Updated with photo from Eric
I had a chance to meet some folks I have only talked to on Twitter. Last night thanks to Ryan and Jennifer, who organized a TweetUp, I met a great group of folks at Nola’s in Palo Alto.
The thought that struck me when I was driving back late last night is “How much we seems to be meeting more face to face given that there are more options available to meet via the Internet”. Even though I have met and connected with these folks on twitter, facebook etc. it was still a great thrill to meet for drinks and talk for a while. The number of events I have been attending thanks to being more connected on social networks has increased not decreased.
At Nola’s between 6pm and 830 pm you would have seen 10 of us laughing, talking, tweeting (well more of that than anything else).
Here’s what I learned:
1. When you meet someone face to face you tend to listen more intently. Ryan is apparently a mini celebrity (of Yahoo layoff fame). I have been talking to him for a few days, but had NO idea he was “the guy”.
2. There’s always opportunity to talk shop but it does not feel that way. If you are looking to go to these events purely to justify “doing business” – forget it. If you go with the intent of meeting people, networking and having fun and then business happens – awesome.
3. Much as we tend to be “hyper connected” we still rely on the “old” means of connecting. Everyone (save me) had a business card. Ryan actually made on by hand (so he’s getting there). I personally hate business cards. In fact I usually make it a point to clearly pronounce my name and let people Google me. My website has my phone, email, etc. So why bother with business cards?
The other thing that was great was its was a good group of people and we were open (meaning we bashed a lot of people that were not there and did not have any expectations coming into the meeting.
Eric’s probably got some photos from the event. Please post a link in the comments, Eric?