The proper social media mindset: a review of Gary Vaynerchuck’s “The Thank You Economy”
As many of you might know, I’ve been in California enjoying the beautiful weather this past week. While relaxing on the calming beaches of San Diego, I decided to swing by the bookstore and pick up a copy of Gary’s latest book. It was Mr. Vaynerchuk who originally sparked me a good amount of inspiration with which to venture out into my first business (Leetzone - a computer repair and small business network consulting group.) His book “Crush It” really lit a flame under my ass in regards to self-branding, passion, and genuine care. And because I was concurrently watching his Wine Library show for my Geography of Wine class, Mr. Vaynerchuk became somewhat of an ideal role model.
An entire year has past since then; an entire year packed with business development and relationship building. I spoke recently with Bill Boebel (co-founder of Rackspace Email and Apps, originally Mailtrust) about my journey and he summed it up quite nicely:
Me: “I really feel like an entirely new person from last we met. I assume this trend continues each year?”
Bill: “Yes, that will continue and even accelerate, and it is a sign that you are doing something right. I have felt this way every year for the past 10 years. If you don’t feel this way, stop what you are doing quickly and start looking for a new challenge.”
Well, that attitude seems prevalent with these darn entrepreneurs :P With this round of fresh inspiration, Gary throws down the gauntlet to every and all sorts of business. The ultimatum: start caring about your customers, or someone else will. “But Paul, isn’t that common sense?” Yes, of course it is… but how about applying that attitude across a new medium of communication?
This media are the online social platforms - Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, FourSquare, Yelp, etc etc. Gary argues that a focus on establishing one-to-one relationships via these social networks is far more valuable than anyone is giving credit for. And I for one, am led to believe him. It’s not because of the massive success he has had via social media. Nor is it because of Gary’s list of real-world businesses using social media to flourish. Nor is it the way Gary demonstrates real-world examples of how companies are failing and how a revamp to their social strategy could bring bliss.
The reason I believe Gary is because he’s spot on about innovation. Great businesses adapt quickly. They spend a good amount of money on research and development. They realize when the world is changing, the trends are moving, and the future is at hand. It doesn’t matter what the company does - as long as the leadership can innovate, they will succeed. I believe it is a fundamental cornerstone of humanity.
Social media is the next thing; hell, it’s already here or you wouldn’t be reading this. Businesses better heed Gary’s cry and hop on the “care-train” (yup, coined that myself. Arent you proud?!) Use the power of direct communication, of loyalty and trust, and you will find success :)
Its pretty obvious that I enjoyed the book. It was written in Gary’s vernacular, making it an easy, but fun book to read. It took me about a day to finish it front to back, but I also took many notes as I was going through. If you’re a business owner or someone who REALLY cares about your business (or even your personal brand), you should invest some time in hearing Mr. Vaynerchuk out.