At a time when the economic outlook is grim and we daily brace ourselves for bad news from the volatile stock market, reading Gary Vaynerchuk’s “The Thank You Economy” is a welcome break. Mr. Vaynerchuk, an award-winning entrepreneur, reminds readers that American innovation is alive and well and - with his intriguing guide to developing strong consumer relationships - can get even better.
He writes that “no relationships should be taken for granted. They are what life is all about, the whole point. How we cultivate our relationships is often the greatest determinant of the type of life we get to live. Business is no different. Real business isn’t done in board meetings; it’s done over a half-eaten plate of buffalo wings at the sports bar, or during the intermission of a Broadway show.
Then there’s the story of the rapper 50 Cent and Pierce Ruane, a geeky Canadian teenager who on YouTube called 50 Cent a “media whore” for promoting Vitamin Water and sex toys. “When he added ‘What else is he going to do - 50 Cent diapers for your little gangsta?’ Ruane received almost a million hits.” And what did 50 Cent do?“Rather than ignore the kid , or even take offense, 50 Cent flew him to New York City and posted a new YouTube video of the two of them hanging out together. … 50 Cent has gotten some negative press for bad behavior, but with this one move he humanized himself, and probably made a lot of people feel better about thinking he’s cool.”