VaynerSports: Creating Disruption

Doc Williams
Photographer: Sweat RX

It’s a cold Friday morning in New York City. After spending 6 hours in traffic and running on one hour of sleep, I arrived at the new development of New York City known as Hudson Park.

I try to take a deep breath. I look outside again at the words on the mesh that protects visitors from all the construction down below several hundred feet. The names read like the who’s-who of elite businesses.

Turner. Coach. CNN.
And the reason I drove six hours after my third different job of the day: VaynerMedia.


The Atmosphere that Made VaynerSports

This brainchild of AJ and Gary Vaynerchuk created a unique perception of what they could do in the sports world. Usually, dealing with an agent, they book your appearances, negotiate for apparel deals, etc.

But at VaynerSports, they treat the athlete with the view of really growing with them as they progress through this crazy world of fame, not just when they are at the height of their career. VaynerSports will stick around for when an athlete shifts from their sport to the second and third act of their career.

I think of many athletes such as Vince Young, Greg Odom and others that never set themselves up for success after the height of their career. Let’s be honest: it’s hard to age with grace in sports. VaynerSports looks at the athlete’s career in a holistic way, and I don’t see that on the horizon for many others.

When I was shot up the twenty-fifth floor to VaynerMedia, there was an atmosphere of ease, excitement, and hustle. I hate to use these overused words, but that’s what it was.

Lessons I learned in that meeting: Be nice to everyone. So many times I meet athletes or entrepreneurs that are caught up in trying to show off and stand out. But what I noticed with the crew at the Vayner was that people were chill and having a good time, just trying to do the best work they could and to treat people nicely. The main thing that struck me was the genuinely friendly and outstanding communication when dealing with different ones from the team.

Key Take-Aways for Building a Brand

The main feeling I gathered from VaynerSports was that they were really in the weeds. The team was almost all 20-somethings that were hungry. Like, I will eat your babies hungry. Their mentality wasn’t a macho superiority, but just pure driven energy to find the best way to accomplish a task.

And it was refreshing.

I’m so used walking into a business where the managers aren’t doing anything and they’re always trying to pawn work on the interns and new guys, but all the teams were really just putting in work.

I can’t stress this enough: those Gary V videos are not an act. There were no secrets hiding in that building. No secret rooms. No secret formulas. Just hard work and a drive to beat out the competition.

Although I was only there for two hours, I learned a lot and gained a great appreciation for their company’s culture.

Hopefully, through the video clips and different articles we got to craft from talking to the staff and founders of VaynerSports, this will inspire you to get out there and create a unique brand in the fitness realm. In the upcoming article in the print edition, we’ll discuss the key ways to create a stand-out fitness brand.

Be sure to comment below to ask us any questions.

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