Review of “Crush It!” and Free Book Giveaway!

Crush ItIf you remember from my May 2010 reading list, I put Crush It (by Gary Vaynerchuk) as #1 on my list of books to read.  I recently finished it, and now feel compelled to write a review about it (be sure to look at the end of the post where I’m giving away my copy of the book!).

Crush It was a fairly quick and easy read, but that doesn’t really take away from the book’s powerful message.  In short, Vaynerchuk explains that now is the time to turn your passion into money.  More importantly, he gives some pretty clear (yet somewhat general) steps to actually taking your interest/love/obsession and turning it into a business.

Overall, I definitely think it’s a book every aspiring (or even currently successful) entrepreneur should read, but let’s dig into some of the details…

Building Your Personal Brand

“Developing your personal brand is key to monetizing your passion online.” (Vaynerchuck, pg. 28)”

For me, this was one of the most powerful messages of this book, and definitely something I will begin to apply to My 4-Hour Workweek as well as other muses and ventures I undertake.  It’s clear that your product may not need to stand out for your business to be successful – however, you must stand out.

There seems to be something about a personal brand that can empower a business to go beyond selling a product or providing a service.  Vaynerchuk points to some “personal brand geniuses” such as Oprah, Howard Stern, and Emeril.  These are people who could slap their names on any ordinary product and make it successful because people value the brand.

Vaynerchuk of course goes into more detail and provides more examples, but I think this chapter alone is worth the price of the book.

Social Networking

Social networking is another area that Vaynerchuk hits hard, as a platform for giving your product, service, or content a voice in the online world.  He talks about Facebook, Twitter, and flickr, along with other social networking sites and tools.

I’ve always known these to be important and that they’re becoming more a part of our culture (especially online), but I took for granted the impact it can have on a person’s brand and business.  Once again, Vaynerchuk isn’t going to tell you something you don’t already know (unless you’ve never heard of Facebook), but he presents his message in a way that really gets you thinking about what you can do to improve your approach to your business.

A Look at All Chapters

I think it helps to know the subject of each chapter to give you an idea of the other content this book contains that I haven’t already discussed above:

1) Passion is Everything

2) Success Is in Your DNA

3) Build Your Personal Brand

4) A Whole New World

5) Create Great Content

6) Choose Your Platform

7) Keep It Real…Very Real

8 ) Create Community: Digging Your Internet Trench

9) The Best Marketing Strategy Ever

10) Make the World Listen

11) Start Monetizing

12) Roll with It

13) Legacy Is Greater Than Currency

If you look at the book on Amazon, you’ll see that it allows you to read the first page of each chapter if you “look inside.”  This should give you a taste Vaynerchuk’s writing style and how he presents information.

My Only Criticism

I wouldn’t say this is a bad thing necessarily, but I felt like this book was a bit too brief in some areas.  Excluding the appendix, this book is only 134 pages and covers several topics.  Vaynerchuk does an excellent job of touching on a topic, getting right to the point, and conveying his smart and powerful messages.

And that’s where the real value is in reading this book – understanding its messages and internalizing them so that you can apply them to your own business.  While I think people who loved The 4-Hour Workweek would also love this book (which I do), they’re very different.

In Tim Ferriss’ book, you almost feel like you’re reading a reference or road map.  There are parts of The 4-Hour Workweek that you’ll likely want to go back to and reread depending on what step you’re at in your muse creation, in my opinion.

Crush It is a bit different in that, once you read it and understand its messages, you’re probably done with it and ready to move on.  This isn’t a bad thing, but it’s something I noticed.  And that’s why…

I’m Giving Away My Copy to You

Here’s the deal – I want you to leave a comment answering this question: “Are you currently trying to cash in on your passion? If so, how’s it going? If not, what’s holding you back?” Feel free to add as much detail as you’d like.

Alternatively, you may simply comment about your views on the book, if you’ve read it.

After there have been 20 comments (not including comment replies from me and multiple comments from the same person), or 48 hours have passed (whichever comes first), I’ll randomly pick a commenter and send you my copy of the book, completely free of charge.  Once I pick a winner, I’ll update this post to announce the winner, and e-mail that person (at the e-mail address you leave with your comment) to request with their name and shipping information.  If I can’t reach you via the e-mail address you use, you’ll need to contact me. [If I don’t hear from you within a couple days of announcing you as the winner, I reserve the right to give the book to another commenter.]

Your chances of winning are 1 in 20, or better!

UPDATE: The winner of “Crush It!” from the comments is Lauren Nelson! Lauren, I’ll be e-mailing you shortly with the e-mail address you provided with your comment, to get your shipping information for the book.  Thanks for all the great comments, everyone!

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17 Responses to “Review of “Crush It!” and Free Book Giveaway!”

  1. Hi!

    I’m currently in a 9 to 5 job, but at nights I’m building my first product, witch is going to be released August 1. After being inspired by the start breaking free ebook, and a lots of blogs like yours and Pat Flynn’s. I finally, 2 months ago, decided that I wanted to break free from this 9-5 jail.

    I know it will take time, but at least now I’m on my way to achieve what I desire the most, freedom…



    Eric G. Reply:

    That’s fantastic, Ronny. Best of luck to you, and please let me know if there’s anything I can do to help!


  2. I’ve just listened to the audio version of 4HWW. I had previously read the book but not implemented it. I’m going through my definition process now. I would love to read Crush It!


    Eric G. Reply:

    @ Charles – You’re on the right path for sure. I think 4HWW and Crush It are two of the more important books an aspiring entrepreneur and “lifestyle designer” should read! How is the audio version, by the way? Does Tim Ferriss narrate it? I’ve never been one for audio books, but I’d like to start getting into them.


  3. The book “Rich Dad Poor Dad” is what got me started about three years and since then I have reading all sorts of books. I would like to start a bussiness, but I am not sure how to match my passion to the right bussiness. I have a bit of time to figure it out now because I am not currently working. I know I need to decide soon even if the answer is to go back to a Job for more start up capital or to learn a differnt area of bussiness. Currently I am a Electronic tech/Electrician.


  4. May its funny I just found this as I am listening to the Crush it song lol. Garyvee is the man I wouldn’t be doing what I am doing if it wasn’t for his book.


  5. What I am trying to do is sell an investment newsletter as my muse. I read Tim’s book twice as I have in audiobook format. But this past couple of weeks I have been unfocused. Time to get back to work.


  6. I am currently in the process of working on my first muse. I would like to be up and running in the next month. I just finished the 4 hour work week book, not to long ago. Excited and looking forward to becoming part of the new rich. Crush It sounds like it would be a good book to read and full oof more info to add to my (or anyone else’s) arsenal.


  7. For years, I was the one with the big ideas that never took off. I could out-dream anyone… it was the delivery I was lacking in.

    The birth of my daughter and the rearranging of a couple of elements in my life finally encouraged me to make some changes. I knew I could write, I knew I was passionate on a variety of subjects, and I knew it was time to take my future into my own hands.

    I started writing at a variety of mills. I started blogging. I started networking. I started developing several different projects. For the first time in my life, I’m seeing consistent results and progress. A dream is working out… and I can’t help but feeling pleasantly surprised every time I wake up to more growth.

    It hasn’t been a Sunday stroll in the park. There are times I find myself butting heads with a brick wall. Slowly, but surely, I’m learning to climb the wall instead of trying to break it down… heck, even walk around it.


  8. I actually just got my 4HWW book back out because my focus has been lacking. The 9 to 5 job has currently pushed it’s way back in after I made a definite effort to remove parts of it(time suck and all of that). Short answer is no, I am not cashing in on my passion, but hope to be back on the trail soon.

    I read a couple of chapters from Crush It at B&N the other day. It was pretty brief and I could have probably gotten through it in an hour just sitting at the bookstore. Very well written book in my opinion. Whoever wins your copy will definitely get a book worth reading.


  9. Eric, thanks for the good review of Crush It…it looks like a good read.
    To answer your question, I AM trying to cash in on my passion…and it’s going well. I have started phasing out of my day job and have begun working on a variety of affiliate marketing and reselling niche websites. Also, a friend and I will be recording our first podcast this weekend!
    Thanks for all the great content on your site!


  10. Thanks for the great comments, everyone.

    @ Gord – I’ve always meant to read “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” and never have. Translating your passion into a business can really be a challenge, but the first step might be to blog about it if you’re interested in writing. You can blog about any passion, which is one big reason why it’s a starting point for a lot of people.

    @ Bryan – That’s really great that you’re looking start your muse soon. Feel free to share it here (or with me via email) once it’s up and running – I’d love to hear about it!

    @ Lauren – Your story is pretty inspiring. A perfect example of hard work paying off. I like your blog, by the way – perhaps you’d be interested in being interviewed for My4HWW sometime?

    @ Scott – Great to hear that you’re phasing out your day job to cash in on your passion. Best of luck to you.


  11. Hey Eric,

    I’d definitely love to do an interview. Thanks for the blog love! I’m certainly a fan of yours!


  12. Great blog post, and it’s good to see a review of “Crush It!” that also compares it a little to “The 4 Hour Workweek,” which I am familiar with. To enter the contest:

    I am definitely looking to cash in on my passions, the plural being very important. I’m freelance writing, growing my writing blog, and writing e-books to help teach others to do what I do, without all the bumps and bruises I’ve had to take to get there. I also have creative projects I’m working on, from my dream novels that have been in my head for years, to producing an independent film, “Apocalypse, CA” a friend is making. I love to create, to write, and to teach, and I’m actively pursuing any project that involves one (or more) of these areas.

    The hardest part for me is all the debt I have to pay off, the budgeting I have to do, and so the hours I have to work to get back to a healthy place. This limits my time for the projects I’m really passionate about, and only recent discoveries on how I personally can increase my productivity and how I function best while working have put me in a position to really free up some time, cover my bills, and be able to make some serious progress with my creative pursuits.

    I find the biggest benefit of all of this: I’m extremely happy when I work. When I’m pursuing my own work and projects, when I’m active towards pursuing these goals, the satisfaction and happiness that comes with that is just incredible. That alone would make it all worth it, and I know I’m going to crush it.

    After living all across the continent, being homeless twice, finishing grad school, and now on the verge of being upper class while producing a movie – it’s been a great 10 years and I’m not even 30 yet. So that’s my story on my passions and my life where it is right now.


    Eric G. Reply:

    Master Dayton, that’s a truly inspiring story, and to be honest, I’m a little bit jealous that you’re really getting into what you love doing. Hopefully there are only bigger and better things to come for you.

    And I’m sorry to say it, but the contest ended a couple days ago. I’d still highly recommend reading “Crush It!” though!


  13. I know the contest ended I’m not looking for a copy of Crush It. I’ve read plenty of reviews on the web, so…I have yet to read about someone who bought the book, read it and actually opened their own business based on the Crush It! media basics.


    Eric G. Reply:

    Hey Vince – I agree, I don’t know that I’ve seen someone specifically open a business based on the Crush It! social media principles. What I got out of the book was more about pursuing your passion in general, and not so much about how Gary V. leveraged social media. Thanks for the comment!


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