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Crush It!: Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion
by Gary Vaynerchuk
Published by Harper Business, HarperAudio on September 10, 2013
Genres: Business & Success
Length: 3 hours and 40 minutes
Buy on Amazon
Review/Post Reading Time: 7 minutes
Crush It! by Gary Vaynerchuk is an outdated book that I think you should read. What? The book was written back in 2018 and, for me, it still holds strong and relevant for most of the content but we're talking social media.
You know, the internet. Where things update in real-time and change by the minute. How much has social media changed in twelve years?
Still, the value is in the evergreen content as far as I'm concerned. But hey, don't think my review is finished here. This is just a poorly executed synopsis that gave you nothing about the book. Sorry, that's just the mood I'm in. There are close to fifteen hundred words waiting for you inside or below - depending how you're standing. 😉
Crush It! Book Intro
Crush It! Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion
Crush It author, Gary Vaynerchuk took his family discount wine business from $4 Million/year to $50 Million/year but spent millions in traditional marketing and advertising to do it.
Today, Gary Vee has mastered the power of social media, community, and content creation to the degree that leaders and influencers of every level study his every move.
Gary Vee goes into how an individual can reinvent themselves, how businesses can leverage social media and how everyone needs to build their personal brand.
Gary’s 3 Simple Rules For Success
Gary Vaynerchuk, in the book Crush It!, reveals The Three Simple Rules he attributes his success to:
- Love your family
- Work super hard
- Live your passion
Don’t let Gary’s rules fool you, Crush It goes far beyond those 3 Simple Rules For Success, he delivers a blueprint complete with strategy, resources, insight, and even predictions.
Can you tell I like this book a lot? This was another one of my top 10 books for entrepreneurs and, not surprisingly, the second of those 10 which Gary Vaynerchuk authored.
Recurring themes you’ll hear in Crush It is storytelling, passion, intent and content. In fact, Gary V is very repetitive in his books and videos. Other recurring themes in Crush It are:
- Hard Work (Hustle)
- Personal Branding
With the exception of continuous note-taking, Crush It is an easy read. Most readers can get through the book in an afternoon and the audio version, which I HIGHLY recommend, is just a little over three and a half hours long.
Listed below are some of the key takeaways I took from Crush It in the form of topics you can look forward to. I’ll let Gary Vaynerchuk handle the details of each:
- Social Media
- Using social media data
- Finding revenue
- Building legacy
- Growing your personal brand
- Great content creation
- Choosing your platform
- The dangers of metrics
- Creating a community
- Reactionary business
- Putting out fires
- Being assessable
- Predictions and insight (Outdated)
- Steps to take including a checklist
Brian’s Overall Book Rating
Before I get into my overall rating, I think we need to look at a necessary question from a success and business book written back in 2009 – is it outdated?
Is Crush It! Outdated?
Funny, I recommend books like How to Win Friends and Influence People (1936) and, to a lesser degree, The Science of Getting Rich (1910) but we’re looking at things like social media and modern branding here. So is it? Outdated?
Yes and No. Crush It (2009) is a little outdated in areas but I think this book is extremely relevant and I still actually consider it almost a must-read by anyone considering a modern business.
A few of the social media platforms have changed and some of the predictions are outdated but the principles are evergreen.
Here’s an example. In his book, Gary says U-Stream is quickly becoming his number one social media platform. Well, in 2016, IBM bought U-Stream and turned it into an expensive video hosting business with prices beginning at $99.00 per month. Guess what they did with everyone’s free videos? Yep, after a 30-day notice, they were deleted.
So when he says Advil should search Twitter for everyone – in real-time, that says they have a headache and offer to send them a bottle? Even if Twitter disappears one day, there will be a replacement and the idea is still strong. It’s evergreen. Got It?
There is a newer book by Gary Vee that some say is an updated version of Crush It called Crushing It! (2018). While that’s on my TBR list, I haven’t gotten to it yet. Of course, as soon as I do, you’ll be the first to know.
Back To My Rating
When I first read and listened (Yes, I also have the print version), I was blown away. It was right after I first learned of Gary Vaynerchuk and I honestly didn’t care for him at all. He seemed so arrogant and maybe a little too outspoken for my tastes.
But, as I mentioned, the book blew me away. This book was popping up in so many conversations among my little online business and blogging connections I figured it was worth giving a chance. I read it in an afternoon and, just like that, I was a Gary Vee fan.
Even then, it wasn’t until August of 2014 that I purchased the audiobook on Audible. That was even better since it was read by the author himself. Five years later and I got excited for the content all over again.
So I love the book and gave it three and a half stars. What gives?
I know, even though I still believe the book can be used for today’s social media and modern business environment, I also know many people aren’t going to be happy when they hear Gary say to visit SomewhatFrank.com only to find that the site, even though it’s still there, was basically abandoned ten years ago. Or when you go to SocialTimes.com only to be redirected to AdWeek.
I cannot in good conscience give this wonderful piece of digital art the five stars I want it to have but only base that on ignoring a percentage of the content.
It pains me to give it less than five stars but, to be honest, I have to ask how much of that is based on an emotional attachment, albeit an irrational one.
How much of that is simply me remembering getting so excited after reading this book that I couldn’t sleep that night and got up and started creating a brand at three in the morning? Yeah, you probably won’t feel that. Not now. Probably.
Now I realize I absolutely must listen to and review Crushing It!, even though that book is already two and a half years old. I really need uncle time to sync with my timeline a little better.
Why I Think This Book Is A Must Read
Gary Vaynerchuk is widely considered a social media expert and asked to speak on social media and personal branding on every platform from podcasts to mainstream news organizations. So is social media why he’s so successful? I don’t think so.
Gary Vee is so passionate about what he does, he cannot help but stay on top of his game and out-work everyone around him. So is that why he’s so successful? Maybe, but I think it has more to do with his ability to share his passion in a way that is absolutely contagious.
If you’re an open-minded type of person, I think you can’t help but get excited about your own brand’s potential when listening the Gary Vee speak on it.
My advice is simple:
Listen to the book. Take action immediately!
Don’t take notes, plan a strategy, and work on implementing a plan of action. That’s going to undo the passion and excitement you drew from the audiobook. Just get to work. Right now.
“Being authentic, and being perceived as such by your audience, relies on your ability to ensure that every decision you make when it comes to your business is rooted in being true to yourself.”Gary Vaynerchuk – Crush It
Book Recommended For
Any small business that just “Has a Facebook & Twitter” account. Anyone that has little or no social media interaction on their accounts or has to play silly games and tricks to get a little. Anyone struggling with building their brand or anyone that doesn’t even know they need to build their brand.
Who May Not Like This Book
Even though I still like and recommend Crush It, I realize that other people like myself that live, eat and breathe this kind of stuff might find it a bit in the realm of common knowledge.
Whether that’s because Crush It’s techniques and theories have been shared in other books or we all just advanced together, there’s not anything new here – unless you haven’t been following the world of modern business and branding. This, I believe, is most people.
Crush It! Book Chapters:
- Chapter 1: Passion Is Everything
- Chapter 2: Success Is In Your DNA
- Chapter 3: Build Your Personal Brand
- Chapter 4: A Whole New World
- Chapter 5: Create Great Content
- Chapter 6: Choose Your Platform
- Chapter 7: Keep It Real… Very Real
- Chapter 8: Create Community: Digging Your Internet Trench
- Chapter 9: The Marketing Strategy Ever
- Chapter 10: Make The World Listen
- Chapter 11: Start Monetizing
- Chapter 12: Roll With It
- Chapter 13: Legacy Is Greater Than Currency
- Conclusion: The Time Is Now, The Message Is Forever
Crush It! Author: Gary Vaynerchuk
Crush It! Audible Narration By Gary Vaynerchuk
The author, Gary Vaynerchuk, is the narrator of Crush It on Audible.
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