Welcome to episode 6 of the Self-Publishing School podcast. Today, I am joined by Gary Vaynerchuk, the CEO of VaynerMedia which is one of the world’s hottest digital companies, and the host of the #AskGaryVee Show. He is also the author of four New York Time’s bestselling books including Crush It!, The Thank You Economy, Jab Jab Jab Right Hook, and #AskGaryVee: One Entrepreneurs Take on Leadership Social Media, and Self-Awareness.
When Gary was fresh out of college he took his family’s wine business and grew it from a 3 million dollar a year business to a 60 million dollar a year business. He did this in just five years. He is also a prolific angel investor and a venture capitalist investing in companies like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Uber, and BirchBox before eventually co-founding Vayner/RSE, a 25 million dollar investment fund.
In today’s show, we talk about how Gary was approached by a publisher and got his first book deal. We also discuss Gary’s feelings on self-publishing, and what it means to Gary to build a brand. We also touch on business and book promoting tactics that Gary used to become as successful as he is today. Gary also talks about the importance of finding what you are good at and the important concept of “hustle” and just putting in the work.
You can find Gary here:
[01:42] How Gary reacts to technology and the things going on around him. After finishing a speech at Web 2.0 about living your dreams in a practical way, Gary was approached by several publishers. He signed a book deal and Crush It! was born.
[04:11] Why Gary uses a publisher to get that big cash advance, but he is open to self-publishing in the future.
[05:24] The launch of Crush It! and how Gary promoted it in advance by building an audience, using social media, PR, and influencers.
[07:16] How you really have to put in the work of promotion a half a year before the book comes out.
[07:50] Investing in brand building was very helpful in promoting #AskGaryVee and building an audience.
[10:30] How Gary’s message of work is not all that sexy, but his charisma makes up for that.
[13:19] How people need to find the medium that works for them. We don’t have to communicate to the world the same way everyone tells us to. Try what works for you.
[15:01] How talking is a skill for Gary, so he takes advantage of that skill.
[16:08] The number one question people really ask about Gary?
[16:26] The top 3 drivers for sales of #AskGaryVee.
[17:19] How Gary did an 8-hour telethon where if people bought 8 books they were put in a big drawing. It was a big success. Even if people didn’t buy the books, Gary built and increased his audience.
[18:52] The jab, jab, jab philosophy is to give away content three times and then the right hook is the ask to buy. Give, give, give, sell!
[20:12] Mistakes authors make of not promoting early enough and being too sales oriented on social media.
[21:26] Hustle mode really works. Hustle to sell and write your books. Do the work.
[22:25] Mistakes made and lessons learned over the course of Gary’s book career.
[24:17] How Gary’s books fit into his business model.
[25:23] Triple down on your strengths and don’t worry about your weaknesses.
[27:31] Being fully yourself and finding your own system.
[29:12] How changing people’s lives is worth more to Gary than money.
[30:51] Having balance between the steak and the sizzle. You need to have both.
[32:37] Writing a book works, if you write a good book. Just write your book.