How to learn from the best
Everybody is online today. Not only you and me, but also thought leaders, billionaires, entrepreneurs and visionairies – And we can learn from them, updated September 2018
The best share their knowledge
Did you realize that there are millions of interesting people in the world? In fact, everybody has something interesting to tell, although we’re not always interested in listening. But what if people we know from TV or Social Media speak? We usually listen. Why is that? Because they inspire us. They inspire us with knowledge and they inspire us to take action.
It has always been like this. We all knew Bill Gates before the internet was everywhere. We knew him as the founder of Microsoft and the richest man on earth. But that was about it. Today, we know quite a lot more about him. Why? Because we can find articles, videos, book recommendations, and a whole lot of other curated content about him. Bill Gates has his own blog with more than a million page views per month (find it here: https://www.gatesnotes.com/).
Just look at what he writes at the end of his about page, right next to his signature: ”
A Message from Bill:
“I feel very lucky to get to connect with so many extraordinary people. Whenever I have the chance, I set aside a few minutes to share what I’m learning here on the Gates Notes. Thanks for reading.”
He is known to read one book per week, and is on top of that the second richest man on earth. So if a man who is as smart and influencial as Bill Gates shares his knowledge accessible to everybody, wouldn’t it be a pity to not consume and then incorporate as much as possible of it?
I believe so. In fact, I believe a person like Bill Gates is so accessible to us that we can easily consider him a mentor. Wait, what? Yes, it’s true. You will find answers to your questions by reading his articles or watching videos of him on Youtube. He can be your mentor, even though you can’t call or mail him.
We do not need to have personal access to someone to conside him or her a mentor
Hearing the word “mentor” often implicates having a direct and close access to that person. While being able to talk to someone who has the same goals as oneself but is many years ahead is priceless, it’s nearly impossible to have people like that for every aspect in life. Unless you’re given with a strong family network, you won’t just find people like this without effort.
But there’s hope for you and me. In the last years, it became clear to me that having mentors is a garantee for speeding up my personal development. But I soon realized it would be quite hard to find people who could teach me in online marketing, entrepreneurship, finance, relationships, and health at the same time. It was just a bit later that I understood that today, those people and their knowledge are online and accessible.
It didn’t actually happen online. I read a book about self improvement which opened my eyes. The book teached me the learnings of decades of talking to millions of people and figuring out some of the most important rules about relationships. Dale Carnegie put all his knowledge in this book. After reading the book, I read articles, watched videos, and searched for curated ressources about the topic. I learned so much about his ideas and teachings and other topics that I sometimes literally asked myself “what would Carnegie do?”, “What would Buffet do?”, “What would Musk / Ferriss / Gates do?”.
The way of learning through books and through online content works just perfectly. Don’t only look at books and blogs, also podcasts, videos, and other content formats work just fine.
It’s easy to find mentors in Tech (Entrepreneurs) and digital marketing
Bill Gates is just one example of how it is possible to find a great mentor without having direct access. There’s dozens of inspiring personalities for any aspect in life. And with the rise of social media, the possibility to learn from those people went through the roof.
That counts especially in marketing. The top marketing experts know that with a strong brand comes more credibility and therefore more revenue for their companies. Just Look at the ones listed below, they are masters in brand building. On top of that, in Online Marketing and Tech, there’s also a strong philosophy of sharing knowledge. That is why the most inspiring experts have their own blogs, own youtube channels, own Facebook pages, or podcasts. Some even write books about their marketing experience.
That means that any Online Marketer out there is able to learn from the best. Especially in Digital Marketing, where work means a lot of testing and working with trial-and-error approaches, the opportunity to prevent making mistakes by learning from the best is priceless.
Only for that reason should any marketer within the digital field know and learn from people like Neil Patel. So if you are an online marketer looking to grow your skills, this overview of my personal favorite online marketers will lead you to all the knowledge you need to drive traffic to a website, growth hack a platform, go viral with your content, or anything else you might wanna do with your own or your customers digital business.
The list features the people I chose to follow closely and I describe in which ways they mentor me. In fact, I also look closely at entrepreneurs that I find inspiring, not only marketers. There are many more and I’ll increase the list with time.
Neil Patel is an entrepreneur and digital marketing genius who build amazing companies for digital marketers. Hes the co founder of Crazy Egg (A/B testing & heatmaps), Quick Sproud (seo analysis tool), and KISSMetrics (behavioral analytics), which are all tools for online marketers and digital entrepreneurs.
Neil is also a contributor on Inc., Forbes, Entrepreneur.com, TechCrunch and others. His companies work with Tech giants like Google, AirBnb, or Amazon. The Wall Street Journal calls him a top influencer on the web, Forbes says he is one of the top 10 online marketers, and Entrepreneur Magazine says he created one of the 100 most brilliant companies in the world. He was recognized as a top 100 entrepreneur under the age of 30 by President Obama and one of the top 100 entrepreneurs under the age of 35 by the United Nations.
How Neil mentors me: Neil was a SEO professional in the old days, but today he has really really good content about anything in digital marketing. His blog posts are the most thorough and his youtube videos are super authentic and fun to watch.
Learn more about Neil Patel here:
Tim Ferriss wrote the bible for Digital Nomads. In The 4-Hour Workweek, he describes how he build a lucrative business that only takes 4 hours per week to manage. On top of that, he defined and described a new way of living, he calls it “lifestyle design” and those who live it the “new rich”.
The 4-Hour Workweek and all of his other books The 4-Hour Body, The 4-Hour Chef, Tools of Titans as well as Tribes of Mentors became New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestsellers. I’ve read them all.
He is also an early stage investor or advisor in Uber, Evernote, Twitter, Alibaba, Facebook, and Shopify.
Tim Ferriss podcast has over 150 million downloads.
How Tim Ferriss is a mentor to me: The highest credit I can give Tim Ferriss is by reading all of his books. Tim Ferriss is a digital nomad, an entrepreneur, an investor, a person who enjoys life, someone who always tries new things and most importantly, someone who loves sharing his experiences. He embodies so many things my generation looks for. He is really inspiring and by making himself a human guinea pic on a regluar basis, he experiences all sorts of things on his own body. On top of that, he intervies the most inspiring people across any area you could think of and knows exactly how to bring his learnings on paper. His content is unique and valuable, and he is just a very smart and thoughtful person. I learn from him in any area of life – health, relationships, business, investing – you name it.
Read his first book: https://www.amazon.de/4-Hour-Workweek-Expanded-Updated-Cutting-Edge/dp/0307465357
Visit his website here: https://tim.blog/
Joe Pulizzi is one of the most famous content marketers. He is the founder of Content Marketing Institute and author of content Inc, which was chosen as one of five must read business books of 2013 by Fortune Magazine. Hes is one of the leaders behind the content marketing hype of the past years.
He is also the author of the content marketing books epic content marketing, Managing Content Marketing, and 2-3 others. His newest book “killing marketing” was released September 2017 (I read it in a weekend sprint in February).
How I get mentored by Joe Pulizzi: For a long time, I liked Joe Pulizzi for his very well made podcast “this old marketing” that he is doing together with his partner Robert Rose. After reading his book “killing marketing” and getting in depth knowledge about executing profitable content marketing, i think even higher of him and will definitely buy “content inc” later.
You can find the podcast here: http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/pnr-with-this-old-marketing-podcast/
Don’t judge him by his oldschool look.
Gary Vaynerchuk is the owner of VaynerMedia, a 600 million $ in revenue digital marketing company. He is a super charismatic person that loves to stand in front of the camera.
Above his business success stands his strong character, his straight forward talk and his motivational speaches. His videos like “6 mins for the rest 60 years of your life” get over a million views, his youtube account has over a million subscribers.
Fortune magazine put him in their 40 under 40 list and he was profiled in New York Times, Fortune, Inc. and many others as an inspiring person, which he definitely is.
Gary Vaynerchuk is clearly one of the top influencers for lifestyle entrepreneurs and youngsters who dream of making a million bucks with social media.
Gary Vee as a mentor: He will say it straight in your face: It’s whether you put in the work, or you will never reach your goals. I love that attitude. Gary is a social media beast and I like seeing how much he is winning with his unbeaten authenticity.
Check out his youtube channel here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCctXZhXmG-kf3tlIXgVZUlw
or his website here: https://www.garyvaynerchuk.com/
Elon Musk is a one of a kind Entrepreneur. The way he sees the world is something that is hardly understandable, but in a genius way. He plans to bring humans to the Mars, and even imagines dying there. On the other hand, he is the incarnation of an Entrepreneur who wants to make the world a better place.
Elon Musk with his companies is active in many industries:
Zip2 (co founder):
Zip2 was a company company that provided and licensed online city guide software to newspapers. Elon Musk cashed out 22 millions when the company was sold for more than 300 million US$ in 1999.
X.com (founder) & Paypal:
With X.com, Musk developed an online paying service, just similar to Paypal. Both companies fusioned and Musk held 12% on the company when it was sold to Ebay for 1.5 billion US$ in 2002.
Musk founded SpaceX in 2002. The company was the first private financed company ever to launch a rocket in to the orbit. That was in 2008. The cost of a launch with a SpaceX rocket is three times cheaper than of those companies which are backed by the government.
Tesla (Investor, later CEO):
After investing in Tesla in 2003, Musk became the CEO of the company and leads it since then. Tesla had the chance to conquer the electric car market, but struggled to build enough cars many times. But Tesla is not only an electric car company, Tesla also makes batteries and solar panel cells.
Neurolink, The Boring Company, and what ever else will come..
Elon Musk as my mentor: I read his biography and watched many videos. I think he truly tackels many difficult challenges that might change the world to the better. To me, he is the living example of someone who follows his passion and chases his dreams, regardless of what others think. That’s just inspiring and, thinking about it, looking at him / listening to him provides a direct view into the future or how the future might look like.
Steve Jobs was truly inspiring. Reading his biography provided very deep insights in his life and character. Steve Jobs was someone who lived in a tunnel, he ignored everything that wasn’t goal oriented. While this characteristic was so strong that it made him an unpleasant person to work with, I believe that being goal oriented for a lifetime will result in overtrumping everybodys expectations big time. In this way, I like to think of him as a mentor about focusing on whats important in life and in career.
and many more
Who is your number one person in the world, that you learned from?