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Gary Vaynerchuk’s Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook Book Review

By November 30, 2013February 25th, 2021Creative Disruption


Content is king, context is God…and then there’s effort…

If you’re involved in social media in any capacity, you’ve undoubtedly heard (and hopefully engaged with) Gary Vaynerchuck. (garyvee on Twitter). And if you’ve engaged with him any time in the last couple of months, you also know that he has written his third book. This one titled “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook“.

As I’ve followed GaryVee closely for some time and I wholly agree with his ideology on social media (pretty much every social media marketing professional would have to agree), I decided to write a review of sorts on his new book. I’m sure quite a few people will do the same.

This will be a very short book review. I can summarize the entire book with one word. VALIDATION! Let me hashtag that even though  it doesn’t really mean anything here on WordPress. #Validation. It’s just for emphasis.

So why the word validation? Because that’s what “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook” did for me.

  • it validated my work and ideology on Facebook for my clients
  • it validated my work for my clients on Twitter
  • it validated the numerous meetings that I’ve sat in on trying to get the suits in the boardroom to friggin understand what I was saying to them
  • it validated the years of sweat equity that I’ve poured into developing the social media marketing skills that I’ve obtained
  • it validated that the fluidity of social media requires constant analysis and adaptation for what works today may not work tomorrow
  • it validated the amount of time I’ve spent going to conferences and listening to great minds speak
  • it validates why I’m up at 6am and in bed so late scouring content to see what works and what doesn’t
  • it validates the fact that I’ve been performing social media audits for free because it may be a valuable lead gen opportunity (you’re sly Gary…but I picked up on that…way ahead of ya bro! Cool )
  • it validates why I follow Gary Vaynerchuk on Twitter and why I have for years…and a bunch of other top notch people as well
  • it validates why this is such a lucrative business…because despite the valuable instruction in this book…many, many brands and businesses won’t take the time and effort to succeed at social media
  • it validates why I write
  • it validates why I’m learning how to become a better photographer
  • it validates why I produce videos
  • it validated my belief that most traditional advertising agencies aren’t prepared to succeed in social media
  • it validated that we truly all are media companies…we’re all production houses

without effort-intense, consistent, committed, 24-7 effort…you will lose

Notice that I said validation. Meaning I already knew all of that which Gary V. wrote. It’s hard to imagine anyone who is executing social media professionally on behalf of a brand client not knowing everything in Gary’s book. That’s not to say that “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook” isn’t valuable.

What I’m saying is that the information that Gary speaks of in his book is stuff that we have all talked about on an ongoing basis. We’ve all met at conferences. We’ve all interacted on Twitter and exchanged tips and admonitions. We’ve read the articles. We’ve watched the videos. We’ve sat on the webinars. We’ve exchanged the emails and direct messages. And we’ve done that for years!

There’s nothing new in Gary’s book. As social media professionals, “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook” is social media 101. But what Gary did is show the world at scale, that there’s a ton of crappy work being done. No doubt this book could’ve been 500 pages long, if not more. The amount of crap being spewed on the social networks could have undoubtedly kept Gary writing for another 18 months.

What I hope is that this book lands on enough desks that it will serve as a catalyst for change. I hope that the entry level social specialist at an ad agency gets influenced enough to speak up and demand better work be done on behalf of a client.

effort is the great equalizer

I hope that some of the suits in the C-Suite pick this up and get incited to put a foot up the ass of some of the posers they have hired and roll some heads. I’m seeing the possibility of a lot of EVP types diving for cover as a result of a CEO getting a hold of this book.

Gary just turned the lights on and this book may cause a lot of cockroaches to scurry. Fortunately, there’s no place for the pablum pushers to hide. The transparency of your lack of social media proficiency is now on display for us all to see.

I’ve been telling some of you for years that your work is crap and that there are certain practices and principles that differentiate social media from traditional advertising. Now, with this book, you’re found out. And for that, I feel validated.

But this isn’t about me. It’s just how this book affected me. It’s about you. It’s about what you do after you put the book down. That’s what separates the social media winners from the social media losers and wannabees. What are you going to do now that you’ve read the book and seen the case studies?

Business has forever changed. Some may not like it but it truly has. The consumer now has more control over messaging than they ever have had and their influence is real and measurable.

It’s absolutely true. The USP in social media is effort. Social is, as Gary says, a 24/7 game. To succeed it’s all about preparation, insane effort and a commitment to continued adaptation.

What story are you going to tell? If you’re a brand, do you understand that a story is being told about you whether you know it or not? As an agency representing a client do you realize that business has changed and people are avoiding your commercials?

Like I said above, “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook” simply validated what I already knew to be true. Some will read this and do nothing. Others will avoid it and eventually succumb to a social media tsunami of inevitability. And hopefully some will read it, take action and prepare to execute with Herculean effort.

But as with this 1,100 word book review, I know what I’ll be doing come Monday morning. Pretty much what I do every day. Because…

no matter what, though, I’ll always be telling the same story-about social media, about business, and about how they really are now one and the same

My recommendation: Buy “Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook” and read it often and execute!

Perhaps we can even discuss this on Twitter.

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Barry Cunningham

Author Barry Cunningham

Barry Cunningham is an antagonist of conventional wisdom. Check out our case studies. They will give you an idea how we help brands & businesses amplify their conversion and lead gen campaigns by deploying digital advertising campaigns at scale. And I invite you to subscribe to my newsletter.

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