As the CEO of VaynerMedia, Gary Vaynerchuk is a talented entrepreneur, a self-trained social media expert and a bestselling author.
At eight-years old he was operating seven lemonade stands in his neighborhood and by age ten had moved onto selling baseball cards at local malls. In high school while working at his family-owned liquor store, Gary started reading The Wine Spectator and wine books, and realized collecting wine offered an allure similar to his previous hobby of collecting baseball cards.
With a wealth of knowledge and an entrepreneurial spirit, Gary spent every weekend of his college years at his parent’s wine store. Recognizing the importance of e-commerce in 1997, Gary launched Winelibrary.com and helped grow his family business significantly from $3 million to $45 million by 2005. In 2006, with a Flipcam perched on top a NY Jets bucket, Gary began Wine Library TV which revolutionized the wine world. His wine reviews soon attracted over 100,000 viewers each day and his die-hard fans started to call themselves “Vayniacs.”
In the spring of 2009, Gary and his brother AJ launched VaynerMedia, a new breed of agency that helps Fortune 500 companies like GE, PepsiCo, Hasbro and the New York Jets find their social media voices and build their digital brands.
With over one million followers on Twitter, Gary is recognized internationally as one of the top people every entrepreneur should follow and a social media trailblazer. He has received substantial attention from the media including guest appearances on Jimmy Fallon, Late Night with Conan O’Brien and Ellen. Gary’s ultimate goal is to own the New York Jets. Although his various businesses obviously play an enormous role in his life, he always puts his family first.
Gary’s latest book Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook: How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy Social World is currently a best-seller on Amazon.
CEO @ VaynerMedia
- Age: 38
- HQ: New York City
- Apple or Android? Apple
- Favorite TV Show: The Wonder Years
- Hobby: Selling garage sale items on eBay
- First Car: ’76 Monte Carlo
What mobile device can you not live without?
Can we take a peek at your iPhone’s home screen?
What app do you use most often for work?
The native mail app.
What social media network or website do you frequent most when you’re not working?
None, I’m always working.
What’s the first thing you check on your phone in the morning?
What work challenge keeps you up at night?
What has been the most exciting work development this year?
The business maturity of a lot of individuals at VaynerMedia has been exciting to watch develop.
How many miles did you travel in 2013?
I really don’t know. The truth is, it’s way more than even I think. I travel a ton.
What other career would you like to try?
What does your desk look like right now?
In general it is a little messy, usually with some Jets memorabilia or wrestling figures scattered.
What is the last business book you read?
I really do not read and am pretty public about that, but if you consider Jobs a business book, I enjoyed it.
Outside of your company’s efforts, what ad campaign or video caught your eye recently?
The recent WestJet campaign.