The Thank You Economy

by Gary Vaynerchuk

The Thank You Economy is about connecting with customers through social media, but it is not a book about Facebook, Twitter, or any other specific technology.  It’s about creating a culture of caring relationships, like when your great-grandmother shopped with local merchants. Those relationships disappeared as the economy evolved from mom-and-pop shopkeepers to big box stores, but social media offers a means of restoring that human touch in a scalable way.

Vaynerchuk says “the single biggest differentiator in this new economy [is] good intent… Good intentions create a pull.” He quotes Peter Blackshaw who said, “We often forget the symbiotic relationship between trust and ROI.”

The author strongly advocates managing social media internally. “A great caring culture stems from the top of the company and cascades through it like a waterfall. If you want that culture to flow outside of the company to the customer, and then get carried even farther by word of mouth, you have to be sure that your messengers live and breathe it the same way you do.”

He notes that the majority of marketers are using Twitter as a mini press release service. “Only 12% of messages from marketers are directed at individual Twitter users, meaning marketers still see it as a broadcast medium rather than a conversational one.”  Further to this point he writes, “Anytime your brand or product is mentioned or used is an opportunity to say Thank You, as well as You’re Welcome, I’m sorry, How so? … Tell me what happened, How can I fix the problem? or Allow me.”

Side benefits include “earned media” when a blogger or traditional media cover something you’re doing online.  Another benefit is cheap market research by simply listening to your customers and asking follow-up questions.

Vaynerchuk, Gary. The Thank You Economy. New York: Harper Business, 2011. Buy from

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