Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook

Summary Written by Rex Williams
"Your story isn’t powerful enough if all it does is lead the horse to water; it has to inspire the horse to drink, too."

- Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook, page 11

The Big Idea

Tell Your Story As a Native

"Content is king, but context is God."- Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook, page 17

“Buy one get one free!” “On sale, today only!” “Free shipping!”

Traditional marketing is all about right hooks–asking people to come buy your stuff. And that makes sense. What else are you supposed to do when you’re trying to sell things? Well, a lot actually. And that’s what Gary’s first two books were about–building relationships through social media–because people buy from those they have a connection with, or who have helped them out, and that’s what the platforms are designed to do. Now, once you have those relationships, how do you go for the sell? Very carefully, creatively, and precisely unique depending on which platform you are using.

The way you might ask someone to check out your product on Facebook is different than what you would do on Twitter, or Pinterest, or Instagram. Gary calls it native content. You’re being native to the platform, an insider, someone who knows how that platform is used and what people are looking for. That is when you are mastering the context.

It comes down to this basic truth: “A great marketing story is one that sells stuff,” says Gary. “It creates an emotion that makes consumers want to do what you ask them to do.” Great storytellers are very observant and keenly attuned to their audience. They know when to speed up for comic effect or slow down for dramatic impact. There’s a science to it all, and Gary has figured out the formula.

What’s interesting is that a few years ago these social networks didn’t exist; now they have their own culture and language. It’s like new countries have emerged (bigger than most existing ones) and Gary is trying to teach us the language and local customs. He has become a native to them all.

Insight #1

Storytell on Facebook

"On Facebook, the definition of great content is not the content that makes the most sales, but the content that people most want to share with others."- Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook, page 32

Gary talks about three forces that have made it more difficult to share content on Facebook:

1. The masses
2. The evolution of the masses
3. Facebook’s response to the evolution of the masses.

With more than a billion users creating content how can you possibly stand out? Plus, as people’s interests evolve over time, as their life experiences change, how does Facebook keep all that information relevant? Answer: An algorithm called EdgeRank.

Every interaction you have with Facebook (posting, liking, sharing or commenting) is called an “edge,” and the more you have with certain items, the more they show up in your newsfeed. Currently, the algorithm does not consider click-throughs or any other action that leads to sales. So even though you may get a lot of sales from a particular post, that doesn’t help it get seen by more people.

Gary’s recommendation is to effectively jab, jab, jab on Facebook with posts that are likeable, share-able, and generate a lot of comments. Give generously and entertain, so your customers feel like you get them. Then, when you post a right hook, a call to action for a purchase, they’ll gladly want to be a part of your story.

On Facebook, I always like joining a conversation by commenting and giving people a boost, but I need to do a better job of telling my story in a way that’s fun and engaging for the people I want to connect with.

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Insight #2

Listen Well on Twitter

"There’s a lot of talking and selling on Twitter, but not enough engagement, and that’s a travesty, because Twitter is the cocktail party of the Internet – a place where listening well has tremendous benefits."- Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook, page 85

Gary talks about Twitter with the same affection as he talks about his children, because it has had such an impact on his life and business. It was perfect for his cocktail party personality of short bursts and quick conversation.

He says, “Breaking out on Twitter isn’t about breaking the news or spreading information – it’s about deejaying it.” What he means is that people want an entertaining spin on the information, a definite opinion or angle that will get people talking. Everyone else is just breaking the news.

The key to ‘listening’ to what people are talking about is to use Twitter search and find subjects that are relevant to your business, or to use the trending topics and spin them into your story. Gary says it’s “the only platform where you can jump into a conversation unannounced and no one thinks you’re a stalker.” It’s a marketer’s dream because you can connect directly with your customer and yet still be visible to the whole world.

There’s so much more information Gary covers, such as promoted tweets and the skill to using the right hashtags, along with similar details about the other platforms such as Pinterest, Instagram, and Tumblr, that I can’t even begin to cover. But I’ll be applying the wisdom I’ve learned from Gary on a few of them.

Read the book

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Gary Vaynerchuk

Gary Vaynerchuk is a “New York Times” bestselling author and American businessman who was born in Belarus and immigrated to the United States as a young child. Gary’s entrepreneurial instincts took over at a young age, when he owned a franchise of neighbourhood lemonade stands and made $1,000 a weekend selling baseball cards. Much to his dismay, his father Sasha pulled Gary into the family business, a local liquor store called Shopper’s Discount Liquors. Before long, Gary recognized that consumers collected rare wines just like people collected baseball cards, and he was off to the races. Gary transformed himself into a wine expert, rebranded the store as Wine Library, launched a retail website in 1997, and by 2008 he had raised annual revenue from $4 million to $60 million. In 2006 Gary achieved one of his life-long goals when he was caricatured on the front page of the “Wall Street Journal” in an article about online wine sales.

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