Babar Khan Javed
Oct 26, 2017

VaynerMedia set to enter Asia via Singapore in 2018

We caught up with the outspoken founder & CEO of VaynerMedia to learn his perspective on the macro issues plaguing the business of advertising.

Gary Vaynerchuk, the CEO & founder of VaynerMedia.
Gary Vaynerchuk, the CEO & founder of VaynerMedia.

At the first Brands Minds Asia 2017 in Singapore yesterday, the founder and CEO of VaynerMedia confirmed plans to launch in Asia.

"100%," Gary Veynerchuk said in response to the question. "I would say that it would be an upset for VaynerMedia not to be in Asia by 2018."

Campaign Asia-Pacific spoke with Vaynerchuk about the macro and micro issues facing brands and the advertising industry, which brought together thought leaders in branding, design, influence, and marketing.

What can the brand CMO do to structure deals that de-incentivize ad fraud?

Brands should be taking more stuff internal and they should be working with shops that align with their interests. I am blown away by how many CMOs and CEOs have told me right to my face that they don't believe their agency partner is the right one and then they act like they can't do anything about it.

I do not blame the agencies and holding companies for this, I blame the clients, the ones writing the cheques. Are they doing right by their brands or right by their careers?

And so, I think there is a massive misalignment in the current ecosystem. Here's what [brand CMOs] need to be doing: anything but what they are doing right now.

As someone that started off building a brand in-house, to forming an agency, to now buying into the media and publishing industry, what is your view on what agencies need to be doing differently?

The holding companies have to be willing to lose money in the short term. Are they willing to lose for three to six quarters so that they invest in new capabilities—which I know that they don't because bonuses get affected? The independent agencies need to not bill just for EBITDA to sell to a holding company because then they are just falling into the trap of not being valuable.

I think they [holding companies and independent agencies] need to be more consumer-centric to figure out what these brands actually need and build out those capabilities. I'm very proud that VaynerMedia has gone from 40 million to 100 million [dollars in revenue] and has continiously lost profits because I'm reinventing and reinvesting.

This is very simple. You're either doing short term or long term. I think we've gotten so extreme in the short term, quarter-to-quarter, that any agency with a holding company or independent that starts thinking in three-year terms has a disporportionate advantage against the competitors.

What is your view with regards to the impact of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) in the business of advertising?

Facebook Messenger, which is at scale, is going to be a disporportionately important platform for every brand in the world that reads your publication in a three-year window. If I'm Twitter, I'm scared shitless of Facebook Messenger because all the community management that can be done in AI and ML in a Facebook Messenger environment is scary, because 87% of the questions are in sales. I think it's going to be a real consumer trend in 2020.

We will feature a longer interview with Vaynerchuk soon. 

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