
Use Snapchat as your chance to speak your unfiltered self.
Twitter is for the latest news. It’s the online equivalent of the water cooler where people go to hear the latest rumors.
Gary says you should listen on Twitter to catch the latest trends and stories.
The biggest platform for video creators, which will soon overcome television for time spent watching videos.
It’s just too big to ignore. Gary says that even if you think this is not your medium, you have to give it a try.
I personally couldn’t agree more. I started Yotube with good content but super very low quality videos. For a while I thought I was wasting time and that web was my mainstay.
However my Youtube channel has recently seen a major acceleration and it might become more central in my content strategy.
Some have been calling Facebook’s demise for a while now. But the giant is still there, still the biggest media platform around. Which means to you, you cannot not have a Facebook page.
Facebook is possibly the best platform to target your audience, and works great even with smaller budgets. And don’t forget Facebook Live.
Gary says that Instagram’s private message is one of the best ways to connect with other influencers. He has been saying it for a while as a friend of mine mentioned it as big game changer some time ago.
Then he found out those people must follow you back or your DMs will go into an “other” folder which will likely never be read.
In a world of busy people, podcasts break barriers by allowing consumption on the go or while doing something else.
Very good for shy or introverted people.
Voice first is the new kid on the block. Spurred by Amazon Echo and Google Home voice, says Gary, is the future of interaction.
If you’re serious about personal brand, you must look into Alexa.
Influencer, Not Entrepreneur
The line between influencer and entrepreneur might be blurred in some cases. But this book is more for people who want to build a social media presence and follower base rather than building a company. For example, Gary recommends using Youtube for vlogs. But vlogs are not for everybody.
Risk of Entitlement Mentality Vanity
Gary says you shouldn’t fear vanity. But at the same time I feel you should fear mediocrity. Before starting to put yourself out there, you should ask: do I have something to give? Self promotion without being great at something is entitlement mentality.
Some can make it without really adding value (law of the large numbers), but your best bet is to make yourself a great person first. Gary addresses it in Crush It.
Told You So Mistake
Gary uses this book as a way of saying that what he told you with his previous book works. But that doesn’t really prove anything and it’s a typical inductive fallacy mistake (check Fooled by Randomness) and prone to survivorship bias.
As an example, imagine that today I’d tell you: the best way to get rich is to invest in lottery tickets. Then 5 years from now I’d present you a list of people who got rich with lotteries. Would that prove anything? Exactly my point.
Gary Vaynerchuk is widely considered an expert of social media because, well, he is doing well for himself there. So he does have the credentials to speak and he does have experience in it.
If you are serious about building a personal brand, you should look into guys like Gary Vaynerchuk. And Crushing It! sums up his views quite well.