Be a great crowd.

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Iron & Wine at the Commodore Ballroom, November 3, 2013

When I was growing up, Vancouver was a much smaller city. It was a city that, when I visited the States, many people I met hadn’t heard of (and sometimes they didn’t even realize that Canada extended all the way north of Seattle).

As an avid concert goer, we got a lot of tours coming through Vancouver, but many others skipped us. Now Vancouver is a world-class city and virtually every musician includes us in their itineraries.

I’ve lived in Seattle, Los Angeles and Vancouver, and, having been back for over a decade now, I’ve noticed something remarkable about artists when they play Vancouver. They seem humbled, sometimes ever overwhelmed by the audience’s love and support. Vancouver has some of the best crowds I’ve ever been a part of, and they create fertile ground for some amazing shows. They create an energy that is amazing to be part of, and they create a mood that encourages musicians to perform at their best. In fact, they often remark on how great our crowds are.

I took the shot above when I saw Iron & Wine this past week, and he seemed truly honoured to be playing for us. You could feel the connection between artist and audience – almost a sacred bond of trust. And you know what, I bet he’ll never skip Vancouver when he tours. That energy will keep him coming back for more.

It’s a lesson for all of us. To be grateful and humble and supportive and devoted. To be a great audience and keep our heroes coming back and wanting more. Whether that’s our members or customers, our staff, our colleagues or our boss. It’s a simple lesson from the mosh pits of Vancouver.

How a branch can express your mission.

Vancity Branch Redesign
For the last year and a half I have been tangentially involved in the redesign of two of Vancity’s branches. It’s been an amazing project, looking beyond the expected excitement about new fit and finish within the branch, and at the kind of business we want to do within the branch and how Vancity can best bring its mission and vision to life in these spaces.

We call these two branches in South Burnaby and Port Coquitlam our prototypes, living labs that opened last month. You can see photos, as well as a video that shows what we’re trying to do and why:

Wasserman + Partners is hiring.

Wasserman + PartnersVancity’s agency, Wasserman + Partners is hiring for two positions.

The first is a Digital Project Manager who will be “responsible for the successful planning, managing and launching of digital projects within the advertising agency”.

The other is the Director of Production, a role to “bring campaign concepts to life, regardless of the medium, or whether it has ever been done before”.

Both roles are chances to work with this excellent Vancouver agency, which Vancity chose as their agency of record earlier this year in a unanimous decision.

If you do apply, let them know you discovered it through me. I won’t get anything from it, I’ll just want to know…

Internet Marketing Conference returns to Vancouver

Internet Marketing Conference Vancouver 2010I’m excited to be on a panel at the upcoming Internet Marketing Conference coming to Vancouver from September 21-23rd. This will be my third year in a row speaking at the conference. Guy Kawasaki is the keynote, so I likely need not say more…

The topic of the panel is: When is Social Media not working? Social Media is the popular way of reaching people online. At the same time many businesses are failing to gain business advantage from Social Media. How do you know when Social Media is right for you and when it’s not?

If you’ll be there, make sure to say hello…

Crowdsourcing the next BarCampBankBC

BarCampBankBCFor the last two Septembers, Tim McAlpine, Gene Blishen and I have planned and put on BarCampBanks here in Vancouver. We have been discussing what to do this year and we think it’s time for new blood.

So here’s the deal: I’d love someone to step up and take over the planning of a BarCampBank here in BC. It’s a great event, but the three of us feel like we’d be re-hashing old territory and some new energy and ideas need to surface.

Leave a comment if you’re interested, and we’ll go from there.