If you wanted to be successful and have a positive impact on people, there were a few approaches to do so. And the internet opened up the possibilities even more.
We have to ask ourselves what we want to do with our lives. Recently, I’ve been attempting to answer this question for myself, and I noticed a few paths I’m attracted to such as the strategy I call “Elon Musk Vs. Gary Vee Approach.”
Let’s start with the Elon Musk approach. We all know who he is and his execution strategy can be described as finding a really important problem and dedicating all his time, intellect, and resources to solve it.
We also have the Gary Vee approach, which focuses on the creation of content at a high scale to leverage the attention of social media to create companies and sell products.
The Gary Vee approach is somewhat low risk - high output, and success is more or less guaranteed as long as you create interesting content consistently for a long time.
While the Elon Musk approach is high risk - extremely high output. Success is super unlikely, but if you make it, you really make it, and most importantly you solve an important problem to help society. In Elon’s case, electric cars, reusable rockets, underground tunnels, and a few others more.
If you use the Gary Vee approach, you won’t solve problems as pressing as climate change because you’ll be spending your time on social media creating content. Then, you have “reach” and “impact” that could help fund and promote the “important problems” effort, but you most likely won’t be solving them yourself.
And that’s fine, we need both Elons and Garys in this world.
To me, those two paths are exciting but it seems like you have to pick one over the other but I’ve learned that if I'm thinking of choosing, I should choose both. And here the opportunities get even more interesting, and one more approach opens up.
I call this approach the “Lex Fridman Approach.”
How does Lex fit into the Elon Musk vs. Gary Vee approach?
At first, he used the Gary Vee approach. Lex started making podcasts and creating content across social media, which gained him a formidable audience of almost 2 million (Jan 2021) .
He’s been using this method, and it’s working extraordinarily well as he continues to grow.
What does Lex need to transition to the Elon Musk Approach? Not as much as you’d think.
Find an “important problem” and start working towards it through the founding of a company.
Or a simple tweet, like this one, may do, which excited thousands of followers and investors to back him up.
Another example of someone I find using the same or similar approach is David Perell.
David can be described as a citizen of the internet who has leveraged Twitter to have an impact in the world by writing powerful essays, creating life-changing online courses, and recording profound podcasts.
How does David fit into the Elon Musk vs. Gary Vee approach?
It’s the perfect combination.
At first, he started using the Gary Vee approach. David created content on Twitter and wrote essays, which gained him an audience in both social media and his email list.
He followed this method until he had an audience big enough that cared about what David was doing. Then, he created his business called Write of Passage, which teaches people to accelerate their careers by writing online.
Even though David has started investing and doing other things, David hasn’t fully transitioned to the Elon Musk approach, but I would assume he would do so in the next decades as he tries to make Write of Passage the business school of the future.
In this intersection, we find up-and-coming stars such as Lex Fridman, who leverage the use of social media (Twitter, YouTube, etc) and the internet (Podcasting) to perfectly fit the Gary Vee Approach.
Then, after developing this approach, they can transition to the Elon Musk Approach more smoothly and with less risk as they have an audience to whom they can sell to, resources to self-sustain and create companies with, and the arts which they have mastered (writing, speaking, podcasting, etc.)
This Ladies & Gentlemen is a new approach that will create riches, success, and a vast new world of opportunities. Most importantly, I’m sure dreamers and optimists like Lex will have a significant impact on society as they work and solve important problems.
 I’m counting YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. If I count podcast downloads or views, the number would go by a lot more. But there wasn’t a way to accurately get these stats. Maybe there’s an opportunity to create a podcasting stats platform (wink wink).
If you’re into interesting ideas (like the one you just read), join my Weekly Memos., and I’ll send you new essays right when they come out.