I respect and admire people I’ve never met. I respect LinkedIn founder, Silicone Valley investor and uber-smart guy Reid Hoffman though chances of meeting Reid are not good (he is busy and I don’t run with his pack of dogs). Sometimes I get to meet heroes and they exceed expectations. When I met the artist and personal hero Robert Rauschenberg he insisted I call him “Bob” so expectations were staggeringly exceeded. I met the photographer Annie Leibovitz and was so charmed it never occurred to us to ask Annie to take a picture of my ex and I since we were too busy taking pictures of her (she enjoyed the role reversal ) so hero expectations exceeded again.
This week I met Chaz Felix, Bronto’s Chief Operating Officer, whose creation makes Bronto the family I never knew I had (lol). Internet marketers think in very particular ways. We Internet marketers construct worlds much like Bob Rauschenberg from inspiration, found objects, feedback loops, dreams and desire. We want our worlds to move, dance and engage much like a Leibovitz photograph of the White Stripes (shown) or a pregnant Demi Moore. We want what we see so clearly in our head on the page and shaped by the love of a sharing mob.
Our desire for love isn’t ego as much as validation. We are never RIGHT or WRONG as much as surprised or not, intrigued or not, bored or not. If a tree falls in the Internet and no one cares is it art or solipsism. We don’t fail as much as fall forward. Internet marketing is the loneliness of the long distance runner, the horrible isolating pain of knowing one of life’s sacred truths – Love The One You Are With (to place my age firmly as BOOMER by quoting Stephen Stills).
Suddenly, unexpectedly and in a driving rain you feel a light presence on your shoulder. Your pace steadies and two runners synchronize. Where there was one there are now two. Energy is renewed, muscles less tired and strength grows instantly, exponentially and confidently. Time flattens and disappears. Surely you’ve always existed in this moment with this special strength, with tandem rhythm, thought and life.
Bronto’s soft spoken COO shared a truth I already knew. “We are product guys,” he said almost apologetically, “our focus is on the Bronto platform.” I know how I felt about Robert Rauschenberg because he was so omnipresent in his art. Attending Bronto’s “Power To the Marketer” user conference a few weeks ago I had a different reaction. They know ME washed over like riding a bicycle in the rain.
Listening to Chaz discuss, “One to many, one to some, one to one,” marketing relevance and the difference between complexity and sophistication, otherwise known as the magic “do more with less” rule, I experienced spooky Déjà vu. Who loaned my brain and for how long I wanted to ask the receptionist as she handed me an inflatable green dinosaur.
Why is this particular dinosaur so magical? Bronto’s futuristic dinosaur if such an oxymoron makes any sense is aligned with these Mega-Trends:
- We create as much content every two days as from the dawn of civilization to 2003 (Eric Schmidt), so curation not creation holds the “cut through the NOISE” keys to Internet marketing’s future.
- Internet marketers have another name for great curation – email marketing.
- Segments, personas and “life cycles” are key to great Internet marketing.
- Bronto’s email marketing platform is the most sophisticatedly simple expression of the email marketer’s / curator’s art.
fixing email marketing. How unaware we can be isolated on tiny islands in swift streams. Every other day, during the period I wrote “Fixing Email Marketing”, I rode a bicycle to within a stone’s throw of the team who had already fixed email marketing. That Bronto is so personally validating to previous battles waged such as email as relationship builder, email as touchstone email marketing as passion, joy and art isn’t as important as its existence in the world.
Imagine a world where right brain creative, a tribe I identify with, and left brain engineers, a tribe that fascinates and confuses me, are so related distinction or segmentation, to use a favorite email marketing phrase, is meaningless. Bronto is Daniel Pink’s A Whole New Mind: Why Right Brainers Will Rule The Future come true without the class warfare, without the acrimony. In Bronto’s brave new world right brain and left brain archetypes and personas live, work and run together.
New artists have been working in my backyard. Shame on me for being so clueless and unappreciative and my amend is to say to my Internet marketing friends and followers make a pilgrimage to Bull Durham, experience some dinosaur magic and know you aren’t alone or crazy. There is a happy green monster of a magical platform capable of finishing your sentences, adding to your most intimate Internet marketing thought and whose existence means your life will be happier, larger and more artistic. If the ultimate gift is helping others become artists the Bronto's team is giants of generosity.