Importance of Natural Resources

How to Build a Stronger Connection With Your Audience | Young Lions Creative Academy Talk


Think about what I just said. Think about how far that actually goes. This industry sells vanilla ice cream And it yells it in a place
where nobody hears it, that’s what this is all about. This whole week is about
selling vanilla ice cream and selling it to a
room that doesn’t exist. (dramatic tone) (applause) Hey guys. Let’s, that’s a hardcore setup, so I’ll take it. I’m really excited to do this. This is the only consistent thing that I’ve been doing at Cannes, you know, for me, unlike a lot of you, I didn’t really grow up
aspiring to be in the industry, and didn’t spend the first 35 years of my life in the industry, I’ll try to speak up
’cause I know it’s loud. So just to give you context, ’cause I’m sure most or
half of you don’t know, I run a company called VaynerMedia. I started it ten years
ago with my brother AJ. My career, as an entrepreneur, I grew up, I was born in the Soviet Union, I came to the US when I was a little kid, very immigrant kind of upbringing. Let’s go. Yep, (speaks in foreign language). – [Audience Member] (murmurs question) – Yes. Mic? – Yeah,–
– Or do you wanna wait? – We’re gonna get you a mic.
– Okay, no worries. – So just wait ’cause we don’t wanna miss all this amazing content. – No worries. Should we do Q and A? (laughter) Like, real quick. – [Audience Member]
Like, (speaks Russian), when do you move here? – Yeah, (speaks Russian), 1978. – [Audience Member] Okay,
your Russian is still– – I really understand it, ’cause I don’t use it,
Russian people make fun of me, but but if I went to Moscow for a week. – [Audience Member] Yeah, exactly. – If I just heard it enough. It’s really interesting
growing up an immigrant because you’re you’re outside
world’s this new place but the house is still the
old school, you know, right? – [Audience Member] That is– – That is something I don’t see, you hear it, I’ve heard
other people talk about it, but I don’t think it’s talked about enough and then, more importantly, I wonder what that actually means, you know, there’s gotta be something pretty profound about living two different worlds and it manifests in such fun inside jokes, like, for example, I don’t
take any medicine ever. It’s a hardcore thing in my, it’s very like hardcore Eastern Europe, it’s unbelievable how
much that’s in my culture. And just food, just growing up
in the ’80s in America, where it’s been amazing with the
Whole Foods and the Wegmans and just these progressive
food culture in America but in the ’80s it was like six things. So my friends would come over, I remember nobody in
America, in the ’80s or ’90s, knew what pomegranate was, like nobody. But, it was a hardcore Russian thing, people would come to my house and be like, “The fuck is?” Just literally look at
it for like five minutes. Should I go since it got quieter or? – [Staff] Yeah, you can–
– Okay. So there’s a lot of things
I wanna talk to you about and I wanna do even more Q&A
’cause I think context matters. But to frame up up the conversation, I think what was really cool was I was a lemonade stand
kid, I was a shovel snow, wash cars, like always my true hobby, to this day I garage sale
and do all these weird things ’cause my true hobby is business. I genuinely love it, I’m sure for some of you
that were probably so happy that this was an industry,
’cause you grew up drawing, or creating, or whatever like, “Oh, wait, that’s a job?” That’s how business is for me. When I have downtime I’m trying
to start side businesses. So loved business. Grew up in an environment where
my dad worked every minute to try to make it in the new world and he eventually owned a
liquor store in New Jersey. I was dragged into that when I was 14. And, really, from day one, I started doing two things
that are interesting to me, I started doing a lot of UI, UX, which in in the way I would say that was I started moving my dad’s store around. I used to stand behind the register and it wasn’t that busy, right, where I could watch almost
every customer walk in. And where would they go? And what would they buy? And intuitive, as 14, I would understand. Like, why do we send them that way, where we sell stuff that’s
not as expensive as over here? Really, in hind, a lot of this stuff in the last five years I’ve recalled. Even lemonade, when I was six years old, instead of standing behind
my own lemonade stands, I got my friends to do it, because I would literally
walk up and down the streets of New Jersey watching cars drive by to try to figure out what tree, or what post to put a sign on. So, I’ve been truly,
intuitively, chasing attention my whole life, as a matter of fact, it’s gonna bubble up in a minute, one of the biggest reasons I push against television advertising and think it’s grossly
overpriced and overrated is not because I don’t
believe in the craft, or a 30-second video,
it’s that I don’t believe people are consuming them. I think that needs to matter. You could literally make the
greatest thing of all time it’s kind of like the tree in the forest you’re gonna spend nine
months making something that nobody sees, seems
like a waste of time. So, was that kind of kid. I’ll fast forward ’cause
I wanna get into the meat. In 1996 I launched one of
the first three e-commerce wine businesses in America. My dad had a liquor store, we were in a middle-class area, but there was affluent towns around us. I saw people wanted wine. I started reading about wine like crazy, got super educated about wine as a 15, 16, 17 year-old kid, super weird in hindsight. Launched in ’96, had email
open rates of like 90 percent, was the first day one advertiser
on Google Search, day one. Five cents a click, no, typing in words that had nobody type, like Cabernet had no bids or, like crazy shit. Built my dad’s business from a three to a sixty million dollar
business very quickly. That changed our immigrant
life as you can imagine. kinda made it, was fancy,
you know, in the wine world. Whiz kid, articles, AP, all
the things you would want. And then YouTube came out, and four months after YouTube came out
I intuitively understood it was gonna be big and
I started, legitimately, one of the first long-form
shows on YouTube. Every day, five days a week, 20 minutes, me in front of a camera tasting four wines and talking about it. Completely exploded, like
hardcore web 2.0 phenomenon, was a dig.coms and Reddits and Boing Boing and just got a lot of coverage. There was a couple of vlogs. Diggnation, Rocketboom, I
mean you guys are so young. This was before there
was a video on YouTube that had a million views. A video. So super early. Got national attention. Conan O’Brien had me on his show. The whole fucking Internet
was hitting me up, like, “Do it for us.” It was that small of a kind of like, it’s crazy to even talk
about this right now. ‘Cause, first of all,
’cause it’s only 2007, it’s not that long ago. Go on, it went super viral. And then I realized that this whole world was gonna be huge and that is, I was super right about e-commerce, email and Google AdWords and I did great. But, then I started reading articles about Google going public,
and YouTube selling for 1.7 billion dollars, and I was like this talent I have, I
might be able to use it for something more than
selling some more champagne, or Bordeaux, and so I decided to become an angel investor
in early-stage startups. The first three companies I invested in were Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr. Yeah, it’s like, you know, yeah. (laughter) Obviously, that kind of
changed the course of my life. This was all way, I mean,
I bought my Facebook stock from Mark’s parents, like early shit. That was good, changed
the course of my life. “Made it” You know, totally different way. And then I did something interesting. It’s 2009, my brother’s about
to graduate from college, he’s 11 years younger to
me, we’re super tight, we knew we wanted to
do something together. I’m now getting super
attention from family offices, global billionaires, hedge funds, people that want me to raise
hundreds of millions of dollars to do a fund to invest
’cause “I can pick ’em”. And that was probably the
most interesting point of my career, where I
could have easily gone down the path of extremely, in
my opinion, easy money. I don’t know how much you
know about running a VC firm, but you get 2% of the
overall money you raise just for managing it and
you get 20% on the back end after you pay it back. You raise three, four, $500 million, you’re making a lot of money
a year just to take meetings. And I remember just knowing
in my heart, intuitively, even though it was extremely attractive, I was young, I was 34, that I didn’t wanna not be a practitioner. I’m gonna say something
pretty interesting right now which I genuinely think is true. And it’s a hyperbolized statement, but I think it’s true. There’s not a single
person at Cannes right now that makes more content
on a daily basis than me. I put out 50 to 100
pieces of content a day, across seven to 10 platforms. To be the person at this event, and I don’t know, how many
people on earth exist right now that produced as much content as I do. I’m posting again 50 to 100
pieces of creative a day, across Facebook, Instagram,
LinkedIn, Twitter podcasts. I’m a deep practitioner. Right. And it’s fun, some of my
lead creatives are here. It’s fun sometimes when we jam. I love reminding my company, I’m like, “Look, I’m actually doing this.” And there’s something
very powerful about that. I’m not ideating and
producing long-form video, but I’m pump putting out content. And so I knew that that’s who I was. I literally went completely the other way instead of going down
that huge financial path, I decided to build, and
don’t get it confused, one of the worst businesses you can build, which is a client service
creative business. Now let me tell you why I did it. My ambition 10 years ago stays true today, I want to buy some of
the most nostalgic brands that have ever existed, when
the next economy collapses. So when this economy finally collapses I wanna go buy KitKats,
Bubblicious, K-Swiss, Ralph Lauren, I wanna buy brands. And then I want to be the CEO of it. And what I knew then was I
understood small businesses, I understood Silicon Valley, I didn’t understand
fortune 500 businesses. But, I wasn’t gonna go get a job. So I decided to start the
agency because at that point I realized marketing was my superpower. Hanging out with all those
Silicon Valley titans, why was I invited to the dinner? Why were they listening to me? It’s because they were great a tech, but I really understood. One of the biggest reasons, forget about the current way
people view Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook, Mark
Zuckerberg’s deep understanding of human psyche was the number
one reason we connected. I think I’m an extremely good marketer because I think this entire thing that we’re at right now is
an internal B2B ecosystem and the only thing I pay
attention to is the end consumer. I know so little about
what’s going on here. This is literally, the
first three years I was here I only did this event, I
didn’t know anything else. You guys remember. Harry had just joined us to run comms from BBDL, she’s incredible. I’m still asking her. On the way here she’s like,
we were fine, finalists, what’s it called? – [Harriet] We get shortlist. – Shortlist, she’s like
we were shortlisted for a bunch of stuff today.
I’m like, I don’t even know, I literally thought it was finalist. I still don’t. Adam, yesterday we won a silver thing and I was like what does that mean? Like I still am so deeply
unaware of what’s happening here. Not out of audacity,
not out of disrespect. I actually love coming here, the vibe. I love hanging with you guys. I love this, it’s just that
everything I think about is the consumer. It’s the only thing that matters and that’s why I believe that, I’m humbled by the most
interesting, or one of the. We’re doing some of the
most interesting things because we just see it different, we just see it different and
the way we see it is practical. So I mean, the far majority of
what you’ve already worked on you would have never consumed. That’s the fucking truth. And I think that’s that’s my aspiration to come to things like this. Actually have a conversation
about what the hell’s going on. Creativity is amazingly fun. I think that we have to be very thoughtful that somebody’s paying us
to make something happen. I think there’s a lot of audacity that seeps into this
craft, where it becomes about ideology and selfish behavior. I watch creatives and
strategists make decisions all the time, based on what, they wanna blow up a building,
they wanna meet John Legend, they want this joke to see the world. It has nothing to do with
what the client needs and definitely nothing to do with, does the end customer care? And so I think a lot about that. And so we started VaynerMedia. You know, it’s interesting
my aspirations were, a couple things I didn’t know, first of all, the first 45
people that worked for my agency had zero days of agency experience. I mean you wanna talk about
a a fucking shit show. We won a million-dollar scope from Pepsi and on the way out the
guy grabs me and says, “Hey”, incredibly provocative, “You’re gonna get the
business this is incredible. ” This is what we’re looking
for.” It’s 2009 then he goes, “One piece of advice.” I’m like please because
it was so early, he goes, “You need to hire somebody who knows “how to make a deck.” I will never forget that. By the way, it took us another three years before we actually knew
how to make a deck. We are the fastest, organically grown to a 100 million-dollar revenue agency in the industry’s history. And we win no RFPs, like
we’re just incapable because we come in with a philosophy, we’re not willing to, you know,
everybody sells on an idea and it’s just not something, we have pregnant it, we flirt with it, but the truth is we have a philosophy. Which is a couple things
that we believe in that I think are unique. One, we believe that volume of creative is the cost of entry of
relevance of the next decade. And that we think this
world needs to understand that quantity does not
mean lack of quality, and, more importantly what is quality? For example, I think
the rise of copywriting is going to be profound
over the next decade because I don’t think people understand that the copy change, literally the copy that associates every every post on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and things of this nature
that will continue to grow in attention is massively important to the output of success. We become so visual it’s,
so video and Instagram now that people are mailing in copy for all of you that have your own ambition to grow your Instagram as cop, I watch copywriters in my company who are interested in
growing their Instagram mail in copy, because they’ve been sucked into how visual the medium is. So volume to us is imperative. We also think that Facebook and YouTube and whatever the Facebook
and YouTube, and Instagram of the day is, that
internet long-form video is actually where brand
building is being done. Not in the form of TVC. I think that we have to have a
conversation in this industry about things actually being consumed. And I think that common
sense needs to actually be part of the conversation. It is 2019. The far majority of people,
all across the globe. are watching OTT at scale. There is so little network television being consumed in major 10
markets, U.S., Europe, Asia, so little, and then for
that person to actually, first of all, they’re
not watching the show. And if they’re even watching the show for them to serendipitously
watch a commercial, it’s just not happening. Watching a commercial is
getting dangerously close to looking up the yellow pages. And yet we celebrate it
like nobody’s business. And I think we have to challenge that. There’s no way in your
careers that TV commercials are gonna be on the
pedestal, it’s impossible. You’re basically, you know,
I look at it like this, It’s a U.S.-centric example, I know we’ve got a lot of people here but every country in the
world has its major retailers and has its emerging internet retailers. I think this world continues
to celebrate Walmart and Target and big-box retail while
I keep beating the drum that Amazon is here and
it’s gonna be a problem. And I think that’s the
analogy for creative, we have to have this conversation. You can’t celebrate something nobody sees. And so that’s important to me. But, make no mistake, I believe creativity is the variable of success, right. The creative. All the strategy work which is imperative, all the other stuff. We’re A fully integrated agency, we have media and creative under one roof. I believe in your career you will see all of the agencies consolidate
media and creative under one roof. It is not working for the clients to have media and
creative in separate rooms because I’m sure you’ve
already seen this in meetings when it doesn’t work everybody does this. The media agency’s like,
“It’s the fucking creative.” The creative agency’s like, “Their fucking media plan sucked.” And that’s been unbelievably smart for the holding companies to separate it and quite profitable, but the brands are starting to not be happy. And they’re the ones
who write your checks, and that will play out. So I’m excited about that. I started the agency with 45 people that didn’t work in the industry. I knew nothing about the industry. I’d read nothing about the industry So I started VaynerMedia. I built a creative shop that
I put media in the name. I had both media and
creative under one roof. And had no idea that it was unique. So we were doing all these unusual things. What it led to is a very large agency that has not played by the industry rules but has driven business
results for its clients. So now we do have 900 people globally. We do have the U.S., L.A.,
and New York offices, and London, and opening up Singapore. And, very frankly, feel
very confident we’re about to get a big scope for
the World Cup in Qatar. And that means Middle East
and looking at South America. So I think it’s gonna be
interesting to see what happens. I think because of some of the awards we’re winning this week, just, I’m feeling from the creative class here a little bit of more of a, “Okay you can be in the club?” And I’m laughing I’m like, “I don’t want to be in the club.” I don’t mind to be in the club but there’s only one club I wanna be in which is, wouldn’t you
want to be a creative that in real life, when you
hang out with your friends, people know what you’re talking about? How many more times do people
here wanna spend 20 years of their life making TVC that when they talk about it and they’re the IBM spot and
their friends and relatives are like, “I have no idea
what you’re talking about.” And if they do it’s because
they tried really hard to find it, right? I think that people want to, and I think if you’re creative, I think you want it to be seen. I just don’t know what else to say. And I think what Mike and Adam
will tell you if you decide to yap with them after this, is after having careers in fancy places, doing fancy stuff it’s fun to make. Think about all the ideas
that you guys have had that will never see the day of life. You guys are all 12 years
away, six years away, four years away from being
the final decision-maker to actually see something made. Right now you’re
politicking and strategizing on how to convince the
two people above you to actually make the thing you believe in. You’re not in the creative industry, you’re in the internal
politicking industry. That’s why volume will
set this industry free. We have interns from day one in ad school being able to see their thoughts in market from the biggest brands
in the world, literally. In terms of, we have
literally interns, already, in our company that have had more pieces of content seen by humans
and some of the people here. That’s real. That’s going to play out,
I hope, for all of you. I want you to be in a place where you get to be creative for real, instead of working at a bank and fighting for a half pregnant version of your idea to see the world. And that’s why so many of you
have to do things on the side, ’cause you can’t scratch your itch. – [Taya] First of all, I wanted to work for you one day. – Good. – [Taya] Not too far away. But, I have a question, because I– – what’s your name? – [Taya] Taya. – Taya?
– Yeah. I have a question. My clients have to
research all our TVC work, and that’s the only way that they can get their
budgets signed off. So what’s your advice? Because they really
don’t care about digital, or even Shoppa, so what’s your advice to get them to see it in a
new way from a personal use, yeah, down the ranks, at the moment. – They’re not seeing it from
a person that’s up the ranks. So here’s what I would say, here’s a really, really
important piece of advice that I think will bring you value, please don’t stay quiet because
you know it doesn’t matter and you know it won’t
play well in the room. Now, that doesn’t mean be like me and be super combative,
it means be respectful. But let me give you one
humongous piece of advice, the world’s gonna change,
animatics are the stupidest shit of all time it. (laughter) Ipsos is the stupidest shit of all time, it can’t sustain itself and it will break, and it’s getting closer than you think. So, it’s important for you to share your actual points of view in these rooms, ’cause people are watching. And right now you may be frowned upon, or it’s silly, or it’s
naivete, or it’s a kid talking but everybody’s watching and listening. And in three years when
that person’s fired and then goes to a new
place and they have to win in digital they’re gonna
be like, “She knew.” And so die on your sword. A lot of you are staying quiet because you know it will help you grow but you’re not, you guys are agreeing to things you don’t actually believe in. You’re doing it because within
the four walls you work in that’s what you know the rules are. It seems like it makes sense, the problem is we’re at
a point of transition. And what always happens
at a point of transition is people, you guys are
in a very peculiar spot, you’re the last of the Mohicans, so you’re you’re gonna uphold the past ’cause it’s gonna play in the room, but you’re also gonna
live through a career where it’s going to be frowned upon. When you apply to the progressive places, they’re gonna want to know
where you sit on this. What did you do about it? We’re going to talk to the
clients or the other people. If you don’t have a track
record of least communicating your points of view, you’re
definitely not gonna have work. Most of you are not gonna
have progressive digital work. Which is one of the reasons you may wanna do a lot of that on your
own accounts or side stuff, you’re not gonna have anything to point to when shit hits the fan. And shit is gonna hit the fan. Shit’s starting to hit the fan. – [Taya] Thank you. – You’re welcome. – [Englatina] You used “intuition” and “intuitively” six times. – I did? – [Englatina] Yes.
– Good. – [Englatina] How important
is intuition to you? And why do you thing people nowadays, especially in the business
environment overthink, and overthink and forget about intuition? – It’s a great question. – What’s your name? – [Englatina] Englatina. – Englatina, it’s a great question. I think intuition is deeply foundational to doing great work, and
I think it’s a talent. I think you it’s hard to groom. I always talk about hard work because I think it’s
something we can all do, you can decide if you’re
ambitious and hungry. You could decide, if you don’t burn out, that you could work longer. It’s hard for me to be like,
“Become more intuitive.” Like, the fuck does that mean? Like, where do you go with that? I think it’s super important. I laugh at everybody talking about a, all I’m hearing about is AI walking. Guys, nobody knows what
the they’re talking, this is not a tech industry. This is not a technology based industry, this is a creative industry. Like everyone’s talking about AI. AI is so far away, the way
people are talking about it. I literally was listening to people like, “We may not have a job in
three years, AI is gonna make.” I’m like AI is nowhere. It’s coming, it’s cool but everyone’s on big data and
research and all this stuff. And all we do is create all these layers to take away common sense,
intuitiveness and creativity. That is my biggest observation
about this industry for a industry that’s creative,
the entire last 20 years has been completely built
to strip it all away. – [Englatina] Why? – ‘Cause it’s run by banks. Guys, who here works for
a holding company agency? You work for a bank. (laughter) You work for a bank. You’re working for a company
that’s publicly held, you’re an Excel sheet. The second you lose a client
there’s an email sent out to the MD, your MD has to pay 20 points to the holding company as a tax, and then she or he is worried
about their bonus on margin and not one conversation
is around creativity. We have a very big point of view on pushing in opposite directions. Yes, we love to listen to the customer but that whole great saying of “If I listen to my customer I’d make a faster horse, not a car”, we believe in that too. So it’s a mix of our
intuition and you know. But, when we see something
black and white, and, I don’t know how many of
you know the Kool-Aid, the brand, but the Kool-Aid man, the big thing would break through walls. So we did, you see on Twitter now, the designs where you make pictures at it. It’s fucking, what’s it called? – [Staff Member] ASCII. – Yeah, cool. So when we see something
like that we go from that, now Mike and team is ideating to something we call bridge videos. What’s happening back home now when they see virality or
something that’s got something, now they’re ideating, they’re not doing research in a bubble. Our strategy team also
has had to deal with this, it’s no longer six weeks
of them leading the witness to where they want it to go, right. And then giving you a brief,
and then being mad at you for not doing what they thought, right. And so we’re looking at it,
and now they’re deciding what one, two, three-minute
video are we gonna make for pre-roll YouTube, for
YouTube, for Facebook, for IG TV because we know those
videos are gonna get seen. And if those get seen, the reason we call ’em bridge videos is then that becomes our Super Bowl spot. Because we think Super Bowl
is actually getting seen. We think Super Bowl is
the best ad in America, and we think every other
TV spot’s the worst, besides banner ads, they’re the worst. We had something on Planters, right Mike? – [Mike] (murmurs) – Yeah, so, Zion, who’s a very famous
college basketball player had a sneaker break during a game, we jump in and Mr. Peanut does something, it catches, it builds, it builds, it leads to us to actually
make a Planters sneaker that came out yesterday. – [Mike] The idea happened in the morning, sketch went out as a
tweet in the afternoon, got 17,000 likes, it went to the client, and said let’s make a sneaker,
and we made a sneaker– – There’s nothing more fun for us than selling ideas that already have proof from the consumer behind it. I see your reactions, you can imagine how much
more ammo we have walking in. And it’s qualitative ammo a lot of times, we talk, ’cause it’s easier
to understand numbers, 300,000, 17,000 I promise you
a lot of our clients say yes. Yeah they hear the numbers but
then we show 10 or 15 screens of qual, I live on qual. I read only, I read. All I do for a living is post content and read all the comments. – [Audience Member] So I’m
from Mumbai and back home Instagram is the big thing– – Yes, I’m aware.
– is exploding. – Yes, I’m aware. – [Audience Member] So what
are, on your Instagram, you keep telling brands
and users to keep investing and keep posting on
Facebook and Instagram, what do you think are the
next big apps for that? – I’m not sure, and I never care. – [Audience Member] Okay. – I only care about this moment. By the way, if television
network drops their prices by 80% I will buy a fuck-load of television. So I don’t know you. And I don’t, as much as I love Facebook, Instagram, YouTube those
things in six years, you’ll watch videos online
of me saying it’s shit, because the price became too
high for what the attention is. And so I always first think
about the price of the attention and then I think about being a contextual creator in it. One of the things that we do very poorly in this industry as well, is make our creative contextual
for the distribution. You can’t post the same video on LinkedIn and Instagram and expect
it do the same thing. The mindset of the consumer, even you yourself, are different when you’re in your Instagram feed than when you’re in your LinkedIn feed. We do not have good enough conversations around context and mindset in consumption. Let me, I’ll get back to you, I promise. – [Audience Member] Going
back to creative process here it’s so quick and it seems so creative. What is the process there, or what are some of the considerations that you take into mind when creating? – One thing that’s probably unusual, or a little different is we try to push, and we successfully
have been able to push, our clients to realize the reason all of their businesses are down, is they need to be
marketing in a relevant way to 15 different cohorts, not one. There is no 18 to 35. The fuck is that? Just look at all the
different creeds and, not, forget about the way you all look, your mindset, the psychology. So one of the considerations is upfront, through common sense, you know, like show me any brand right now and I can give you 10 of their
meaningful cohorts right now. I understand it’s targeting moms, I understand within moms, and
I’m gonna use America now, but with the U.K. and Singapore that there’s different income levels, there’s different races,
there’s different, I think everybody in the world realizes, there’s different Americas within America. There’s a lot going on. And so if I’m gonna go
after a 28 year-old woman and she happens to love Donald Trump and she happens to make $500,000 a year, you can imagine my video,
or my piece of content on Instagram for Olay should be different than me going after a Spanic woman, who’s 28, who lives in New York, who hates Donald Trump and
who makes $73,000 a year, you can’t make that same piece of content. That just two, think
about what I just said. Think about how far that actually goes. This industry sells vanilla ice cream and it yells it in a place
where nobody hears it. That’s what this is all about. This whole week is about
selling vanilla ice cream and selling it to a
room that doesn’t exist. That to me is a problem. So cohorts. Yes, culture one of the considerations is, I’m sure Adam and Mike will tell you, one of the wildest things
is we put the client and every person touches the business, our project managers, everybody, in a WhatsApp, Slack or text thread, and all the ideating happens
inside there, with the client. One of the things you note, we’ll find out is if the client gets excited and they start coming up with
ideas and we start making it. One of the most fun
things has been watching my creative team that had audacity, that’s like the client
doesn’t have good ideas watch client ideas do well,
better than their ideas. That’s humbling, that’s
fun for me to watch. So it becomes a very humble,
very safe, very make, very ideas-driven environment which just think about those words. So cohorts, the work flow, a lot of listening, strategy
and insights happens after the contents in the market, not being tested. – [Audience Member] So you talk about how (murmurs) the paces at Vayner – Yes. – [Audience Member] And
knowing a lot of creatives that have worked there. – Yes – [Audience Member] They
have been burnt out. – Yes. – And so they leave pretty
quickly or (murmurs), So how do you combat that,
to keep the highest talent? – Yeah. So pretty easy. Our retention rate, our exit, voluntary exit is 5.3%, so I
don’t know how many creatives. One thing that I’m sure if
you talk to Mike and Adam and not me, come to
Vayner at 6:30 at night and tell me how burned out people are. We just have nobody in
the fucking building. I’m a hustler but there’s
nobody in the building at 6:30 at night, any
night at VaynerMedia, there’s like six people of 900 people. I’m being dead serious with you. So I understand that
some people, you know, I think everybody will understand this, we have an unlimited
vacation policy, unlimited. We have nobody in the building at 6:30, we have a founder that puts
out a ton of propaganda of hard work, we have humans that, there’s people who can burn
themselves out working 30 hours a week because of their
DNA, their anxiety levels. So without knowing who
you’re referring to, or how many as many, I think there’s, let me promise
you one thing and, again, Mike and Adam are probably
better, when I leave, to talk to there’s an incredible
perception of who we are, there’s a lot of weird things I do, let me give you an example, people are not self-aware
when they get fired and you have all sorts of
weird shit that happens. And I spent two three years telling people who were mad at me for getting fired to go to Glassdoor and
leave negative reviews. That is the reverse of
what every agency does. I do that because I think
emotional intelligence, back to me saying intuitive, is the only thing that matters. And I think that anybody
that believes Yelp reviews, or Glassdoor reviews,
or any anonymous reviews like Secret and Whisper,
are deeply, deeply cynical or don’t have emotional intelligence. So I use these perceptions as
ways for people not to enter. I think if you come and
you actually spend time, and actually look under the
hood, I think we have it. I mean, I’ll be honest with you, I’m disappointed in the
work ethic at VaynerMedia. There’s not a fucking soul
in the agency at 6:30. So I think we handle it pretty easily. I look at how many people
voluntarily leave our company. I look at things like a creative who left and came back three weeks ago, that we both know, we’re just, you know. I think we have it really, really good. I think that there will,
we’re always trying, you’ll always try to be better. The reason the chief hard officer, Claude, has more power than the CFO, Allen, is ’cause we’re very
warm, and feelings, and, but some people are able
to burn themselves out regardless of the room
you create for them . And, by the way, one of things I’m trying to be more conscious of is maybe they do look to me as Gary Vee and maybe they’re taking on that pressure. I’d hope that they see what’s happening in their day to day, but. That’s how I see it. – [Audience Member] Well, I– – Please. – [Audience Member] Yeah,
no, I was just gonna say, I’m asking because
perception isn’t always real. – yeah I felt great about it. I feel, I’m pumped about
your que, I don’t, you know. Here’s what’s amazing, and this is how I’ve thought about it, and I appreciate that content and I could tell it
came from a good place, the truth always wins, right. Harry you might be a great. Harry just came from BBDL. I remember when we
interviewed very recently, she’s only been here for three? – [Harriet] Two months. – Two months. And so I think the biggest thing that’s going on with our shop
is perception versus reality. And it’s on purpose, to be very frank, I don’t want people to know
what we’re really up to because if this town really
knew what I was up to, they would be way more scared and would be doing way
more things about it. Because let me tell you what
I’m doing here right now, I have no interest in recruiting you, I’m interested, it’d be amazing. I’m interested in inspiring
you to start your own shop and never sell it to a holding company, that’s what I’m doing
with my 45 minutes here. That’s how we’re gonna
make this industry better. The reason this industry
has so many, you know, inclusion issues, burnout issue, is ’cause you’re fucking Excels, you guys are Excel cells, every one of you that raised your hands are
line 419, column C, you are. That is how these companies
are run, I know it. ‘Cause I’m a businessman. So you like that one? That’s a good one. (laughter) So what I want, is for you
to think about this world. Imagine a world where,
instead of making 280,000 or 315,000 being a senior
creative at a holding co, you have a business that’s your shop, doing 800,000 a year, which
trickles down to you making, instead of 280, 216, but
you’re fucking 8,000 times happier as a human being. – [Audience Member] (background
noise drowns out question) – It’s paid. So the question was, volume
sets the creative industry free, the question was is that
organic or is it paid? It’s often, often paid
because, as you guys all know, the organic channels for
a lot of our clients, where are we going, right? What’s crazy about paid, I even, that’s first time I got goosebumps. So we’ve said a lot of things here, think about how much I
must believe in this. It’s scary to me that you can spend $80 and get massive insights. I don’t think people understand, especially if you don’t do paid at all, or when you do paid,
the paid guys and gals that are here they spend
800,000 against something, they think it’s all reach, everybody loves fucking reach here. Reach is potential reach,
not actual consumption. You believe in GRPs, you
believe in impressions, come on. (laughter) – [Audience Member] In terms of RYs, or is this more of an iterative process, of Vayner pushing out so much
content, are you creatives working on it every day? (background noise drowns out speaker) while we do this again, or do this again? – We are and we’re also
putting it against sales data. So one of the reasons
we’re really working is they’re running this creative
and then it’s running within a one-mile radius
of Albertsons, or Tesco, or Sainsbury, or Walmart and then you’re getting feedback loops that are not just quant and qual, Planters was declined, or
flat for nine straight years, 108 months like straight. The first month, before
we did the Super Bowl spot which aired in February, in January, just on this volume model
we grew the business 2%. That’s a big deal for them, like that’s real it. Just ’cause people are seeing shit. It’s like marketing works all day long, you just have to see it. And it has to mean something to you. – [Audience Member] So
with the art director, sorry, you looked at me– – No, no I’ve just thought she’s trying to get her second question in, and I’m trying to balance it out. And we’re just having a fun,
we’re having a fun game. – He’ll come back.
– Go ahead. – [Audience Member] Cool,
so the classic art director, copywriter, team model, since
you guys have your crazy, wild, wild west, what’s
up with the client, How do you feel about the
copywriter and the art director working together, – We love it. – does that still work for you? – Yeah, we have that. So the one thing that we
have is every account, and we don’t have this
everywhere all the way yet because we’re just rolling this out, but we’re really close now, every account has three
full-time creatives 100% dedicated to the
logo, even when it’s a 500,000-dollar fee account, and that person is a copy
person, a design person and then a what we call a shreditor, she or he is doing film and
post-production as one person, kind of what D Rock does for me. And, again, as you can
imagine that production value, when you’re making 5,000 pieces of content is not necessarily the
films that, you know, it’s native it’s the shit
that you actually like when you’re consuming content. And some of it can be
very high production value and we just chop a bunch down. Some of it could be grab your iPhone, make this video on the
counter and post it. So they are there. And then above them are
teams, art and copy, CDs and what’s happening is
the the core creator team is very allocated, a 100%, on one account. As you go up those teams
are spread out more, but they’re all making. The thing I put the most pressure
on Adam and Mike about is, I need you, on the way
to work, write a tweet for Budweiser or Rolling Rock to set the tone that
if our GCDs are making, this is a making culture. We have people that
start hitting GCD level that never make a single
thing for seven, 10. Make a single thing. – [Staff Member] One more question. – I’ll talk to you after. – [Audience Member] Hi. – Hi. – [Audience Member] So you were talking about buying companies. – Yes. – [Audience Member] And
for, because you never, you wanna understand the companies more, but why nostalgic brands? – Because nostalgia is the
most under-priced thing in the world. And, you know, it sucks
’cause ten years ago when I was talking about it, nobody knew. Now everybody knows,
Fila, Champion, Marvel, like the whole culture
is playing on nostalgia. 10 years ago I could have
bought Dragon Ball Z or Pokemon, I could have bought this shit cheap, now everybody kinda knows, way more than they did 10 years ago. Now I have to be more
clever now I have to find IP in places people don’t see it. But, it was, I mean, I was so on it. I just, my timing didn’t work
out the world didn’t melt. We work on Fila, we’re
thrilled to be part of that. Fila went from being
irrelevant to making dad shoes that every cool girl wears. That’s cool, that’s interesting, that’s like something nobody saw when we started working on
it, couple of years ago. I did a deal with K-Swiss, me personally, I have a K-Swiss sneaker. K-Swiss was off the grid for 20 years. Never on your grid it was big
right before Nike got big. It was cool with like Ice-T and early Dr. Dre and Mike Tyson. It was the ’80s stuff, and it was easy for me to
reboot it and be successful because nostalgia sits, nostalgia sit. Like, any Nickelodeon thing that I reboot will hit your radar. And so it’s the most under-priced thing because it makes you feel something. And it makes you feel something about when you were in a
much happier, simple place, which always plays to a grown-up, when their life is
complicated and intense. Doug feels look really good when you’re worried about the world. (laughter) – [Staff Member] (murmurs), Gary. – Thank you guys.


Reader Comments

  1. TIMESTAMPS:

    6:50 – 2007 Wine Library set me up for angel investing

    8:25 – The most interesting point of my career

    12:00 – The only thing I think about is the consumer

    14:25 – VaynerMedia’s philosophy

    22:10 – Don’t stay quiet because you think it won’t play well in the room

    27:30 – We push hard against what “on-brand” means

    31:20 – What’s the price of the attention?

    37:10 – Work ethic at VaynerMedia

    44:05 – Nostalgia is the most underpriced thing in the world

  2. Let me guess, you are building brand under which s** (he he stuff!) sells, awesome genius! or is it what Amazon is already practically doing? you invested in the company right, good choice. Your intent is good, your content is super valuable, you are sure to succeed, with or without viral content because consistency is what it takes to achieve your goals, after that experience lets you set new goals. Keep going !

  3. I have a question I hope you can provide some insight on. I've heard you say that privacy is dead and people who want privacy are trying to hide something (big time paraphrasing). The way I think about things is usually pretty layered and easily misunderstood, so Im usually hesitant to give my quick takes. I place a lot of value in harmony and face to face interactions so I always prefer people dont have a judgement on me when I meet them for the first time.

    I feel like your advice would be to not care about other peoples judgement and just put out a lot of content if I have something to say, but I wanted to ask if you ever regret being so well known that people know you before you know them. Do you still get to have authentic conversations without people already knowing most of your opinions or do you feel like a big fish in an ocean?

  4. That was a whole ‘nother level of insight!! The workings of Gary’s mind is amazing and Super interesting. Love this content!! ❤️🙌😊

  5. Insanely good video. Working at Vayner would be the absolute dream job. I don't know why anyone would ever want to leave 😅

  6. Комментарий, комментарий… Не знаю английского к сожалению

  7. ⚡What's good comment section👋🏿, Gary vee has Plates a pivitol point in my grind and its slowly starting too payoff.. Gaming channel looking for collabarations

  8. Die on ur sword 🗡! Big interests does it in a lot of non sense ways, we gotta keep learning so we can share quality and quantity at the same hit. Thanks Gary for all the knowledge and motivation for moving into new lanes, improving our comfort zones so we can start a new north for ourselves.

  9. 3rd or 4th generation only in a specific country someone will not have these feelings of "inside" connection with the old country. In your case Gary, there is a third part of you as many others do, that have another >5000 years root connection with a third dimension, Judaism. 🙂

  10. AWESOME AWESOME AWESOME message!The success of my newest brand launch is hinged upon envoking feelings of nostalgia in potential clients.

  11. Gary is mANNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN i love his content and he even inspired me to create a YouTube channel myself but i do gaming i was hoping for some love and support and maybe a subscribe – Michael Rimmer AKA HFC Clan

  12. 15:26 – can someone tell me what on Earth he means here pls? Copywriters MAILING IN copy because they're interested in how visual the medium is, and want to grow their Insta followers!?!? WTH does that even mean?

  13. Thanks you so much Gary VEEEEEE because of you’re amazing advice I started my own podcast on YouTube you’re the best #askgaryvee

  14. Gary thank you for these Cannes 🦁 talks. And thank you for calling out self-serving ad making in the advertising industry and also speaking to how powerful emotional and Nostalgic content will win in the end.

  15. At 26:55 Gary you are asking a question about something photo/graphic thingy on Twitter and an audience member replies but I can't hear the answer. What did he say? Thanks in advance 😀

  16. When you know what you want, and want it bad enough, you’ll find a way to get it. – Jim Rohn

  17. Building the GaryVee Nation by making contextually relevant content (at scale) – and making it look easy. Keep it coming.

  18. 1) what do you mean by mail in copy
    2) why are is there a gary vee reference in Czarface & Ghostface Killah – Czarface Meets Ghostface album

  19. i love that statement, " if people are creative they want it to be seen". this is very true, but most people are too scared to show their talent because of insecurities and judgement from others

  20. Why though do your VC friends think they know more in the digital game when they aren’t actually the practitioner. I think it’s pretty scary these young VCs are out there with zero depth into the ecosystem just giving money. I’m literally dumbfounded.

  21. Your nostalgia observation is super clever! It’s interesting how Automotive Manufacturers play on nostalgia yet under deliver by watering down the product like the new Chevrolet Blazer.

  22. I didn't fully understand 15:40 when he talked about copy… I hear that it's going to be more important in the coming decade.. but what did he mean when his copywriters are mailing in copy?

  23. the host of this event should've shown their logo on the TV instead of "HDMI 1, no signal"
    marketing 1.0: Understand what gets seen.

  24. 9:22 – I've created a challenge for myself around this very concept. Utterly failed mind you yet still on going (hence why I'm even leaving a comment). But the process and learning of what it takes to find and distribute value over short term results is what I'm in it for. For no ones benefit other than my own. Self discovery & awareness is a process of a mindset. Every challenge is an opportunity in disguise.

  25. So true, we are all so different from social media platform to social media platform. It would be an interesting business world to live in if we were the same on our Instagram feed, that we were on our LinkedIn.
    -Merged Media

  26. Stronger connection? Vulnerability. Give yourself consent to be vulnerable and keep relaying your message genuinely

  27. I appreciate your honesty.. I wish I had heard this as an 18 year old instead of a 57 year old. My experience has revolved around service but as a person that abandoned creative pursuits, I find I get burned out easily with the amount of energy I put out.

    I've never been a business person and find myself, for the first time in my life "selling." Selling scares the crap out of me and I get stressed out by numbers being squawked at me over a headset while trying to provide the best service for a customer standing right in front of me… but I went in to it to learn as much as possible.

    After 35 years of doing this and that, I still haven't found what really sparks and drives me. The reality is, I don't have the energy and stamina. I'm tired. And yet it doesn't stop me from getting up each day and putting the hours in while exploring new possibilities…. and look for ways to get back to those creative roots.

    Thanks Gary Vee!

  28. I can’t believe gary slipped up, I’ve never heard him speak Russian or ever refer to his Russian speaking ever before

  29. It's actually an ART to always say the same thing and STILL amass a HUGE amount of fanboys who get inspired and motivated by it as if they heard it for the 1st time

  30. I got a business school ad before this video starting out: "In xxx school we teach entrepreneurship" hahahaha

  31. Can someone explain to me what he was talking about from 14:17 to 15:40 this is when he is talking about the visual of "copy"

  32. As a consumer…your thumbnail sucks and this was a very interesting video. I only clicked bc it’s you but that thumbnail sucks.

  33. Gary, I'm a natural writer.

    I made a vlog 140 days in a row, but it just doesn't have the same punch as my written.

    I've done some professional copywriting and I blog all the time. I understand how to affect people and make them feel and do stuff with that type of communication.

    Do you have any videos or tips for how to leverage those skills?

  34. 0:50 — the moment Gary is suddenly sitting the exact same way I am right now (other than I’m holding an iPad).
    Even wearing flip-flops lol. No hat though it’s like 76 degrees in here.

  35. Nailed it. When I watch Gary I see some of the same thinking I have with my clients. I run a small agency that I just quit a six figure job to take a chance on. This was my side hustle and now it’s my gig, I have GaryVee to thank for it. WLTV OG

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