As a rule, I try to hang around smart people. Especially, folks smarter than me. If you’re doing the math, that’s a lot of people. So I jumped at the opportunity to listen to and meet Gary Vaynerchuck the other day.
[Free beer from Lakefront Brewery was bonus. Hurry and try the Snake Chaser Irish Stout]
I sat right up front, off to the left (his right) but not in the front row. I was close yet safe from embarrassment. So I thought.
“Raise your hand if you remember life before the internet,” he asked. My arm shot up. I think I was the only one. This got Gary’s attention. “How old are you?”
I said, “36.” Then a reference to me having too much beer in college followed, which was funny. You had to be there.
Of course I remember life before the internet. I just don’t remember how things got done before then. Worse yet, I’m 37, not 36. D’oh!
What did one minute of low-level embarrassment teach me?
Get noticed and be memorable. That doesn’t mean jockeying for the center of attention. Just get someone’s attention and give that person a reason to remember you — tomorrow, next week or a year from now. That’s personal branding. Pro tip: execution is everything.
I didn’t plan to be noticed or memorable. But I should have. Maybe Gary Vaynerchuk will remember me the next time he’s in Milwaukee. He’ll ask, “Do you remember life before Twitter?” To that, I will say…