An Award-Winning Social Media Strategist, Producer and Personal Publicist, Joy Kennelly has covered the worlds of entertainment, red carpet events, celebrities, travel, technology, food festivals and fashion including the last six years of LA Fashion Week, in her page one Google blog, Pure, Unadulterated Joy.
For more information, please review: http://about.me/joykennelly
Please send any invites, tips and inquiries to: joyannatravel (at) gmail (dot) com
Life has gotten progressively better and better. Had a wonderful visit with my Aunt and Cousins in Colorado while exploring opportunities for group travel in Glenwood Springs and Boulder. Having difficulty transferring pix from my phones to my computer and for awhile lost my camera, but it's coming back together soon. Thus, no pix for now unfortunately.
Also, been reading great books that are inspirational like Jessica Jackley's Clay, Water, Brick about her experiences with co-founding Kiva.org and ProFounder, which opened the door politically for current crowdfunding being approved by the government. She's extremely gifted, articulate, informative and connected.
Highly recommend reading her book if you're an entrepreneur seeking to do a global business like we are. What I enjoyed is the similarities in our backgrounds - raised in Christian homes, love East Africa, love helping disadvantaged people and more...
I really love learning and enjoyed hearing and learning from the British Social Media guru - Vincent Dignan who is really out there fashion-wise and how he conducts social media, but I'm telling you it works. Brilliant! Here's a tip for Instagram: Follow, like, like, like. Try it you'll like it.:)
Then, last weekend just completed another intensive media training program taught by Ann DeVere called Turn Your Interviews into Cash and met some really interesting people. Learned a lot too and can't wait to apply it.
May work with one woman I met to produce a business cruise if we decide to move forward with that idea. Another woman and I might collaborate on medical tourism. You never know what comes out of attending events is what I find.:)
My motto is Always be Learning and Growing.
Otherwise, living my life and enjoying each day despite having a leg injury that the ER docs haven't been able to explain or discover why I have it. All I know is I thought I was better, went out with my crutches for an evening event, and then was worse immediately.
Needless to say, even though I'm feeling better, sticking on my crutches until I see my new Dr this week. Despite the toll it plays on my hands too. I'm falling apart I tell ya.:)
Sometimes I think we're given challenges to make us slow down and have time to process what we're doing in life and who should be in our circles. I chose to separate from certain people while bringing other people closer and continuing good relationships I value which has been very healthy and healing.
Doesn't mean the difficult ones will be gone forever, but as I'm healing from my Mom's death, needed the mental space to focus on taking care of myself and get my life going again. You can't build when you're surrounded by negative energy that's always tearing you down. Feel much lighter now.
Busy pitching agents, angels, friends and others in an effort to get funding underway. There's so much more I could be doing if I could afford to bring in help and ramp up certain technological and marketing aspects.
In the meantime, just plugging away and grateful to Ariel Barco for his technical support and friendship as we change things up behind-the-scenes. Hire him! Great IT professional: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ariel-b-3438a750
Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go read my book on The Ultimate Sales Letter by Dan S. Kennedy.
In case you aren't aware by now, in addition to my travel fan page and lifestyle events, I also cover tech events and then share them on my Digital Marketing Specialist Fan Page which you can like to stay up-to-date, or follow me here since I like to spread the love around.
This year I have free flight privileges through my Mom and finally was able to take advantage of it and flew up to SFO to participate in the very interesting Silicon Dragon mini-tech conference held at Draper University.
Especially enjoyed hearing this young man speak because I believe he will revolutionize the world with his robotics - please fund him.:)
Silicon Dragon Robotics Discussion
I also enjoyed hearing Linkedin, Uber, Evernote and Silicon Valley Bank speakers discuss doing business in China and other panels as well.
Linkedin, Uber, Evernote & Silicon Valley Bank discuss doing business in China
Lots of tech industry heavyweights participated and I've given a very comprehensive review of the entire Silicon Dragon confernce which you can read when you click here.
Don't forget to read the captions. That's where I put all the good stuff.:)
SoCal Innovation Forum (SIF) is the most influential cross-border forum integrating Chinese and American resources in Southern California’s entrepreneur community. I was privileged to be invited to attend and enjoyed meeting everyone and hearing the speakers, some I've heard often, others new to me.
Lots of great information and I've encapsulated it in my coverage on my Digital Marketing Specialist fan page here.
It's really funny to me how different men are than women. I've been reading a lot of great books on female entrepreneurs, leaders and other change makers to have positive female role-models to look to rather than always reading about how men do things.
I really enjoyed Gail Evan's book, "Play Like a Man, Win Like a Woman: What Men Know About Success that Women Need to Learn. The book was listed for several months on the New York Times,BusinessWeek, and Wall Street Journal bestseller lists." (Stole this from her bio.:)
Men are really, really competitive! I just saw this in action on a Facebook post I casually posted regarding the woman in Kentucky with the marriage license debacle. Now I haven't formed an opinion either way, because to be honest, I have too much on my plate as it is.
However, I guess all the guys who were going back and forth on this topic sure cared about it. A Lot!:) I've never seen straight men argue so fervently on something that is really minor if you consider everything else going on in the world today, but for some reason this issue of religion caused something close to flame war! Or maybe it was because Ted Cruz said it? LOL (And for the record, no, not voting for him.:)
I haven't been online much due to personal health issues and working on other stuff, but man, these guys went at it! They totally exemplified exactly what Gail writes about in her book, among other topics.
The reason I liked her book so much is because she succinctly, eloquently and in story form, shows through examples in her own life and career at CNN, the White House and other prestigious jobs she's held, how so very different men are than women! And how to deal with them and master these same techniques.
Now I get it!
I'm happy to be having a guy join my team who I think will be a great addition just by virtue of the male chromosome and will be announcing his involvement down the road. I've decided it's time for stealth mode, at least for the moment. As a publicist, I'm always sharing, but now, feel it's time to dive deep and stay low until I have what I want to offer fully actualized.
The other thing I've come to realize as I wrestle with my health issues is that my Dad raised my sisters and I to be extremely entrepreneurial and never give up. I'm very proud of both of my sisters and thought you might enjoy learning about us because I feel like sharing something personal which I don't always.
My youngest sister has been married forever, has three girls, dogs, cats and all now live in CO with her wonderful husband because that's where he was raised. They have bought, with my Dad's help, numerous real estate properties in cool places and renovated each and every single one. Glori and Dad often work together while Dwayne is working full-time in his demanding jobs and she knows everything there is to know about houses.
She's the boy my Dad always wanted.:)
My parents idea of fun is watching those HGTV shows where homes are bought, renovated, then sold. I'm starting to get into them, but since it's what they've done, they watch knowingly whereas I'm learning. I helped renovate my Dad's rentals growing up and can paint and do basic stuff, but Glori is a master at everything. Very proud of her accomplishments in that realm. Her husband too.
She and her husband are now opening a new business where they're taking the skills and experience she's gained running their own real estate to offer to other investors and property owners in Breckenridge, Blue River and Placer Valley the security and safety of knowing their rental and personal properties are in good hands. They're pretty jazzed and have created an awesome website you can review here: http://www.alpinehomewatch.net/
(I helped her edit and gave her advice on working with her web guy. I still want her to create an app, but she doesn't understand that technology aspect yet. I'm sure it will come though, knowing her like I do.)
I do have to admit, sometimes I get a wee bit jealous because having a husband support your business while you're launching is a big deal. It's almost like having an angel investor because costs that single female entrepreneurs have to cover like basic living costs, are taken care of by a husband's full-time salary. I see a lot more mommy entrepreneurs find success simply by virtue of that financial fact which they seem to take for granted because they have other struggles I don't deal with, like kids, schools etc.
However, such is life. Now that I have someone who wants to help me who is as passionate about what I've been doing and understands what we need to do, perhaps everything will move along a lot faster now. At least that's my prayer.:)
Now, my other sister is just as entrepreneurial believe it or not. Both sisters have successfully moved out-of-state to develop new lives and opportunities. I think partly, because they have family members there with them. Grace is a single mom to my delightful college graduate niece and recently broke both her feet; yet still managed to drive for Lyft and was making a successful living doing that in Austin, until she now has an even better job more suited to her talents of arranging travel for a Fox production.
I'm proud of her too. Despite being injured, she's worked hard to overcome this and find work that makes her happy while serving others.
That's another thing we all have in common, we like to serve. My Dad was a great role-model and still is in that regard. Mom has always played a more low-key role serving my Dad and the family.
As I was listening to my sister's speak to my Dad on the phone recently, I realized we're a pretty tough bunch. We don't let obstacles like horrible tenants, broken bones, or damaged immune systems keep us down for long. We see what needs to be done, we do it and then achieve other goals. I don't see that resolve in my neices, or some other women I meet, and have to say it must have come from being raised by my Dad. And Mom (who has different skills and talents.)
Here's an example from my past since I've been sharing about my sisters so much.
One Sunday, while still in high school, I was asked to walk the dog before church. We didn't have a fence around our large backyard yet and he needed out before we left.
I donned some high heels that we played dress up in, grabbed the leash and the dog and began walking him around to do his business. Well, he saw a cat and began tearing off after it. Now, I'm still in heels remember, walking in grass, through trees and bushes in an unpaved backyard.
I clung on for dear life and as he tore off, my grasp on the tree I was holding on to with one hand while holding his leash in the other, loosened and I had to let go while being dragged straight into a tree limb sticking out which rammed straight into my throat below my chin.
I let go of his leash and ran bleeding back into the house crying. I only remember going to Dr. Starr's, our family doctor, that day, or somewhere else and getting lots of stitches before going to church later. At least that's how I like to remember it.:) However, if you don't believe me, ask me to show you the scar some day. It's still there. I recovered fine, but never did wear heels to walk him again! LOL
All this to say, I've needed their stories to help me through a very tough time physically. I won't bore you with the details, but just know I'm damned and determined to live a fully functional, happy life regardless. Just need to find the right medications and help to take care of myself.
So, that's all. I need to stop now. It's been fun sharing and I hope you've enjoyed this little dive into my family background. I love them all very much in spite of everything and can't imagine doing life without them. Although we're very different, we're also very similar and I'm choosing to focus on that.:)
By Joy A. Kennelly Years ago when I was transitioning from one career to another I began catering to pay the bills. I worked for some of the most prestigious catering companies and ate some of the most delicious food I'd ever tasted up to that point which turned me into the foodie I am today.
I also worked during some of the most amazing red carpet events too like the private Hollywood Foreign Press pre-Oscar party, a private party at the home of the Architectural Digest publisher or editor, I forget which, but I do know he had the most amazing art collection and stunning home; numerous Academy parties; a private party at Paramount Studios for Grease; and my favorite, serving Adrien Brody during the Oscar's Governor's Ball after he had so famously kissed Halle Berry.
Having worked the event, I missed the kiss and had no idea who he was, just knew all night long, celebrities kept coming over to congratulate him. If you look closely in the pictures they always take of the hundreds of staff you'll see me.:)
But I'll never forget seeing Oprah when she came into the media tent where I was serving and seeing her up close and personal for a few treasured moments while she stood for photographers shooting her picture.
The reason I'm telling you all of this is because I also happened to see Aaron Sorkin outside grabbing a smoke after he won an Emmy for the West Wing too and was able to tell him I loved his writing. He was so jazzed and excited I'll never forget him.
Which leads me to the film he just wrote about Steve Jobs| Here's the trailer - it looks amazing!
I really wanted to see the sneak preview, but will have to wait like everyone else unless a publicist for the film reads my blog and takes pity on this huge fan and lets me and my Mom come to another one. Mom is the Apple queen - everything is Apple and she's more tech savvy in certain things than me! She's takes almost every Apple online and in person class they offer, watches the press presentations, and tells everyone she meets how wonderful Apple is!
Love her tech fascination. We often sit next to each other sharing what we're learning when I visit. Ironic, eh? A woman in her 70's interested in tech, but those are the genes I have flowing through my blood.:)
Now, because I have to run, and too much typing isn't good for me, here's some fun cartoons I promised earlier. Enjoy!
After wrapping up work for a national professional women's organization where I spoke to hundreds of women in all industries, in all levels of their profession, in all areas around the country on a daily basis; attended numerous amazing conferences and special events with panels of female tech founders, entertainment professionals and executives at all levels of their business over the past six months; and read about women who have achieved major success in their fields, I have discovered the following observations to be true about women in business:
1. Those who are majorly successful are part of numerous organizations that enhance, support and provide networking within their chosen field, not only with women, but also men. In addition, they volunteer, sit on boards, and are extremely philanthropic overall whether in support of their own non-profit endeavors, or those they choose to support financially, or with their time.
2. They generally are extremely well-educated with many holding numerous degrees and/or certifications, especially African American women.
3. Many started out in a completely unrelated field and fell into their current profession where they discovered a passion, skill and expertise they developed over time, becoming more successful as they grew in knowledge and experience.
4. All are passionate, driven, ambitious, hard working and believe in their career choices regardless at what level, what industry or what area of the country they reside in.
5. As women overall, we all struggle with finding balance between work and personal life, whether that means single, married, or otherwise involved.
6. Many women rose to the top of their careers only to discover how unsatisfying, soul-draining and unhealthy a lifestyle it was and completely changed careers to find satisfaction doing something completely different where they once again became successful, but in a more balanced manner.
7. Almost all credited their spouse, or a mentor, in helping them achieve their success.
8. Almost all wanted to achieve and develop their careers when asked future plans, but those who didn't, generally only had a high school education, didn't value advancing themselves professionally on any level, and were very satisfied with status quo and/or ready for retirement.
9. Women in sales or real estate, were more savvy with negotiation than those who weren't and often asked for, and received, the better price as a result. Many upper-level professionals sniffed out the dishonest business dealings of the company I was working for and declined the offering immediately which was a relief to know not all women are as gullible as might be believed.
10. Most women's default when they didn't want to do something was to say they needed to check with their husband, but when the price point became more comfortable, they suddenly became more autonomous in their decision making process.
It's been a fascinating sociology study starting with the first panel of all female executives I heard during a conference on the Santa Monica Pier all the way up until now.
I took the time to follow up with Susan Paley, ex-CEO of Beats by Dr. Dre because she was most interesting to me during TechWeekLA (next one coming up this November fyi.)
I'm always interested to learn how someone builds their brand into a global success, how they gain the partnerships, publicity and name recognition, and how they achieved their own personal level of success.
Our conversation was enlightening, interesting and answered all these questions and more.
She had met Dr. Dre before, connected again at a CES conference, they went to dinner with a bunch of other people he worked with, he saw her passion and business savvy, got her on board and provided "access at a level that was insane."
She was part of the branding relationships with artists and connected the headphones to athletes during the World Cup who wore them incessantly creating a natural phenomenon unheard of without paying for product placement.
Here's some examples of the headphones and relationships she helped cultivate during her time as CEO.
Susan said they had to be careful of who they partnered with to avoid bastardizing the brand like OP did in the 80's because then it became valueless. When Roxy approached them there was "authentic core-synergies in how each brand approached the market."
As far as reasons companies become successful, she said it's important to start off with a great product, a compelling value proposition fulfilling a consumer need and a simple idea.
It was nice to hear her validate PR as a huge piece in brand building and also to hear her validate that social media works hand-in-hand with overall marketing efforts. So many people still don't understand that fact for some reason.
Part of their success with Beats by Dr. Dre she attributed to giving away product to influencers, and as Jimmy Iovine, his partner, said tongue in cheek, "I know a lot of people." (He may wish he didn't know the Monsters CEO now that there's a huge lawsuit going on between them. Susan left the company years prior fyi and is now working in the car industry integrating music branding still.)
The main takeaway from our conversation and from other marketing gurus I've heard speak since, is the benefits of co-branding since it creates so much more access and opens up distribution channels an entrepreneur, startup, nonprofit or brand may not otherwise achieve on their own.
This leads directly into the cool Scion MotivaTOUR event I recently attended at Smashbox Studios where CoolHaus Co-Founder, Natasha Cole and Ludlow's Cocktails Co-Founder, Freya Estreller, really impressed me, although all the speakers had something of value to say.
Again, they developed both their businesses through strategic partnerships and Freya's entire talk was on what they use to determine whether or not to partner and how their current partnerships have benefited them. (Please excuse the quality of this pic, it's more to showcase one such partnership. I was actually working for The Hollywood Reporter at the time and enjoyed the benefits of this marketing drive.:)
It was interesting to learn the criteria, depth and breadth of what other companies were willing to provide if they believed in their offerings. They have PR and distribution through key partnerships that leverage their brands into markets they want by simply sharing equity.
Freya and Scion Event Organizer
I was extremely impressed with both of them because I remember being pitched CoolHaus as a product years ago and it's awesome to see the success they're having now. I'm hoping to have a one-on-one interview with them soon to pick their brains more and learn more about developing partnerships.
On a more personal level, it was also very encouraging to hear my "fellow" female tech founder friends share their personal stories (Nanxi Liu, Enplug, Founder, and Espree Devora, WeAreLATech, Founder) at the amazing Digital Women event at Cross Campus Pasadena because even though I've known them for years, I hadn't heard certain aspects before.
Digital LA Producer, Kevin Winston, always pulls together a great bunch of panelists and this conference was no exception. (Register here for his upcoming Silicon Beach Fest June 24-27, 2015 asap because it always sells out.)
I may have complained about the lack of professional women at conference panels in the past, but apparently people are listening because now it's not just me singing the praises of the tech scene in Silicon Beach for women, but also another female VC Investor I recently heard speak at the Digital Hollywood event this past month.
But I digress.
What I enjoyed about the sharing Nanxi, Espree and also Elvina Beck, PodShare, Founder, gave was how personal their stories were. I learned how Nanxi approaches networking and pursuing her goals and how she has accomplished the success her company has had.
Starting out in an apartment where they all lived and worked together to now traveling the world speaking, fundraising and developing strategic relationships while running a very successful company. (I've written about her before here and she's on my advisory board.)
I learned how much influence Espree's father had in her development as a business person because he never allowed her gender to be a hindrance and always encouraged her to go for it. I think that's why she's the dynamic entrepreneur she is today. Her mother's influence is also seen in her willingness to speak and help those just starting out, and even those of us a little further along the food chain who also need help.
I recently was drowning with everything I had going on and reached out to both of them for advice and was very happy to receive the support I needed after being so vulnerable and admitting I didn't have it all together and needed help.
That's what our Silicon Beach startup community cultivates, what it's best at doing, and why I like living back in LA. It's just a different vibe and intent which is encouraging and supportive of all, not just a few, like other places I've lived.
It was nice to hear more female investors speak during the Digital Women event too because so often there is a token female VC, but as Alyse Killeen, Investor at March Capital Partners agrees, there's so much more we can do to support all women, not just those who look like us. Alyse is big on being inclusive to African Americans and Hispanics too which I admire seeing as she's lily white herself.:)
I do believe the more women speak up for themselves, the more we raise awareness of issues that are happening, the more men will see the value of what we're saying and make changes necessary since it benefits the entire eco-culture, not just women.
I especially enjoyed attending the DGA's Women's Steering Committee Presents: WSC 35th Anniversary: Celebrating the Pioneering Women Directors of the DGA because I've been involved in entertainment longer than technology and know many female directors, including my good friend, Martha Cotton seen here with another friend, Pina de Rosa.
It was so inspiring to hear the founding "mothers" so to speak of the whole female directors movement in Hollywood because so many younger women take for granted the privileges and opportunities those who fight for our rights from years ago earned for them.
First the original group of women who made the changes spoke, then they honored female directors who carried on the torch and are making a difference today. It was fascinating to hear their stories, relate to their struggles, hear the humor and the hardship involved with pursuing your dreams and goals.
Very inspiring on so many levels. Entertainment is another sector that is a boy's club and very difficult to break into, but we're making headway slowly, but surely.
Seeing how many female professional groups Victor Harwood has included in Digital Hollywood was also very encouraging. I've known of him and his conference for many years and saw friends I always see at such events and have known for years too like Linda Sherman, and enjoyed hearing new people speak too.
It was phenomenal to hear women at these levels speak and not on topics that didn't mean anything to the audience like child raising, although it was touched upon, however, the main focus was on business and it was so refreshing because it was so high-level and honest!
I finally felt like I was amongst my peers and those I could learn from because they've been in the trenches a while and have overcome their own personal, as well as, professional struggles to achieve the success they have now.
Overall, it's been great to be back in LA and in our tech and entertainment scene although I've been taking time off from the majority of events to focus on building my own business since there's only so many hours in the day.
Time waits for no man (or woman) and you have to put first things first.
This won't be the end of the evolution of women's involvement in the tech or entertainment sphere and I hope to continue reporting, living, changing and experiencing it firsthand for many years to come. If all goes well, I will have an even more to share from the entertainment perspective soon too. I'm ready to get back to the creatives.:)
Recently launched a Meetup site for Joy's Travel Adventures to gauge interest and within a few days had over 50 members. We continue to grow and it's been fun meeting the women offline and learning more about their travel interests to help refine what we offer.
Our next event is called 50 Shades of Selfies with the Style Club which you can find out about by clicking the link to our group above. Join us and make sure to RSVP on our group page to be added to the list.
My goal is to take this beautiful rendition of what our full website will look like created by my amazing Polish team and build this out once I find the right developer here in the states. This is what I envision for the website with a proprietary matching service women will join for a behind-the-scenes, private social networking community to keep confidentiality, privacy and security issues managed.
It will also require approval for inclusion which creates an exclusivity for member only events, offerings, and tours.
I've also created an app and have submitted it for approval. So, yes, a lot going on behind-the-scenes creatively, but also in other realms.
I've also been working on the following:
1. Refining my Executive Summary with the assistance of my advisors
2. Working on financials for the business which has become clearer and clearer now that I have an actual travel group to visualize expenses and income with.
3. Applying to numerous accelerators which is almost a full-time job in and of itself. Made it to a first interview with a few of them. Fingers crossed.:)
4. Taking classes to help refine my travel video concept because I still see this as a TV show since there are really no travel shows for women and Anthony Bourdain's style of traveling just doesn't cut it 100% of the time for females. We need to see traveling we like to do as females, not always eat Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern either. We want to see Fashion, Food & Fun like my tagline says.
5. Pitched over 100 cable, network development executives and others regarding my travel show for women and had quite a few accept my Linkedin invitation, thus opening the door for future communication once I apply what I've learned in my classes for creating the show bible and budget.
6. Been working on finding more advisors because you can never have enough people helping you move forward towards your goals and why wait for an accelerator to provide them, when I can successfully seek them out myself professionally via Linkedin?:)
Oh, and speaking of job, also looking for work that I can do without further injuring my hands until I find investors willing to come alongside and grow my vision to allow me to hire more people to help me.
Balancing a lot, but feeling more driven now than ever because I have a personal deadline to fulfill. I'm not going to let my injuries hold me back from achieving my dreams and goals. No matter what JW Marriott Las Vegas thinks or does.
There are days I really hate my former employer, JW Marriott Las Vegas Resort & Spa, and these days are becoming more and more frequent as I struggle with finding out what's wrong with my hands, waiting on the judge to determine if/when they will take responsibility for the pain and suffering I experienced working for them and now live with on a daily basis, and my inability to do my normal work as a result of these injuries which is causing me emotional, physical, and financial stress on a daily basis.
I often wonder if the main Marriott company knew how their franchisee was handling injured employees what they would say about it and if they would step in.
If it was my brand, I would.
I know I post a lot of fun activities I'm involved in, I tweet silly stuff, and I rarely talk about this issue, but after being rejected by the one female founder conference I really wanted to attend when I attend so many male-dominated tech conferences down here, I'm extremely disappointed and feel like opening up because it's real, the Las Vegas Marriott needs to be outed and I'm tired of the BS.
I needed to hear other female founders speak to gain strength from their experiences and now I won't. Listening to a live stream just isn't the same. It just isn't.
I know I'm on the computer a lot, but I also take long spells where I'm off to allow the pain to subside and to allow myself a mental break from pain. Do you know how debilitating it is to have constant pain? Do you know how terrifying it is to think you may not have use of your hands for the rest of your life when typing, communicating, writing, social media and emailing is how you've made you're living for the past ten years? Or to constantly be put off by doctors because they can't figure out what's causing the pain through normal testing?
Do you know how slow working with pain makes your progress when you're having to work around a disability? Or how difficult it is to find work that won't tax your hands further? Nearly impossible. And being told by someone to just get a job, damage my hands more and don't worry about the future, you need to make a living.
Give me a break. I'm nothing without my hands.
Have you ever experienced not making enough money to get ahead enough to save money for a deposit on a place and discovering ID theft is screwing up your credit and you're turned down by every place you apply to for two months solid because you operate on a cash basis, there's no credit history and your good credit has been ruined by a thief?
And you're having to pick up the pieces and fight to get things straightened out again? All while being unable to work in your normal field because your last employer illegally fired you while you were injured and around the same time you discovered a lump in your breast?
That's been my life for the past eleven months. (And no, no cancer thank you Lord.)
I have been mulling over and over in my mind how I address the fact there are so few female role-models in the Santa Monica tech scene that are seasoned professionals, not newbies like so many panels I see boast. I've been trying to think of a polite way to discuss it, address it, and whatever which is why I still owe an article on the great interview I held with a female who accomplished amazing career achievements in the music industry and now car industry months ago.
I just can't find a polite way to say what I'm about to say. I've really thought about it, but it is what it is. Here's my thoughts - take 'em or leave 'em.
I don't want to hear from some 20 something who easily received funding because the investor probably either wants to sleep with her, or did, and now she only has to worry about looking cute to make sure her investor is happy with her and she'll continue to be able to grow her company not worrying about paying rent, buying food and everything else everyone else worries about on a regular basis while also trying to build a company when they're not receiving funding.
And then, the one time there is an amazing panel of female entreprenuers where we can actually gain wisdom, the female moderator decides to ask them "How do you juggle motherhood with running a business?" Totally ignoring the fact the majority of the female founders in the audience are single, no interest in kids, or don't have children and she's merely asking out of selfish reasons with complete disregard for the audience and their interests.
WHO CARES? I don't. Many others didn't either.
If I want to hear how a woman juggles motherhood and her career I would go to a Mommy Blogger conference, but that type question doesn't belong in the Santa Monica tech scene. Neither does asking, "How do we get more females interested in STEM?" You want to know how? You introduce them to role-models they can aspire to become like, not ask questions that no one in the audience cares about.
If I cared about that issue I would attend a PTA meeting for heaven's sake. I DO NOT HAVE CHILDREN I'M RAISING. I DO NOT LIE IN BED WORRYING ABOUT YOUNG GIRLS GETTING INTO TECH. You want to know what keeps me up at night? Wondering how I can work, build my business, and take care of my hands as best I can. I also worry about being a good role-model and mentor for the young women I meet who are interested in tech through the tech group I run.
That's how I give back and that's what motivates me when I'm having struggles.
I also wonder where all the amazing tech women I read about in ELLE Magazine's Women in Tech Awards or hear are being honored by Women 2.0 (all up in Silicon Valley.) Where are the female leaders here in Silicon Beach? Why aren't they included in the primarily male-dominated Silicon Beach tech conference scene? I don't want to hear from peers, or those with less experience, I want to hear from women I can aspire to become.
You choose any woman on either of those lists (ELLE & Women 2.0) and you will blow any 20 something founder male or female speaker out of the water. Bring them down or invite them to come at least...
I don't want to see a token female moderator out of the hundred tech speakers (all male.) I want to see women discussing how they run their businesses, what makes them uniquely qualified to do what they do, how did they handle lack of funding or respect for their accomplishments, how do they deal with sexism, ageism, racism, where do they pursue training or networking or whatever to find their success, what books do they read, what drives them to stay in a male-dominated industry, where do they find support, who mentors them? (excuse the grammar - not in the mood to be correct right now.)
All those questions and more interest me. You put those kinds of women in front of young girls and I bet then you will see STEM grow for young girls, but not by asking questions. And not by always bringing out the female investors because the financial industry is only one aspect of the tech scene. There are so many qualified female engineers, CEO's, trainers, etc. we could be hearing from. Don't be lazy men. Dig beyond your comfort zone when planning a conference or a panel and seek out women who intimidate you, who might be more skilled than you, or who will speak their mind.
Show young women and girls, don't tell.
Give women and girls someone to aspire to become. Let them see the future of their lives through the current lives of women they see on panels speaking. Let them hear their voices and their struggles reflected back to them. Let them understand they are not alone. They will find mentors. They will find investors willing to bet on them. They will find success in an industry dominated by men.
As I write this, I write for myself as much as I do for the young women who may read this. Life isn't easy. But it just doesn't have to be this difficult does it? I am still disappointed I won't hear the female founders speak, but maybe it's for the best. Maybe I'm not supposed to be in tech any more. Maybe it's time to think of a new dream/goal. It's been two years. I've given it a great shot. I've worked hard. I've done my research. I've paid my dues. I've built many aspects of this business slowly, but surely.
But maybe it's not enough. Maybe there's something else for me to do.
I just don't know what.
That's all. I'll probably regret typing so much in the morning, but writing is how I process things and especially when I'm deeply disappointed. Crying only relieves certain amounts of pain.
Sometimes you need to share it and by sharing it, feel free of it. I hope this is true. I also hope by attending the goal seminar tomorrow I walk out with either a refreshed vision for my business, or a completely new vision/goal. Because I'm tired. I'm tired of fighting to survive.
Fashion Digital LA recently wrapped up at the Director's Guild of America and what a powerful conference it was. I met upper-level executives from Nordstrom, ShoeDazzle, Jurlique, numerous smaller fashion brands like Apliq and Ellie, and major tech companies like Google, Amazon and more.
This is my kinda conference - where tech intersects fashion and people have been in the business a little longer than their 20's, but they're there to liven things up too like the founder of Apliiq.
Founded in 2008, Apliiq is a customizable clothing company that collects rare, deadstock and recognizable textiles and applies them to everyday garments. (From his press release.) Aren't these cute?
The reason I enjoy fashion is I have an AA in Fashion Merchandising, represented a few stylists, worked in retail for five years and have covered LA Fashion Week and other major fashion events across the country for over 7 years. My wardrobe may not always reflect the latest fashions, but if money was no object I would be a fashionista!:)
I love hearing amazing fashion icons discuss their passions, business practices and experiences in this realm. Especially as I continue to build my online women's community for female travelers. I always find you learn something from everyone regardless of whether or not it's in your exact industry. This one just happened to fit in perfectly with what I'm working on.
Smart people's practices translate across every industry.
And smart people were there at the DGA in full force. First up, was Lubov Azria, Chief Creative Officer, BCBGMAXAZRIA GROUP, who was interviewed by Annie Georgia Greenberg of Refinery 29, both true fashionistas.
Lubov was warm, gracious, humble and nothing like I expected from one of the world's most recognizable tastemakers. And Annie was a very good moderator, not injecting herself into every question. What a breath of fresh air!
Sometimes younger fashion people can be so snobby and none of the speakers, attendees, and vendors at Digital Fashion LA were anything like that which was really refreshing. It was an extremely professional conference on many, many levels. I was very impressed. Green Pearl knows what they are doing.
Back to the conversation.
Lubov explained rather than selling a brand, she feels they are selling a lifestyle. I heard that a lot from many of the speakers and it made sense. She also explained the simple truth, "No one needs more clothes." That's why her company focused on consumer's wants vs. needs and catered to those who really believe in the brand, in particular, her elite customers - those who spend money. She stated that 20 elite customers can bring in 1 million in sales. Whoa!
Her motto is based on Henry Ford's quote, "If I asked people what they wanted, I would have heard faster horses, but I made cars." She wants to inspire people to live inspirationally. She also said they are driven by providing a mix of high and low design, not merchant driven.
Now this is the part I found fascinating and other e-tailers will too potentially. When asked her e-commerce strategy, Lubov said they believe in engagement specializing in how the customer goes on their site. They listen to customer feedback, consider communication very important and make it easy for the consumer. They also believe in Geo targeting, use Facebook, emails, and blogger partnerships - they create events because both experiences online and in-store are very important.
See? Us bloggers are important!:)
Lubov supports a charity helping disadvantaged children and was touched to hear a young child had enjoyed her site because it's "the store that's open and never closes. It's fun and you can shop whenever you want." Thus, providing a small escape from the harsh realities of this child's life.
When asked by the moderator for an example of another company doing it right, Lubov offered Net-A-Port as an example of catering to consumers as a brand that does it best. She loved the whole experience of buying from them - the smell, the art and the packaging. Packaging is key! Made me want to buy something just to see what she was talking about!:)
Back to online though, she did share they are limiting their partnerships to keep consistency with their brand. Too many people don't properly use logos, colors or style which affects the brand overall. It's very important to stick to your brand dna - be very clear to your customer who you are. People buy because of what you do. The company's main focus now is on personalizing the experience across all platforms and methods of outreach. She wasn't the only speaker to mention that either.
Many were limiting affiliate marketing except for Pinterest to keep their content consistent with their brand. Currently, BCBG is redesigning the site, including more video (great to hear since that's something I'm including in mine!) with bigger windows, more zoom ability - making it so the customer doesn't have to think and making it easier, more effortless through digital.
She kinda pooh poohed many of the 360 camera shots of images claiming video was much more interesting and engaged more consumers.
However, for many companies I'm sure it's a viable alternative. Plus, as a consumer, I like those visuals. What I hate are tiny thumbnails that make it hard to see the image. Otherwise, I'm cool with seeing it rotate and find it fun to spin the product.:)
Lubov wasn't the only person to say video was key throughout the day either.
Both Mary Cooney, AVP - eCommerce, Kérastase & Shu Uemura Art of Hair (seen above) and Sukhinder Singh Cassidy, Founder & CEO, Joyus.com said basically the same thing. (Loved her site name.:)
Here's a fun example from Joyus:
Sukhinder said with video there is more of an implicit trust because people don't feel like they're being sold to. It's just part of an authentic story about the brand. She said it's rare that the founders are involved in the actual video because she preferred to use Network Chefs, stylists, makeup artists and others who are known and unknown to tell the story.
One interesting tool they also employ is adding the shopping cart right in the video making it very easy for the consumer to purchase if they like what they're watching. "We want our customer to be serendipitous," said Sukhinder. "Video is very impactful."
Her company uses curation with a trusted personality aligning with the woman they are selling to which creates a user experience akin to discovery. There's a direct connection to the consumer similar to many of the popular direct selling companies like J. Hilburn which was mentioned in another session.
David Towers, Vice President – Ecommerce, Wet Seal's advice regarding how video is presented was to keep it short, focus on one item, 2-3 min max, and don't give too many choices. A sample merchandising formula is to create a look, but don't talk about everything. Keep the focus on one product.
Good advice, don't you agree?
That said, make sure it's viable from multiple viewpoints - ie Kindle, cell, mobile and PC. David feels mobile is taking over with his demographic - teenagers. That's why he felt it was very important to have a responsive design.
Eric Koger, Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder, along with his wife/partner, Susan Gregg Koger, Chief Creative Officer & Co-Founder, ModCloth, agreed during their session too. With over 1 million sales in 2012 alone, I think I'll listen to what they have to say.
They employ many cute marketing programs that have been extremely successful in engaging their community. They keep their product line live on the web forever and as a result, any time someone is shopping if they see something they like, Modcloth will accomodate their request if enough people click their "I need it" button. This allows Modcloth to bring back outdated and sold-out items according to customer demand.
It also provides Modcloth with an accurate assessment of customer trends. Another cute idea was having a "love list" which entails clicking a heart similar to a "like" button on Facebook. There was a much higher engagement on mobile with this. When someone clicks the heart button, cute phrases pop up like, "XOXO" or "We were made for each other." The person who came up with all of those had a lot of fun creating these phrases!
Interesting facts presented throughout the day on conversion rates were as follows:
A good e-commerce site will have a 20% conversion rate.
A bricks-n-mortar store will have a 20-30% conversion rate.
Modcloth receives 40% of their traffic from mobile and that has doubled since January. Weekends are growing for interaction and Wed too with Thanksgiving their highest sales. They surmised all their users were probably sneaking in shopping while visiting relatives.:)
Modcloth has experienced a 40% increase in revenue every year. They have found installing an app makes a user shop more.
They aren't the only company to benefit from mobile. 21% of all users buy 44% of the volume sales. 25%+ are Paypal active and 10% of all payments are made on mobile. Overall transactions are 38%. Now this is the fact that really blew me away. Did you know that Ebay has 112 million active users whereas PayPal has 123 million? That's amazing to me.
On Gorjana Griffin, 88% have PayPal accounts and customers spent 2.5 million on Ebay during a 12 month period. Wallets were the top sellers with Louis Vuitton and Chanel in the 25 - 50 dollar range were the highest purchases. This fact was courtesy Roy Rubin, Co-Founder, Co-General Manager & COO, Magento if memory and my notes hold true.
3. If someone buys online and picks it up in person, there is a 300% conversion rate.
Interesting fact, isn't it? The experience in the "physical" world is still very important.
Now one program that kept coming up throughout the day as a way to track this online activity was InSparq. It tracks customers as they interact socially. Helps a marketer learn who is driving traffic to your site and then provides a way for you to use that info to segment your audience.
Kinda creepy to the lay person, but as a marketer, you really do want to know what is making your readers, viewers, shoppers "click." How do you like that play on words?:) Many, many of the top online retailers were using it and the Insparq moderator was very sharp. If I were an ecommerce site, I would recommend checking it out. The other popular one was Looker which provides data flexibility, reporting, and decisions in real time.
Another popular program was called MyThings which Expedia and AirBnB employ. It creates ads to drive traffic back to your site which explains why everywhere I looked after I wrote about Tailored Republic, I saw only their ads everywhere. I had always wondered why that was true and my lunch mate explained this was actually part of a software program he sold.
Hadar Paz, North America CEO, inside.tm, gave a very interesting presentation of how his program worked which essentially re-creates the real world shopping experience with a virtual one inside his online store floor plan.
Imagine you're an online shopper searching around a website looking for an item, how would you like someone to pop up and say, "Hi, how's your weather today?" Here's an example of a sample conversation and experience shown visually.
I'm giving you highlights because I think these are the key take-aways, at least for me. The whole day was really interesting and I learned a lot.
Here's some random shots to showcase the day's events...
I've recently had to accept the fact I am a perfectionist in certain things and as such, hold others to the same high standards I hold for myself. This isn't always the best for relationships, but now that I'm more aware of it I can work on it.
I also realized my German heritage has a tendency to make me see things very much in black and white when sometimes they're grey. My Irish heritage balances that out because I always find the humor too though.
All this to say, when I like something, I really, really like it and when I don't, I really, really don't.:) And I'm not shy about voicing my opinion either. I will always be honest about something and you may not like what you hear, but at least you know I'm honest about it.
And maybe even laugh because you know I'm right.:)
Honesty. A rare commodity in Los Angeles...
That's why I really enjoyed listening to Noah Kagan, founder of www.appsumo.com, speak last night at Technori over at Cross Campus because he encouraged us all to stop trying to be perfect. Just do it!
My friend, Nanxi Liu of www.enplug.com, had recommended I attend and since I respect her judgment, went even though I wasn't sure about it having never heard of Technori before. Seems like a really great group and site!
Now, I had no idea when I saw Noah listed as a speaker, that above and beyond his cool site, AppSumo.com, he was also Facebook's third employee, Mint.com's fourth employee and has also had a lot of failures in his life.
Or that he was single either. LOL
I thought it was cute when the announcer mentioned that in his introduction because he said Noah wanted people to know.
Ladies, he's single and ready to mingle!:) Maybe he should take a spin on Millionaire Matchmaker like some of my friends have done!:)
It's really hard to date sometimes when you're married to your work, or all over the internet.
I've been a workaholic and visible online my entire professional life. I know.
In any case, when Noah took the stage he was a lot of fun to listen to. I mention the failures because I really like seeing entreprenuers being honest about their hard-won success. It's not all hunky dory, happening automatically, or piece of cake proposition.
I was expecting more swear words and crassness, but apparently Noah contained himself for the mixed company. As I glanced around the room I was very pleased to see a nice mix of men and women attending. Perhaps positive balanced change is coming to the LA Silicon Beach scene after all?:)
What I really enjoyed hearing Noah say is your business is not all about a fancy website, business cards, etc.
It's whether or not there's a demand for what you're offering, and are you providing a solution? Will people pay for what you're offering? You won't know until you validate your business. Get out there and do it!
Check out: www.appsumo.com/tacos for more information. Oh, and by the way, I chose tacos in case you're wondering.:)
Back to last night. (Photo credit Mark Lindsey of Miller PR - taken from his twitter account: @MarkSLindsey - great PR company fyi...)
So, Noah had a select amount of time to address the packed house and chose to throw up on the screen a couple of popular, successful, well-known businesses and then asked us all how would we have validated the need and made them work.
I left my good camera in the car so bear with me on these pix, but I wanted to give you a taste...
I didn't realize airbnb was a billion dollar company now! I met the co-founders when I used their services to attend Obama's first inauguration in 2008 and they were so down-to-earth and nice at a welcome party they threw for all of us.
Hope they've stayed that way after all their success.
In any case, Noah had us brainstorm how we would have validated this and made it successful. People participated and it was interesting to hear what they recommended and Noah's feedback. Sorry, didn't take notes and next time you'll just have to attend.:)
Then, what I thought was the best part of the night, after doing this brainstorm analysis with a couple of popular, well-known businesses, he asked engineers to raise their hands and chose two to disect their business proposition with them right there on the spot, live.
Now, if you've been around computer heads for any length of time, you know they are very cerebral, live in their heads (hence my nickname), and often aren't living in reality with whatever they're working on because it's so abstract, doesn't reflect what society needs, and is more for their intellectual pleasure than real life.
It became very clear, very quickly that this was the case with these two earnest young men. I loved how blunt Noah was because I can be just as blunt sometimes and it helps cut through the crap. Doesn't always win you friends, but does clarify things immediately.:)
After disecting their concept, Noah invited them to the front to collect email addresses from potential interested folks who had all come to the conclusion they would probably pay money to have help finding parking in Santa Monica, but had no clue whatsoever to what problem these guys would be solving.
Again, excuse the poor quality, but here's the guys in action with Noah in the background. He has a very charming, disarming way of attacking people I thought was funny and relatable.
I also believe if you look up the hashtag #Technorila you'll find more comments from the rest of the crowd. Well worth the effort.
Oh, and if you're looking to claim www.tendollarparking.com? Looks like Robert Fauver has already saved it according to his Twitter feed @robfauver LOL
Once Noah was done, which seemed much too quickly, then the host announced each startup presenter. Having seen other presentations at Cross Campus, I was dreading it to be honest, but these were fantastic!
I always enjoy seeing mature businesses that have been around for longer than six months because then I can actually learn something vs. wonder why I was there. I've been running businesses since college and have a lot of seasoned CEO's I consider good friends, even though I may not see or talk to them all the time. I've also taken a lot of business programs and understand various aspects quite well.
I'm going to run through the startups who presented fairly quickly since I don't have a lot of time, but wanted you to be aware of them.
As a photographer, I really liked what they had to offer. It allows you to "cap"ture pix and images from videos and apply to products.
The presenter showed us live how to do it in addition to sharing about the company. I was extremely impressed with the image he presented as a piece of art which you can see below.
Next up was CodeWarsDojo which is a cool place for accomplished developers to go and practice higher level coding. If you click the link I've attached a Pando Daily article on them which will tell you more.
I am not a coder, but know many who are and this business model was very impressive. The founders got their start at a hackathon, presented it and were funded that night becoming successful almost immediately.
Write firstname.lastname@example.org to receive an invite to their beta site. Just know they're selective and only accept the best of the best according to the Pando Daily article.
I think you'll be happy you did get in if you're a developer based on the positive response of some of my F/B friends to my post on this.
Next up was a cute idea called Bloom Nation. The guy's names are hard to spell, but I'm sure you'll find them if you look on their site.
They spent a lot of time explaining why they started the business with personal stories, but not as much time on the success of the business which I would have liked to hear more about.
They have 2,000 florists currently involved and when I Googled them just now, found they've been interviewed on TV as well. I think there's room for competition in this realm and think they will do well. CBS News described them as the "etsy for flowers." Gotta love men who are passionate about giving flowers to people, right ladies?:)
Now the next presenter I wasn't too excited about because I don't have kids at home and now that my neices are teenagers, we're not seeing as much hand drawn art as playing around with pix and video on F/B.
However, that said, he got my attention when he mentioned the 150,000 users and millions of pieces of art currently "artkived" on his app: http://www.artkiveapp.com/ I think men sometimes discount the power of mom money and the huge marketplace that exists within this realm.
I would highly recommend checking this out if you're a parent, an investor, press or whatever because I see this going far. Very cool concept and obviously doing well. Why didn't I think of this?:)
My absolute favorite was the last presenter. His name sounded familiar and he looked familiar, but I couldn't place him until I met him personally afterward. Hank Fortner was the cool guy who hosted the Skirball Center fashion show which featured dancers on the runway and numerous charities showcased throughout. Very cool fashion show concept and I wish more would emulate their style.
Hank Fortner's wonderful pursuit this time is something near and dear to my heart because I'm a birthmother. For those uneducated on the term, it simply means I placed my son in an open adoption at birth. That's why www.adopttogether.org touched my heart and as evidenced by the many people asking if he had considered presenting this as a TED talk, many others as well.
Did you know 19 million children are without families throughout the world? Did you also know only about 9,500 children were adopted last year?
Know why? Because it costs $30,000 to $40,000 a year to do so and that has created a huge barrier for many families who would love to adopt, but simply can't afford to.
This is where www.adopttogether.org comes in. Here's a video from their website which explains it better than I can:
Crowdfunding for adoption! Isn't that the coolest thing you've ever heard? Can you imagine a world where there's no more orphans? Imagine how much this would ease so many of the issues of homelessness, poverty, out-of-wedlock pregnancies, crime and more this would help prevent for children who age out of foster care and never have a family unit to support them throughout their life.
Hank said in the 45 days Adopttogether been live, they've raised over $800k and are estimated to raise ONE MILLION DOLLARS by June 2013. That's amazing to me, but I also feel like this is filling a need that has been there since I was a birthmother over 13 years ago.
I know my church, King's Harbor Church in Torrance, will be happy to hear about this because one of their missions this year is to aid in more adoptions. Could you imagine if everyone got on board and began sharing this wonderful cause in support? Or even donating to help people adopt?
Here's Hank's story on how it came to be. Can you imagine having helped foster 36 kids and adopting 7 children? What an amazing life story and family. Brings tears to my eyes just writing this and listening. I hope you take the time to watch both videos. Amazing.
I love how multicultural they are too. Very cool. What great parental role-models.
So, as you can see, a phenomenal night filled with really cool companies and speakers. I hope you'll consider joining me at the next one to be inspired, encouraged, challenged and motivated too.
Here's a quick intro to the review I gave which you can read in full on my F/B site:
More than 7 fashion startups and 1 supermodel, Sarah DeAnna, took the stage at LA's first-ever startup fashion show, produced by Digital LA and Cross Campus this past week. The show featured styles exclusively by LA fashion startups, including: Ellie, Modern Nerd, Me Undies, Style Club, Carbon38, Tailored Republic, Original Tomboy and more.
Having covered LA Fashion Week for over 7 years and attended high-end haute couture fashion shows while living in the South, this was the first time I've heard an announcer encourage the crowd to, "Make some noise" every time a model walked down the runway, especially for the underwear models. Then again, this was the first fashion show where two male models were brave enough to wear only underwear and socks too.
Happy to be able to finally announce the date and time of our first ever New Media Mixer for anyone who blogs, creates web series, tweets, likes and more. Here's all the details. Hope you'll consider joining us!
Coffee Connection 3838 Centinela West LA, CA 90066 Tel: 310 714-2077
Not only will all of us LA-based tech fanatics be there (Melany Berger, myself and Sarah Frischknecht as pictured above left to right), but you will also have the opportunity to connect with our OC Social Media/techie friends as well.
Recognize these folks?
Chris Fleury and Carol Hink
and from LA, Jesse Bouman
and Ariel Barco
And Jon O'Brien of New Antics from the Demo Video Lab has just confirmed too bringing up our video guests and expanding our new media horizons.:)
Readz Publishing has a cool tablet conversion they will be showcasing as well.
All are welcome. Please don't forget to RSVP! http://ticketcake.com/node/4412
I've been writing this wrap-up in my head for weeks and finally have time to put my thoughts down "on paper" so to speak. I had conflicted thoughts after attending the free Marki Costello hosting workshop introduction and needed time to process how to present it.
Plus, had to wait on some pix and other stuff; then the holidays came and have to admit, got distracted with all my fun events.:)
My goal in attending the New Media Expo in Vegas next week is to learn how to create a more regular blogging schedule, develop more quality content for you, my faithful readers, and monetize the hell out of this thing. Also, meet some new collaborators, see friends I only know virtually and learn and network.
I've been blogging for seven years and it's time. Just heard one fashion blogger receives $50,000 from brands sponsoring her blogs and that's my goal!
Isn't it for everyone who blogs?:)
What I love about the tech community in Los Angeles is the openness to new ideas, new people, new concepts and new opportunities. What I found fascinating was to juxtapose the two events, Marki's hosting class vs. Silicon Beach Fest since I attended both the same day.
I was torn because I missed all the morning meetings I really wanted to hear, but I had signed up for Marki's class awhile ago and was very curious what she is like in person having interviewed her for my blog awhile back.
Marki is just as blunt in person as she is over the phone or on TV. When she saw me and another older person in the audience she pointedly asked if either of us were guests, or there for the seminar. The guy left, but I stayed and made a point of introducing myself as her recent interviewer because I knew she felt I didn't belong. LOL
Guess hosting is a super young person's game since she controls the funnel according to her. What cracks me up is she says she's a walking conflict of interest proudly as if that's a good thing! LOL She says only people who take her class will ever become hosts because there's very few talent managers who focus on hosting which she does and E! requires all their hosts go through her class.
What I found very interesting, because I had no idea this was true even in this realm, is the fact even in hosting, your brand is key. What I really liked hearing is how Marki helps her clients shape and develop their concept, provides a safe environment for people to practice and refine their skills, shoots a demo reel you can use to find representation or shop yourself around, and introduces you to key people.
I think she's worked really hard to get to where she is today and respect her for that. However, the conflict of interest really bothers me. In no other industry is this accepted as the norm. Why Hollywood? But I don't really care in the long run because I don't intend to be a host for any entertainment channel, but if they come to me, I won't turn it down. LOL
What was fascinating to me after leaving her workshop, where the funnel for talent is so narrow and difficult almost impossible, to then enter the Silicon Beach Fest where the skies the limit, anyone with a good idea or skills can find success if they work hard, and everyone is so supportive and accepting of everyone regardless of what they look like or what age they are, was the huge contrast in approach.
Completely different vibe to be honest. It wasn't, You can't do this without me and must pay me hundreds of dollars before I help you because I control your destiny like I felt at Marki's workshop.
It was, Here let me help you. I've found success, here's how I did it, and I can help you find it too.
WHAT A DIFFERENCE!
The irony of the entire experience was to hear Marki say all the networks constantly want her to find new talent from the web where people are just out doing their own thing. So, be encouraged host wannabe. You can make it in Hollywood too. Just think outside the box, do your own thing, believe in yourself, and pursue your dreams.
You never know what might happen!:) Disruption in the entertainment industry is happening and the old guard is just trying to protect what they feel they control, but it can't last forever.
Change is inevitable. It just is. Either go with it, or die. Simple as that.
Here's some pix highlighting Silicon Beach Fest, but first, a word from our sponsors...:)
But if you're in tech here in Los Angeles, you already know this.:) My new friend, Espree, pictured with Kevin held an excellent seminar on finding a developer which included a friend, John Shiple, who I had no idea was so accomplished until this seminar!
We had met years ago at a friend's BBQ and enjoyed karaoke most of the night never once talking business. LOL You can check out his website here: www.FreelanceCTO.com
Bumped into other new friends, recognize these guys?:) The entire event was held at the amazing iola in Hollywood and it was fun to finally see what this co-work venue is like after hearing about it during Social Media Week. The seminars were held throughout the first floor and upper spaces too.
Here's some more pix to give you the vibe.
There were a lot of new businesses hosting parties, lots of great seminars, sponsors set up with tables, meetings with friends I've met at other tech events, and it was fun to bounce between seminars listening to what everyone had to say.
It truly lived up to the claim, "LA's first startup - entertainment community fest, with more than 2,500 attendees attending panels, workshops, demo days, pitch fests, hackathon, beach sports and more." Here's some of the fun people I met. The guy on the left and the girl on the right have a very cool company which showcased attendee's Twitter feed throughout the night. She also runs a very cool music newsletter/website called Fusicology. Click the name to learn more because it's been around forever and has the best collection of news, events, fun festivals and more. She's hilarious!
Everyone was a ton of fun. Such a difference than the life and death feel to Marki's seminar. Sad, but true.
And catch this aticle too in case you don't believe me or Forbes: "The Startup Genome Ranks The World’s Top Startup Ecosystems: Silicon Valley, Tel Aviv & L.A. Lead The Way tcrn.ch/10kSHCc "
After a full day of sessions, we were all invited to visit some tech companies and I chose to check out Deviant Art because I love art. Isn't this a great entryway? Check out the owner and his dog too. Here's some highlights from the presentation and office visit.
Wouldn't you like to work here? I would! Scott Perry of Sperry Media is holding the cute swag Deviant Art gave away. If you don't know him, here's something I lifted from an article about him by celebrityaccess.com: "As president of Sperry Media, Scott Perry works with nearly every single label to create online marketing campaigns for across a network of 40 key indie store web sites nationwide and handles the street marketing efforts for lifestyle and entertainment companies at over 400 record and lifestyle stores." I had wanted to hear his session specifically because it really interested me, but arrived too late. Darn it!:)
I won the door raffle at Deviant Art and am still trying to decide what piece of art I would like to own. I want it to be special because it will reflect this very cool time attending Silicon Beach Fest. I was hoping to have something to share with you by now, but with 23 million artists they offer on this site, it's rather difficult to choose just one. Now I understand why people hire art agents or whatever they're called.
I'm now looking forward to attending New Media Expo next week. Here's a blurb describing it I stole from Digital LA who probably stole it from the website: "New Media Expo presented by BlogWorld is Jan 6-8, 2013 in Las Vegas. This is the world's largest conference & tradeshow for Web TV & Video creators, plus Bloggers, Podcasters and Social Media innovators!
Enjoy 3 value-packed days of sessions, networking and cutting-edge knowledge from over 170 speakers that will bring your online content quality, marketing, audience and monetization to a whole new level."
I've gone one time before and couldn't attend last year because I was living in Atlanta. Really looking forward to attending and will share more later. Thanks for reading!
Sometimes I feel like a modern day philosopher because I feel things so deeply in my spirit I am compelled to share a side of an issue that isn't normally covered in the media or discussed in normal life until a tragedy occurs like the massacre at the school in CT.
I always wonder if I'm the only one to feel this way, but also don't care because there comes a point when I can't do anything else, but share.
It affects me that deeply.
And when I do, then I find many others do feel the same way as I do. They were just waiting for someone else to speak out first.
Even though I am not raising my son and technically am not a mother in the tradional sense of the word, only a "birth mother" as those of us in the adoption world are called who have placed our children with other parents to raise, I still feel deeply about protecting children from ills in society.
I only wish more people in power did too.
Pornography, alcoholism, drug abuse, the way women are portrayed in the media have all been topics I've covered here in my blog in the past and now, with the horrific shooting in CT, I feel compelled to address the growing glorification of violence in society, especially as Quentin Tarantino prepares to launch his latest killing spree film, Django, wherein Jamie Foxx, whom I normally love and will watch in anything he does, went on SNL to brag about killing white people.
Yes, maybe Jamie was trying to be satirical, but at a certain point, that commentary ceases to be funny. It crossed a line.
He needs to apologize and SNL too.
And now, even more so when innocent children are gunned down so horrifically after what happened in CT.
When will this glorification and mockery of the sanctity of life end in Hollywood? Why is there such a disconnect on cause and effect?
I posted a bunch of articles, books, and images yesterday on Facebook to process what has happened which helped me and many others. After sleeping on it, I feel a broader audience needs to hear this too which is why I'm sharing it here.
I know many people in Hollywood and in politics are going to be clamoring for more gun control now as they always do after something like this happens, but I hope you will read what else could be causing our society to implode upon itself with an open mind because many, many, many researchers concur that violence in TV, Film and video games is causing people to become more violent.
Aw, it's just a movie. A video game. A TV show. A music lyric.
How can Family Guy, American Family, Django, Inglorious Bastards, Grand Theft Auto III, or Postal 2 or any number of violent media or even violent music videos have this much affect on society you ask?
Thanks for asking. Well, let me tell you.
According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, "While the causes of youth violence are multifactorial and include such variables as poverty, family psychopathology, child abuse, exposure to domestic and community violence, substance abuse and other psychiatric disorders, the research literature is quite compelling that children's exposure to media violence plays an important role in the etiology of violent behavior."
And who can forget this tragedy and what the killer had to say: "(CNN) -- Norway's alleged mass killer testified on Thursday that he played video games as a way to train for a shooting spree that killed 77 people last summer. In particular, Anders Behring Breivik said at his trial that he played "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2" as a means of shooting practice, according to CNN's report."
Not to harp on my sister's friend, Quientin, but did you read the review of the premiere of Django in the New York Times? It's especially chilling in light of what just happened:
"Ms. Thurman, of course, has done numerous movies for Mr. Tarantino including 'Pulp Fiction' and 'Kill Bill.' She can’t give an exact tally of how many people she’s killed on-screen for him. 'At least 88,' she said.
Nearly everyone in the house professed to love his latest offering. 'It was three hours of Tarantino perfection,' Cameron Diaz said, though she admitted to having some trouble watching some of the bloodier scenes.
'It was awesome' Patti Smith said. 'The guy kills 100 people and doesn’t even get wounded. I want to go see it again at midnight with a theater packed full of crazy kids screaming.'
Notice how Patti Smith said "crazy kids?" Who do you think is being influenced by this film?
And this is why I feel it needs to stop. Hollywood has to stop glorifying murdering people. Did you ever stop to think about how Quentin Tarantino learned to make films? By watching videos non-stop in his video selling job in Manhattan Beach.
See the correlation? Or is it too obtuse for you?
I have nothing against the guy. I admire what he's accomplished and how he directs. However, I wonder if any Hollywood filmmaker who is making bucco bucks off this violent trend is even considering donating money to support the victims they help cause indirectly. I wonder how many even have a conscience when they see this happening more and more in our society? Are they that blinded to their influence?
And even the Oscars will be glorifying the Family Guy creator who is one of the worst racist, offensive offenders on TV. WHEN WILL THIS STOP? CHOOSE SOMEONE ELSE TO "ENTERTAIN" OUR CULTURE DURING THE OSCARS.
I am tired of the glorification of violence in society. I'm tired of the killing of innocent adults and children in real life.
This isn't just about males though, it's affecting girls too which is why I was happy to share what my friend, Doreen Hanna is doing with her Becoming a Modern Day Princess program to mentor young women into living lives of value, purpose and strength.
We either address the core issues affecting our society and look at what we're doing to perpetrate this violence upon our innocent generation, or accept the consequences. We can't have it both ways. Guns, in and of themselves, aren't the issue.
It's evil people and their drugged out state too.
So, are we going to allow our American culture to become what it is over in Israel? Will we soon see teachers carrying guns to the classroom to protect themselves like this?
I hope not. This tragedy in CT didn't have to happen. My heart and prayers go out to the victims and their families.
It breaks my heart.
I cried yesterday over the loss of innocent lives which didn't have to happen. We don't live in a war torn country, yet it's beginning to feel like it.
But then I remember people like Mr. Rogers and his wise sayings:
You can become one of the helpers too.
"Sympathy cards and/or letters of support and solidarity can be sent directly to the school:
Last night I was invited to hear Twitter, Uber, Instagram and Kickstarter Investor, Chris Sacca, speak at Pando Monthly by a female entrepreneur I respect and admire online and as a result, really not knowing what to expect, plunked down my $20 for a chance to experience this "fireside chat."
I had no expectations because I don't read Pando Daily and was just introduced to it with little time to research or read before arriving at Zephr's door filled with curiousity and hope. However, my friend has started numerous businesses and is very connected which made me trust her judgment.
I will admit, after hearing all the companies Chris has invested in, which if you're not familiar, are super hot right now in the tech world and elsewhere, coupled with the fact he appeared to be huge fan of Obama via reading his Twitter feed, I kinda expected him to be arrogant, full of himself and annoying, but was pleasantly surprised the opposite was true.
He was thoughtful, humble, generous, revealing, honest, kind, and inspiring.
(Too bad the moderator didn't take a page from his book, but that's another story. We're chalking it up to the fact she's pregnant and probably doesn't realize how bitchy she comes across. Sorry lady, but someone from our gender needs to speak truth. And I'm not just saying this because you said, no questions from the seated audience after I stated mine.:)
Anyway, I was so inspired after hearing him speak for three hours, I felt compelled to share my experience with you. Although, I will admit, I slept on it because some guy called me a poser the other day (to which I responded he was a dick and an ass - good Christian that I am.:) and wondered what people would say when they heard I was privileged to hear one of the richest, smartest, coolest investors in the tech world (in my humble opinion.:)
But after sleeping on it and waking up at 4am buzzing still, I don't care. Think of me what you will because to be honest, I don't write for your opinion. I write for mine. If you're a writer, you know there are times you are compelled to share your thoughts in writing to process it yourself and this is one of those times.
Back to my story.
When I arrived, I was super early and would have been super lost except for overhearing another guy asking directions too. Jackie was very cool and helpful which I generally find among tech heads. No pretension, just mass knowledge just like my programmer friend Paras.
We traisped through Zephr's offices, which are very hip and sound like an incubator for digital-focused filmmakers, and out into the alley to arrive at their large warehouse space where we were promptly shushed out into the street by the zealous organizer because we were so early.
Hey, what can I say? I was excited!:)
I left briefly and when I returned the alley was filled with eager programmers, startups, entreprenuers and the friend who had originally invited me, Espree. Know her? Cool girl and reminds me a lot of one of my young GA room-mates who works in tech with Oracle whom I admire too.
In any case, pretty soon the doors opened and we all streamed inside to enjoy pizza and beer (and in my case, Coke) before the interview began. Jackie had been kind and saved me a seat, but Espree suggested we move to the front and pretty soon, her young skateboard friend, Dante, herself, her other lawyer friend, Damion, and myself were staring at the stage face on for the next three hours.
Talk about butt ache!:) But soooo worth it! Chris is amazing! (This is prior to launch during set-up.)
But if you can, watch the Pando Monthly video if they share it. Not sure how that works yet, but assume they'll be doing something with the footage and/or interview. Kudos to Sarah Lacy for landing Chris because this is one of the few interviews he has given since moving down to LA part-time. (Yes, he's here! Sound the trumpets! Los Angeles is totally becoming the tech hotbed and I just love it!)
The reason I suggest watching vs. reading is because you will see the essence of who this guy really is without someone else's filter, including mine. He is nothing like I expected and totally someone I feel I could be friends with, he is that down-to-earth, funny, and real.
I also admired his integrity. He may not always have had it growing up a young, brash, arrogant investor when he day traded his student loan money in college, but losing 12 million and ending up 4 million in debt like he did has a way of humbling you.
What I really liked hearing him say when this happened, was, he "declared I wouldn't declare bankruptcy." And took the next five years working hard to repay all the debt he owed. That impressed me immensely. He said when he paid it all off, "you have no idea how good zero feels."
He shared how he accidentally overpaid his student loans and they sent him a check for, I believe it was, $38, and to this day he says it's pinned on his fridge because he likes seeing they owe him money. lol
I thought it fascinating because Financial Guru, Dave Ramsey, always talks about how the rich don't carry debt and they live debt free. Hearing Chris say it too was only confirmation of what I'd learned in Dave's class. Makes me glad it's one of my top goals to which I'm very close except for my student loan ironically enough.
I also liked how Chris refuted the moderator when she accused him of using Goldman Sachs, to which he replied, "No money from Goldman Sachs - you should fact check."
He shared how he started day trading and when it's going great, it's easy to think it's because you're a genius, and when things go bad it's because you're unlucky, but now he's learned it's actually the opposite. When it's going right, that's when you're lucky and when it's going wrong, you're f-ed.
He shared how easy it was to fall into that trap when all his ski buddies were telling him how wonderful he was because they had been able to buy boats and homes investing through him back then, but he realized it's important to have people in your life who will call you on your BS like his wife does now.
For me, it's my parents. lol
Moving right along.
He shared how he hustled to make money any way he could and was one of the first lawyers on Elance doing odd jobs, even once doing a VO for a famous black athlete in a low, modulated voice similar to that guy's style which cracked me up because Chris is about as white as they come.
He also wrote contracts for porn companies and said he's the only guy to make money in the business without removing his clothes. Chris is just clever with words - a writer's dream which is why I took so many notes cuz I knew I'd want to write about him once he started speaking.
The moderator, Sarah Lacy, whom I admire for her moderating skills in asking great questions and her deep knowledge, asked him some hard hitting questions which seemed to stop the flow every so often because it seemed antagonistic rather than forward moving. Overall though, great job at moderating on one level.
That said, I'm sure her style is what tech readers love, but meeting her for the first time and hearing it in person for the first time, I was a little put off because I really felt they had a great repoire and he was opening up and sharing stories he admitted at the end he will probably regret the next day, and hearing someone ask him what he thought about negative reviews about himself is enough to make anyone shut up and mistrust the agenda of someone you're speaking to.
I loved hearing Chris reveal how hard his life had been before he made it. If you've been an entreprenuer for any length of time, like I have, you know it's not easy and it was great to hear I wasn't alone in this. Chris really had compassion on those who are struggling in this economy although he doesn't seem to compute that Obama played a part in this and appears to blindly support him, although it was encouraging to hear he invested in Uber which is run by a Libertarian and often has passionate political discussions with him.
My kinda guy.:) Not the Libertarian per se, just anyone who is willing to passionately talk politics and have intelligent discussions not filled with name calling. My style.
Chris even admitted Silicon Valley is a bunch of group thinkers politically and although that was disappointing to hear, at least now I know. Sarah did ask him if he was as disappointed in Obama as many are at the end of the interview and I appreciated her doing that, to which he spewed the party line which I hope young people will research before blindly accepting it because someone they admire said it.
But what do you expect from someone who raised 100 million for Obama and has taken meetings with the President? Maybe I might even think differently about Obama if I had been invited to give my feedback on females in the workplace and in small business at the White House too.
I did, after all, attend the man's inauguration. What?! You didn't know?:) Yes, it's true. I attended Obama's inauguration at the special invite of Rep. Jane Harmon to whom I am very grateful. I consider it one of the highlights of my life to be part of history, especially as one of the lone conservatives in the audience.
Trust me. I was a novelty! lol But enough politics. I have to leave shortly and want to get this out.
I think that's where we left off. When asked about why he kept on going despite incredible odds against him when he first started out, he said "I didn't have a choice." It was in his dna. He said, stories of bouncing back aren't just about titans of business. People fought in wars, have lost their homes and jobs and come back, you just don't hear about them. I admire him for not being prideful about his personal comeback too.
Chris has tremendous empathy for the struggles we all face which endeared me to him because he gets it. Those who have money handed to them and have never faced failure or loss don't understand the depths of despair and self-reflection you go through when all you have is you and God (in my case) and you have to pull yourself back up from rock bottom.
Chris does. That's why my friend and I were so inspired by him. He was empathetic, compassionate, honest and very transparent on how hard it was and how he relates to those who are going through it now. He even acknowledged he knows how much $20 can be for someone when they're bootstrapping because he encountered that when he was flat broke trying to network and he used to sneak in through the kitchen to attend events because he spoke Spanish.:)
When I was younger I read a book of 100 biographies of world famous people and the running theme throughout all was those at the top gave back, they were humble and they treated all people with respect. The most successful companies, churches, institutions, and organizations are also run by these kinds of people I have observed over the years.
Now for those of you who have a company which is doing well and you're starting to receive bids because people want to buy it, here's some advice Chris gave which you might want to listen to:
"If someone offers you money for your company, walk away and think about what really matters. Money - how much do you want? Do you want to continue working in the company and if so, how does that look? Where do you want your company to be based? Who do you want your boss to be? Ask yourself all kinds of questions to allow yourself to really think about what's important to you."
Chris said, armed with that self-awareness, then go back and negotiate on your terms. He said there's no better negotiator than an engineer because they have no filter. They just tell it like it is. I agree, having grown up around so many. That's why we get along - we're both blunt.:)
What I hope every young investor will heed is this next bit of advice too. "Good investors are in the service business." Chris says he gets involved in companies to help and as long as he's helping he sticks around. He probably got more involved with Twitter than they liked at first, but when he was dragged into investing the initial $25,000 he invested, he didn't have that money to lose and wanted them to succeed which is why he was so hands on.
Now, not as much, but he continues to buy Twitter stock because he feels it's the next Google. Interesting, eh? I love smart people.:)
He also said, along those lines, a VC's role is to "empower the entrepreneur" not to be the star and take credit for stuff. It's like when a publicist jumps into every promo shot with their client on the red carpet - I hate that because it's not about the publicist, it should be about the client, just like it's not about the VC either.
Are you listening to us? STOP WITH THE SELF ADULATION.
What I also enjoyed learning is how Chris thinks about Twitter. He says the real value is in the community, the users, and it's created a venue where people communicate. So sparse and simple, it's all about what's not there vs. what it's like on Facebook. Or as Eric Schmidt, whom he quoted regarding Twitter, says, "It's the poor man's email."
Chris, having worked for years at Google, also said, "Twitter is an art problem. Google fails at social because they don't get art." Isn't that interesting? That's why even though Blogger is among the top something of websites, Google has never put money or energy into it. They don't care. They're more about the science than the look.
The part of the evening that really quieted the room, which by the way, was standing room only in a space designed to fit about 500 maybe, correct me if I'm wrong, was when Chris shared how much more people matter than money and holding grudges. You could have heard a pin drop then and also when he said he went from 12 million profit to 4 million in debt over night.
It's life lessons like these that make powerful people resonate with their audiences. He shared how someone in Silicon Valley had once betrayed his confidence and he held a grudge for years after, even ignoring his emails when that guy wrote to tell him he was going to bike ride cross country like Chris had done in 2009, in essence, "joining his tribe" as Chris so eloquently stated.
Then recently he learned this same guy was in an accident while riding and did a face plant at 27 mph and is now in a coma. It's made him ask, how meaningful can it be? He may still hold grudges, but it's so shallow. He passionately said, "People matter more than an investment in a company that isn't even around any more."
It was so deep there for a moment, even Chris said, can we get back to talking about the fun stuff. I think it was important for him to share this though because I know so many people who hold grudges, myself included, and I find once I let it go, I'm so much freer. It's just not worth it people. Friendships should always matter more than money.
Or politics for that matter. Get over it. That's me, not Chris saying that part.:)
Some other great words of wisdom Chris shared is don't let you inbox dictate your day. Be on the offense and look at your To Do list before your email. Make what you feel is important, your priority, not what others think is important via their email.
He also shared how he invites people over to his home for the weekend to get to know them better on a whole other level since he moved to Truckee and counts many of those people as his closest friends. He moved because he was running out of excuses on why he couldn't go to coffee with people. LOL
He told us he was inviting so many programmers over at one time, it got to be too much and took the money he would have spent on an office and bought the house next door to host them now, calling it Camp LowerCase (lowercase?:) which I thought was brilliant.
Chris loves helping people and said, he wants to be obsolete by Series B. He's not on any boards, he just helps them get things going and likes to fund opportunistically, under the radar. Now he's focusing on the intersection between tech and media.
My alarm is set to go off now telling me it's time to wake up which ends conveniently at the same time I have wrapped up my blog. I hope some of my blog helps you with your startup, your life, and your goals because after hearing Chris, and everything he's accomplished, I believe anything is possible with hard work, dedication, drive, ambition, and focus.
Have a great day! I leave you with this fun shot of the door prize he gave to the person who came the farthest...
Here's the official blurb: "SXSWedu supports innovations in learning for education practitioners, industry leaders and policy makers who share a passion for modernizing learning from early childhood to higher education in both formal and informal environments. Join the SXSWedu community March 4-7 in Austin, Tx, for four days of compelling presentations and events."
After researching business books and trying to find leadership topics related to the creative fields, I created this panel because of the lack of information available. I felt my colleagues and I could add value to colleges, policy makers and institutions seeking diversity in business learning and leadership because entrepreneurship crosses all disciplines.
Our audience: Educators in Business, Music, and Liberal Arts, university professionals looking for unique speakers to come talk to their students, industry leaders, entrepreneurs and anyone interested in learning from experts in music marketing, promotion, branding, social media and creative leadership.
Focusing on music due to SXSW's overall emphasis on music, and my working on a book for musicians, I invited two of my book contributors, Michael and Rich, to participate because I liked the mix of rock-n-roll and country perspectives.
Here's our bios in case you're not familiar with our names and background:
Brandvold is a
freelance music industry consultant based in Northern California. He launched
Michael Brandvold Marketing to leverage his years of experience to provide
direction to large and small clients in the areas of online & social
marketing, as well as, e-commerce and customer acquisition and retention.
Gene Simmons of KISS first tapped
Michael’s skills as a pioneering online marketing strategist to launch and
manage all aspects of Kissonline.com’s multi-million dollar enterprise,
including their ground-breaking VIP ticket program.
Michael has also managed the online efforts for Dream Theater, Andy
Gibson, Greg Kihn, Motley Crüe, Rod Stewart, Madonna,Ozzy Osbourne, Madonna and
Britney Spears to name only a few.
Rich Redmondhas toured/recorded/performed with a 'who's who' of recording artists
including Jason Aldean, Miranda Lambert, Lit, Ludacris, Luke Bryan, Eric
Church, Keith Urban, Bryan Adams, Jewel, The Pointer Sisters, Rushlow, Pam
Tillis, Gene Watson, Doc Walker, Deana Carter, Jedd Hughes, Trace Adkins, Hank
Williams III, Mindy McCready, Robbie Nevil, The Stellas, and Doc Walker to name
Currently the drumming powerhouse
behind country superstar Jason Aldean, Rich plays to millions of fans per year
and has appeared numerous times on such shows as American Idol, Ellen, The Late
Show with David Letterman, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Tonight Show
with Conan O’Brien, The Late Show with Jimmie Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel Live, among
Rich recorded all the drums and percussion on Jason’s 5 records,
selling millions of units and producing 11 #1 hits. Rich’s ‘song-friendly’
drumming style, infused with a true rock-n-roll spirit has led to these records
being regarded as a unique voice in Nashville’s musical landscape.
marketing efforts have also successfully enhanced search engine optimization
(SEO), increased attendance at events and developed business and media opportunities
on behalf of clients in entertainment, travel, technology, and fashion, as well
as, in promoting and supporting numerous political candidates and social
has presented classes and produced seminars on social media at The Musicians
Institute, American Cinematheque, and at conferences throughout the US.
Now that you know who we are, please vote to help us be selected: <
All the details are available once you click, but here they are again too:
With personal examples from their successful careers
running creative businesses in the music industry, each panelist will share what
being an entrepreneur has taught them and how they would pass that information on
to future generations; how they learned how to lead a team of creatives; and how
musicians use their creative leadership in bands. They will also discuss how
they developed the out-of-the-box strategies that guide their careers and those
they work with, and what they do to teach others those same skills.
Questions it will answer
How do creative people lead? What makes them successful?
How do they appeal to a creative audience? What sets their style apart from
traditional leadership styles? What do they do differently in branding,
marketing and social media than other business professionals?
Doesn't this sound cool?:) Wouldn't you want to learn what we will present? It's cool to see one of my goals moving forward which I hope you will support by voting.
In case you can't find anything on TV you want to watch, or have no plans and are just chilling looking for something innovative and unique to watch online, look no further. Received this information from a couple of publicists awhile ago and have been meaning to share it with you for quite some time.
You haven't missed out though because the show was created with the ability for an audience to create their own playlists, to group character story arcs, geography, chronology, etc and curate content on your own Youtube pages/social media.
It's completely non-linear and each of the 48 five-minute episodes can be watched in any order.
Isn't that cool?
The series takes viewers on a journey into an apocalyptic future where technology has begun to spiral out of control and 33% of the world give up cell phones and laptops in favor of a stunning new device by H+ Nano Teoranta, an innovative technology company that connects the internet to the human mind 24 hours a day.
I would never do this, but I know some tech heads who might find it fun.:)
As mentioned earlier, H+ is created, written and executive produced by John Cabrera (“Gilmore Girls”). What's cool about the YouTube format, is that it allows for viewers to have direct contact and conversation with John as they are watching.
Don't ask me how, just try it!:) Here's the trailer to give you a taste. It's really, really well done!
The Miami native graduated from DePaul University with a degree in Acting and co-founded the theater company “Collaboraction” and was awarded the Joseph Jefferson Award Citation for Best Actor in a Supporting Role.
Cabrera also wrote and directed web series “The Homes” an indie rock musical road trip starring Chelsea Kane. In his spare time, Cabrera is an avid rock climber and has a background in computer programming and design which garners him respect in the social media digital universe.
I know I'm impressed, aren't you? What's fun for me with this series, is that Bryan Singer had a short film in my short film festival years ago and it's exciting to see people I knew back in the day continue to succeed. I wish them both much success with this show.
Fans can subscribe to the “H+ The Digital Series” channel on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/HPlusDigitalSeries). Viewers have access to exclusive content which provides insight into the origins of "HPlus" and details about this ambitious and innovative digital series. Leave me a comment and tell me what you think about it ok?
Atlanta, GA Normally held the third Friday of every month, Likemind Atlanta’s informal gathering of creatives in all industries will be held December 2 from 8am - 9:15am at Octane Coffee + Little Tart Bakeshop. Likemind Atlanta is sponsored by School of Humans, a multi-platform entertainment studio, located in Decatur, GA.
The gathering is co-hosted by School of Humans' Head of Branded Content and Digital Media, Brandon Barr, a digital storyteller with a wealth of experience in the digital media, advertising and network broadcast worlds, and Chris Wojda, director of brand planning at Definition 6.
Likemind is a casual, once-a-month coffee gathering of creative professionals in all industries which currently meets in over 50 cities worldwide. Likemind caters to young professionals in advertising, media and design who are products of the age of personal blogs, warts-and-all YouTube videos and viral marketing. Likemind Atlanta meetings are held the third Friday of every month through May at Octane Coffee + Little Tart Bakeshop, move to Steady Hand Pour House near Emory during the summer, and then over to Octane Coffee Westside in the Fall.
School of Humans create, write and produce awesome shows, narratives, and films, sometimes with an equally-awesome brand partner baked right into the heart of the story; this entertainment is then spread across multiple channels: broadcast, online video, the social web, mobile — anywhere audiences gather. They call it the human channel.
This morning I attended the 20th Annual High Tech Prayer Breakfast which they claim as the largest networking event in Atlanta, GA with 1600 people in attendance and also, the earliest, beginning at 6am till 9am (I've been up since 4:30am to get there on time.:)
I had no idea what to expect, but since my friend, Curt Cain of iHealth Technologies, Inc., had invited me, I wanted to attend. We grew up in the same church in Manhattan Beach, CA and recently re-acquainted when he and his wife invited other CA "ex-pats" to a dinner this past week.
I have always felt a sense of family with other Christians because no matter how much time passes, there's a spiritual bond which ties us together no matter where we are, or what has happened. I really don't know how some people get through life without a spiritual component to their lives when I find such encouragement, support, and Godly love in my Christian life experiences. I know I couldn't make it living out here in Georgia without my faith in God and Christian friends.
This morning's prayer breakfast was very inspiring to me on many levels as a result.
Back home in Los Angeles I have attended numerous tech conferences, networking mixers, seminars, and parties, and not once have I ever seen a spiritual aspect included. What a refreshing difference to meet CEO's, CFO's, Venture Capitalists, CTO's and more who are also following God and willing to be visible in this public realm by inviting men and women who have never heard the gospel to attend.
In light of Steve Jobs' passing, who I consider one of America's most brilliant innovators, it was very moving to hear Keynote Speaker, Walt Wilson, speak. He had been an early employee of Apple serving as the Managing Director of U.S. operations "as the company grew from just a start-up to a globally-recognized corporation with $5 billion in revenues."
Talk about a powerful way to start the day!
The host committee had gathered together to pray for Steve, his family and the prayer breakfast the night before when they heard the news of Steve Jobs' death. Walt said he had prepared a speech a few months back, but threw it all out at 3am. He had planned to share what it was like working in Silicon Valley, working at Apple and his career, but felt what he had originally prepared wasn't appropriate after last night.
Walt called Steve "My Boss, my Mentor, and my Friend" who had a thirst for excellence and never measured his success by market share. He said Steve always wanted to the be BMW of the tech world and then revealed BMW really only held a 3% market share which was surprising to hear.
What set Apple apart is it was always about computing, not the computers. It was about advancing technology more than anything else. Walt said Steve didn't care what anyone on Wall Street thought, or anyone else for that matter, which drew a laugh from the crowd. Walt also shared Steve always protected his family from his own celebrity which I admire.
Walt shared only one personal anecdote of his experience working with Steve because it was difficult to speak so recently of someone he obviously cared deeply about. I would quote it, but want to preserve some of privacy of the breakfast.
However, I will share with you briefly Walt's story because it was fascinating to learn he had only graduated high school and served in the United States Marine Corps for three years which must have been great preparation for working alongside Steve Jobs.:)
He is currently "the founder and chairman of Internet ministry Global Media Outreach (GMO). He was previously co-founder, chairman and CEO of Exclaim Technologies, Inc., an applications service provider in the business-to-business Internet market. Before that, he served as senior vice president and corporate officer of the consulting group Computer Sciences Corp. (CSC), a $16 billion, U.S. global corporation with 600 offices worldwide, employing over 100,000 people."
I've been meeting more CEO's and influential people here in Georgia faster than ever happened in CA. Hard to believe I've really only been here a little over two months after all.:)
Have to admit though, although these other speakers were fantastic, informative and entertaining, this morning's breakfast spoke to me on a deeper level due to the spiritual component. When you consider Steve Jobs Stanford Commencement Address on living and know he died last night, it really puts life into perspective.
"Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life," he said.
"Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart."
Here is his speech in its entirety because it's so powerful:
As Walt continued to speak, he challenged us to think about where we will spend eternity. If you died today do you know? He reminded us of the verses, Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord." and John 3:17 "For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved."
If you've wanted a fresh start, forgiveness of your sins, or simply to surrender your life to God because whatever you're doing isn't working, please consider asking Him into your life. He will answer you when you call upon Him. "Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you." I Peter 5:7 and “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10:13
I hope you do, but if you don't now, know God is there whenever you need him. I can tell you He has brought me through so much. I was personally touched to learn Steve Jobs was adopted since I'm a birthmother who has a 12 year old son I placed in adoption at birth. It was one of the hardest experiences to live through in my entire life.
When I see TV shows like Parenthood which recently mocked the sacredness of this experience in an episode called, "Hey, if you're not using that baby;" or see Glee's portrayal of a birthmother plotting to get her adopted baby back; or hear Grey's Anatomy recently wove an abortion subplot into their storyline, it grieves my spirit.
"As a birthmother of a twelve year-old son I placed in adoption at birth, I was shocked and devastated to see one of the main characters asking a teen-age mother if she could, “Buy your baby.”
I admire how sensitively Jason Katims has handled Asperger and am writing to request he and his staff present adoption in the same sensitive manner. Children in adoption are not bought and sold. They are not cavalierly “given” away. They are thoughtfully, painfully, delicately “placed” with a family a birthmother considers will offer a better life for their child they feel they cannot offer at the time of their pregnancy.
Please consider the ramifications of treating a human life so callously. Parenthood has the opportunity to present a side of adoption rarely seen on TV if done correctly. I would strongly urge Jason and all those involved with the success of this show to consider researching adoption through such resources as: www.birthmothers.org and www.adoption.com before writing any further episodes."
I have yet to hear a response and have avoided other episodes because that one was too painful. But to those in entertainment who write stories about adoption and/or abortion, consider this thought if you will...
What would the world be like if Steve Jobs' birthmother chose to abort him rather than choose adoption? He has impacted all our lives and he's just one of many talented, creative people who was adopted.
Here's a list of more famous adoptees and birthparents I bet you didn't know about:
Notice the list of birthparents is much shorter? There is so much stigma surrounding adoption perpuated by past and recent Television shows, and the media, which I hope will change soon. Use the resources I mentioned in my letter, adoption.com and birthmothers.org to write truthfully about us please.
It's also time we acknowledge there are three choices when faced with unplanned pregnancy, not just two - abort or be a single parent.
If Steve Jobs adoptive parents hadn't first adopted him and then supported, loved and encouraged his individuality just think how all our lives would be different today. Embrace the third choice and allow Steve Jobs passing to signify more than just his technological advancements, but also the power of love.
Because when it all boils down to it, every human needs to feel loved. Even those who are unwanted, unplanned, or inconvenient.
Give life, give love a chance.... Adoption is a choice too. It's extremely painful, but you get through it and your child then has the opportunity to be a world changer, perhaps another Steve Jobs. You never know, right?
And that's all she wrote. Have a great day. I was planning to cover the Driven Music Conference, but felt compelled to share this with you first after my experience this morning.
20th Annual High Tech Prayer Breakfast, Andy Berlin, Andy Kaufman, Anthony Williams, Apple, Aristotle, Art Linkletter, Atlanta, BMW, Bo Diddley, Buffy Sainte-Marie, CA, Carl Theodor Dreyer, Charlotte Anne Lopex, Chris Morocco, Christians, Christina Crawford, Clarissa Pinkola Estes, Clark Gable, Computer Sciences Corp, Crazy Horse, Curt Cain, D.M.C., Dan O'Brien, Daunte Culpepper, Dave Drabik, Dave Thomas, David Crosby, Debbie Harry, Edgar Allen Poe, Edward Albee, Eleanor Roosevelt, Eric Dickerson, Exclaim Technologies, Faith Daniels, Faith Hill, Faith Ireland, Fine Line Productions, Freddie Bartholomew, GA, George Washington Carver, Georgia Production Partnership, Glee, Global Media Outreach, God, Greg Louganis, Grey's Anatomy, Hank Williams, I Peter 5:7, iHealth Technologies, Inc, Inc, Inc, Inc., Ira Schreck of Schreck Rose Dapello Adams & Hurwitz, James MacArthur, James Michener, Jason Katims, Jean Jacques Rousseau, Jesse Jackson, Jesus, Jett Williams, Jim Palmer, John 3:17, John Hancock, John J. Audobon, John Lennon, Joni Mitchell, Kate Mulgrew, Langston Hughes, Larry Ellison, Lee Majors, Leo Tolstoy, Les Brown, LLP, Lynnette Cole, Malcolm X, Manhattan Beach, Mark Acre, Matthew Laborteaux, Melissa Gilbert, Mercedes Ruehl, Michael Reagan, Michael Tavani, Moses, Nancy Reagan, Nat King Cole, Nelson Mandela, Parenthood, Patrick Labyorteaux, Peter & Kitty Carruthers, Petrus Brands, Planet Smoothie, President Bill Clinton, President Gerald Ford, Priscilla Presley, Ray Liotta, Reno, Romans 10:13, Romans 6:23, Roseanne Barr, Sarah McLachlan, Scott Hamilton, Scoutmob, Sean Cook, Sen. Paull H. Shin, Sen. Robert Byrd, Shane's Rib Shack, Shop Visible, Silicon Valley, Sr., Stanford Commencement Address, Steve Jobs, Strom Thurmond, Surya Bonaly, Tim Green, Tim McGraw, Tom Monaghan, Tommy Davidson, United Healthcare, United States Marine Corps, Victoria Rowell, Wall Street, Walt Wilson, Wilson Riles
Normally when I attend conferences I take dictation and microblog what the speakers are saying while they are speaking. I couldn't do that while moderating which is why I'm very happy to share the Musicians Institute's comprehensive blog coverage of all the speakers on April 7th's social media panel which addressed viral marketing with videos, live concerts utilizing StageIt, YouTube, Facebook, personal vs. professional publicity and so much more.
Click the picture below to be stunned and amazed at the wisdom coming from these mere mortals with extreme talent, creativity and intelligence:
I'm in the camp of Jingle Punks where you can combine fun in business and life. Those who think those two can't work together, guess you haven't read Richard Branson's bio. You know, the Virgin Atlantic CEO, right?
Audio Runner, bloggers, Brad Bogus, Britton Sparkman, Business, Chef Jack Harding, Clean Street Food, Concert Hall, Dlvr.it, Facebook, Foursquare, GAGA Sports & Entertainment, Geo-Location, Hootsuite, Hunter Scott, Jingle Punks, Joseph Yi, Joy A. Kennelly, La Famos PR & Branding, Mobile, Music, Musicians Institute, New Music, Red Circle Underground, RewardMe, Richard Branson, RocketHub, Social Media, Speak Social, StageIt, Tweetdeck, Twitter, Virgin Atlantic, Whrrl, YouTube
The Joy Writer and the Musicians Institute are pleased to announce more panelists are confirmed to speak at the Social Media Seminar Series 2011. The five-part instructional seminar series is designed to teach the how-to’s of social media and online marketing.
Each hour and a half program, moderated by Social Media Expert, Joy Kennelly, will focus on the basics of the social networking tools currently available and feature panels with high-profile entertainment industry executives and technology experts discussing how to utilize current social media platforms, upgrade social media skills and how to brand and market your company, your label or yourself online.
The seminars will be held Thursday’s April 7 and 21, May 5 and 19, and June 2, 2011, from 7:30 to 9pm in the Concert Hall of the Musicians Institute located at 6752 Hollywood Boulevard, Hollywood, California 90028.
> April 21 How to Utilize Facebook and the differences between Personal Pages, Groups, and Fan Pages, as well as Privacy & Protocol issues. Attendees will learn how to best utilize the largest social media platform in the world while incorporating other social networking sites into it to maximize their exposure.
Social Media & Marketing Solutions Manager – GAGA Sports & Entertainment / VP Marketing – RewardMe, Joseph Yi specializes in brand management and digital strategies Follow @joseph_yihttp://josephayi.com
> May 5 Twitter and Twitter Time Management Tools including TweetDeck, Hootsuite and others. Panelists will analyze who to follow, how to develop an audience, what to tweet, and why Twitter is important for artists, companies and self promotion.
COO/Executive Producer/Host, TechZulu.com, Amanda Coolong, is recognized nationally as an online media company covering technology brands and the personalities behind them. Follow @acoolong http://techzulu.com
President/CEO, DashGo, Inc., Benjamin Patterson, a leading digital distribution and marketing firm. Clients include Weezer, Delicious Vinyl, Coconut Records, Time Records, Rock Mafia and Next New Networks among others. Follow @dashgohttp://dashgo.com
> May 19 Blogging with Bloggers and others as they discuss the various platforms available (Wordpress, Typepad, Tumblr, Posterous), styles, audience building and blog marketing tips.
Blogger, Author, Advertising Copywriter and Brand Consultant, Black Conseco's clients include Ford Focus and the Rock + Roll Hall of Fame, Absolut, RedBull, Mercedes Benz and more. Follow @blackcanseco http://hustleknockin.com
Founder/Online Programming Producer, Special Purpose Media,Josh Brooks, is a former talent manager and digital executive; co-founded Fanscape.com, and specializes in Mobile Strategy/Mobile Development Follow @JoshBrooks
Billy Johnson Jr., Journalist & Author has covered hip-hop, R&B and pop music for such influential publications as Vibe, Entertainment Weekly, The Hollywood Reporter and more. His Yahoo Music Hip Hop Media Training Blog averages 4 million hits per month. Follow @y_billyjohnson http://new.music.yahoo.com/blogs/hiphopmediatraining/
> June 2 Geo-Location Marketing and how to establish, engage and utilize FourSquare, Whrrl, with a wrap-up of all other popular social networking sites available in marketing & promoting artists, events and venues.
Managing Partner of TAG Strategic, Ted Cohen is a former Senior VP of Digital Development and Distribution for EMI Music, and popular speaker on all things music and tech. Follow @spinaltaphttp://tagstrategic.com
Co-Founder/CEO Rock Prodigy, Former Marketing Director, Guitar Center, Harold Lee, recently received an Appy Award for Education, was named “What’s Hot” by Apple, and broke into the Top 10 Free Music IPad apps in eighth week of operation (June 2)
Award-winning Social Media Strategist/Personal Publicist, Joy Kennelly’s social media marketing expertise includes a page one Google blog, working with Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Hootsuite and over 100 regional online marketing sites to enhance search engine optimization (SEO), increase attendance at events, and develop business on behalf of clients in entertainment, travel, technology, fashion, and politics.
Joy’s clients have included Actress Yari De Leon (“The Lincoln Lawyer”), VOX DJs, the Los Angeles Convention & Visitors Bureau, Chef David Linville, the Shore Restaurant & Lounge, Filmmaker and Grammy Award winning Musician, Damien Earl Matthias, Actor Domiziano Arcangeli, the Original Long Beach Lobster Festival, Fine Artist Gali Rotstein, the American Institute of Architects, and more. She has presented classes and seminars on social media at Musicians Institute, American Cinematheque, and at conferences throughout the United States.
Since 1977, Musicians Institute has been a world leader in contemporary music education, providing cutting-edge resources in its state of the art facilities located right in the heart of Hollywood, the capital of the world music industry. Its dynamic curriculum is current, comprehensive and compatible with the needs of students who not only desire to study music, but also build a career in the music industry with the knowledge they learn on-campus. Over 6,000 students and alumni have passed through the school.
The mission of the Artist and Career Services Department (ACS) is to keep students informed of the many professional opportunities available in the music industry, help prepare them to take advantage of these opportunities, and make the transition from student to working professional as smooth as possible. ACS assists in obtaining internships and professional placement for both students and graduates. Among other benefits, the office maintains a list of recording and rehearsal facilities, local clubs, management and promotional agencies, major and independent labels, and other establishments and services that are important to music professionals.
"America's Most Promising Startups", Absolut, Actor Domiziano Arcangeli, Actress Yari De Leon (“The Lincoln Lawyer”), Advertising Copywriter and Brand Consultant, Amanda Coolong, American Cinematheque, and Fan Pages, Apple, Appy Award, Audio Runner Band Member, Author, Benjamin Patterson, Black Conseco, Blogger, Blogging with Bloggers, Blogs, Brad Bogus, brand management, Business Week, Chef David Linville, Coconut Records, Concert Hall, Damien Earl Matthias, DashGo, Delicious Vinyl, Digital Media Wire's list of 25 Execs to Watch in Digital Entertainment for 2011, digital strategies, Education, EMI Music, Evan Lowenstein, EventBrite, Facebook, Facebook, Filmmaker and Grammy Award winning Musician, Fine Artist Gali Rotstein, Ford Focus, FourSquare, GAGA Sports & Entertainment / VP Marketing, Geo-Location, Geo-Location Marketing, Groups, Guitar Center, Harold Lee, Hollywood, Hootsuite, Hootsuite, Hunter Scott, Inc., Jared Gutstadt, Jingle Punks, Joseph Yi, Josh Brook, Joy A. Kennelly, La Famos, Linkedin, Marketing Solutions, Mercedes Benz, MI, Mobile Development, Mobile Strateg, Musicians Institute, MySpace, Next New Networks, Personal Pages, Posterous, Privacy & Protocol, Recording Artist, RedBull, ReverbNation, RewardMe, Rock + Roll Hall of Fame, Rock Mafia, Rock Prodigy, RocketHub, Social Media, Social Media Architect, Social Media Seminar Series 2011, Speak Social, Special Purpose Media, Stageit, SXSW performer, TAG Strategic, TechZulu.com, Ted Cohen, Terra Naomi, the American Institute of Architects, The Joy Writer, the Los Angeles Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Original Long Beach Lobster Festival, the Shore Restaurant & Lounge, Time Records, Tumblr, TweetDeck, Twitter, Twitter, Twitter Time Management Tools, Typepad, Vladimir Vukicevic, VOX DJs, Weezer, What's Hot, Whrrl, Wordpress, YouTube
It's been a crazy few weeks. Had to find and buy a car, find and move into a new place, and started teaching Social Media & Fan Management at the Musicians Institute.
Whew! All good though. Very happy with all the positive changes in my life. Now I'm prepping to attend BlogWorld if all goes well.
Social Media Optimization Summits continued
Finally have a moment to write more about my experience in Dallas and Los Angeles surrounding Social Media conferences I spoke during and attended. Here's a link back to Part 1 in case you've forgotten what I wrote before: http://bit.ly/aGqhaT
Wait! It's already there.:) Well, what do you know....Trust me, this strategy works. It's extremely time consuming, but definitely worth it.
Oh, before I get too much into everything, here's a fun video of the tech company I worked for during the summer called Shopzilla. Know it?
Cool group of people and brilliant tech business. Here's the employees and management as you've probably never seen them before. lol I enjoyed seeing all the people/friends I made goofing around in this.
Everyone really is that fun to be around too. My former boss, Robin, is the rocker chick and my buddy, Britton, is rocking out with her around 1 minute in. He's part of the talented band Red Circle Underground so this "acting" came naturally.:)
Here's just one of the fun monthly company-wide activities I worked on while I was there. All the children of employees in the company were given art supplies to create Shopzilla posters. Other times I worked on a huge Mexican Fiesta, a Carnival complete with a live camel and a beach party.
I love tech companies.:) Always have, always will.
Here's a few examples of the kid's design creativity of Shopzilla's logo, and what they received as a gift for participating.
Adorable, eh? I wish I could have stayed on, but they needed someone with Human Resources experience which I don't have, nor ever want to learn. LOL
Great company though... One I admire and wish well!
The Joule in Dallas, TX
I had the privilege of staying at The Joule, in the heart of Downtown Dallas, as their guest during the Social Media Optimization Summits which was absolutely delightful. I highly recommend this hip, boutique hotel as a central location for anyone doing business in Dallas, looking for an excellent restaurant to entertain guests, host an event poolside or inside privately, or attend a hip nightclub to dance and socialize.
Here's a quick peek into why I enjoyed my stay so much:
My beautifully appointed room.
The Joule's beautiful poule high up in the city offers great views. A very popular happy hour venue too.
These two professional pictures were provided by The Joule. The others are mine. Please don't use without permission.
Wine shop on-site in the entryway to the delicious Charlie Palmer restuarant. Click their name to see some of the cuisine, learn about the chef and the venue. My dessert was delicious and just the right size.
Here's some professional shots of the Joule Penthouse & PM Nightlife Lounge. For more information and to review even more images, please click on the links.
They're both so opulent and you'll love what you see! I was very impressed with my experience there and give it a 4.5 star rating.:)
My Quick Dallas Tour
Every time I travel to a conference or Food & Wine Festival, I like to take in some of the local sites to gain a better idea of what the city is about above and beyond the event I'm attending. This trip was no different. Every moment I had free, I walked, rode the metro, or explored because I love traveling and having new experiences.
Similar to LA's Downtown, Dallas streets were rather empty of people walking around, but I never felt unsafe. I only wish I had more time since there's a few museums and art galleries I would have liked to see.
But that's for another trip. Enjoy my visual essay. I will write up the Social Media Optimization Summits Conference next because I took notes and want to share now that I finally have the time.
and Leveraging New Opportunities to Boost Your Brand, Annual Long Beach Oktoberfest, Beyond Facebook, Combining, Dallas, Fan Management, John Forrester & Associates, Joy A. Kennelly, Musicians Institute, Shopzilla, Social Media, Social Media Optimization Summits, The Joule, Twitter and LinkedIn: Introducing, TX
After recently experiencing poor leadership in an organization, I began a search to discover what quantifies great leadership and what qualities are common among those who are great leaders.
I focused in on creative leaders and how they lead because of my personal entertainment and fashion background and my own perspective as a leader.
That, and watching the fun times Bret Michaels and Sharon Osbourne had working together on their Celebrity Apprentice Team projects which helped me realize they are leaders even though they don't fit the corporate world's mold of leadership. They actually have fun doing what they're doing which is my main motivation in everything I do too.
This will be a series of posts on some of the things I've learned thus far on those who are successful in branding themselves as leaders others should follow.
My first stop was Borders where I researched the top selling leadership, marketing and success gurus. What I discovered was there were a few prolific authors who rose to the top of this genre like Seth Godin, Robin Sharma, and John C. Maxwell to name a few.
Because I've been tested reading 900 words a minute and am a voracious reader whose personal library would quickly outgrow anywhere I live, I then went to the library to check out books by these men.
I don't know if its gender bias, or if female leadership books fall into a different section of the bookshelf, but I found it interesting there weren't that many, or any, in the leadership category.
I've always worked best with men so it doesn't bother me too much not to read some fluffy female's perspective, but I am still curious to hear if there are any female leadership books out there! Sorry ladies, you know some of you can be fluffy and all warm & cozy don't deny it. lol
My dad wanted boys growing up so we were raised completely different than most little girls and as a result are very independent socially, mentally and relationally. Plus, living and traveling overseas as a child apparently affects the way I look at things too according to Third Culture Kid research.
Or maybe even more telling, we didn't have a TV in the house until I was a Junior in High School and only then because I won it selling the most candy bars (with my sister's help) in a school contest. Not being bombarded by commercials and other society programming of what a girl is supposed to be in your formative years does tend to make you think differently than the average female living in the US I'm learning.
That said, if any of you reading this have any recommendations for female leadership books, please leave a comment as I would love to hear. I am a woman after all and do love learning from everyone.
Moving right along.
After collecting a stack of books to read and starting to read them, I then began searching for others who exhibited leadership qualities with something to say in the online realm in this regard as that's an area of focus for me also as a Social Media Strategist.
The guy who stood out to me immediately was Personal Branding Guru, Dan Schawbel. I'm sure there are others, but his profile and information caught my eye because of his age and his command of personal branding in the corporate world and online space.
In addition to reading and watching webinars, I also plan to start interviewing creative leaders in fashion, entertainment, food, and publishing which should be very interesting. I've also been invited to interview influential Hermosa Beach residents for Patch Hermosa which I'll announce here once they're published.
So, in the ensuing posts I'll be sharing what I've learned thus far and what I know about creative leadership having helped numerous people create their own personal brands as Actors, Fine Artists, Screenwriters, Filmmakers and others.
I'm breaking it up into separate posts because there's a lot of content and I want to give you a more in-depth analysis without overwhelming you with content.
Bret Michaels, creative, Dan Schwabel, John C. Maxwell, Joy A. Kennelly, Leadership, marketing, Patch Hermosa, Robin Sharma, Seth Godin, Sharon Osborne, success, The Celebrity Apprentice, Third Culture Kid
I belong to Peter Shankman's online community for media professionals and found his presentation at the Executing Social Media Conference very interesting. So much so, I'm giving you the link to all the conference presenters to allow you to keep up on trends in the internetsphere also.
You might see some names you recognize if you're into this sort of thing. Click here.
We rule.:) Always disappoints me though to see how few females are represented at these conferences and that those who are have kind of lame presentations because they come from such a limited point of view since they work within a corporate environment. I may be generalizing, but...
Where are the maverick internet women who are entrepreneurs and have their hands in numerous pots like me? Oh well. Maybe I should hire someone just to pitch me as a speaker. HA! I was honored as a Who's Who in Technology years back for my work producing Internet World's first (and only) online Media and Entertainment Festival in case you didn't know. I would give you the year, but I always forget which one is right (2000 or 2001?) and don't want to confuse you.
For awhile there I was getting so many awards/recognition it was hard to track (she says modestly waving a fan in front of her face because it's so dam hot in here.) JUST KIDDING! Not about the awards, just about being modest about it! LOL When you're good, you're good. HA!!! Notice it hasn't happened in a couple of years. That's to keep my head in check. :)
Oh on another note, by the way, all the photos of The Shore's food and table setting are courtesy of Nathan Schirmer, photographer for hire. If you need someone to take food shots of your restaurant or interiors, then please consider hiring him. He's got a great eye and is very cool to work with.
Let's see, what else? Oh, here's some fun pix from the weekend (can you tell I'm stalling? I'm waiting on someone to pick me up and it's going to be a bit before they arrive.) Pays to have VIP front row seats, eh? By the way, the U.S. creamed Barbados seven to zero if I remember correctly. Very exciting game! I used to play AYSO soccer as a young person and totally love the sport. I also love how patriotic everyone is. GO USA!!! Doncha love the flag shot? That's my money shot. All reproduction rights reserved by Joy A. Kennelly 2008.
AYSO, Executing Social Media Conference, Joy A. Kennelly, Media Entertainment Festival, Nathan Schirmer, Peter Shankman, The Joy Writer PR & Marketing, The Shore, US vs. Barbados, Who's Who in Technology
Click for the full story of how we came to use the infamous "Pitcher House Bar" as the location for filming. (Isn't it ironic that a HB bar that caused trouble has done something nice for some filmmakers. Restores my faith in humanity.:) jk)
Remember to daily vote for "Heinz Sight" until September 10th at:
Just received an email this morning which states,"We are pleased to welcome you as an inaugural member
of the National Academy of Media Arts & Sciences (NAMAS). NAMAS is a
peer group of prominent executives, technologists, and creative people working
in all forms of digital media including television, internet, newspapers, and
magazines, as well as technology, advertising, and production companies. It is
our mission to stimulate dialogue and exchange of ideas among the burgeoning
number of professionals and students active in the new media realm."
Isn't that cool? I'm very honored and feel my technology background is validated now. Nice to see they're allowing women - just kidding.:)
I'll share more later, but this is all for now...
Hope you're enjoying the absolutely gorgeous CA weather!
Entourage was great tonight! Totally cracks me up. Can you imagine hating someone so much and then being stuck working with them over and over again? I can't! This plot line is great - can't wait for next week.The drug scene was a little excessive though. I wouldn't doubt this type BS goes on in Hollywood, but I've been very fortunate never to be a part of it. Not my scene. At all.
Moving right along.
Met with my Blog/Zine Network group today which was interesting as usual. We had more new people join us (for some reason I'm having deja vu. Did I write this last month? Oy vey!) Learned some new blogging tips which is always helpful. That's why I started this particular blog with my "byline." We'll see what happens doing that. Just curious.
David Tandet of Frontline Writing had some interesting Web sites for us to review and utilize in the future. I would tell you, but then I'd have to shoot you since you haven't joined the group yet! Just kidding. But seriously, if you want to learn about blogging, join us. I'm going to start inviting more guest speakers to come and we'll all learn how to grow this type "business" together!
Bay Cities Community Church was good as always. Sometimes music just hits my spirit and today I was tearing up again. I can just see myself on stage crying occasionally if I do sing with the worship team, but hey, I'm an emotional person and music can hit your emotions. So! We shall see!
Enjoyed hitting Trilogy Spa Hermosa Beach today after church for a bit. Was supposed to have a friend join me, but she was upset I switched day spas on her last minute so she bailed. I felt really, really bad at first, but after enjoying the rain shower and the floating water bed experience, I was feeling no pain. I really like their mango coconut sugar scrub - I smell so yummy! Don'tcha wish you were here with me right now? I smell good enough to eat! LOL
I was feeling pretty good about myself after that treat. I guess it showed because men were real attentive to me at the smog place. I must buy more dresses! It's nice to be feminine, especially since it's been so hot.
Now to get up early and take care of business. Last night some of the drunk idiots either visiting people here, or who live here were talking loudly and trying to climb our back wall at 3am. The bastards. I almost yelled, but when I opened the window wider I think they got the hint and shut up. OY VEY! More drunken idiots in the South Bay. Oh well.
I know I'd hear drunks a lot in certain parts of Hollywood too, but I've just never lived near this type behavior before - lucky I guess. At least people haven't been doing their stupid "Woo Hoo" calls since I told one of my neighbors that whoever did that at 2 and 3am were asses. Word travels fast I guess. It's not Georgia's Rules - it's Joy's Rules. JUST KIDDING!
I just find it highly disrespectful to be loud and obnoxious when people living here have small children. Maybe those "Woo Hoo" people have moved out or something. Good.
I'll get off my soapbox now.
Life is good.
I love my place, love my pool, love my friends down here, and love the beauty of the South Bay.
I just love being able to drive down PCH and look over to see the ocean whenever I'm at a crossroads of streets. There's just something majestic about an endless ocean that goes off into the horizon.
Men Online More, But Still Influenced By Traditional Media
by Tameka Kee, Monday, Jun 18, 2007 6:00 AM ET
SOME 71% OF MEN AGES 18-34 spend more time online now than a year ago, according to Maxim's
latest annual Man Study--but a resounding 74% still felt that putting
an ad on TV would be the "most effective" way to get it seen by guys.
To commemorate its 10th anniversary, the men's magazine commissioned
research agency Hall & Partners to do an in-depth study of U.S.
men's media usage habits. The findings confirm that although men ages
18-34 have been characterized as "advertising averse," marketers can
still target them with entertaining, multi-channel messages.
While 83% of men surveyed said they watch less than 5 hours of
television per day, a clear majority (74%) would use TV as their
primary distribution channel if they had to create an ad themselves. A
little over half would target their demo with ads in magazines (56%) or
on the Web (55%), and only 17% would choose radio.
For ad content, 48% of Maxim
readers said they would use female models to target men, and 35% would
strive to make their ads funny. But while sex appeal and humor were
key, so was clearly defined product information--with almost 40% saying
they'd "focus on the product."
"If advertising is cool and relevant, this demo will give it the same
amount of attention that they give to any other form of content, and
they'll even send it to their friends," said Rob Gregory, group
For example, 30% of men surveyed said they "enjoyed using social
networking sites," and 26% said they regularly "forwarded content to
[their] friends online." The two factors combined illustrate the
growing importance of community-based online activity among 18-
to-34-year-old males, a bright spot for marketers seeking to leverage
"Advertisers are dealing with the most plugged-in generation in
history," said Gregory, "but this shows that the traditional methods
are still as viable as emerging media at reaching 18-
Still, the most successful brands have leveraged media companies like Maxim
to target men using a mix of print, online, and even mobile
content--highlighting "the increased viability of a 360-degree
approach," said Gregory.
Hi, If it's not one thing, it's been another and I've come to realize I won't be blogging my wrap-up of the OMMA conference after all. Since my car accident it's hard for me to concentrate for too long without painkillers and I'd rather just tell you what I learned than write about it if you don't mind. Sorry for the promise, but it has to be broken this time.
However, if you're around Beverly Hills tomorrow night and are still interested in hearing what we've learned, my Assistant Organizer, Thomas Griego, and myself, Organizer, of The Blog/Zine Network will be giving our OMMA wrap-up together at the
Bar Noir at Maison 140 at 7pm. The bar/hotel is located at 140 S. Lasky Beverly Hills, Beverly Hills
, CA 90212 ph: (310) 281-4000 if anyone cares to join us.
I also have programs of the conference I will be sharing with those interested. Hope you'll consider coming out. First visit to the group is free, any further visits require a $35 annual membership fee and give you access to the group's activities.
Otherwise, that's all for now. Thanks for dropping by. I did upload the De Hoghton Denim party concert (sorry no sound though) on youtube if you're looking for it still.