3 Social Media Marketing Truths from Gary Vaynerchuk

Megan O'Neill


A week ago, we went live on our Facebook page with our second annual Social Video Marketing Summit. We were incredibly excited to be joined by serial entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk, who kicked off the live event with an inspiring talk, The New Way to Hustle: Social Media in a Video-First world.

GaryVee jumped right in to say that “all of us know that there’s something going on.” That thing is social media and “we are living in the thick of it.” He says, “There is no debating that all of us will look back one day [and realize that] this is way bigger than Facebook video or filters on Snapchat. This is when the internet impacted us as a human race and changed everything forever.

But what does this mean for you? And how can you make the most of it on a smaller scale, for your business? We’ve distilled Gary’s talk down into three social media marketing truths, or understandings, that can help you take the leap into really standing out in a video-first world.

Truth #1: “The one thing that we are all battling for is attention.”

Gary cuts right to the chase, saying, “The one thing that we are all battling for is attention.” Where is our target audience hanging out and, once we know that, how can we grab their attention?

Here’s a hint: Gary points out that mobile devices “are going to become the remote control[s] of our lives. And when you start realizing that almost 50 percent of people’s time [on mobile devices] is spent on a social network or content platform, all of this stuff gets really real really fast.” What does this mean? Catering to a mobile audience is becoming increasingly important.

And here’s what else: Gary says that, “right now I think everybody is grossly underestimating how much time is spent on Facebook and Instagram, and how much they overestimate people spending time in other places.”

Once you understand where your audience is, the next step is to determine “the creative variable that it takes” to get someone to take the action that you’d like them to take. Which brings us to our next truth…

Truth #2: You must listen and learn.

“We now have these incredible tools and platforms to allow us to listen,” says Gary. He stresses the importance of listening, learning from listening, and using those learnings to create content that is more engaging and more attention-grabbing. “I’m not scared to make a piece of content that people don’t like — I’m not scared to mix up my music from hip-hop to sentimental. I’m willing to do anything, because I need the learnings.”

Truth #3: “The market’s always right—not you.”

“A lot of times we try to make people do things on our terms,” says Gary. This doesn’t work. You need to craft your marketing to fit into the lives of today’s consumers. He shares the evolution of the internet and social landscape since he’s been in business, and how he’s had to ride the wave, from the emersion of email to ecommerce to Google Adwords, YouTube, Twitter, and beyond.