A self-professed “hustler”, Gary Vaynerchuk (also known as ‘Gary Vee’) pulls no punches when it comes to giving advice about what it takes to be your own boss. In his uniquely direct style, he shares his experiences and perspectives on what it takes to be an entrepreneur.
Tapping into his experience as a business owner, investor, social media master, and media production machine, we’ve boiled Gary Vee’s wealth of advice down to the top four bare essentials needed to succeed in business:
1. Know Your Customer
“Am I being empathetic because I care or am I being empathetic
because I know being understanding will give me leverage in the situation?
The answer is both.”
The first priority of any kind of business is not just to know your market environment, or your competitors, or even the product you’re selling. It’s about knowing who is on the other side of the business, the person who will be coming to you and looking for whatever it is that you’re providing them with.
It’s about knowing what they want and what they need, versus what you want and what you need. And it’s about taking that knowledge and using it to serve them the best way you can, without weighing the calculations and costs too much.
Nobody’s asking you to operate at a loss, but if you’re not authentic or unwilling to deliver above and beyond in the value of your product or service, they’re going to find someone else.
2. Solve Their Problem
“You can tinker with the parameters in ways people didn’t think were possible…”
So, now that you got your product or service that stands out from the crowd, how do you make it relatable?
Start with a list of 50 problems and solutions. For every problem, write a solution, or more than one if you can think of them. It’s fine if you have one solution to multiple problems, just as you can have multiple solutions to one problem.
Then, look at that list, and think about what you can fix. What are the solutions you have right now that match the problems which your clients have? What can you provide or do for them that will make you a better choice than anybody else?
Don’t call your clients and try to sell them whatever your business provides. Call them and understand what they need, and then give them a solution.
Sometimes, you may not have what they need. Accept that and move on. Maybe you can’t fix their biggest problem for them, but how about their second biggest problem? or their third? or fourth? What about the 36th? Keep going down that list until you find a problem that you can fix.
Because at the end of the day, let’s face it – if your business isn’t standing head and shoulders above your competition, and giving you the opportunity to innovating new solutions to the same problems, you’re in hot soup.
3. Communicate and Connect
“Too many people are scared to share their visions and thoughts in public or even in board-rooms.
Having a strong vision is important for your personal brand.
Don’t be afraid to say what you think. Ever.
That said, don’t forget to listen, either.”
True story right there.
Connecting with your clients builds your message, it builds your brand. You can’t be shy about talking about what your business does, will do, and aspires to do. And you need to communicate that intent and that purpose in the clearest way you can.
If you’re not making an effort to connect, converse, and add value to your customers, then you’re not doing enough. As long as you’re not communicating clearly and listening to your clients, any fancy marketing campaign you have in mind, isn’t going to work.
Maybe having many social media channels can feel overwhelming, but you still need to put yourself out there and put in the effort. Start with just one if you feel overwhelmed – pick YouTube, pick Twitter, or pick SnapChat. The point is to pick something and run with it.
“Make it simple. Make it memorable. Make it inviting to look at. Make it fun to read.”
Don’t let perfect get in the way of possible.
4. Expect to Fail and Fail Often
Everyone loves the idea of being your own boss – it’s sexy, it’s glamorous, you’re one of the big boys. But do you know how much effort, how many hours of pure, hard work go into that “image”?
You only ever get to meet the successful entrepreneurs. And even then, you see them after they’ve achieved their $10 million business. You don’t see the $9 million failure behind all that. You don’t see the overtime hours, the burned weekends, the stress, the fear behind it all.
Real entrepreneurs expect to fail, across multiple industries, repeatedly.
If that scares you, then stop now.
But if it’s still something that you want to do, get an education. Start putting in the hours and doing the homework. Research, study, prepare. And then take the plunge and do it.
And what better way to prepare for entrepreneurship than to hear from the man himself?
Meet Gary Vee in Kuala Lumpur at the National Achievers Congress 12-13 July 2018! As partners for the event, Leaderonomics readers will receive a further 10% discount. For more information and to register, visit www.nacmalaysia.com.
This article was written by the team at Success Resources and published with permission on Leaderonomics.com.