Crush It! By Gary Vaynerchuck

Gary Vaynerchuk is all about turning your hobby, your passion, into your day job.  He promotes quitting your job to pursue a profession that is your passion – and gives advice on how to do that. He provides step-by-step explanations on how to create a personal brand and promote it using social media in order to turn a profit and have a career.Screen Shot 2013-05-23 at 9.58.41 AM

Social media channels attract huge audiences, which can translate into advertising revenues for you. When your knowledge is sought after, advertisers will see that, and pay to get a share of your follower’s attention. Use these channels as “personal branding sites” to establish who you are and what you represent to thousands of people – who will then pass your message on, sharing it to even more people.

However, in order to get this word of mouth, and ensure people see your website, you need to provide excellent content. If your information is not outstanding you will get nowhere. You must be an expert on your subject – so get out there and research and study!

You’re ready to go online with your expertise when you can convincingly and compellingly blog about at least 50 different aspects of your topic. Make sure that you have these two questions answered:

  1. Is your subject of interest your “ultimate passion”?
  2. Are you knowledgeable enough to be hailed as the world’s number one blogger about your subject?

Passion is crucial to success. If you are not willing to work hard to learn everything you can, you will be just another blog, lost in the congestion of the online world. You cannot make money this way. Blogs are easy to create – use different media (text, video, audio) – to create a compelling composition that works for you audience. Promote your content by adding your comments to other, related blogs, and by joining online conversations. The important thing is to convey your personality and expertise.

Don’t expect results overnight, as getting noticed on the internet takes time. Continue to post interesting content, publicize yourself, and connect with others. Develop a community by joining in with every blog out there that shares similar content and interests to yours. Make sure that you are providing valuable information and feedback, and show that you are a well-rounded member of the community. A following will be generated from this, and help you toward success. Be interesting to attract people to your blog. Once they discover you, your great content will keep them coming back for more.

Once you have defined your personal brand follow these steps to set up and promote your brand:

1.    “Buy a domain name. Use your personal brand, or firstnamelastname.com” – names that end in .com or .tv are the best – buy both!

2.    “Start a WordPress of Tumblr account” – these are blog hosting sites.

3.    “If you’re filming a video blog, buy a good camera” – Use a high-definition camera that you can carry with you everywhere and use when you feel inspired.

4.    “Create a Facebook fan page” – make sure your blog features a Facebook link and share functions.

5.    “Open a Twitter account” – use your domain name.

6.    “if you’re doing video, open a TubeMogul account” – This site distributes videos for free to social networking sites.

7.    “Start pumping out content” – blog as often as possible, daily if you can. Include personal life details and anecdotes that demonstrate your concepts.

8.    “Tweet or post your content via Ping.fm or TubeMogul” – develop your community by distributing your posts to as many forums and blogs as possible. Reply to every comment you receive.

9.    “Go to Search.Twitter” – locate everyone who is tweeting about your special topic, and communicate directly with them.

10. “Go to Blogsearch.Google.com” – This will bring up all the blogs that focus on your topic

11.  “Join groups and fan pages that concern your special topic” – this is another step to developing a community.

12. “Rinse and repeat” – establishing your brand online takes work.

13. “Include a list of all your social network links” – make them part of your “e-mail signature, letterhead and business cards.”

14. “Have a big fat button on your site that says, ‘want to do business with me?’” – the idea is to “get sticky”.

When you have firmly established your personal brand online, and have a loyal and enthusiastic following you can begin profiting from your brand. Once you begin receiving free samples and products from firms that have noticed your blog you will you will know you have reached this point. Find advertisers who will sponsor your blog. They will be happy to do so if you have a strong following.

Another way to make money from your blog is to join the lecture circuit. Now that you are a well-known expert people will pay to hear you speak. Set up your own paid seminars or consul. Your internet fame can also lead to profitable book deals.

Organize affiliate programs with companies that sell products that relate to your topic. Place links on your website to those of other companies. If someone from your audience “clicks through” to buy something, you will earn a commission. Sell products from your blog, featuring your blog name, which will make money and provide valuable word-of-mouth advertising.

This being said, don’t take ethical shortcuts. You will lose if you forget your passion, and focus solely on the money.