Every Interaction Is Opportunity Awaiting

Posts by Anthony

Readers, Ay!?

First off, just wanted to inquire, “How the heck are you?”  Secondly, I need to complete this post started last Wednesday at the airport on my way to #Mozcon, which was fcuking awesome…

All am I asking is when do dudes in their early thirties, fighting off middle age and ear hair, get to hang with brilliant younger guys in their twenties (Joel K and James A), rock late night with Bill Sebald,

or get to rock a snap bracelet for the first time since 1989, when the Coreys ruled the silver screen?

But I digress….

Last Wednesday, I was sitting in the Aspen airport, waiting for a flight to Denver then Seattle for #mozcon.  I was super stoked to  meet some people and learn more about them.

BE INTERESTED. The notion moves both ways.  Anthony Nelson introduces a point worthy of further exploration, questioning the value in a nondescript comment/reply from my former post.

“…I agree with the theory of replying to every comment on your site, but sometimes there is simply no valuable follow-up response avaialable. Constantly writing ‘thanks for commenting’ on your own blog puts you in-line with the guy who writes ‘nice post’ on everyone else’s.”

Readers/blog owners, do you leave a obligatory “thanks, homie/ette” when confronted with comments cut from similar heights of fervor?  Do you do nothing, hoping further comments be more plentiful, approachable?  Doing nothing is immediately inactive (says ‘captn’ obvious’).

Hmmm… you could engage in reflexive, knee-jerk-esque interaction…  We all do it. For instance, you walk in a coffee shop, maybe getting a coffee from a barista you never met….

They say, “How the heck are you?”

“Fine,” you half reply.

You get the obvious, ‘of course’ nature of the interaction taking place. It’s robotic and not fun.

Fcuk that.  I say, Fun.the.world.

FTW!  Let’s do things differently.  Let’s be more.  It’s an investment. When you are more, you get more.

Let’s consider a different chain of events.

They say, “Good morning!”

(They get your order.)

“So, what are you doing today?”

(Wait. What?)

Things are different now.  Kinda more exciting.  You can’t get by on a monotoned response. You could say, “Aw nuthin…..”


You could also sit in a corner all day flinging around feces. Let’s aspire, shall we?

I grabbed a coffee first getting to the airport.  The barista, Derrick, had an All-Star personality.  We could of had an obligatory interaction…but we didn’t.  Homeboy is from Illadelph (so am I); he aspires to have his own clothing company (he’s sending me a shirt); and, he inspired me to write this post as this concept was fresh in my head from my readers’ comments.

In short, we connected; he was curious; I was curious.  The curious seesaw worked well for us.

Im a curious dude. I can be quiet, but always curious.  Be curious of people even when they need some Curious-George-like help themselves… (How many times could I stuff curious in this post…)

The next time you choose to engage, whether initially or in response, think about the nature of your contribution. What kind of ‘place’ is the engagement headed?  If you get more by giving more,  how can you better the interaction?  Sometimes it’s as simple as thinking of how to position your response…  If you don’t want monotone replies, give people a reason to be more dynamic…

I really like Mya’s comment on my last post:

“…G+ shows where someone is located. For example, give them a “Thanks [person] for giving me feedback! I’m glad I have readers from all over, even from New Mexico:)”. Its short, you are appreciative, and you’re acknowledging that you have checked out their profile to see where they hail from.”

Great idea, Mya. Thank you for that!

One concept always tickling my inkling regarding marketing… is details. (Jenny Lam gave a phenomenal presentation on the importance of design, celebrating the ‘little things’ often.  Here is Gianluca’s recap of that event day.)

Little things matter.  Little things are sometimes the impetus for something much LARGER.  Savvy?  Make interactions count.

PS – I interviewed Chris Winfield of Blue Glass recently (Actually, Greg Boser did an awesome presentation focusing on BG at Mozcon.  I nervously shook Greg’s hand at one point (kudos if you’re reading this, Greg; it’s not easy to make me nervous) during the show and caught a glimpse of his Led Zeppelin t-shirt (so he obviously knows music as well as business.)) and really excited to be placing Chris’ answers here on my blog in the coming days…

Do you have a question for Blue Glass?  I did.  You should.  They’re kicking ass…   Save them for my next post.  Later, blog skaters!  Thanks for reading and be good.

Anthony Pensabene

9 thoughts on “Every Interaction Is Opportunity Awaiting

  1. “Be more.”

    Two words that define a mentality that can radically change interactions. Also, if you keep this up people are going to think I have more to offer humanity than my snarky, self-depreciating wit; that simply won’t do.

    You’re a good man, Pensabene.

    1. thanks for the read, Alessio. Wish you, some of the UK dudes, and others I’m a big fan of were there.. #thingstocome .. I have to hat tip Julie Joyce because her ragging on Rod Stewart lately inspired my smartass nature to send her a personal meme… then I got to thinking….

      1. yeah, Rod Stewart creates emotion, in a bad or wrong way, when he is protagonist or not in a speech between two people, or even more.
        I think at the end of the day we all can say Rod is the man (sorry Beatles, or Rolling Stones…)

        1. haha perhaps it’s difficult for some to swallow.. “Some guys have all the luck..”

  2. That can be a tall order…responding to comments that is more than the \”thanks for the comment\” line…..especially if there is really nothing to say. I would guess you could investigate the source and find commonality (as you say \”details\”) between yourself and the person to spur a bit more conversation.

    I have noticed you have a real keen sense of doing this….both in your tweets and in your comments. It\’s like you take the typical twitter automation that most people do (I\’m guilty of this as well) and throw it in the friggin\’ trashcan.

    I do know that it is the little things that affect people. Like when you remember their name or can talk about a past meeting (even if it is random) or personalize the conversation with something you know about them (how\’s the wife and kids?) or even shake their hand when you have no idea where you know them from but know you have met in the past.

    And when you jar someone out of the usual generic question/ generic response routine that we are so used to delivering, it is actually almost comical the looks. Because people aren\’t used to having to think about their response…..

    Back when I used to bar tend, a CEO frequented the establishment I worked in and he knew everyone\’s name who worked in the place. And if he didn\’t, he would ask me and try to commit it to memory. It means something to be recognized and it means something when the lines that typically separate ourselves from others are erased and we are just two people shooting the shit.

    I think marketers forget these little personalization tidbits or don\’t bother because you can\’t automate the response. But it makes a huge difference and in marketing terms can actually be the difference between someone remembering you and someone passing you over for a competitor. Because we usually buy from people we like.

    But it isn\’t really about marketing, I guess. It\’s about being truly interested in people\’s lives and actually noticing them for who they are….and acknowledging them as more than \”some guy I am selling stuff to…\” \” or some girl who is going to connect me to ____\”. As you say, it\’s about truly being interested (because usually, they are interesting.)

    1. haha tall order.. I heart Johnnie Black on the rocks.. yeah, it’s more of an attitude than every.single.time. application.. you bring up a lot of good points about affecting people.. people relations has existed as long as.. and online relations is still pretty young.. in leveraging a social media tool such as a blog, it’s wise to consider offline or human contact sentiments..

      I used a ‘party’ metaphor a few blogs back.. relations is much like an establishment, such as a bar. Obviously, personality and engagement can impact people. I can think of many examples of continuing patronage due to keen (thanks for that observation, Leo), amicable treatment..

      Getting to know things about people does make relations more interesting..you keep building. But coming to a circle..like you say, it’s not just about marketing. Marketing is a part of relations but not mutually inclusive.. It’s more about an attitude toward people in general, especially those who take interest directly..

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