There’s a certain mindset that you’re likely to encounter in the fast-paced worlds of internet marketing, start-ups and other specialized types of entrepreneurship that if you want to be in business, you absolutely have to ‘crush it.’
Gary Vaynerchuk is the mascot of this point of view and, boy howdy, has it worked for him. The man turned a single liquor store into a media empire.
But just because something works well for Vaynerchuk doesn’t mean that it’s definitely going to work for you. Not all of us have the same mindset, motivations or energy levels. Vanyerchuk does well at ‘crushing it’ because — and I say this with respect, awe and positivity — he has the energy of a toddler who’s been mainlining Pixie Sticks. Personally, I have to sleep occasionally.
Are the War Metaphors Not Cutting It For You?
Business doesn’t have to be a battle. Sure, you’re not going to get anywhere if you aren’t putting in the hours and the effort, but that doesn’t mean that you have to ‘destroy the competition,’ ‘shock and awe your target market’ and generally declare war to build a viable company. There are other options. The reason that we don’t hear too much about them is that those options are quieter and used by entrepreneurs who are, in turn, operating with a mindset that’s a little quieter.
But Kelly Kingman and Pace Smith — two entrepreneurs who I respect just as much as Gary Vaynerchuk — have set out to change the situation. Rather than offering business advice that requires you to stockpile your own set of Pixie Sticks, they’re talking about the Way of the Peaceful Entrepreneur.
Yesterday, Kelly wrote a huge post breaking down the differences between the peaceful approach to business and the more gung-ho alternative that we’ve heard so much about, and how they play into operating a business online. It’s a great read and I encourage you to go over the whole thing, but there is one section in particular that I want to point out:
When I started my business, I struggled to get my mind around how people were making money online — and it was even more difficult to explain to my friends and family. When you’re starting out, online business models can blur together because you’re drowning in advice. Too often, everything gets lumped into the category of “blogging,” simply because most websites also function as blogs. Blogging is one business model among many options that are open to you.
The drawback to blogging as a beginning business model is that it’s what I call a high traffic strategy — the amount of money you make is directly connected to how many people visit your site. For new entrepreneurs who can’t wait two years to make money, it’s far more effective to start with a service based-business, because it’s a low traffic strategy. You need far fewer individual clients than blog visitors in order to make a living.
Blogging for a living requires aggressive tactics. It’s one of the reasons that, when I started blogging, I didn’t actually try to make money from it. I used my blog as a showcase to land clients. I had a blog that worked for me, but I also had a business that didn’t kill me with 90 hour work weeks.
More Good Stuff to Come
On Monday, Pace is the main attraction in a ‘peaceful cage match’ with Johnny B. Truant to debate the merits of the opposing view points. Johnny is a firm proponent of aggressive entrepreneurship, so this is a match well worth tuning in for. Best of all, it’s free. Make sure to get in on the live call.
Of course, all of this is a build up to something bigger — a seven week ecourse on building your business as a peaceful entrepreneur. Personally, I think that Pace and Kelly are fantastic instructors. They also teamed up to create Engaging eCourses which I go back through about once every three months because it’s such a great resource. But even if you aren’t ready to commit seven weeks to The Way of the Peaceful Entrepreneur, make sure you don’t miss any of the free materials they’re offering.