It’s happened to the best of us, falling down the YouTube rabbit hole and making a discovery that has you sending links to your friends for days. That discovery came for me in 2015 when I stumbled across Casey Neistat’s YouTube channel. I had heard his name before but never checked out his work, so I decided to dive right in.
So for those of you who don’t know him, Casey Neistat is a YouTuber/filmmaker/entrepreneur/business owner/husband/father/ all around badass (he wears many hats.) Casey had an already successful YouTube channel boasting viral videos such as “Bike Lanes” and branded content such as “Make it Count” for Nike. It wasn’t until Casey decided to start his daily vlog when his channel grew from five hundred thousand subscribers to over seven million. The daily vlog was meant to promote Beme, a tech company Casey co-founded alongside Matt Hackett. While Beme the video sharing application had early success, it ultimately suffered against the likes of Snapchat and Instagram and shut down. Not to worry though, as Beme was recently acquired by CNN for twenty-five million dollars. Ultimately Neistat’s daily vlog took on a life of its own and provided an inside look at the life of one of the most interesting, charismatic, and business savvy individuals the world has to offer. As a subscriber and avid viewer of the vlog, here are three lessons that your business can learn from Casey Neistat:
One of the primary reasons Casey Neistat is such a polarizing figure is his originality. From his primer coated Ray-Ban Wayfarer’s, to his cruising through the streets of New York City on a boosted board (while simultaneously recording his vlog). Casey has found a way to take his craft to the next level, by creating beautiful productions that are aesthetically pleasing, substantive, and follow a logical story arch. Each video or vlog he creates genuinely feels like a short film, that leaves the viewer in anticipation for the next installment.
When it comes to your business, you have to find your niche and your style to differentiate yourself from the competition. We aren’t talking about recreating the wheel here, or riding a boosted board in traffic (I actually would leave that to Casey) but rather putting your own spin and personality on whatever you are doing. Originality is key to developing, attracting, and growing your business. For example, we at Thirsty Agency create fans, we don’t just provide a service for you, we provide an experience that your clientele will remember.
Relationships matter, whether they are personal or professional. At the end of the day, it’s people over profit, and it’s clear that Casey Neistat is a subscriber to this belief. Casey is in constant collaboration with other content creators. These collaborations range from Marques Brownlee a.k.a. MKBHD (Tech YouTuber) to Karlie Kloss (Fashion Model) to Shaun McBride a.k.a. Shonduras (Professional Fun-Haver) to Marlan Franklyn, his UPS delivery man. These collaborations have led to some of the best content Casey has produced because he genuinely cares about these individuals.
When it comes to your business, cultivating relationships is essential for success. Whether it’s between your clients, your colleagues, or your contemporaries. The number one rule of business as stated by Casey is, “Only work with people you like.” It’s absolutely crucial to maintaining a constructive relationship with your colleagues, which paves the way for a positive relationship with clients. In our early days as an agency, we actively reached out to larger agencies letting them know we enjoyed the work they were producing. This led to open dialogue and ultimately mutual respect for one another.
Imagine making a film about your day, every day, for about two years. That’s exactly what Casey Neistat did and continues to do. Like I stated earlier, Casey’s daily vlogs were initially to provide an inside look at the development of his tech startup Beme, however, it led to something much larger than that, around seven million subscribers larger to be exact. This was not an overnight success and required a lot of time and work. One of the prevalent themes within his vlog is the importance of a work/life balance. Seldom do you find a vlog where Casey is not at an airport, working with his cohorts at Beme, or creating content. However you do notice something, most vlogs also incorporate spending time with family and friends and running, lots of running. Casey makes it a point no matter where he is in the world, to get in a run. If he’s not running 8 to 10 miles at a 7:00 min pace, he’s usually running home to spend time with his wife and daughter.
It’s important that you prioritize your work/life balance. Not only will you feel better, your work will yield better results. Whether it’s a morning run or spending time with friends and loved ones, be sure to make time for yourself and your work life will prosper. The Thirsty crew makes it a point to spend time with friends and family, and even get in some office bowling off the clock.
So there you have it, three lessons you can employ in your business practices from Casey Neistat a.k.a. real life Poochie.
Check out Casey’s YouTube channel here.
Check out the update on CNN’s acquisition of Beme here.