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  • - Welcome to Larry King Now,

  • our special guest is Gary Vaynerchuk,

  • the self-proclaimed hustler,

  • is a digital media mogul, author, web show host,

  • and venture capitalist among many other things.

  • As the CEO and co-founder of VaynerMedia,

  • Gary hosts the hugely popular YouTube show,

  • #AskGaryVee.

  • And has penned three New York Times best selling books.

  • Gary has been named to Fortune Magazine's 40 Under 40 list,

  • of the most influential business leaders,

  • and holds the number one ranking

  • on Forbes top 40 social selling market masters.

  • His newest book, #AskGaryVee, is available now.

  • How did this all start, you, wine?

  • (laughs)

  • What, what happened with you?

  • - What happened with me is,

  • I had the great benefit of being an immigrant.

  • I was born in Belarus, in the former Soviet Union.

  • - [Larry] My mother was from Belarus.

  • - I didn't know that.

  • - Minsk I think.

  • - Yeah, I was born 40 minutes from Minsk.

  • And came to the states in '78,

  • when they let some Jews out of there.

  • And, we set up in Queens.

  • And my parents lived the American dream,

  • they worked very hard.

  • My dad was a stock boy in a liquor store

  • in Clark, New Jersey.

  • And eventually became the manager of that store,

  • and eventually saved up enough money

  • to buy a store in Springfield, New Jersey.

  • I was lemonade stands, baseball cards, real hustler kid,

  • Blow Pops, anything to make a buck.

  • And at 14, I got dragged into the store.

  • You know, oldest son, immigrant family.

  • I always tell people, Larry,

  • that I lived their grandparent's life

  • more than theirs, right?

  • I'm couple generations behind most.

  • I did it in the 70's, and 80's, and 90's,

  • when most people did in the 30's, 40's, and 50's.

  • - You're a legal immigrant?

  • - I am, thank God.

  • - [Larry] Okay.

  • - Otherwise I probably wouldn't do the show--

  • - Donald?

  • Okay. (laughs)

  • - And, I fell in love with people collecting wine

  • when I was 17,

  • because I was into collecting sports cards.

  • That was my connection point.

  • I wanted--

  • - Collecting? - Collecting.

  • I wanted to build 4,000 wine shops.

  • That was, I was gonna build a Toys "R" Us of wine,

  • sell the franchise, buy the New York Jets.

  • That's what the plan was.

  • Heard the internet my freshman year of college,

  • heard that sound,

  • cuh, cuh, chee, cuh.

  • Knew that it was special.

  • And in 1996, I launched one of the first

  • e-commerce wine businesses in America.

  • Called WineLibrary.com.

  • Took over my dad's business,

  • kind of running it day to day in 1998,

  • alongside with him.

  • And from '98 to 2003, helped grow that business

  • from a three to a $60 million business.

  • That became the foundation.

  • Built that on e-commerce, email marketing,

  • banner advertising, Google AdWords,

  • things that the marketing world didn't believe yet.

  • And then, YouTube came out.

  • And I started a wine show four months after YouTube started.

  • And that--

  • - You are not a wine expert?

  • - I grew up a wine expert.

  • You know, from 15 to 30,

  • in those 15 years, my whole life was wine.

  • - Were you always successful?

  • - In everything but school.

  • - Didn't do well in school?

  • - Poor.

  • Terrible actually.

  • Punted it.

  • You know, it was funny.

  • And this is where I give my parents enormous credit,

  • and I've, you know it's funny,

  • it's a business book that says self-awareness.

  • My parents grew up, and I give them so much credit,

  • in a world where all their contemporaries,

  • as, and you know this,

  • education's the way out for immigrants.

  • - Sure is.

  • - My mom recognized that I was a merchant,

  • an entrepreneur, a promoter.

  • - So did school fail you, or you failed school?

  • - School failed me.

  • School's failing entrepreneurs every single day.

  • - Because?

  • - Because it's not built for entrepreneurship.

  • It's built for workers.

  • You know, if, you're being taught to play within the lines.

  • And there's nothing being taught that maps

  • to the entrepreneurial market.

  • As a matter of fact, my biggest cynicism when I sit across

  • an entrepreneur today,

  • is if they are too successful at school.

  • I probably look at Ivy League grads

  • starting startups right now

  • with more of a negative light,

  • than I do somebody who wasn't as good.

  • - Because?

  • - Because what I've learned

  • over the last five to seven years,

  • and by the way, in the last two, three years,

  • I've taken a step back on this,

  • because there's too many entrepreneurial friends

  • who've gone to great schools that have been successful,

  • so this is not a blanket statement.

  • But I will tell you that in a world of private schools,

  • in a world of mommy and daddy having a lot of connections,

  • that when you go from 12, 15, 18 years of that ecosystem,

  • and you go into a market, and you create an app,

  • the market doesn't give a crap who your dad is.

  • The market responds to your product,

  • and a lot of these kids have not been able

  • to take the punch in the mouth

  • that comes along with entrepreneurship.

  • - You're big on self-awareness, right?

  • - [Gary] Huge.

  • - How does one get to be self-aware?

  • - I don't know.

  • - So how do you teach it?

  • - I don't know.

  • But I know it's damn important.

  • And so, I know where I start and where I stop, Larry.

  • And I wish,

  • honestly I'm curious to see

  • over the next 40, 50 years of my career,

  • if I figure it out.

  • I think that,

  • the things that I've been pushing people to do is,

  • one, create an ecosystem where you make the people

  • closest to you feel comfortable to tell you the truth.

  • So, one of the things I've been asking for people to do

  • is tell your mom and dad and spouse,

  • best friend, coworker,

  • hey, tell me the truth.

  • What am I good at, what am I bad at?

  • And spend a month or two to get them comfortable

  • to actually tell you the truth.

  • Cause the people that love you

  • sure don't want to tell you.

  • - How did the website thing come about?

  • - Way back when?

  • - I mean, you, your web show.

  • - [Gary] Or the web show now?

  • - What is the biggest thing you do, is your web show?

  • - The biggest thing I do right now

  • is I run a 650 person social media digital agency

  • that works with the brands like Toyota, and Pepsi--

  • - [Larry] That's called?

  • - And that's called VaynerMedia.

  • - And what does VaynerMedia do?

  • - We're a modern day Mad Man.

  • We're a Madison Avenue agency,

  • the same people that used to sell commercial time

  • on anything you ever did in radio and television,

  • we now do that on Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram.

  • And we produce the creative for the brands

  • to sell stuff, through the phone.

  • Because Larry, and I'd love to get,

  • I'd almost want to,

  • I know we're doing a show here,

  • but I'd love to get your thoughts,

  • maybe after, maybe right now, who knows.

  • I think we're living through a very interesting moment.

  • I believe that the telephone is becoming the television.

  • And the television is becoming the radio.

  • And I've been spending a lot of time studying

  • the transition, in the late 50's, from radio to television.

  • Because this is the first time

  • we've had a platform shift in our society

  • in a half a century.

  • And I think it's a very big deal.

  • And I've been spending an enormous amount of time,

  • the last five years,

  • trying to be the best storyteller for that platform.

  • - Next, utilizing the digital world

  • for your entrepreneurial benefit.

  • How social media can transform your business.

  • Stay with us.

  • - We're back with the incredible Gary Vaynerchuk.

  • Is that a Jewish name?

  • - You know it's funny,

  • I know it always confuses people.

  • People don't think it, but I am.

  • - [Larry] Okay.

  • (laughter)

  • The book, #AskGaryVee is out now.

  • An entrepreneurs take on leadership,

  • social media and self-awareness.

  • Okay, how do we use social media

  • to help our business?

  • - Well I think we first understand

  • that social media is a slang term

  • for the current state of the internet.

  • And when you position social media that way,

  • you take it a lot more seriously.

  • So step one Larry,

  • for 97% of the people that are watching,

  • is to actually take it serious.

  • That's number one.

  • And again, we were talking as we were getting ready,

  • a lot of radio people didn't take television

  • serious when the transition happened.

  • That was their loss.

  • - Correct.

  • - [Gary] Right?

  • That's what's happening right now, Larry,

  • this is historics,

  • that history always tells you the future.

  • And so that's what's happening.

  • So first take it serious.

  • Two, understand that Facebook,

  • and Instagram, and Snapchat,

  • and YouTube these are different channels.

  • It's the difference between CNN and Fox,

  • and ABC and Sports ESPN.

  • You've gotta understand the context

  • of the medium that you're on.

  • So when you're story telling

  • about your business on YouTube,

  • you've gotta produce different content

  • than when you're putting a picture on Facebook.

  • So again, sitting in your presence,

  • I almost wanna ask questions more than do this interview.

  • I think that people

  • underestimate context of the medium.

  • I would assume that when you interviewed somebody on radio

  • versus when you did it on television,

  • there's slight differences

  • 'cause they're different mediums.

  • - Slight.

  • - Slight and it's slight, but it's real.

  • And in that slightness is all the magic.

  • Number three, it's understanding

  • that you have to provide value.

  • Too many businesses right now on Facebook

  • and Twitter and Instagram,

  • every post they put out is buy my stuff,

  • buy my stuff, buy my stuff,

  • here's where I'm gonna be, check me out,

  • buy my book, check out my experience,

  • watch me on my show,

  • and nobody's providing values.

  • So the prior book I wrote to this was called,

  • Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook.

  • Give, Give, Give, Ask.