If you give a f*ck about your legacy and your customers, then you should go out and buy this book.

I discovered Gary a few months ago and he was the catalyst that pushed me into creating my own personal brand. Prior to discovering Gary, I was “hiding” behind the label SeekFitLife

Gary instilled the wisdom that has allowed me to move forward with my own personal brand. Because of Gary, I feel like I can (almost) run through walls.

I went out and purchased #AskGaryVee and have read it multiple times — taking notes! Below, I’ve taken notes from the book and then provided my own annotations of how I have applied the bullet points in my own personal brand.

Gary’s “clouds”

  • Bring value to the customer
  • Provide 51% of the value to the transaction
  • Play the long game of lifetime value
  • Smart work never replaces hard work, it just supplements it
  • People are the most important commodity
  • Never be romantic about how you make your money
  • Try to put yourself out of business daily

Gary’s thesis

  • The “dirt” is about being a practitioner and executing toward the clouds.
  • Know your craft.
  • Most people play between the clouds and dirt.
  • Wine Library TV did well because Gary knew his craft (the wine business)
  • His message: Dig deeper into your craft. Learn everything about it. Become the mason and the architect.
  • The dirt is about being a practitioner. Executing toward the clouds. Knowing your craft
  • Most people play in the middle (between clouds and dirt)
  • Wine Library TV. Gary believes it did so well because he knew his business and he knew his craft

Raise the bar of your business philosophy and dig deeper into your craft. Be an architect and a mason (equally)

Q. What motivates you to keep going without seeing any growth along the way?

A. There was always a why he started the thing in the first place and patience!

Summary For (Aspiring) Entrepreneurs (Like Myself!!)

Below are bullet-point notes from the #AskGaryVee book and then my annotations of how I’ve taken action against those points.

  • Create a “reality show” around your business idea (i.e., become a media company and pump out a shit load of content!)

Side note: this tidbit motivated me to do daily vlogging on my YouTube channel. I am able to pump out my daily journey — almost like a diary! Because I am able to synthesise content via voice faster than the written word, I’ve also increased my podcast output.

  • Cash/ sales is the No. 1 most important thing for startup businesses.
  • If you want to run your own business (“solopreneur”) then gotta punt everything else for the first 3–5 years!

Side note: this tidbit has pushed me into not going out to night clubs. Scaling back my travels. And working every single minute on my personal brand when I am not at my corporate job.

  • Cash is oxygen for a 1 person business
  • (Handle) names mean nothing. A brand name becomes what you make it. In Gary’s own words: “Too many startups spend months on their name and weeks on their actual business.”

Side note: I made this mistake in the past with SeekFitLife. I spent way too much time thinking of the label and the logo design, rather than focusing on creating content!

  • There’s never a bad time to start a good business.
  • People fail to start a business because they are scared.

Gary’s words: “who are you scared of? Letting yourself down or who in your life don’t you want to let down? It’s about “having that talk.” Think about who it is that you don’t want to let down. Once you do this you will then start the process of doing what is right for you.

Side Note: I had this challenge with my father. Deep down I feared the judgement from him with starting my own personal brand. He already was not supportive of the idea of me wanting to quit my corporate job to pursue my own business ventures. At the time of writing, I have not spoken to him in about 6 months… and it has been incredibly liberating!

  • Don’t sell to the unsellable
  • The way to BIZDEV (shoutouts, etc) is to provide 51% of the value to the other person you want to bizdev with…you create leverage. Milk from my cows for your apples.
  • How do you get your first 10 customers? You grind it out…….doing shit for free and using that to get business in other areas
  • Keep reinvesting in your business (my personal brand) to build something substantial.
  • If you are into cupcakes and cupcake sales are going super well (the market adoring your product and service,) that is when you need to triple down and expand….you need to go all-in.
  • Content content content has always been the gateway to awareness around a product. PUMP OUT CONTENT!
  • For app developers: Document your journey of the PROCESS of building an app!!! That in itself IS the content.
  • Should you have a plan B in life? Yes…it’s practical……
  • Deploy 80% of your energy on to plan A. Gary discusses if all his businesses were to fail, he could fall back onto his personal brand.
  • Entrepreneurship cannot be taught.
  • It’s more practical to audit what you are doing while you are awake vs. How many hours sleep you are getting.
  • Stop being romantic. When you believe in your own shit you tend to get slower.
  • Don’t take time to breathe. Gary doesn’t waste 15 minutes watching YouTube videos. Every…minute…has…to…count.
  • Balancing speed hustle and patience

Closing Off

This book is a must have for anyone that is serious about taking their business to a whole new level.

But you should really listen to each question and answer — thinking about how it can directly apply to you. That’s what I did.

Consequently, I have been pumping out content around the topics that I am most passionate about on pretty much every platform you can imagine.

Because of Gary, I am using Instagram Stories at scale and beginning to learn Facebook Ads.

Let me know what you think of this incredible book.

Click here to learn more about it.

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