Tucker Max is the person that everyone likes to hate and widely regarded as the leader of the “fratire” literary genre. At the same time, this notorious man is also a hugely successful founder of several startups and one of the best-selling authors in the United States.
But how did Tucker achieve so much and what can we learn from the process?
It’s not your average story and in many ways, Tucker’s behavior and opinionated nature is largely responsible for his immense success. In other words, this outspoken, straight-talking and often rude individual seems to have mastered the art of marketing and even taken PR to an entirely new level.
In this article, we look at how Tucker Max made the big time and how we can make sense of his controversial approach:
How Tucker Max went from “fratire” to a Successful Founder
After receiving a BA in the University of Chicago and qualifying as a lawyer, Max changed direction and decided to focus on his personal interests and hobbies. As a result, he wrote a New York Best Seller called “I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell” and this book went on to sell an incredible two million copies.
As you may know, he later produced a movie based on this book which led to the aforementioned reputation of being the leader of fratire. However, he also went on to write “Assholes finish first” and “Hilarity Ensures” before Time Magazine included Max on the 100 Most Influential List in 2009.
Since then, Tucker Max has assisted many successful startups, and he is the founder of Scribe, a company that helps leaders write and publish their own books.
Anyway, the point is, in spite of his controversial ways, Tucker’s achievements are undeniable and this is especially true in the context of PR and Marketing.
What the Success of Tucker Max Tells Us About PR and Marketing
Success Means Nothing Without Purpose
In recent interviews, Tucker Max opened up about his experience with success and wealth in particular. According to the author, his millions of dollars and relentless womanizing brought little more than temporary fun and an unfulfilling feeling. He also went on to say that no matter what a person achieves in life, they should always pay attention to purpose and remember that outward success has no real meaning.
From a PR and marketing perspective, this clearly implies that without demonstrating any genuine purpose, a brand is unable to connect with the target market in a meaningful way. What’s more, without trying to nurture a meaningful relationship in this regard, it’s difficult for founders or employees to feel any great sense of satisfaction or meaningful achievement.
Helping People is the Best Way to Create Value
In his books, Max talks about taking a ruthless approach to business and dealing with people in general. However, this belief slowly subsides and Tucker now tries to emphasize that helping other people is the key to making money.
More specifically, he explains that riches mean nothing to people when they are struggling with a certain aspect of their life and providing a solution to this problem is the key to making money.
As you know, Marketing and PR is all about capturing the attention or a target market. However, at a time when most people are disentitled to conventional advertising or marketing efforts, it’s more important to focus on creating value. That is to say, businesses are now better served when they stop trying to sell and start focusing on how they can solve the customers’ problems.
Doing Great Things Because “Knowing” Is Never Enough
Indeed, many of Tucker’s comments are unnecessary and of poor taste, but he has always backed up the talk with books, movies and new businesses. With this in mind, Max suggests that most people don’t seem to realize that knowing something is not enough and doing great things should always be the focus. In terms of marketing or business decisions, this also highlights the importance of acting on trends, data and any other important knowledge.
Legacy and Reputation are Most Important in the Long Term
After all the nasty quips and horrible statements, you might think that Tucker Max is a shallow individual with no sense of remorse. On the contrary, Tucker is always quick to play down this past and point out that he resents his reputation as an uncaring, woman-hating straw man.
According to Max, the media helped create this impression and most of his statements are taken out of context in order to seem more controversial. Either way, it’s clear that Tucker is not completely happy about how he reached this point, regardless of the fame and wealth it brought into his life.
It should go without saying that being controversial and being offensive are two different things. Tucker has obviously taken a route that no startup or business should follow but at the same time, his remorse is a reminder that legacy and reputation matters.
For example, many busnisses use unsavory methods when it comes to PR and marketing but in the long run, attention is temporary and people never forget. That is to say, it’s never wise to risk the legacy and reputation of a business in order to gain traction in a market.
Taking a Different Approach to Business
On the other hand, the movie for “I Hope They Serve Beer In Hell” is a rather extreme example of how taking risks is also needed in order to stand out. For example, instead of caving into the demands of Hollywood, Tucker took the unorthodox approach of finding independent investors for his movie before self-distributing the finished product in movie theaters throughout the United States.
But what might this mean for every other business?
It simply means that there is more than one way to get things done and there is often a reward for being different. What’s more, this is also a reminder that sitting on the fence is rarely a good option and businesses that dare to dream are usually the one’s that manage to do great things.
It’s true, Tucker Max will always be the guy that everyone likes to hate but there is still a certain genius to his approach and lessons from which many businesses can learn to get ahead.