Seth Godin vs. Gary Vaynerchuk

Two takes on social media for creators.

It’s not often you see two marketing gurus go head to head and strongly disagree on a tool that is so fundamental to today’s marketing — the use of social media toward building trust and attention as a creator.

Watch Episode 185 of the #AskGaryVee Show to watch the debate.

Seth Godin has a clear opinion and makes a convincing case. He says that you are the product when you use social media.

Seth Godin

And it makes you nervous because you are checking it often.

Worse, it keeps you from doing meaningful work as an artist. It allows you to hide from your work under the illusion that you are doing something important.

“[Artists’] job is to create a body of work that earns them trust and attention.” — Seth Godin

He ends with some strong points and strategy. He says that if all you can say at the end of the day is that you did a good job on social media, “you did not have a good day.”

He urges artists and creators to start out with zero social media first and focus on their art.

Gary Vaynerchuk is clearly fired up. He loves a good debate.

At the same time, he knows Seth indirectly kicked at the foundation of Gary’s brand.

Gary Vaynerchuk

Gary built his brand on people using social media. He talks about it, uses it, encourages everyone else to use it, consults with companies on how to use it, and shares how it launched his career in wine and public speaking.

If people followed Seth’s advice, like the social media companies themselves, Gary would have less “product” to sell.

Gary cannot fathom folks not using social media as he does to connect with his audience. There is simply too much opportunity, but he respects the fact that not everyone can use it like he does and that many folks use it for entertainment.

When it comes to building a body of work, Seth is saying it’s a distraction.

Gary is saying it is his body of work.

It’s his way to show empathy, connect with people, and engage the market.

At the end, Gary flips the conversation to self-awareness in knowing whether social media helps you or hurts you.

“I like human beings!” — Gary Vaynerchuk

Art or Audience? Where do you focus more?

Written while listening to Matt Woods.

Originally published in The Dolan Diaries.

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