The Virtual Meets the Concrete

3 musketeersLast year I attended SobCon09 – and met many of the people I’d previously only had conversations with on twitter.  Successful Outstanding Bloggers Conference – required to advance your business to the next level.  I hung out with some of the big name people – and that created avenues to stronger conversations over this past year.

Today – I want to talk about the people who took some time out of their busy schedule that weekend to welcome me, answer my questions and continue to stay in touch.  They are the reason that I continue to grow in the social media realms.

@geekmommy Lucretia Pruitt was on a panel.  I love her cutting wit and at SobCon she was suffering from a migraine.  It did not slow her down, she’s the expert at just barreling through and doing what you have to do.

@jasonfalls Jason Falls – sat at my table.  He’s another person with cutting wit.  He can be sharp, to the point and does not suffer fools gladly.  It was my good luck to see him having a skype conversation with his children.  Yeah, he’s a real dad and it shows.  I learned from Jason that all is not what it looks like. There are many layers to that onion.

@bradshorr Brad Shorr – one of the smartest guys in the world.  We had some great conversations about SEO.  Admittedly, I’m a little clueless on that topic.  Brad spent some time showing me why I need to know more.  He also followed up with phone calls after the event.  Who does that?  Brad Shorr does.

@Shashib Shashi Bellamkonda In real life, he’s a quiet guy.  He’s also a great observer – and brings major good things to the small business conversation.

@GeoffLiving Now here’s a man with passion.  In person, he’s busy and very focused on what he’s doing.  You just want to follow him around to see what change he’s creating in the world.  Hey – that’s what I do online with Geoff too!

@PhilGerb Phil Gerbyshak Yes – that man is as happy as his avatar.  Always ready with a hug and a good word.

@BeckyMcCray Becky McCray is small business.  She taught me how to use my camera to shoot video.  She hung out in the hallway with me (and we all know the hallway is where you learn things at conferences).  She broke bread with me.  Becky is a friend, aren’t I lucky?

@CCSeed Richard Reeve Richard and @northernchick Kathryn Jennex – these two lovely people spent a lot of time with me — both are a compass point for calm in my life.  Richard is a Jungian psychology student.  Kathryn is possibly one of the kindest people in the world.

Online we live in a virtual world – we can create and shape our persona any way we want. I’m a pretty smart cookie – and wondered if I’d appear that way in real life too.  I rather felt like Sally Field – You like me! You really like me! Turns out the persona I was shaping online just happened to be the real me.  Meeting some of my online friends in real life gave me the opportunity to live into that person I said I was.  It’s pretty cool to say you are who you are – and then to actually live into that space.   It’s been so good for me, that I’ve declared this year as the year I live into my greatness. My virtual (and real) friends hold me to the standard I’ve set.

Now that rocks!

This blog post was written in response to a call out from Liz Strauss and Terry Starbucker – the real power behind SobCon.  I plan on attending again this year – and always welcome an opportunity to write about the specials available. #SobCon2010  Read more about the promotion for SobCon10.


  1. Shashi Bellamkonda on February 4, 2010 at 1:52 pm

    Hi Deb,
    It was my good karma that enabled me to meet you. You are doing great work in the small field and hope we can all give you all the support you need.


  2. Deb Brown on February 4, 2010 at 6:14 pm

    Thanks Shashi – That is great to hear, and I look forward to creating many things for small business with you and Network Solutions!

  3. Brad Shorr on February 5, 2010 at 11:32 am

    Hi Deb, Thank you for those kind words! Your post here really brought back good memories of SOBCon. I hope our little SEO chats helped you out on that project.

  4. Deb on February 5, 2010 at 1:41 pm

    Hi Brad and thanks really goes to you. Yes – I learned a lot from you and look forward to learning more. You know you rock.

  5. […] Deb Brown @debworks wrote The Virtual Meets the Concrete […]

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    • deb on February 19, 2010 at 1:51 am

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