Video Transcript

00:12 Scott Gerber: You right now have nearly a million Twitter followers, which is a rarity for the non-celebrity, traditional celebrity crowd. For businesses that are looking to build personal brand, or expertise, or relevance in their niche market, what do you suggest to those folks to go about building that type of community?

00:27 Gary Vaynerchuk: Acquire it.

00:29 Gerber: In what way?

00:30 Vaynerchuk: Pay for ads on social networks, and I know that's so not sexy and probably the biggest curve ball I've thrown for all my fans that watch this. Let me explain. To put up a Facebook ad, that is you or your brand and that you're only paying if somebody opts into your list, is the greatest deal of all time. If you can pay 80 cents to somebody who only you pay if they wanna follow you, knowing at this point that social is now mature enough, that we realize that you'll be pitching in some sort of way. You may be throwing right hook, right hook, right hook every time and then they'll unfollow you, but you may jab a whole lot and also throw right hooks, and that's quite rewarding to the customer. I actually think, that for a lot of people that are trying to organically build base, that ship has sailed. It is much harder now. I was there early. I was there in '06 and...

01:17 Gerber: Would you say that was the reason? Early adopter was the reason that you've been able... Plus your other...

01:21 Vaynerchuk: Yes, yes. But, you know, being early mattered. We all followed each other out of... Do you know in 2007, if somebody followed me, I followed them back immediately 'cause that was protocol? That was the appropriate thing to do on Twitter? So, you're talking about supply and demand, and what happened was, the supply outweighed the demand and that's why it's harder to get followers now. Plus, most brands sucked and business people sucked at it and they just spammed and they went right hook, right hook, right hook. Do you know what happens when you throw five straight right hooks? The person on the other side starts ducking. You become predictable. Got it? And so, what I think is really fascinating to me is that, if you can acquire them on Twitter's ad platform, on Facebook's ad platform, on the future ad platform for Pinterest, and Instagram, and Tumbler, then you should if it's opt-in because they're willing to hear you. Then it's your job to do a good enough job with the way you story-tell to make that ad worthwhile.

02:20 Gerber: So, let's talk about the storytelling components. So, you have someone, whether they come through organically, come through, through press you've gotten, or ads. Now, the question is how do you maintain that retention? So, storytelling is one. What are some other key components to maintaining them?

02:31 Vaynerchuk: This is why I think Twitter is the single most important platform on the internet. Twitter's the one place that's scaled, that it's acceptable for you to jump in and do customer service and act like you're at a cocktail party. I love it. To me, that's always been my secret. Engage, engage, engage... Bring value. The real answer is bring value. Whether you bring value by engaging or you bring value by just being super smart or entertaining, or funny or creative, you have to give people a reason to stick around. My true gift, I think, in the most humble way I can say this, is I think I've been right about where the world's going. And as long as I don't lose that, I'm gonna win, but I'm only as good as my last stance. Like, it worked out for me that Instagram was bought by Facebook when I predicted it the year before. That matters. That made people think I was smart because plenty of people thought I was an idiot when I said it, right? But if I come out this year and say Google+ is gonna put Facebook out of business and it doesn't happen, that's a strike against me, and it's a ratio of the value. So I think I bring value in articulating what's coming in the future. In the wine world, I brought value through entertainment on something that before, it didn't have it. So, I think it's about value. Do you actually bring something valuable to the table?

03:38 Gerber: And in talking about value. How does the Average Joe... Small business owner... What should they be talking about internally when they're analyzing their community to talk about what real value even is? What's that conversation look like?

03:49 Vaynerchuk: You should ask.

03:51 Gerber: Ask the community?

03:51 Vaynerchuk: Absolutely. Like, "What do you want from me? What can I bring to the table?" And then you should test. You should do entertainment, you should do education, you should do irreverent content, you should do utilitarian content and see what people are responding to. The data is there. Do you know how many likes, shares, comment, stars, favorites, tumbles, pins... The data is there. I just think this comes down to people not thinking it's real. I actually think social media is in the exact same spot that the Internet itself was in, in 2001. There was all this hype, then the market crashed, the stock market, and then people were like, "Ah." There's literally people rolling around in 2001 saying, "See? I told you the Internet was a fad." I mean, literally that was... Like go Google it. There's articles. To me, I think that's what's happening with social. There was such a hype, with guys like me hyping it, then people starting doing it and it's not at the full... It's still a seven-year-old kid that's going to be Kobe Bryant, but it's still seven. You can still push it around. I just don't think people understand how important this thing really is in five to seven years.