A self-professed “hustler”, Gary Vaynerchuk 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.
From this business owner, investor, social media master, and media production machine, we’ve boiled Gary Vee’s wealth of advice down to the top 4 bare essential must-haves to succeed in business:
1. Know Your Customer
The first priority of any kind of business is to know not just 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 provide to them.
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, willing to deliver above and beyond in the value of your product or service, they’re going to find someone else.
2. Solve Their Problem
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 1 solution to multiple problems, just as you can have multiple solutions to 1 problem.
Then, look at that list, and think about what you can fix. What are the solutions you have right now that match to the problems that 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 don’t have what they need. Accept that and move on. Maybe you can’t fix their biggest problem for them, but how about their 2nd? 3rd? 4th? 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, innovating new solutions to the same problems, you’re screwed.
3. Communicate & Connect
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, 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. Whatever fancy marketing campaign you have in mind, as long as you’re not communicating clearly and listening to your clients, is total bulls**t.
And yeah, maybe having all these social media channels out there can feel overwhelming, but you still need to put yourself out there and put in the effort. Start with just 1 if you feel overwhelmed – pick YouTube, pick Twitter, 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? Click Here to Meet Gary Vee in Singapore at the National Achievers Congress this year!