When Gary Vaynerchuk took the stage at Web Summit I could tell he wasn’t going to be everybody’s cup of tea. He’s the sort of guy who could either rub you up the wrong way or inspire you. Luckily I find him inspiring and I see his swearing and attitude as a sign of his passion.
Having just finished reading ‘The Thank You Economy’ (review coming up soon) I was already versed in his ideas. I say ideas but what he really has is a truck load of common sense, a great work ethic and passion for what he does. He bounced on to the stage and talked at 90miles an hour for 15 minutes and I’d challenge anyone in the audience to say they didn’t feel the impact.
I chose to travel light with just an iPad yesterday and was barely able to keep up with my note taking but I think I caught the main points. These quotes may not be 100% accurate but they are the best that my touch screen typing and bad memory could do. I’ve also added my own interpretations, if Gary is reading I hope I got close enough!
“Most people are marketing and building products like its 2009”
“Twitter.com/search the mosr powerful tool in the world right now”
If you aren’t using social media to communicate and converse with other people you are missing a huge opportunity. Stop trying to sell and use it to build relationships.
A kinda obvious point but it does still break my heart to see businesses continuously pushing out sales messages. I sometimes look at Twitter searches and wonder why businesses aren’t taking the opportunity to respond to people who need what they have got. Stop creating for a moment and start listening, you will find customers. Which brings me to the second quote:
“Everyone is very focused on the ROI for themselves”
“We are not reverse engineering the end goal of our customer”
It’s true, everyone is talking about ROI on social media, and us marketers are trying to answer but Gary thinks we should turn it around, we should focus on the Return On Investment of our customers. What benefit do they get out of speaking to us?
“We are lucky enough to be born in a time when the Internet is here”
We are in a time when we have access to this fantastic technology, it enables us to communicate with people in ways we could have never imagined in our teens. I for one probably wouldn’t have ventured into business if I hadn’t had so much information at my fingertips and it has certainly changed the course of my life.
The Internet has made things easier both for consumers and for vendors, we can connect so easily with our friends, our customers and more importantly those we would never have had the chance to meet before because of distance, disability or opportunity. If we run a truly customer centric business this has to be good news. Not only can we talk to customers but they can tell our friends how great we are.
“Biggest impact and social shift of our time”
“Everyone in this room is grossly underestimating the impact of [the Internet]”
I moved to Ireland 15 years ago. When I got here mobile phones still came with shoulder holsters for the battery packs and no one had them. I had to write letters by hand to my friends at home and when they moved we lost touch. In the space of those 15 years the world wide web and social media have changed the way I keep relationships alive. I can stay in touch with those friends I lost when I left home, I can become part of the everyday lives of so many people. I know that one of my friends is raising pigs and the challenges she is going through, I know another who has moved to the South of France and is enjoying country living, traveling and riding motorbikes. I can follow the stories of their lives although I rarely get a chance to meet them in person. This is the world we live in now and yes it is the biggest social shift I’ll probably see in my lifetime.
“We haven’t even started, were literally in the national anthem of a baseball game”
The impact of the Internet has grown so quickly, who could have imagined where we are now 6 years ago? And how can we imagine where we will be in 6 years? It’s always growing and changing and we need to keep up and keep innovating to stay in the game.
“For every one Instagram there are 8 million Instascrams”
“We don’t need magic pixie dust we just need to execute”
We spend a lot of time trying to decide what is unique about our business, I even talked about it a bit yesterday but as Gary says it’s not magic, we just need to execute our business well, we need to provide great customer interaction, we need to care and we need to build a business that just gets it right.
Is that why Instagram succeeded? Is it because it executed better than any of it’s competitors? Or was it because it reached the right people, it struck a chord with the people who set the trends.
“If you have customers or users you have value – if people use it and stick with it it’s value”
The real value isn’t getting the customer, it isn’t badgering them until they buy it is retaining them, building a long term relationship with them. We should be trying harder to keep relationships alive. Do you keep in touch with your customers online? What do you do for them?
“Keep saying hello to people, it’s people that will be the differentiator for you”
If you haven’t experienced Gary Vaynerchuk yet you really should. Make a start by checking out some of his videos. And if you like them you might find his books inspiring too.