Welcome to the 500th episode of the Creating Wealth show. Jason is excited to bring on Fernando during the intro portion of the show. Fernando talks about how he first found about Jason’s podcast and how it’s been an incredible journey since then. Jason invites Guy Kawasaki on to the show to talk about social media and to also share some of his thoughts on the Steve Jobs work model.

Key Takeaways:

1:50 – Thank you for supporting the Creating Wealth show.

6:15 – Jason gives a highlight of some of the amazing guests he’s had on the show.

21:40 – Paul Zane Pilzer once talked about if you listen to the customer, you’ll always be looking in the rear view mirror.

27:30 – Jason welcomes Guy to the show.

34:30 – Guy talks about when he uses Periscope’s streaming service.

39:30 – Guy shares his advice on branding.

44:25 – Is it really the job of an entrepreneur to figure out what the customer wants before they know they want it?

47:45 – The right thing to do is always keep learning.

49:30 – Our technology right now gives entrepreneurs a lot of free tools to work with.

Tweetables:

“Imagine a need, create the need, and then fill the need.”

“It’s very hard to predict what’s stupid and what is brilliant and it’s a very fine line. The only way you can know is after the fact.”

“When you have a brilliant dictator, it’s a very efficient company. The problem is that there are many dictators, so few are brilliant.”

Mentioned In This Episode:

Way of the Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman

VentureAllianceMastermind.com

@GuyKawasaki

GuyKawasaki.com

Transcript

Jason Hartman:

Welcome to the Creating Wealth show episode number 500. 500! Half of a 1,000. 500. This is a big deal today. So, thank you for joining us to celebrate episode number 500 of the Creating Wealth show. You know, it has been a fun, interesting, and amazing ride over the years and I really want to thank everybody so much for making this show such a big success.

We’ve had millions of downloads of the show from listeners in 164 countries world wide. When I started the Creating Wealth show years ago, I never in my wildest dreams imagined it turning out like this, but it’s because of your support and the great guests we’ve had over the years just making the show what it is.

So, we appreciate your support of the show, your referring people to the show, your reviews on the show, and your questions and comments and many of you listeners have been on the show over the years. We’ve had many client interviews over the years, we’ve done case studies on our clients to hear about their experiences, the good, the bad, and the ugly with their investments. It’s just been an amazing ride.

So, thank you so much for making the show such a big success and thank you for joining us today for kind of a special episode, episode number 500. I’ve got Fernando here with me to help me with the introduction and our guest today will be the world famous Guy Kawasaki. We’ll get to him in a few minutes, Fernando, how are you doing?

Fernando:

I’m doing great, Jason. Congratulations on your number 500. I think that’s awesome. You’ve been doing this for many years and congratulations. It’s been a very inspirational podcast for me personally and I know a lot of people can say the same, so congratulations.

Jason:

Well, thank you so much and Fernando, you started out as a listener to the podcast. I just thought I’d ask you, how did you find the show? You just went on iTunes I assume and just searched real estate investing or something?

Fernando:

Yeah, I was searching for all kinds of investing and real estate related podcasts. Tried to find the ones that would resonate with my idea of achieving financial independence and I came across your podcast. I listened, I think I listened to one episode and from that point on I decided to download literally hundreds of podcasts and just went on a spree and listened to everything that I could and tried to get my head around the concepts that you present. So, it was awesome.

Jason:

You did listen to a couple of other real estate podcasts too I think, right and they, of course, they sucked I’m sure.

Fernando:

Of course I have to say they sucked! But no, the reality is that they did suck. They talked a lot about, you know, how to flip houses and what the real estate market going to look like in the next year, you know, try to predict this, is this a good time to buy or sell, and it’s always the same and really they didn’t near the target of how do I actually make income from this investment and how am I going to become independent financially through real estate. It was just a different concept you are present that was great.

Jason:

Yeah, we try to really go knowing that our clients are whole people, we try to take a holistic approach to investing in life, you know, every tenth episode we do something of general life interest and that’s what we’re doing today, just Guy Kawasaki, you know, we’re not talking to him about real estate, but you know, there’s also a lot more to the world then specifics about real estate investing. So, I hope the listeners like that.

We gotta talk about the broader economy, we’ve got to talk about the political climate, we’ve got to talk about the legislative and the legal climate, the regulatory climate, all of these issues really integrate into our investments, so there’s a lot to talk about. It’s been great to experience that.

Fernando, I’m curious, when you were a client before you came to work with us as an investment counselor after your financial independence day and leaving Apple computer to be a full time real estate investor. Do you know what show number you started with by any chance? I’m kind of curious.

Fernando:

Oh boy.

Jason:

That was three years ago right?

Fernando:

Yeah. I started listening in the beginning of 2012. So, you’ve been doing it for 8 years, right?

Jason:

Something like that.

Fernando:

Yeah. I don’t remember the actual episode number.

Jason:

Boy and I tell you, at the frequency at which we publish episodes now, three per week, every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday and, of course, Friday now has turned into Flashback Friday, which most people love, but one guy said he didn’t. I talked about that on the last episode. I don’t know. I think he understand us a little more with my explanation. He will, you know, three episodes per week, we’d be at episode 500 a lot faster.

We didn’t used to publish so many as we do now, but let me just tell the listeners before we jump into some of today’s actual topics and the meat of this show, I wanna just remind the listeners of some of the incredible high-level, thought-leading, ground-breaking famous, expectational celebrities guests that we’ve had over the years. I hate to say this and I really try to balance it a little bit, but you know, the financial world is a male dominated-world, unfortunately I’d say.

We’re constantly trying to get more women on the show, but you know, there’s just not a lot of them writing books about fiance in the financial world compared, you know, must be a pretty small ratio. So, I definitely wanna get more female guests on the show, because I just love that they have such a different perspective about things, just to go down a few of these and of course, you know, 500 episodes we’re not going to cover all of them, but I’ll highlight a few. Jim Rogers, the world famous Jim Rogers author of many books and hedge fund manager, really just incredible guy. I love Jim Rogers’s work. Of course, the very famous Steve Forbes, the Forbes family, Forbes magazine.

Robert Kiyosaki, the author of the Rich Dad, Poor Dad book and that entire franchise of books. Harry Dent who I discovered in the mid 90s with his books. They’ve just been phenomenal over the years. You know, he’s made some pretty bold predictions, he’s been right and wrong about them, but really interesting economic demographer. A guy you know, Fernando, of course, John McAfee, because he’s in the tech world and that’s where you came from at Apple computer.

Fernando:

Yep, yep, very interesting interview. I really enjoyed that podcast.

Jason:

John McAfee, he talked about his life in Belize and some of the new technologies he’s working on. Interesting guy and you know, folks, you gotta give me credit for entertaining every part of the political spectrum. Bill Ayers, I mean, Bill Ayers the guy who is self-described on my show when I asked him the very blunt, maybe rude, question, “Bill, are you a Communist?” And his answer, “Jason, I’m communist with a small C.” Not a capital C. So, I love that one.

Fernando:

Interesting.

Jason:

And then to go to the other side of the political spectrum, Pat Buchanan! Complete opposite of Bill Ayers, right? Meredith Whitney, she wrote a great book and I think we just re-ran her episode on Flashback Friday as the Fate of the States, which really talks about the business friendly states and those are the places we like to invest as real estate investors, so that’s a phenomenal book on that topic. Meredith Whitney’s book. Dr. Ben Carson, who is a presidential candidate and he was really interesting.

Denis Waitley, one of my big mentors in life who I discovered it at age 17. We had Ryan Holiday on the show, author of I believe just three books now and his books are ground breaking, huge best sellers. Brian Tracy, he’s in the same category of Denis Waitley, of course, a big, you know, motivational speaker and business philosopher. Eve Wright, who works for the Miami Heat basketball team. She wrote a great book on passion and life and living with no limits.

On the far left side of the political spectrum, Noam Chomsky. Really interesting guy. Dr. John Gray the author of the Men are from Mars, Women Are from Venus series of best selling books. Harvey Mackey, another huge best selling author that I followed for many years. His first book was, I love his book titles, Fernando, How to Swim with the Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive.

Fernando:

Very descriptive.

Jason:

Yeah, he has great book titles, really good book titles. Kelly McGonigal, she has written some great books and she is an author on some really great stuff about how to use our mind more effectively. The famous Dan Millman, he’s great. You know, Way of the Peaceful Warrior. Millions and millions of people have read that book

Fernando:

Yeah. Very good movie, yeah. I enjoyed that a lot.

Jason:

You saw the movie? Wasn’t that, few books translate into a movie really well, but the Peaceful Warrior was awesome.

Fernando:

The movie was fantastic. I mean, we enjoyed it. There were so many good messages in that movie. I highly recommend it.

Jason:

Me too and you can get that on Netflix. I’ve watched it three times, it’s great.

Fernando:

Yep, same here.

Jason:

Thomas Sowell, author of many best selling books, you know, contributor to Forbes magazine. I believe he is a Harvard professor, forgive me, I can’t remember right now. He’s just a great thought leader and thinking and great, great guy. Doug Casey, the guy who in the 70s wrote the very famous book called the International Man and it’s all about Internationalizing our life and he’s made a lot of really interesting predictions on the economy. He’s another tech one for you, Noah Kagan, I think he was employee 30 at Facebook and he’s the guy behind Appsumo, which is a very popular, successful company nowadays that a lot of internet marketers and software developer uses, so really some great stuff.

We had representative Todd Akin who got fired for some of his somewhat outlandish comments. Byron Dorgan has been on the show. Really, we’ve had some incredible guests over the years and many more, not just those, but Gillian Tett, very famous one. She was really good too. So, just a lot of great, great thought leaders over the years and we’ll have a lot more for ya. Fernando, since you’re in the tech world or you were in the tech world until your financial independence day last year working for Apple many years, you know about Guy Kawasaki, right?

Fernando:

Oh yeah, oh yeah. He was known as Apple’s chief Evangelist and he did that work for many works at Apple. He started back in 1983, so he’s – obviously I wasn’t there when he was there, but he’s very well known. I think he’s moved on to found many ventures and is involved in a lot of companies nowadays, so he’s a very famous guy.

Jason:

Yeah, definitely. I remember when I first started Guy Kawasaki, I flew out to Boston and I went to his Garage.com seminar and that was during the first, you know, dot com and boom and bubble. It was amazing. There were probably, I don’t know, maybe 400 people there and there were all these, you know, mostly young kids who were all had some startup idea, some internet company idea, and he gave out t-shirts for Garage.com that said, and this was the culture and the thinking at the time; it was an amazing time, really. It sort of amazing you couldn’t see that bubble getting ready to pop, but the t-shirts I remember them, because I – I don’t know where that, you know, I wonder sometimes where some of my clothing goes. It just kind of disappears. I mean, I give a lot of it away, certainty, to salvation army, you know, I’m always taking bags of clothes and giving it away to them, but where does it go? Some of it I know I didn’t give it away, I don’t know where it went, but he..

Fernando:

Probably stuck in some dryer somewhere.

Jason:

You know, who knows. Fernando, I can tell you for sure, my dryer, you know, the divorce among my socks, it’s sky rocketing. Like, why do these socks go in the dryer I sort of wonder.

Fernando:

There’s a black hole hidden behind your dryer.

Jason:

When you’re Apple, you didn’t work on an app for that?

Fernando:

No, no, it wasn’t my specialty.

Jason:

Okay, got it, but anyway, these t-shirts that he gave out, I remember they just totally like basically nailed the culture at the time, the shirt said, “Garage.com,” It said, “Startup, get big, cash out.”

Fernando:

The easy way.

Jason:

That was the whole idea. Forget about building a company that lasts or anything, it was just all about, you know, having someone buy you, you know? But yeah, it was an amazing culture. There were all these ideas and, you know, I think there was like a $700 event, which adjusted for inflation was kind of a lot, it was amazing. It was at Babson college and I remember meeting Seth Godin; I want to get him on the show too; when I was there. He was one of the speakers. I talked to him for a bit. Yeah, so Guy Kawasaki, I mean, when you – how long did you work at Apple by the way Fernando and tell the audience what you did there too.

Fernando:

Well, I was, my latest job at Apple was as a program manager for intellectual property in the chip hardware division and basically I interfaced with companies that would sell intellectual property features that would be present in the mobile devices at Apple. I was there, I was there for ten years, four of these years were in a startup that was purchased by Apple and the remaining years were actually at Apple, so I retired in 2014, so about a year ago.

Jason:

Financial independence day, yeah.

Fernando:

Financial independence day in May 2014, so that’s when I left Apple.

Jason:

And you did that when you had 70 units. When I met you the first time and you just discovered the podcast, I remember you only owned your own home and now you’re a real estate mogul, right?

Fernando:

Yes, well, thanks to all the podcasts that I listen to in my education and learning the principles allowed me to get to this point, which is I’m very grateful for that.

Jason:

Well, we’re very grateful for your business and I’m really grateful to be working with you now and we’re developing a software that we’re working on, so the more to come on that on future episodes, but I think that’s really going to help investors. It’s going to help investors self-manage their properties hopefully or buy a la carte services from property managers. We have a big vision for what we’re doing here and I’m, Fernando, I gotta tell you I’m super excited about it.

Fernando:

Me too and I think we’ve talked a lot about it and we’re definitely making big strides putting the startup together and putting the team together, you know, I think we’ll be able to talk more about it once we get the first mockups done and we can tell people to try it out. I think it’s the first step of that big vision that you mentioned and there’s a big opportunity there and we’ve certainty are or one of the few people that can see some of the pains in the business and can try to address where there is issues there’s opportunity and I think that’s what we’re going after is how do we address these issues.

Jason:

If we can make it easier through a software program to manage your manager or to not have a manage a be a self-manager nation wide and have a long distance portfolio not doing management the old fashioned way from our experience in working with thousands of clients over the years and just seeing the pain points and, you know, gosh, if we could just do this or if we could just do that, that’s what Fernando and I are working on and you dear listeners are going to be the first to know about it and the first to be able to beta test it and use it with your own portfolio, so keep listening for more announcements on that.

There’s going to be a lot of opportunity there I’m really excited about, but tell us a little bit about, Fernando, your thoughts on Guy Kawasaki before we get to his interview. I mean, he’s a really innovative guy, author of 13 books. By the way, I have to say to the listeners I apologize that this special episode, the sound quality of the interview with him isn’t better. I had to be mobile. I was in San Diego last week when I recorded and I was under a time crunch, because episode 500 won’t wait! It has to come on a given date. I was traveling and it was the soonest we could get Guy Kawasaki, so apologize in advance for sound quality not being as good as usual, but you know, our editors fixed it. It’s passable, okay. Tell us about, like, the Steve Jobs mentality on focus groups, listening to the customer, Guy Kawasaki made an interesting comment about that, didn’t he?

Fernando:

Yeah, he, again, he worked, you know, at Apple in the early years and instantly learned quite a bit from Steve Jobs and I remember him on documentaries when he was discussing marketing at Apple back when Steve Jobs was in charge and when of his comments that really stayed with me was that the concept of an Apple focus group back then was the right hemisphere of Steve’s brain talking to the left side of his brain, you know, that’s the kind of the marketing focus group that they did, which is probably right on.

You know, I can see how that played, but he did have many, you know, many learnings that he took from Steve and another one that I remember is about experts being clueless and Steve was famous for thinking that people that can tell you what’s wrong usually can not make it the right way, but you can just talk about it, which is interesting. If you lie too much on experts, it could bring you to the wrong to learn result.

Jason:

There’s an old very telling joke about that. What do you call a consultant? A consultant is a guy who borrows your watch to tell you what time it is and then doesn’t give it back.

Fernando:

That’s spot on. That’s exactly the concept, yeah.

Jason:

Exactly. So, this whole concept though with Apple and Steve Jobs not using focused groups, I think it’s interesting. It reminds me of another guest that I really want to get on the show that I discovered many years ago. His name is Paul Zane Pilzer. He wrote a book I think, he wrote several books, but one’s called the theory and practice of economic alchemy and I just remember how when I was very young that book fascinated me.

You know, it talked about everybody being so concerned that Japan was going to take over the world and how that wasn’t true and it turned out to not be true, you know as well, he was right about that, but he also talked about, like, companies, you know, that have this whole thing of they say they wanna listen to the customer and all this kind of stuff and, of course, there is a lot of validity to that and I don’t know exactly where to come down on it, but you know, he talked about how if you listen to the customer, you’ll always be looking, like, in the rear view mirror and the example he gave, I remember well in that book and, you know, think of this, this was in the olden days, okay, this is a long time ago this book was written, but he said, “No one realized no customer could tell you that they had a need for a water proof cordless phone until Sony invented one.”

So, the normal concept of businesses find a need and fill it, that’s like, you know, kind of business 101 concept, right, but the more advance concept and I’m sure this is a Steve Jobs, Guy Kawasaki, Apple-type evolutionary concept or maybe revolutionary is, Paul Zane Pilzer said this is he said, “Imagine a need, create the need, and then fill the need.” So, did anyone know they needed an iPhone before it was invented, not exactly, right?

Fernando:

Yeah, if you were to ask people if there were, you know, described their desires, they are usually – they do it in terms of items they are already using, they just want something that is better, faster, and cheaper, but usually you can’t go the step beyond which is where the holy grail is and that was what Steve was so good at.

Jason:

Yeah, there’s an Henry Ford quote like that too, “If people ask me,” Or maybe it says, “If people asked horse people,” Or you know, “People what they wanted at the time, they would have said they wanted a faster horse instead of a car.” See, most people can only think in terms like you said of what they have now to work with.

Fernando:

Yeah, exactly.

Jason:

Where as taking that evolutionary leap really requires a different mindset, doesn’t it?

Fernando:

That’s true. Another one just to complete another learning that guy took from Steve and certainty put into practice his ventures was the concept that A players hire A players. You know, you always want to surround yourself with people that are, you know, the same level as you are or better than you that way you will grow and if CEOS and entrepreneurs understand the concept then they have a much better chance of being successful and I learned that when I was – with my dad back when I was a kid and that’s just great advice that applies direct to business.

Jason:

How did you learn it with your dad? You told me that story when we were in Las Vegas at that conference, I remember you saying that. Did you want to share that at all?

Fernando:

It’s just that, you know, that advice was always to when I was playing sports or in school just surround yourself with people that are at the same level or better than you are and you will learn from them, you will grow, you will become a better person because you surround yourself with people that will allow you to get there and if you do the opposite, you hang out with people that are not going to be losers and you going to end up, you know, going the wrong way, so that’s pretty much what I learned back then and I apply it even today.

Jason:

That’s a great, great bit of advice, Fernando and I wanna just put a plug in for the Venture Alliance mastermind, because that’s the whole idea of it, okay. By the way, we have a really sort of crappy website you can all check out listeners. See how transparent I am? This website is under construction, it’s not very good, but I’ll go ahead and announce it on the show. It’s VentureAllianceMastermind.com. So, you can check it out. VentureAllianceMastermind.com, under construction, please pardon the dust on that website. It’s not done yet, but you can check it out and see what we’re up to and check out our event coming up in San Diego.

Our first event, it’s going to be the inaugural Venture Alliance event, but that’s really the whole point is surround yourself with people who are ahead of you and really just sort of expands your consciousness and makes more things possible, so I think that’s a very good point and Guy Kawasaki nailed that huh, but that doesn’t happen in a lot of corporate America, because people don’t want to hire really smart people because they are intimated by them. They think they’ll take their job, right? Everybody protecting their turf.

Fernando:

Some managers and executives, they think that they wanna hire people that are not as good as they are to few superior to them, but that’s just such a backwards idea, I think it’s just an ego trip and that it really doesn’t bring value to the company. You always want to get better, so that’s definitely something to not do. You wanna hire people that are equal or the same, equal or better. That’s really it though.

Jason:

People, they can’t pull you forward if they’re not ahead of you. If they’re behind you, they can only pull you back toward them. You know, water seeks its own level as the saying goes, right.

Fernando:

Yep.

Jason:

Good stuff. Well, hey, let’s get to Guy Kawasaki and jump into episode 500. Again, sound quality not up to my usual standard here, but I think you’ll still enjoy the interview and of course, Guy Kawasaki is a great guest. We’ll talk to you next time on episode 501! Here’s 500, Guy Kawasaki. Thanks for joining me Fernando. Let’s get to Guy.

Hey, it’s my pleasure to welcome Guy Kawasaki to the show. You’ve heard the name, he did not invent secular Evangelism, but he’s certainty popularized it back starting in 1983 when he was Apple and he’s the author of 13 books, these books are basically text books for academic institutions and startup companies and people in the text world. They’ve been on the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal bestseller list. He does over 50 keynotes per year and it’s a pleasure to have him here with us. Guy, how are you doing?

Guy Kawasaki:

I’m doing great. Thank you.

Jason:

It’s good to have you. So, what’s the latest and greatest? What are you working on nowadays?

Guy:

Well, I just had two books come art, the Art of Social Media and the Art of the Start version 2, so I’ve been busy. Trying to make a living, you know how it is.

Jason:

Tell us about the social media and what your thoughts are on it?

Guy:

Yeah, I think social media is just the best thing that ever happened to entrepreneurs and marketer and yet I see it used so poorly, so this book has about more than 150 or so tips about how to optimize social media and I ensure you that there’s never been a better book about social media.

Jason:

Good stuff, good stuff. Well, you know, what are some of the mistakes you see entrepreneurs making in their social media sphere?

Guy:

They don’t use it enough, they don’t repeat their post, they don’t post frequently, so more positively an entrepreneur optimizing social media would repeat their tweets because you can repeat tweets, all your audience is not listening or watching at the same time. I think every post, Twitter or whatever platform, should have either a graphic or embed video and these are some pretty fundamental things that many people, if you look at what the do, they are so wrong. Social media has high activity and CNN and ESPN, they don’t run a report only once and figure that everybody has seen it.

Jason:

That’s good. That’s a fair statement. I agree with you. Any tips on how often to repeat things? I mean, you know, any leader knows you gotta keep beating the drum over and over, right?

Guy:

Yes, indeed. I take most of my tweets and repeat them three times, so three times over 24 hours and, you know, I push the edge, but I have to tell you, I have looked at my analytics and I can either get, you know, x or I can get 3x, so it’s kind of a no-brainier, you want 3x not x, right?

Jason:

So, three times in 24 hours for Twitter, what about the other platform, do you feel the same with those?

Guy:

No, I don’t feel the same way. I think you can get away with much less. So with Facebook, I think it’s, well, with Facebook, I probably post five or six times a day, but each one is different and I may post a similar promotion or something three or four times, but it looks different. You know, different graphics, different text, so on Twitter I’m talking absolute identical posts 3 times in 24 hours. Facebook I could do over a course of several days two or three times but looking different.

Jason:

How do you perfect posts or respond to comments, especially critical comments. I think that’s a vital thing to learn.

Guy:

Well with comments, good news/bad news, right. So, if you have comments, at least you’re being seen and people are interacting. It might not be the, you know, the fan boy stuff that you prefer, but it’s better than being ignored. So, that’s data point number one. Data point number two is, I think that you do what I call the amateur boxing rule of social media, which is you only go three rounds. So, somebody comments, you respond, they respond, and no matter what they respond, you drop it.

Jason:

So don’t get sucked into the vortex, I like that, the three round concept. They shouldn’t get hung up on having the last word because on three rounds you can’t have the last word, can you?

Guy:

No, you can have the last word and it doesn’t matter if you get the last word, because frankly no body cares. People are not going to watch and follow the trend of 5-10-15 comments. The only person who might be following the whole thing blow by blow is the person you’re, you know, fighting with, and that might be some 16 year old kid anyway! So, I just, it’s not worth it.

Jason:

So, don’t give into the trolls, right? Okay, so what about blogging? I mean, what about the integration of blogging and social media. Do you mean repost your blog post? A lot of people do that already or do you have something more specific about that?

Guy:

Well, my test is that if it’s worth blogging, it’s worth promoting through social media to get people to read the blog, so I have a hard time warping my mind around the concept of you went through the effort of writing a blog post, but now you don’t want to tell everybody to read it. I mean, I’m searching a scenario where that’s true, so that’s what I mean and I don’t mean obviously reposting the entire blog post, I just mean that you do a, you know, sort of a tweet or a two or three sentence summation and you point to the source, so it’s self-curation, if you will.

Jason:

I want to get to some of your other entrepreneurial ventures and Canva and your early days at Apple, maybe a few comments on that I’d love to hear too, but let’s finish up on the social media topic and talk about getting more followers, socializing events, running hang outs, etc.

Guy:

Sure. So, for social media, it is a very powerful tool for also optimizing the impact of your events. Many people use social media to get people to events, but once the events starts, they drop the ball and arguable, that’s the most important time particularly if you regularly run events. So, what you want to do is provide so much attention and so much action from the event that next year people will say, wow, you know, I have to attend this event because I really missed out last year, so that means someone who is probably wholey responsible for social media, taking pictures, now with Periscope and Meerkat, you know, live streaming, and tweeting out great comments, great short quotes from speakers, selfies of people, you know, all this kind of stuff. You want to make it seem like this is the most important place to be on the earth at that moment.

Jason

Yeah, the streaming is definitely hot. I mean, Meerkat and Periscope are getting a lot of play right now. Why is that? What do you attribute that to? People just want to be in the action of course.

Guy:

Well, I do Periscope a lot and I only do it when, you know, I sort of passes a test. So, one test is I’m at an event, it’s a speaker or a panel and people who are all over the world or don’t have the time or money to come to the event can see this, so I feel like I’m doing them a favor in the sense, I’m cheating for them. I’m getting them content they could have not have gotten, so that’s one scenario.

Another scenario would be where I’m getting some place that most people can not get, so for example, in April I’m going to the Porsche factory, so I’m going to stream line from the Porsche factory and it’s not like I’m streaming live from the Oval office. On the other hand, I bet on the other hand there’s a lot of people who love Porsche and love cars and have never been to the Porsche factory.

So, it’s that kind of thing. I see a lot of people Meerkating and Periscoping themselves sitting at a desk and they’re answering tweets and all that. I’m like, I can’t think of something that’s more boring and more egotistic than, you know, my live stream of me answering email is fascinating. You know, if Barrack Obama wants to do it, okay, you know? If Shaquille O’Neal was doing it, maybe, but you know, Lonelyboy15 saying tune into my Periscope or I’m going to be sitting at my desk, what a waste of bits.

Jason:

Waste of bandwidth, definitely. Okay, well talk about the other kind of live formats, you know, whether they’d be hang outs or webinars, Twitter chats, any of those real quick, and then let’s jump back real quick.

Guy:

I happen to love those and I love those because they’re so difficult to do well and they’re difficult to do well, because you have to be very quick on your feet and there’s two aspects of that, one is mental. So, you have to be able to answer quickly, think quickly, you know, come back at people quickly, so that’s one and there’s also for Twitter chats in particular there’s also more mundane how fast you can type. So, there are people who can type fast and there are people who can come back fast, but there are not many people who can type and come back fast. So, that’s the challenge for Twitter chat and for those kinds of things. I happen to love that challenge.

Jason:

I want to ask you about the Art of the Start, which I just loved. I mean, I thought that was a fantastic work. One particular chapter, but talk about anything you like, but I definitely want to make sure you talk a little bit about partnering, because that is so critical and so complicated. I remember one of my grandmother’s old quotes, she used to say, “Jason, the hardest ship to sail is a partnership.” But, you know, partners can be vitally important, you know, complimentary talents, right?

Guy:

It is a very difficult thing to do. I think the word and the concept is vastly overused. To me, the only kind of partnership that matter is a partnership where it affects your spreadsheet, so if you form a partnership and you don’t whip out excel or change something, like a cost went down or revenue went up, I think basically is a BS partnership. So, partnerships have to move the needle and it’s not just warm and fuzzy because the press is going to love it or whatever. If it doesn’t move the needle, it doesn’t matter. Don’t even bother.

Jason:

How about anything more technical on the way you split up equity or, you know, choosing partners, anything like that?

Guy:

Everyone is so different, you know, I kind of believe in the win-win theory, not everybody does, and I’m not saying that the win-win theory is the only one that works, but I like to sleep at night and I also believe in karma, so that’s kind of my test. I think win-lose partnerships..

Jason:

They don’t work.

Guy:

Yeah, they don’t work or they may work, but they may die young. It’s got to be good for everybody.

Jason:

And even if it gets you through the one deal, there’s also going to be another company you wanna start, you know, six years later, right?

Guy:

Well, that too and I also believe that it’s karma, you know, one day you may be 800lb bully and you can get a great deal, but the next day, guess what, there’s always an 8,000lb gorilla if there’s 800lb gorilla.

Jason:

Marketing is one of your great, great skills, at least in my opinion. What about positioning, pitching, branding?

Guy:

Pitching, branding, all that stuff, I think just comes down to a good reality that, it’s not about, you know, if you have a big and you put lipstick on the pig, what you end up with is lipstick on a pig. It’s still a pig. So, the secret to Evangelism and marketing and branding and positioning is, don’t start with a pig. It’s very easy to Evangelize something that is great, it’s very hard to Evangelize a pig. So, many people believe that you can take a pig and you can add marketing and make it not into a pig and it’s just not true. It’s like so hard, so this is kind of the anti-marketing marketing, which is you want to be good at marketing, find something good to market.

Jason:

Very good point. You know, when I first met you back in 1999, maybe 2000, it was in the hay day of the dot com bubble and some of the ideas we saw out there were some of the silliest ideas and I thought that at the time, really, not looking back, I mean, at that time I thought that too and I’m sure you did as well. What do you see out there nowadays in the tech world and the startup world, you know, things you love, things you hate, if you’re willing to mention the ones you hate.

Guy:

Well, obviously I went to work for a company called Canva and what Canva does is it enables anybody to create beautiful design, so it’s in the democratizing of design business and it is doing remarkable well. 1,000 of people sign up for it everyday. So, you know, kind of dedicated to that. A couple of weeks ago I was appointed to the Board of Trustees of the Wikimedia Foundation, which is the entity that owns Wikipedia and so that is very interesting also, you know, one of the most important projects maybe for all mankind.

Jason:

I agree, I donate every year. I love it, I love what they do.

Guy:

So, those two things along plus my speaking and writing kind of keep me busy, you know what I’m saying?

Jason:

Absolutely, but you know, just kind of as an observer out there, not what you’re in to necessarily, you know, do you think we’re seeing a lot of silly stuff in the last few years that’s going to be weeded out, you know, are we in another bubble like we were 15 years ago?

Guy:

It’s very hard to predict what’s stupid and what is brilliant and it’s a very fine line and the only way you can really know is after the fact, let’s just be honest. So, if I told you that I’m starting a company to enable to send out 140 character text messages when you could already send out text messages and you IRC and you had email and you had all that, you know, you’d say, well, Twitter such a stupid idea. Well, guess what, not so stupid after all, right?

Jason:

Fair enough.

Guy:

And then, a few years ago we all thought MySpace would control the world. That it would be the operating system of the internet. Well, you know, MySpace kind of disappeared.

Jason:

Especially Rupert Murdoch, yeah.

Guy:

Yeah, exactly. He bought it. Opps. So, how do you, how do you reconcile all this that some stupid ideas really, really created humongous companies and some smart ideas imploded and so, it’s just kind of a crap shoot and it is better to be lucky than smart, that’s my conclusion.

Jason:

Right, right. I always say that. Better be lucky than good any day, but you can’t depend on luck, that’s the problem, that’s the problem. Talk to us for a moment some of your early days. I especially want to hear about Apple, you know, working with Steve, any insights there that would be interesting to listeners.

Guy:

Apple wast just fantastic. Working for Steve was a life changing experience. I wouldn’t change that for anything. Very difficult person to work for, but what a great experience and it was like, you know, working at Disney Land and getting paid everyday. It was fantastic. I would not be if it were not for that experience, that’s for sure.

Jason:

I was telling one of my clients who used to work at Apple about you being on the show and he said to ask you about some sort of comment you made about the right brain and the left brain of Steve Jobs and marketing. Tell us about that.

Guy:

So, my comment that many marketers believe in focus groups and you know, asking customers what they want and checking with them and all that and my statement was that Apple did not do any focus groups, the only focus group was Steve’s left and right hemisphere being connect. So, that was the Apple focus group and I’m not saying every company can do it this way, but certainty it worked for Apple. So, when you have a brilliant dictator, it’s a very efficient company. The problem is that there are many dictators, so few are brilliant. So dictatorship part is easy, it’s the brilliant part that’s hard.

Jason:

The focus group thing is it really the job of an entrepreneur to figure out what the customer wants before they know they want it?

Guy:

Coming from the Apple school I would say yes, that’s how it works. Now, but you know, there are other kind of entrepreneurial organization. You could try to be a low cost provider, right, so that’s another path, you know, I don’t know if Target was, you know, some brilliant insight as much as well, if we provide great selection and low prices, we’ll win. Okay, you know, I mean, how hard would have that been to see. So, this is a way, call it the Steve Jobs way. I don’t think it’s the only way.

Jason:

Good point, good point. You know, the kind of idea that in business you want to find a need and fill it or is it more about imagine a need, creating that demand some how, and then filling it, you know? Like I don’t know the focus group thing. I agree, that’s an interesting ideology of Steve and Apple.

Guy:

Here’s the danger with all this kind of stuff which is on the one hand it’s very dangerous to run your business according to sort of stories, right. So, the story of Steve, you know, the story of this kind of thing, so this is kind of an episode, a particular instance in time, well that doesn’t take into account that for every Steve who was the brilliant dictator, there are 10,000 stupid dictators, so this doesn’t mean, oh, you should look at what Steve did and say, okay, that’s the way to go, because we don’t know what the statistics are. He could be, you know, seven standard deviations away from the norm and so, you know, you shouldn’t pattern your life against Steve Jobs, because you frankly are not seven standard deviations of visionary like he was.

So, that’s one thing and, you know, lots of things have to work together for a Steve to be successful. You have to be at the right place at the right time, prior to personal computers, but as things are getting cheaper, you know, there’s a lot of factors, right, so it’s hard to do science, because with science you’re trying to test a hypothesis and you’re trying to create control where you control for all the variables, but in business, you can not control all the variables and so, it’s dangerous to learn by stories.

On the other hand, if you try to create a scientific experiment in order to learn what to do, you will run out of time and no one is going to fund it. So, can you imagine if you went to venture capitalists and say, well, we’re going to run a test, we’re going to take a visionary and we’re going to have this kind of product and we’re going to take this and this kind of product and we are going to control for all the variables and we’re going to tell you which is the better path, no body is going to fund that. So, scientific method is not suitable for business and the method of individual stories is also very risky, so that’s why I guess it comes down to luck.

Jason:

That’s a good point. Well, you know, it’s interesting, on that thought, do you think that an American business or a business in general we’re studying success too much and failure too little?

Guy:

Listen, the right thing to do is, you know, always be consuming information, trying to digest and turn information into knowledge knowing full well that, you know, just because Steve did it this way doesn’t mean it’s the only way or the best way. Also, you have to control from the fact that correlation is not causation, so you know, just because Steve drove in the carpool lane and packed in the handicapped slot, that doesn’t mean that if you did, you’d be Steve Jobs. That’s correlation, that’s not causation. So, there’s a lot of things to think about and then, you know, best strategy of all is be lucky. Not quite actionable, but..

Jason:

I love it, yeah, not quite actionable exactly. Well, good stuff. Well, Guy, give out your website and tell people where they can find more and your Twitter handle too.

Guy:

So, my Twitter handle as you would expect @GuyKawasaki and my blog site is GuyKawasaki.com. Very easy.

Jason:

And on Twitter you’ll see the three times a day posting.

Guy:

Well, you know, can I just tell you, Jason, if someone sees my posts three times a day, this says more about them than me. They need a life. They should not be seeing it.

Jason:

That’s a good point. They should have only seen it once or maybe twice.

Guy:

Exactly or not at all.

Jason:

Good point, good point. Definitely. So, Guy, just as a closing thought. We’re living in an amazing time technologically. It’s an amazing time to be in business too, because the cost of starting a business has just plummeted, you know, there’s so many great tools out there, there are free or very, very cheap. Canva is a fantastic tool, of course, and it’s not very expensive. I think there’s even a free version. This is giving he entrepreneur so many tools to just be so innovative and create so much, what do you see for the future?

Guy:

I tell you, as you say, it’s cheaper and easier than ever. You don’t have to buy servers anymore, you don’t have to buy tools anymore. You have virtual teams. Your marketing is social media. So, you know, maybe the best and only place you need to spend money in social media is promoting Facebook posts, although I would also say promoting pins on Pinterest is also going to be good. So, it’s a great time and have at it. I don’t know what else to say. It is a fantastic time to be an entrepreneur. It means that it’s going to be more ideas and more companies that doesn’t necessarily mean that there’s going to be more good companies and ideas, but at least there is more of a meritocracy where it’s not just the people who know the right VCs, at least more people can try.

Jason:

Guy Kawasaki, thank you for joining us.

Guy:

Thank you. Enjoy yourself.

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This show is produced by the Hartman Media Company, all rights reserved. For distribution or publication rights and media interviews, please visit www.hartmanmedia.com or email [email protected]. Nothing on this show should be considered specific personal or professional advice. Please consult an appropriate tax, legal, real estate or business professional for individualized advice. Opinions of guests are their own and the host is acting on behalf of Platinum Properties Investor Network Inc. exclusively.

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