Last week I was on vacation with my family. Well I guess a more accurate description is I was away with my family on their vacation while I spent more hours than I should have working. But I did take time to spend with the kids and got to enjoy the beach, some long walks with my wife, etc. I also got to read two of Gary Vaynerchuk’s books, The Thank You Economy and Crushing It! If you don’t know Gary Vee (as he’s often called), he’s an online marketing guru who started out in his family’s wine store and grew their online business significantly. I’ve been following Gary online for about a year (mostly videos he posts on LinkedIn or Tweets). Tons of energy and good information for online marketing.
About 9 months ago, I came across Miles Beckler, also an online marketing guru, when I was looking for “how-to” videos. Miles’ YouTube videos are very detailed “how-to” videos showing how create an online business. He doesn’t tell you the content to create (that’s up to you and your creative juices) but he does provide hypothetical examples, i.e. how to successfully create a business for vegan dog food.
So what does this all have to do with you? Well, since you’re either thinking of starting a business or you already have a business, you need to know how to market and brand your business but almost more importantly, how to market and brand YOU. knowing these two guys is pretty important for different reasons. But first, three similar characteristics of both Gary and Miles.
Similar Characteristic #1 – CREATE CONTENT
Both Gary and Miles will tell you that your success is largely tied to your ability to CREATE CONTENT online on a regular (i.e. daily) basis. Creating content is probably the biggest “secret” for online success. And CREATING CONTENT is a lot of work which needs to be done CONSISTENTLY (of which I’ll admit I’m not consistently creating content online).
Similar Characteristic #2 – USE SOCIAL MEDIA
Again, both Gary and Miles understand and talk to the importance of using SOCIAL MEDIA platforms (Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, Instagram, etc) to build a community and constantly interact with that community. Characteristic #1 (Create Content) is the foundation. Without good quality content, there is no community.
(Somewhat) Similar Characteristic #3 – Online vs Brick-n-Mortar
While both guys focus on online marketing, they focus on different types of businesses (based on my understanding of their focus). Miles’ online marketing focus is applied a bit more to content marketing, affiliate marketing, etc businesses whereas Gary’s online marketing focus is a bit more on “classic” bricks-n-mortar companies. Again a bit of a generalizing for each. Personally, I take pieces of content from both and apply them to my more “traditional” business.
Ok, now for the reasons why you need to know both of these guys.
If you know nothing about online marketing or building communities, I would recommend starting your “education” by reading both of Gary V’s books. Gary “flies high” in his books about online marketing with The Thank You Economy being a little dated at this point (published in 2011) but still has relevant info. His high-level view is good because it’ll give you a flavor of social media platforms, i.e. Facebook vs Twitter vs Instagram, etc. In both books he also provides lots of stories from people who’ve struggled and succeeded with their businesses, some “traditional” businesses, some more contemporary, “online only” businesses. If you don’t know why you should use social media for your business, then Gary is a good place to start.
If you’re familiar enough to know that using social media is important for your business but aren’t sure how to apply techniques, then spend time going thru Mile’s YouTube channel and his website’s blogs. Let’s suppose you know you need to create a sales funnel. In this video, Miles shows you exactly how to setup your own website too do this. Or perhaps you need help with keyword research for SEO. He has a video for that too. The depth of content is great. Miles wants you to be successful with your online business and provides tons of content to help you succeed.
Gary is a bit more strategic and forward looking in his content than Miles. Gary likes to go where the “attention is” so he’s constantly looking at new technologies where people will congregate. This may be the next Facebook, Instagram type app or applying technologies like Virtual Reality (VR) / Augmented Reality (AR) and Artificial Intelligence (AI).
While Miles is a bit more pragmatic and tactical but he does also look at things strategically, particularly from a content platform perspective (“own the racecourse” as he says). He constantly advises to use WordPress.org (the open-source version, not WordPress.com) so you can control your content platform (see video here). While he doesn’t deter you from using Twitter, Facebook, etc, he cautions you on getting too much “premium” content on those platforms because you’re at the mercy of how those businesses treat you and your community.
The videos Miles has created also show you “fingers on keyboard” on how to apply what he’s telling, be it figuring out how to do keyword research to setting up your own sales funnel on your WordPress site (including the steps to register your URL, setting up hosting, etc).
As you can see, Gary and Miles compliment one another with their focus and the content the provide. And both of them understand it’s CRITICAL to regularly create truly VALUABLE CONTENT and make it available for FREE (aside from Gary’s books which you can get at the library). For you as an entrepreneur or business owner, your “cost” will be spending the time to educate yourself (which I do understand is a cost). You’ve heard the saying “work smarter not harder”. Well I’m not sure if the “work harder” goes away but the knowledge you’ll get from these two guys will help you “work smarter”. And since you’re already sacrificing lots of your time in your business, don’t you want an advantage to help you achieve your goals? Neither of these guys are “get rich quick” snake-oil salesmen like a lot online seem to be. They’re focus is to help you achieve your dreams by giving you incredible content for you to apply because they want you to succeed. You just need to make the commitment and do the work. Best wishes!