How I built my business in less than a year by listening to Gary Vaynerchuk.
Last year, I had no idea where my life was going, or where I’d end up being. I’ll be 30 in less than two months. I’m a little terrified because I’m losing my twenties but mostly excited. What will my thirties be like? Cause I failed 90% of my twenties and was this miserable sack of shit. I sucked at life. I dealt with depression, anxiety, heartbreak, loss, bitterness, self-destruction, and an endless pit of hopelessness and dread. I had this gross victim mentality.
Today — right in this moment, at 6:23 PM on a Sunday evening, I can say with every fibre of my being, every cell in my body that there is a fire in me that I never knew I had. I have blossomed into this woman I LOVE. Into this confident person who didn’t exist before. Who was only a shell of a human. Scared. Small. Fighting the greatness in herself.
I forced myself to step out of my comfort zone and connect with who I am. And most importantly, I cut ties with people, things, situations that no longer served me, helped me or enhanced me. It wasn’t easy. It was the hardest thing I have ever done. In order to work on me, I really had to commit myself to limit useless social gatherings, to stop wasting 8 hours reading multiple fiction books. To watch Netflix for 3 hours straight. I didn’t have my shit together, and I felt like a pathetic excuse of a person. I am hard on myself — but I needed to be. My behaviour sucked and it was a method of escaping my reality.
I had no passion so I begun experimenting with different business ideas and started to become more social on the internet. I joined facebook groups like Screw The Nine To Five and challenged myself to make connections. With Screw U, I discovered other communities that peaked my interest. That gave me permission to explore this entire world that was unknown to me. It allowed me to learn what other successful people were doing. To really look into myself and figure out what I was good at, and how my skills could help people.
I found a null in the digital space where people didn’t know how to make a decent logo, didn’t understand the concept of good design or graphics. Had crappy, low conversion websites. I made a promise with myself: I would be the go-to Branding person, but HOW? I didn’t know jack shit about making a logo, about what branding even was. But, I had a knack for creativity, I knew what looked good. I had a good feeling. I knew I needed to do this, for myself and if I wanted to survive. If I wanted to be taken seriously. I had experience with photoshop because I was a self-taught photographer and a certain sense of style and sass.
April 28th, 2016, I sold my first logo for $5. YES, FIVE FUCKING DOLLARS. It was still money. I posted in a couple of groups, “Anyone looking for a cheap but awesome logo?” Within 20 minutes, I had about 15 messages from all kinds of people. The first 3–4 I did for $5 — I was $20 richer. The next few I priced at $10. Soon, within a month, I made $400. And I loved every single second of it. I was hooked. I started getting more clients, I started making connections.
I had enough work to put into a portfolio and build my own website cause I couldn’t afford to hire someone. I built my website on Squarespace and fortunately took a coding class in college as an elective. I got lucky. I knew how to make my website pretty. And whatever I didn’t know how to do — I googled it. I was awake at 3 AM every night researching, learning, youtubing tutorials. Taking notes, trying the codes, tweaking. I didn’t give up because I had to make this work because I wasn’t about to go back into the corporate world working for a boss I hated and a hostile work environment. Within 2 weeks, I had a full, functioning website and a portfolio.
When I started getting more logo clients — and if I noticed my clients were on Squarespace, I offered to fix their websites for an additional cost, and I was under charing so of course they couldn’t say no. But again, $200 is better than nothing. And within a few weeks I started offering web design. It took me a couple of months to build my website portfolio and soon I was getting referrals left, right and center.
Then in July 2016, I discovered this foul mouthed dude called Gary Vaynerchuk and I was instantly hooked. He talked about Hustle. Passion. Monetizing yourself. Success. Getting it done period. Making shit happen for yourself and so many things I wasn’t doing. I watched his videos for few weeks and listened. I took notes. I copied his model of:
1) Working for 12-18 hours a day 2) Stopped wasting time on shit that doesn’t matter 3) Started being more active on social media and making genuine connections 4) Stopped binge watching House of Cards (but it’s so good) 5) Giving 6) Creating free content for my audience 7) Being positive
If you don’t know who Gary Vaynerchuk is — google him RIGHT NOW. Go follow him on youtube, watch his vlogs and you will be amazed at the information he gives for FREE. Once you get over the F-bombs and raspy voice, you will begin to love him. And you’ll begin to implement what he tells you to do. And most importantly, you will see results. If you give a shit about making an impact in the world, about growing as a person, about having a successful business, you will want to learn more. You will go buy his books so you can monetize your skills and talents. (I recommend starting with Crush it and then The Thank You Economy).
Once you become a Vayniac — you will:
1) Stop Complaining 2) Stop being an idiot 3) Learn how to engage in a genuine manner 4) HUSTLE until your eyes bleed 5) Turn into someone you were always meant to become
Back to the story — fast forward to March 5th, 2017: I now have more clients than I can handle. I am making more money than I ever imagined, I have savings. I have a tribe — yup I have a tribe of people who LOVE me and buy me. I am getting invited on podcasts, radio interviews, events to speak as a Branding expert because I now have the social proof of being good at what I do.
Punchline: If I can do it. What the fuck is stopping you?
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