How To Succeed On Social Media

Inc. Magazine Interview With Gary Vaynerchuk, 20140425

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By default we want the right hook
20140425 08 6 Second Science Fair


  • Bring value like doing Q&A's.
  • Listen to your target audience and add to their conversation.
  • Speak the language of your audience through the medium they consume on the platform they use.
  • Don't focus on ROI, focus on building skill into a talent.
  • Be an early adopter and test everything.
  • It's about the long game.
  • Use Twitter advanced search to find conversations that contain hashtags you're interested in and select the option "Containing links". This will give additional content of interest.

How To Succeed On Social Media

By default we want the right hook the sale but I would think about social media as an opportunity to jab, to give. Q&A is the greatest thing right now, it's the place where we can bring the greatest value.

  1. Understand the power of Twitter. You can use Twitter search to find out what people are talking about right now and then jump into the cocktail party whether you have a million followers or none.
    You don't have to participate in the conversation but you do have to listen.
  2. Have a strong strategy for Facebook and Pinterest if you are selling something online.
  3. Be practical.
How do I get an ROI from a piano

Entrepreneurs are strapped for time and resources so how should they learn more about Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook in a way that improves their bottom line?

It's like everything in life, how do I get an ROI from a piano, I don't look at it I practice and then if I'm talented maybe I'm Billy Joel and make a crapload of money.

How do I get an ROI from a piano?

There is this analysis paralysis around ROI. There's no ROI in anything unless you learn how to use it, practice to build talent then execute it.

When a new social platform comes out you make a decision if you want to gain the first-mover advantage and take the risk along with the upside or you're a slow second mover. We need to get away from the mentality of show me there's a return and I'll invest.

While everyone else is sitting on the sidelines waiting to see if it's worth investing in the first movers are already making a return.

Analysis paralysis around ROI
Analysis paralysis around ROI

How Social Grew A Client's Bottom Line

Gary has made a lot of money using things like YouTube, Twitter and Facebook. Then there is the wine library and finally clients which unfortunately don't want to reveal too many details except recently Mondelez shared some data.

Nilla's entire budget went into social media last year to create content on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter. No SEO, no SEM, no print, no TV, no direct mail, no event marketing.

This market that had flat lined down for 10 years was up 9% in sales, not in FB engagements, not retweets or pins but in sales.

It's not that radio advertising doesn't work because if you know your audience listens to sports radio when they're driving at 5:45 in the afternoon then it has a chance to work. This notion that there is no ROI in social is just ludicrous

General Electric was a huge win with the 6 Second Science Fair and 3D printing campaigns. It's about getting earned media and reputation marketing around positioning the brand in a certain sector.

Finally Mondelez shared some data.
Finally Mondelez shared some data.

It's difficult to quantify precisely how awareness impacts ROI. What is it worth to Gary to have him on the front cover of Inc magazine, it's got to be worth something.

Perhaps someone was at the airport and saw Gary on the front cover of Inc so they Google him, read his Wikipedia entry and decide to follow him on Twitter, 7 days later Gary puts out a good slideshare and 9 days later asks people to buy his book which they do. Trying to quantify that is insane.

These are the same questions around new trending technology.

It's gotta be worth something. (Nov 2013)
It's gotta be worth something. (Inc. Mag, Nov 2013)

If you don't know how to get into this screen and storytell about what you do for a living you're out. Social networks control an enormous percentage of the consumption so if you don't know how to storytell in a screen economy you're playing Russian roulette with your advertising dollar.

Before entrepreneurs start focusing on the ROI of social they need to be looking at the return of everything else that they do. Social media allows you to build a database of followers that you can be market to over and over again.

There's huge upside to getting in early on a new platform. To not test and give effort to everything that has relevance in today's world will make you lose.

Companies shouldn't make a decision to go all in on any one technology and if they do it wrong then it doesn't matter what they do it's not gonna work.

If you dont do this you're out
If you don't do this you're out.

How Should I Build My Brand

You build integrity through your actions. Gary put out a public service announcement on what he calls Birdy Bragging, just retweeting nice things said about you.

Instead of every post you put out being here buy my book put out some content or an interview you found valuable or here's what I can do for you it's about having a good balance between giving and asking.

The best piece of advice is to bring value to your audience.

You need to be aware of and adjust your language to the audience on each platform.

Gary will create different content that says the same thing for different platforms. On tumblr animated gifs work better, then it might be an image with a quote on Facebook and hashtags on Twitter.

How Do You Build A Large Engaged Audience?

It's about being the tortoise and not the hare.

The best way to build an audience is through search and Twitter search is a cocktail party. The number one way to build an audience is to search words that are in your world and jump into the conversation.

If you wanted to start a New York Jets blog then go on Twitter and search for New York Jets, Wilkerson, Rex Ryan the Patriots. See what people are talking about and inject your opinion into the conversation.

To become good at cocktail parties you show up join a circle, start talking, listen and add something to the conversation then you become friends. It's the exact same thing.

You don't start shouting and you don't ask the popular person to announce that you're cool as well. It's human dynamics.

Its about relevance.
Its about relevance.
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Proudly brought to you by Michael McDonald, founder and editor of Zen Notes.

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