Crushing It!: How Great Entrepreneurs Build Their Business and Influence-and How You Can, Too

The Founder of Inspire Leadership & focuses on unlocking people’s potential by providing them with programs; mentorship and coaching into high performance

Book by Gary Vaynerchuk

This is the first personal branding book that I have read this year and Crushing It has a lot to offer. If you aim to create your own brand, this is a must-read book as it is a collection of interviews of some of Vanynerchuk's followers who supposedly read Crush it and are Crushing it now with their brands on social media. Even more interesting and more useful is how Gary Vee has broken down each social platform though these eyes people who have become successful by using the specific social platforms. The book is both informational and inspirational especially for people who have no idea how to use social media for brand building. 

The book provides very practical tips on how to use relevant hashtags, direct messaging and forming partnerships with influencers in your area of interest, engaging directly with your audience, and specific advice regarding the various social media channels. 

Key takeaways from the book are:

  • Substance over form. There is a need to build great content. Without great content, you can't build your online personal brand and gain a solid follower base.
  • In social media and as you build a brand, you will need to be yourself and always speak the truth; without authenticity, you can't bring consistent content. This also applies to choosing which brands and businesses you work with. The key is to ensure you work only with brands and businesses that are aligned with your brand.
  • The 10,000-hour rule also applies here. #HARDWORK! It is not easy to establish your own successful brand and eventually monetize it -- it requires countless hours of studying trends, producing content, and engaging with others on the various social media channels... The first months or even years can be hard, so you'll probably only make it through the trough of disillusionment if you are truly passionate about what you are doing. In other words, it takes seven years of hard work to get to a breakthrough. This should be accompanied by consistency, discipline and 10X mentality.
  • Have good intentions. This will help your brand to soar.  The idea is not just to create a brand and money, but to be connected to your purpose in life as you need a motivator to make you progress and do this day in and day out. If you're missing this essential part of the puzzle and running for money and other external motivators, then you’ll just be blind hustling and that eventually leads to complete burnout.
  • The final takeaway for me is that many of us are failing to “crush it” because we do not want our private life to be public. This is something that is holding many of us back in launching an online personal brand. Gary Vee suggests that we can start small. The book mentions a high-school art teacher who began documenting his after-school art lessons. His page soon grew, and now he is making 30k on the side!  The greatest way to build your brand is to document, not create. That means, instead of creating daily content, we should start by documenting what we are already doing in the industry. 

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