I walked past a private dinner being given at a restaurant in New York last night. Perhaps forty people, listening to an after-dinner speaker.
The room was dead. People were sprawled over the chairs. One guy had his head down. Others were facing away from the speaker or checking their iPhones.
They didn’t think of themselves as marketers in that moment, but of course, they were. They were marketing themselves to the speaker as uninterested, tired and hard to reach. They probably got very little back in the way of increased energy or enthusiasm from the person they ostensibly came to hear.
Every time you walk into a meeting, agree to sit in on a sales call, do a job interview or have a conversation with a consultant, you’re marketing. You’re either selling the story of your enthusiasm and attention, or you’re not. And more often than not, you get what you put in.