The event was packed. Rows of seats we packed with people, all waiting to see the session with Gary Vaynerchuk (AKA Gary Vee), hosted by Marcus Sheridan. The first statement made by Gary Vaynerchuk which caught my attention was, “We love the binary thing,” and as social media marketers and techies, he was right. We are all so focused on the thought that things can either be huge successes in social or, an absolute failure. Pinterest is a platform that is growing tremendously, but because it hasn’t taken over Facebook, does that mean it’s a failure? No, it has it’s community and it’s purpose, and it will continue to explore this. Same for the debate on which will be the ONE live streaming service…it may not work out to be so simple. Sheridan’s big question to Vaynerchuk was what will lead the way for video as a platform? To this, Gary had mentioned that his thoughts and choices for each video platform (YouTube, Snapchat, Facebook Live) was not as simple, and it goes back to goals. He feels Facebook Live is great right now, but urges that it is not what is dying, but about choosing the right platform for your message, and who you want to reach.

Speaking more on Facebook Live, Gary adds, “While it’s number one now, I’ll put the effort in now.” Gary Vaynerchuk lets us know that he doesn’t care if things move on. His advice is that if a platform or service is good now, use it and push it now. Don’t wait 6 months to decide on a whether it will be useful for the next 10 years. If something is ripe now and you can get wins now – try it now.

On the question of patience, there was a lot to learn from Vaynerchuk. He’s overarching answer to being called impatient was “I’m probably one of the most patient F(*&$ers in this place”. Gary explains that people have micro and macro levels of operating. Gary calls himself fast, excitable, and energetic on a micro level. However, on a macro level, he has waited 10 years to start talking to people about business and success, and has worked hard and hussled in the meantime – actually making his own success. Vaynerchuk explains that many people jump to giving advice and making money from it, but he is about making things happen before making opinions.

While giving praise to Facebook for its live feature, Gary also comments on Twitter. He mentions that Twitter’s problem is its large supply of information without a big enough assessment of order. Twitter could be great for news, but it needs structure.

Vaynerchuk also stresses the concept of ‘day trading attention’, which I absolutely loved. He reminds us that “before you can tell me how great your product is, you need my attention!” Attention is key. It needs to be heightened so that you can speak. You need to be able to predict people’s current and future behaviors. If you don’t know how or aren’t good at it, find people that are.

Amongst the questions and topics covered, Gary also talks about “haters”. He voiced to the room of marketers not to immediately siphon negativity as simply haters and trolls. Even if they don’t know you, or don’t like or agree with your opinion, haters are a source of information. You can analyze some of what they’re saying, but don’t let it get you down.

In the business of marketing, in the digital age, Gary’s reminds us of three importance qualities: Perseverance, Hustling (aka “hard work”) and Patience. There is a point where people need to be able to move on, and it comes from self-reflection. Don’t do the same thing over and over if it’s not working. Observe and understand how the market is reacting to your stuff, and adapt if needed.

Two other points noted within the discussion was the ideas of ‘Playing for Life’ and ‘HR based business decisions’. Employees are the most important part of a business by an absolute distance. Gary references the Glass-Door website, a sire where people rate their previous employers and business. At Vayner Media, he says, it’s very hard to get fired. Gary doesn’t believe in firing people right away, but urges the importance of getting to the heart of issues with your employees. He explains that it is not about working long, but working hard and efficiently.

On the point of Playing for Life, Gary Vaynerchuk is working for a legacy. He is doing what he is doing because he loves it. There are no shortcuts – no matter what any ebooks or short courses might tell you – that will change your life tomorrow. However, he also warns against complaining, calling it the biggest value killer and “quickest tell to a losing player.”

Gary believes that to be successful in the Digital Age, we need to move forward, work hard, and make things happen.

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