This is not a social media manifesto….it’s much more than that

Beyonce - I Care

The following image comes from a friend of mine, Jeremy Waite, who blogs across at…..and is social media strategy lead at TBG Digital.

It is Gary Vaynerchuk’s Social Media Manifesto paraphrased from his Inc 500/5000 keynote in 2011.

The_GV_Social Media Manifesto

Here’s the full text:

“I love social media because it sells shit. But brands need to remember that it is a customer service tool first and a sales tool second. People are marketing like they are planning a wedding. They put all their effort into planning the wedding and then no time at all working on their marriage. Brands need to go “Beyoncé” on their customers. They need to out a ring on it! Because for the first time ever, we are living in a push (not pull) economy. Brands are not in control anymore. Customers are. But we need to return to ‘small town rules’. Big brands acting like local businesses who care. Like 50 years ago in small town communities. Because most businesses are missing the point. Social media is not about talking. It’s about listening. It is about listening. It’s about creating word-of-mouth at scale. Because as humans, we love to share good things. But we don’t want to be sold to. Big retailers need to start acting like small start ups. And become obsessed with responding to every. Single. Comment. Post. Tweet. Request. Because the people who want to buy from you. Are the people who want to buy from you. And whichever brand cares the most. Wins.”

When I saw this, I loved it instantly! It’s so simple, to the point and so human and personal. However, the more that I thought about it I came to realise that it is not a social media manifesto….

It’s much more than that.

I think it’s a manifesto for all business, all future business, every business that loves and takes care of it’s customers, every business that believes in, invests in and empowers their employees to be their biggest advocates and advocates for their customers too. It’s a customer service manifesto, a sustainable growth manifesto and a marketing manifesto and doesn’t just apply to social media.

What do you think?

Note: I write these posts because I am passionate about great service and helping companies get more value and growth out of the customer relationships they already have. If you’d like to find out more about how I do that then get in touch here. Alternatively, sign up for my monthly newsletter here.

Thanks to NoahRazzi for the image.

11 comments On This is not a social media manifesto….it’s much more than that

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  • Hello Adrian

    It occurs to me that we are living in a time of transition where there is ‘battle’ going on between the existing way of doing things and the new way of doing things as espoused by Gary’ social media manifesto.

    The existing socioeconomic structure is built upon the old way of things and has done remarkably well. PUt differently, their privileges are bound to maintaining the status quo. What will all the people in marketing do if they are not selling themselves as the masters of messaging that get people to buy stuff? What will the sales folks do if we accept that customers are not interesting in pitches, they do their research and then place an order?

    I find it amusing that so many people advocate that marketing take the lead and own the whole customer experience / customer-centricity stuff. Which organisation has the most to lose from this shift? Marketing. Why? Because focusing on the customer experience means spending money in product development, operations, customer service. The companies that do a great job on the customer experience don’t need to spend lots of money on marketing. Why? Because the customers do the marketing through word of mouth and word of mouse.


    • Hi Maz,
      That’s a great point and it will be interesting to watch to see if the old and traditional departments/ways of doing things are willing to ‘destroy’ themselves in order to re-create themselves.

      I fear that, as Jeremiah Owyang alludes to in this TechCrunch interview, that there is a split coming and we will see companies that cling onto the old ‘broadcast’ ways that are augmented with more analytics and science and then there will be companies that go the way of Gary’s manifesto. I’ll be cheering for the latter.


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  • Adrian,

    The key point for me was it’s.. “not about talking. It’s about listening”

    I don’t think that has much more to do with social media than any other endeavour.

    As an approach listening works far better than talking

    But I do find it remarkably difficult to pull off convincingly


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