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Gary Vaynerchuck is an entrepreneur from the US who built a multi-million pound wine business from scratch through social media. He recently spoke at the Paris Le Web 08 conference. Everyone should watch it, if nothing else, it's entertaining if a little terrifying - he's quite intense.
In short, he says two things matter: 1) Word of mouth - Now instead of a maximum audience of 100 now people have audiences of thousands if not tens of thousands & customer service will prevail, if it’s good. 2) If you can build a personal/people based brand you should as it will add value to yourself and the company you are working at. A company/brand with a board of celebrities is always going to be more valued by a customer base than one which is invisible.