“I Believe in This the Most” and Other Thoughts on Content Marketing from Our Sit Down with Gary Vaynerchuk

Our CEO, Marc Cerniglia, recently had the opportunity to sit down with marketing guru and mega-influencer Gary Vaynerchuk to talk about…literally anything. Marc asked him about the importance of marketing to your current audience, and Gary’s response did not disappoint. Check out the transcript of the conversation below!

Marc: So my company is Spotlight Branding and we do content marketing—social media, blogging, email newsletters—specifically for law firms and financial services. We feel like often there’s so much focus on growing your audience and not enough focus on nurturing and getting the most value you can out of your existing audience. And we’re the company that focuses on that.

Gary: Smart. You know what I call it? Hunting vs. Farming. And there’s so much money in farming and a lot of people are addicted to the hunting.

Marc: I love it. And one of the examples I like to give when I talk to our clients and potential clients is if you just stayed in touch with your audience more regularly—write a monthly blog, a daily social media post, right?—you’re going to double or triple your referrals. Just the referrals.

Gary: Marc, I believe in this the most.

Marc: Believe it or not my audience—CPAs, lawyers, etc.—they don’t understand (they say they do but they don’t really understand) just how important it is to use content to stay in touch and why it’s worth spending money on doing that.

Gary: I know that. Who the fuck do you think you’re talking to? I get a million emails a year from those people—just that group of people—either thanking me for being the person that broke through and got them to understand it, or four years later.

Marc: So why should lawyers and financial pros move forward with doing more content for themselves, even if they don’t feel like their audience is that big and really focusing on the audience they have?

Gary: The ROI of retention and recommendation from your current (audience) is greater efficiency than marketing for new customers. It’s just, you know, it’s really hard to talk logically to people because it’s emotional. 

Marc: I agree. And one of the things I’ve seen too that I think is really valuable is that when you put out a lot of content, what I find is that it actually makes the rest of your marketing work better.

Gary: Of course, because you’re top–of–mind, you’re alive, you’re showing a pulse.

Marc: Right. You hit the nail on the head. We’re not the hunters, right? We are the farmers. But if you do go hunting, what we do is going to help that hunting work better because now you’re bringing them into this content system that’s going to keep you in touch and build your credibility. Is that kind of what you see as well or would you word it differently?

Gary: That’s exactly what it is. It’s one of the biggest misnomers in business. 

Marc: And that’s why I thought to myself, “I got these five minutes with you, what is some value you can deliver to my audience?” Because we preach this message all the time.

Gary: The reason I keep talking to Marc about this, like, here I am, you guys know what I do. You know where my success comes from. Go read The Thank You Economy, I wrote it in 2011, it speaks to this. I believe in this the most and you know, just like anything in life, maybe you need to hear it from a different voice that Marc’s been telling you to do it this whole time. And maybe you need me to say it.

Marc: Well, you know, actually the biggest thing that I hear, believe it or not, isn’t that people don’t agree with me, it’s that they don’t want to annoy their email with an email newsletter, or they don’t think that—

Gary: That’s called an excuse to not want to do something.

Marc: Yeah, and the thing is that it works. It works. I mean, I almost wonder sometimes, Gary, and I wonder if you agree, if what we are saying is so simple, that it’s almost not sexy. Like, “Hey, if you just stay in touch with people more, you’ll get more referrals and more repeat business.” 

And people are like, “Yeah, that makes sense. I do some of that.” And they just don’t do enough of it like maybe it’s just not sexy enough.

Gary: I just think most people don’t want to do anything, Marc. Like, you’re passionate about farming. Most people are actually passionate about hunting because they get the thrill of the hunt.

Marc: That’s where they want to spend their money, on things like pay–per–click ads instead of content.

Gary: I know, I know. They’re wrong. Hey everybody, you’re wrong. It’s funny sometimes but rarely, and this is one of those moments, sometimes it’s just a matter–of–fact conversation. This is a matter of fact. I’ll give you an example: You would say to me, “Gary, can you tell my audience how to lose 10 pounds in a healthy way?”

“Hey everybody, I would like you to eat less calories, eat clean calories. And I’d like you to go to the gym every day for an hour and do the right things. Thank you.” And that’s how this is.

Current clients’ word of mouth for new clients is better than most marketing one can do.

Marc: You know, one of the things I think I found though, too, specifically with financial services and attorneys that we work with, they actually get a lot of business through referral, and I think that creates a false belief that they’re doing a good job.

Gary: 100%. They’re getting referrals, not from marketing, but they’re getting referrals actually just from operating a good business, which lends themselves to less referrals. 

Marc: Right. And I think because they’re getting a good amount of referrals, they don’t realize how many more they could be getting.

Gary: Most people are also complacent. They’re like, “Well, I did 3 million last year so I’m going to do 3 million this year.” And I’m like, “What’s wrong with 6?”

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Spotlight Branding

Spotlight Branding is a content marketing and branding firm for lawyers and other professionals. Our goal is to help you create an online presence that positions you as a credible expert in your field, keeps you connected with your network in order to stay top of mind and increase referrals, and to become more visible online so prospects can find you!