10 social media life hacks, the #AskGaryVee way

Who is Gary Vee you might ask? Well, he is the answer to all your social media marketing problems. This past January, I began reading the #AskGaryVee book. This book provides readers with advice on anything from entrepreneurship, leadership, self-awareness and social media. He is founder of VaynerMedia, an agency that works with fortune 500 companies like General Electric and Budweiser. Gary is a social media guru and seeks to provide people with the education on how to improve all their marketing skills. Throughout this semester I have learned some pretty awesome life skills from Gary. Here are the top ten tips that #AskGaryVee has taught me about social media.

1. Snapchat is a great tool to use, regardless of target audience.

The classic question was asked in the book; “If you owned a hockey team, what would you do with snapchat?” The question was most intriguing because snapchat reaches a younger audience than a lot of hockey fans. Gary suggested catering towards this younger market by creating contests and cool visuals to really draw the audience in and make them feel connected. Snapchat is meant to bring consumers closer to the brand at a more intimate level. However; Gary does believe that by 2018, older audience members will be on snapchat.

2. Pinterest and Twitter don’t go together.

Some things go together but others don’t. Having your Twitter connected to your Pinterest is really not a great idea for getting your message out. Auto-posting everything you Pinterest to your Twitter does not give any more value to your social media plan. The main takeaway from this is that every social media platform should be treated differently. As Gary says, this idea is not “compelling.” Work to increase your unique and creative content.

3. Instagram can be used for more than just selfies.

Gary goes on in his book to explain “hooks” and “jabs”. The jab is the content you publish that creates awareness, entertains and engages your audience. The hooks are the content that brings in the actual sale. Instagram is sometimes a hard tool to use to bring in the sales. Hooks can be tricky but Gary gave three important steps:

  1. Put up pieces of creative content

2. Drive people to your profile in the comments section

3. Provide a link in the bio section to get that hook!

4. Asking questions is okay

Sometimes when managing content it can be difficult to ask the right questions to your audience members to gauge how well your content is being received. Gary taught me that it is okay to just go for it when asking a question. It’s okay to ask “what do you think of my service?”. The key takeaway is to compare the results to the year before. I personally started to realize this when I worked for a cruise line in Miami. People were not afraid to answer questions is asked on Facebook about how to improve customer service. Loyal customers like to be involved and help companies they love.

5. Think about the future of social media

With the ever-changing social media market, “the next big thing” is always on the horizon. It is important to think about how social media is affecting consumers in general. The main reason people use social media is because it is useful. But as you dig deeper, you realize that it is more than just a tool. It brings people together, creates connections and develops closeness. The next big platform is going to do all those things but better than the rest. As Gary says, it is going to be something “the youth of the world didn’t know it couldn’t live without.”

6. YouTube is a great tool, don’t forget it!

This is the first time Gary admits to making a mistake in his past. He rarely used to promote using YouTube until now. He states that YouTube’s value is so obvious. One of the reasons he decided to make the #AskGAryVee show was to increase his YouTube presence. I will admit, I am not a huge fan of YouTube but now I am reconsidering. The social media platform provides all sorts of tools that consumers love: graphics, visuals and variety.

7. Think about the value you bring to the table on Twitter

One of my favorite quotes from Gary’s book, “I’d like to see more people worry less about the value they gain from their followers and more about the value their engagement provides others.” It is so true. Twitter is all about engagement. Yes, having lots of followers is great but also having great conversations on Twitter is better. As Gary calls it, engagement is about creating “depth”. People want time and attention on Twitter now just meaningless posts that don’t provide any value to the follower.

8. Algorithms are tricky

Every social media site has some pretty difficult algorithms to figure out. That’s why you see so much of Gary on Facebook but maybe less on Twitter. Facebook does a great job at showing its followers what they are interested in but Twitter is a little different. For me, I have figured out some great ways around algorithms by reading what other people are doing online. There are a lot of forums that discuss the matter extensively.

9. Influencer marketing is something everyone should know about

Influencers have more power than ever to sway follower’s opinions on products, brands and public issues. They have the power to create “meaningful distribution” which is the ability to sell items through this platforms. It is not only about creating content but also getting consumers to buy the product. The influencers are like reliable sales-people. They are so valuable for retailers to help spread the word about their products.

10. Boring products can have an exciting story

If one day you get stuck doing social media for an insurance company, you will understand this. Sometimes the most boring products get placed in your lap and it is up to you to make the product and content more exciting. As Gary says, “there is no boring if you tell the story right.” The first step is to think about how your product affects its consumers. Using your imagination is the best tool. Look at how weird but successful some insurance companies make their advertising. The Geico gecko brought humor to a rather serious company and has been so successful since its first commercial.

Bonus Tip: Never give up.

If there is one big tip Gary has taught me, it is to never give up on your social media endeavors. Success does not come over night. Happy posting everyone!