It’s been one week now.
One week since I stumbled upon Casey Neistat and my idea of the social media world was flipped. If you don't know who he is. here's a quick little intro:
As a blogger I like to stay up to date on things. I read articles on personal branding for fun, I can’t drive on the highway without rating how well a billboard is marketing its product, and I know how to build a social following.
Yet, here comes Casey Neistat.
I don’t imagine that he ever read a manual on how to get big on Youtube. He didn’t attend film school. Nobody gave him handwritten instructions on how to go viral.
What I’ve come to discover from one week (and approximately 100 videos) is this:
Casey Neistat was one of the first people to figure out how to create a personal brand.
And that means there’s something to learn from him.
A lesson from Professor Neistat:
- This is the golden ticket of personal branding:
Always be telling a story.
Casey has honed in so well on this that he’s telling you a story (one of his videos), within a story (his life). Are you catching what I’m throwing? I want you to look at ANY of his videos and tell me that he isn’t telling a 5–10 minute story. If you look at even one more video, you’ll notice that chances are you have encountered his wife, daughter, or “office” (the term office is used loosely here). In a VERY short time, you can figure out Casey’s life story-and now you are interested in learning more. F*cking brilliant.
2. This second lesson is story tellings right hand man:
Consistency is an obligation, not an option.
Casey started creating vlogs everyday in 2015 (yes before vlogging was an internet sensation). What happened from this consistency:
a) He became really good at telling stories
b) He became really good at creating short videos
c) He was forced to go and do something interesting everyday OR find a way to make something boring cool
So because of this consistency, Casey became really good (x2) at his craft AND was forced out of his comfort zone, out of his home, and out of his creative box ON A DAILY BASIS. Let’s think of that on a growth scale. Chances are it would look a lot like this:
One would also say that his following probably did something of the exact same nature.
3. Lesson numero tres:
You don’t have to pretend you’re perfect.
In fact, pointing out that you aren’t will be one of your best assets. How often does Casey talk about his failures? The guy has a “Drone Cemeteray” in his office (again, loose term). If you can embrace dropping your phone in a pool, breaking a $2,000 camera, and just generally making life f*ck ups-then you my friend are on the right path.
4. This leads me straight into my next point:
STOP BEING AFRAID
Right now. Stop.
Don’t be afraid to drop your phone in the pool. Don’t be afraid to break the $2,000 camera for the shot. Yes, I sure sound crazy but listen to this: in one of his videos Casey says that he used to carry his nice camera in a big hardshell case in his backpack so that nothing bad would happen to it. Guess what actually happened? He missed out on opportunities for amazing content.
Casey attributed him embracing the potential for his equipment to break as the reason why he’s able to get the shots he gets. I’ll attribute this embrace to the success of his career.
5. Last but not least:
You have to put your own happiness before anybody elses.
There hit a point where daily vlogging took its toll and Casey became uninspired by it. So what did he do? He stopped. This is a beautiful thing. If something no longer serves you, why continue? Take a break. Walk away. Let your flow of creativity just run without obligation or deadlines. I’m sure it wasn’t that easy to tell 6.8 million subscribers that what they loved him most for was going to come to a screeching hault-but he did it anyway. For this reason ALONE, Casey is the man.
Here is where you can stand out. If you can find a voice that can tell your story, the energy to document and continue to tell it on a daily basis, fall in love with your flaws, throw your fears out the door and be willing to do anything it takes to make yourself 100% happy-you can become a social influencer.
You can grow a personal brand.
You can grow your blog.
You can become, what you want to become.
Need some more inspiration to just go and do it?
Let’s have Casey take it from here: