David Siegel

David Siegel | Build An Epic Social Circle Anywhere With This One Simple Platform

In today’s episode, we talk about MeetUp with David Siegel. David is the CEO of MeetUp and the host of the new podcast Keep Connected.

People are feeling lonely now more than ever, so what can you do if you’re feeling lonely, where can you go to meet new friends who share your interests, and what is the cheat code to making new friends anywhere you go?  

What to Listen For

  • How did the Art of Charm get started using MeetUp? – 2:50 
  • When creating an account on MeetUp, should you try to join MeetUp groups or create/host your own? 
  • Why are people suffering from loneliness now more than ever and what can you do about it?
  • The evolution of MeetUp through the pandemic – 10:51
  • How did the pandemic affect people’s willingness to meet up using sites like MeetUp?
  • Is it a good time to start attending events and MeetUp groups in person yet?
  • Are MeetUp groups welcoming to introverts?  – 24:15
  • What kinds of MeetUp groups should an introvert attend and avoid?
  • Is MeetUp a good tool for professional networking?
  • What sports should you look into if you’re interested in trying something new and popular?
  • Can you find MeetUp groups that center around happiness and mental well-being?
  • The cheat code to meeting a lot of people – 43:52 
  • What are 3 traits of the best organizers on MeetUp?
  • How do the best hosts on MeetUp provide great experiences for the attendees?
  • What are the 3 steps in giving value that solidify a connection with guests and members who attend your events?
  • What are the top 5 best practices in networking can you implement in your next MeetUp event?

In a post-COVID world, people are struggling to figure out ways to be social again and get a handle on the loneliness they experienced during the lockdown. What better way to do both than find a group of likeminded humans on a site like MeetUp? One of the major advantages MeetUp groups/events have for people who aren’t sure how to make friends is that MeetUp self-selects for people who are open to meeting new people. That means people who attend MeetUp groups are going to be friendly, welcoming, and approachable.

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Resources from this Episode

Speaker 1: Welcome back to the art of charm podcast. A show designed to help you communicate with power and become unstoppable on your path from hidden genius to influential leader. We know you have

Speaker 2: What it takes to reach your full potential. And every week we share with you interviews and strategies to help you transform your life by helping you unlock your X-Factor. Whether you're in sales, project management, engineering medicine, building client relationships, or looking for love, we've got what you need. You shouldn't have to settle for anything less than extraordinary.

Speaker 1: I'm AIJ and I'm Johnny. All right, let's kick off this week's episode. Thank you everyone for tuning in today, we have David Siegel with us. Now, David is the CEO of one of our favorite apps, meetup.com and the host of new podcasts keep connected. meetup.com is an online platform that brings people together, both through online and in-person events. So now they're for almost 20 years now, and meetup.com has helped over 50 million people find new friends and build their network based on their interests. Let's face it. Now that we're starting to leave the pandemic behind the idea of getting together is quite anxiety provoking for many of us. In fact, a recent report from the American psychological association found that nearly 50% of Americans reported suffering from the phenomenon known as re-entry fear. And we're going to talk today with David about the best practices that he's learned from the data.

Speaker 1: They're almost 20 years of meetup insight, so that you can get the most out of any social event that you attend while here the show. David, we'd obviously love to talk a little bit about your journey to becoming the leader of meetup and, uh, talk a little bit about the transition that you at meetup had to make through the pandemic. Obviously, meetup, uh, was all about me. Yeah, exactly. And if that's changed the company, ethos or the viewpoint, Johnny and I have been huge fans of meetup now, uh, we found meetup in 2009 and we've been sending you thousands of members over the years, recommending meetup.com to all of our clients and show fans, anyone who's looking to grow their social circle, move to Newtown, meet people, practice these social skills, grow their network. Meetup has been our preferred platform.

Speaker 2: Not only that laying out step by step, how to use it, to create opportunities and build a social circle for yourself of either like-minded individuals or how to use it, to build a new social circle. If you're moving into a new town and why we promote it so much, because to us, it is an extension and a tool for people to implement the tools that we teach.

Speaker 1: And it actually grew our business, uh, 12 years ago.

Speaker 3: I know, I see we're recording now, but this is probably the unofficial part of the recording.

Speaker 1: Right? Well, this'll be edited in, so we're just,

Speaker 3: Okay, great. Because I'm like, I'm like when we start talking, you better mention this stuff. This is great.

Speaker 1: We moved to New York to start the company in 2009. So the podcast started before then, but when we moved to New York, we didn't have a social circle and we were starting from scratch. And through the grapevine, we had heard about meetup.com. We joined, we started using the platform to grow our social circle. And we noticed that if you actually host, you are at an advantage. So we decided we were going to start hosting our own meetups to accelerate the growth of our social circle and then realize, oh, there's a lot of people here who could be potential clients of the art of charm. And we started hosting in-person meetups in New York city. And in those meetups, we met a lot of future clients and it became a way for us to grow our business locally in New York city, the podcast had tremendous reach globally, but in New York city, starting from scratch lead generation was a challenge, not having a social circle.

Speaker 1: So it helped us socially and professionally. And as Johnny was sharing earlier, we encourage many of our clients to become hosts. So not just join the platform, but actually create a meetup, play a home game, welcome people in, and then we train them on how to be an effective host, what it takes to create a sustainable meetup. Because what we've known over the years is that hosting is the make or break point on whether or not that meetup and that group will succeed. If the host has it, that it factor, there will be many more meetups. If the host doesn't have it. Well, Johnny and I were very likely to attend another one of those. I there's nothing

Speaker 3: More it than AIJ and Johnny that is like the ultimate, so I could see why it was so successful.

Speaker 2: We had it so dialed in that when we had moved the business from New York to Los Angeles, we had our meetup running and getting set up before we even got there and had implemented our strategy immediately to gain ground and solidify ourselves in Los Angeles.

Speaker 3: Okay. I have to have the two of you on our meetup podcast. We called keep connected where we bring in people who are organizers to talk about an organizing has actually changed their life. And how so let's do this. Let's make sure that we, uh, we, we, we have mutual guests and hosts do the guest host kind of cap switch

Speaker 1: We're booked next month to be on your show. So we're excited to share a bit more of that story as well as your audience. That's great, but we wanted to at least start there because it's rare that Johnny and I and, and show fans will hear this celebrate technology in a social setting. So Johnny and I tend to be harsh on technology and how it's moving us away from socializing, disconnecting us for people in our lives. But meetup is that one platform service opportunity for tech to actually bring us together. So let's start by sharing a little bit of your journey to meetup.

Speaker 3: Yeah. Okay. So first of all, we always say we use technology to get people off of technology. And if there's no better use of technology than to actually get people off of technology, I don't know what there is. And the reality is, is it's so important as you know, not just from an entrepreneurship and from a kind of building business and networking perspective, but just from even a human perspective, the loneliness epidemic that exists out there in the world is just terrifying. 46% of people. According to the survey, before the pandemic said that they regularly feel lonely, 46% and 25% of people, one to four people don't have one trusted confidant and it's among gen zeros, by the way, it's like 66% of people regularly filled only college students during the pandemic. It's just, it's terrifying. So from a business perspective, it's awesome, obviously, as you both know, and have experienced and also just from a personal perspective, okay, you're your question on my story.

Speaker 3: I was a early employee at DoubleClick. So I got started in the internet days at like 23, 24 years old. And the reason why that's kind of relevant is because from it, you might appreciate this in terms of thinking about relationships. The person who hired me at DoubleClick was a leader named Kevin Ryan, who was the founder of Mongo, DB guilt business, insider Zola, and like 15 other companies. And he is the person that 20 plus years later, I got to acquire meetup out of WeWork. So that's a big, fast forward. And we kept in touch throughout and he was my mentor throughout. So relationships matter to put it lightly, to give you a fill in that gap a little bit. After DoubleClick, I went to business school, I worked for a bunch of publishers, a 100 flowers and everyday health. And then I became the president of seeking alpha after that, the CEO of Investopedia.

Speaker 3: And I love finance because I believed that people make poor financial decisions and that the mission of helping to educate people around finance meant a lot. At one point, the largest investor in seeking alpha came over to me and his name is Michael Eisenberg. And he runs a big, big fund. He was an investor in Seattle and he was on the board of WeWork. And he said, David, what do you think of meetup? And I said like, meetup has changed. So I go to meetup events all the time. I go over there for networking purposes, go there and meet amazing people. Like meetup has changed like millions of people's lives. I love meetup. Like I'm obsessed with meetup. I'm obsessed with like interpersonal connections and helping people to lead more meaningful lives and lead more meaningful lives by getting together in person with people. Right. So he said, okay, that's good because we want you to become the next CEO, but I'm like, well, they already have a CDL, their founders, Scott heifer, man. He's been the CEO and founder for like 17 years. Like, yeah. Well, so after we work acquired meetup, there was a decision to look for a new CEO and 27 interviews later I was hired.

Speaker 3: So I've been with the company for two and a half years. The only the second CEO and meetups history, best job I've ever had by far PR predominantly because I really feel like I make a major difference in, in people's lives and make the world a better place. And, and that's, you know, super important to me,

Speaker 1: Johnny and I can attest to that. And many of our clients who've moved towns or starting over socially. We've highly recommended because let's be honest if there's a shared interest or a shared reason that you're in the room, connection magically happens a lot easier. So if you're struggling a bit with social anxiety, you're new to a town or an industry, and you're starting over, it's a great opportunity to get like-minded people in a room together who are open to connection versus trolling, random events or bars or opportunities where we're not gathering for those specific reasons. Now, of course you have been CEO and leader of meetup through a pandemic where meeting up in person is not really possible. And of course, with a goal of using technology to get people off of technology, I doubt meet up within thinking that virtual events would be an opportunity for you to explore with its core ethos, being, bringing people together. So let's talk a little bit about, what's changed about meetup through this pandemic experience that none of us had really planned for.

Speaker 3: Yeah. So there's a saying never failed to take advantage of, you know, a potential crisis or a challenge. There were so many opportunities that in certain ways have truly helped meet up, to provide a better experience for its members and organizers that we were too scared to do in the past. So very specifically, the number one reason why we refuse to bring on organizers in the past was because they said we want to create virtual meetup events. And we said, well, we're an IRL only platform. And we turned down, no joke, tens of thousands of organizers, because they wanted to create events that were virtual in nature with zoom or whatever, the Skype before that, you know, and have people all around the world. And we said, no, no, no, we don't do that. Well, what, in late February, we started seeing China, you know, the, the events and the RSVPs in China, like go off on Colette.

Speaker 3: Like I'm not talking about like 30 or 40%. I'm talking like 90% down and suddenly like Italy, 90% down. And we're like, oh, that's never going to happen in the U S like, it's going to be like, you know, swine flu or SARS, which is horrible, horrible, devastating, but didn't really impact the U S in any meaningful way. Obviously we're wrong. One of our employees was the first case of COVID and Mount Sinai hospital in New York. And we actually, ironically meet up was one of the first companies to have to leave their, their, their office space in a, we work no less. I like March 2nd or March 3rd, super early. And we're like, okay, what do we do? So we gathered everyone together. And we said, change a policy. Safety is the most important thing. We not, we need to make sure your people are safe.

Speaker 3: And we opened up the ability for online events. We created the ability for people to use 200 different event platforms, zoom, obviously being the most well-known, but there's lots of different ones out there. And in the last year and a half, since the pandemic started, we have had over 3 million online events. Now we're seeing, you know, do the vaccines things growing again. And just to, I lead a podcast and Hey, when people wax on for too long, but this, this will be quick. So just to share this one last tidbit, which is online events, provide so much value for both members and organizers. And let me explain if you live in a rural town and you let's say are the parent of ADHD kids, and there's no meetup group for parents of ADHD, kids in this rural town in Canada, like a friend of mine.

Speaker 3: So now he's able to be part of a parents of ADHD online group that has people from 30 or 40 different countries, which is a real value for a member. If you are an organizer and you want to have a global footprint rather than having to create, you know, 50 or a hundred different locations, you can have a global footprint with an online event. Ultimately it never can replace in person and hybrid events is what's going to be something that becomes extremely popular in the future of both in-person and online. And we're facilitating that, but there's so much value to be gained from members and organizers through going online. It's really been a blessing. It's really been a blessing. So

Speaker 2: What do you see as some of the biggest challenges as we move forward in your company, goes back to IRL events. After the entire world has been conditioned to pull everything back and had an, has gotten incredibly comfortable

Speaker 3: Sitting at home and

Speaker 2: Doing everything as we are doing it right now. And I belong to several groups and there is a focus on, Hey, this has been great, but things are opening up. And unless a weaken transition is in real life, then our mission, our purpose and everything is going to collapse in on itself because all of those things solidify with face to face person to person interaction.

Speaker 3: Yeah. I think Johnny, you have the tale of two worlds. You have the introvert world and you have the extrovert world right on the actual extrovert world. If there's like our, if there's like a group of salespeople or marketers that they're dying to get back out and they're there, they're just out there and the vaccines are happening and they're going IRL. And we're going to, we're seeing like groups that are filled with more extra, like whether it's hiking groups or certain sports groups, we're seeing enormous growth. And like people playing pickleball, whatever tennis, all these different groups, we're seeing enormous growth in groups that have personalities that are more extroversion oriented. Now the opposite groups that are more correlated with introversion, not to stereotype, but let's just say many of our tech groups out there, or some of our potential social groups, especially around introverts, they definitively do need more coaxing and nudging and encouraging.

Speaker 3: So at, at one point in time, we were creating, we created something called meetup live to help organizers be more successful with the transition from in-person to online. Now we're actually doing the opposite and we're creating kind of workshops for organizers who have been doing online for so long. I've had a kind of plan and how to manage getting back in person. And to understand that in the beginning, there's going to be some people that are be less comfortable getting together back in person. And that's okay. You don't need to wait until everyone is comfortable getting back in person. You need to wait until enough. People are comfortable getting back in person that it'll just start becoming a regular flow. And just the answer is Nike, just do it.

Speaker 1: Well. One of the first things that we would teach all of our clients around setting up a successful meetup is creating FOMO. Easiest way to create FOMO is to actually post pictures of people, enjoying your meetup and meeting in person because FOMO and we've had Patrick McGinnis on the show, a good buddy of ours who coined the term. It is a driving force that is coming back with a reckoning. Now that we've got vaccines working and we're getting back to rooms. So even the most introverted person is going to feel FOMO when they see that fun meetup group with tons of people, smiling, masculine, enjoying themselves, ready to socialize again. So leveraging FOMO, if you're listening to this and meetups are already happening. And one of the things that we love so much about meetup is that pretty much anywhere in the world, our clients have been able to find a local meetup where people are willing to get together and it's happening now. So if you are on the fence, you're feeling a little introverted. You're wondering, can I, should I do it meet up is a great place to start dip your toe into socializing again in person,

Speaker 3: Well said, you know, download the app and type in anything. You will find something that you're interested in. You'll find multiple things that you're, and you're going to meet. One of my favorite stories is, um, is a buddy of mine before I joined meetup. And I would tell him, I was thinking of joining, meet up. He said to me that he's 50 years old and he doesn't spend much time with people in their seventies or people in their twenties. And he has this like horror film meetup that he's been going to for like two years. And he's like, there are people in their twenties and their fifties, their seventies that are people that are ex CEOs. And there are people that are, have no college education whatsoever. And the ability to like build relationships and meet people that they never would have met, who never would have met beforehand.

Speaker 3: And they go for drinks afterwards. It's just, it's just an sh and bond over a shared experience. It's just, um, it's, you can't do that in zoom. The only way is, is, is really IRL. I love your, your, your, your point on FOMO. We're trying to get people to get together as a company, more often in person and come into the office. And every time we have a get together on like a rooftop lounge, we're taking pictures and slack or posting them all over the place. We're like, come on every lot. It's fun. You don't want to force people to get back, but it really helps.

Speaker 1: Yeah. It's encouraging a client

Speaker 2: Of ours. He lives in Australia and he had a date. I can't remember it either. She didn't show up or it just wasn't working out. And he, and the date had ended, well, he was already out for the evening. He was already dressed up. So he was looking for something to do. So he went on meetup and found, uh, an event going on and he went over there. Well, he just threw up everything that we have done, uh, at our trainings, he felt very confident to just roll up and engage with what looked fun. And he did. And he started talking to one of the charming ladies who was sitting next to him at the bar. Well, they had struck it off. They had gotten to her relationship. They had gotten married and now they are expecting their first child. And this was all due to that access of finding something easy and just down the street at another bar as he was already out. So for those people wondering, I mean, yes, to download that app and, and these, these are the opportunities that you will find having meetup and having those skills to vote comfortable walking right into that.

Speaker 3: I feel like we should like find out if we could have, have, have the kid be named, meet up or something. That'd be fun. That's an awesome story. Johnny, the number of people that have met their significant others kind of threw me because there's a whole Harry met Sally kind of thing that goes on that people want to be friends and, and, and play kickball or whatever. First, before, you know, they're on that like awkward date, just staring at each other. Wondering what to actually talk about first, you hang out first. So we're actually doing a big partnership with that, with the largest dating site out there and kind of going to be managing their events and we'll see what happens. Step tired of it and

Speaker 2: Consistent results. Are you dating who you want to be dating? Are you where you want to be in your career? Do you have the proper roadmap to get you where you want to go?

Speaker 1: If you're tired of wasting time and tired of seeing other people effortlessly build their dream lives while you work twice as hard with fewer results to show for it, perhaps it's time to get the guidance, the skills and the accountability that you need to reach. That next level X-Factor

Speaker 2: Accelerator you'll develop the tools to communicate powerfully, cultivate, unstoppable systems and mindsets, and be held accountable by a community of high value members, mentors, and coaches.

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Speaker 2: Right. Our members are driven, knowledgeable and dedicated to advancing their lives and the lives of the community. They're CEOs, professionals, entrepreneurs come join the fun.

Speaker 1: And that's not all every single month, we get our hands dirty with implementation sessions to get direct feedback from me, Johnny and the rest of the art of charm coaches. So all the skills you've learned from this podcast, we put into action in your life. In fact, listen to what our client Clint had to say about those implementation sessions.

Speaker 4: I would probably pay the same amount of money just for those implementation of workshops. They're that valuable to me, because for me, when I get reps at, at doing something with feedback, I, I have to have, you know, feedback from qualified or experienced people so that it means something it's different. If someone was in the class with me say, Hey, you did a good job. Well, I mean, I don't want to diminish that, but okay. We're both on this drink together. It's different. If someone has been proctoring or leading those events and say, okay, here's what I think you should do here. Here are some ways you can improve. That really helps me feel like I'm making progress. Those things happen in those implementation workshops. And I find them extremely valuable for that reason. Now that the lessons

Speaker 1: From this show have enhanced your life. Imagine what a year long mentorship in the X-Factor accelerator can do for you unlock your own X factor and become extraordinary. Apply today@unlockyourxfactor.com. That's right. Pause. This podcast that applied today, unlock your X-Factor dot com. I want to highlight something that's that's so key here, because yes, there are shared experiences and there are groups with shared interests that you can join. But that doesn't mean you shouldn't go to other groups. You know, when we started hosting in New York and started hosting in LA, we had tons of people stopped by the meetup were like, I'm already extroverted. I'm not interested in social skills, but I'm just trying to meet new people. Meet ups. Self-select for people who are open to meeting new great, interesting people. So if you're an introvert, it's the ultimate safe space for an introvert, the best hosts, the ones who have a track record of hosting multiple meetup events, they know exactly how to unlock your genius as an introvert gets you in conversation and meeting awesome people.

Speaker 1: So don't look at it. Oh, it's for extroverts. As you said earlier, who are excited to go back out, it's actually one of the safest places for you to practice conversation skills, to network, to meet awesome, interesting people, because it's self-selects for people who are open to meeting new people versus going to a random bar, a random store walking around the street, aimlessly, or even going to the gym. We hear that time and time again. Oh, I go to the gym. People go to the gym to work out. They're not going to the gym to meet people. Sure. You might cross paths in a conversation could happen, but meetup is that one destination. That's welcome to all perspectives, introverts, extroverts ambiverts and great hosts. Know how to unlock your genius in that setting. So even if you're not into paragliding or you're not into real estate, go to one of those events and you might end up like our client meeting your significant others soon to be spouse.

Speaker 2: One final point to that is that we had told our clients many times to avoid dating meetups specifically because there's so much tension and it's awkward and everyone has preconceived notions. And it's just, there's because of the expectations put on it. It just turns into an awkward experience. So to go on with Ajo is saying you're self selecting for people who are open, who are interested, who are making the most of their lives. Those are the folks that you want to put yourself in front of to meet for dating. And, and which is why meetup is so rad because so many people, when they think about being single and they think about an event and an a singles event, they start losing their mind of having to deal with everything that is attached to that. No

Speaker 3: One wants to go to singles events if they're single. And the key is that we don't really call out like singles events. We have events, and then people look up to some of the people going and they go, and they have hopefully a great time. I got to tell AAJ and Johnny, a very brief story just about what you were talking about, which I met and I in, um, and Silicon valley obviously prepared, not obviously, but pre pandemic. And I met this very, very introverted, um, engineer, and he's a meetup organizer. He said, I have two groups. One of my groups is a group for, for people to bowl and build relationships bowling together. It's a bowling group and do it for social reasons to get like, kind of feel comfortable socially. And the other group is a career networking, uh, group. And I'm the organizer of those two groups.

Speaker 3: And he said, and this is insane. I've gotten two jobs from my bowling group. And I met like a friend and a girlfriend through the career networking group. And what that speaks to is kind of the overlap between the personal and the professional, that when you, one of the great things about meetup is you build personal relationships that can then turn into professional relationships and potential professional relationships that can turn to personal relationships. And when you could kind of do both of those things, it's, it's beneficial kind of as a human being in all ways,

Speaker 1: Every conversation is an opportunity. And if you take that view and that perspective meetups are the best place to ensure you're getting in tons of conversations, you can't go to a meetup and not interact with people. They're small, they're intimate. And the great hosts know how to connect people. So even if you're feeling a bit of social anxiety jumping into that meetup opportunity is going to put you in a place where conversations happen. And it's no surprise that through those conversations, that leads to career opportunities, that leads to romantic opportunities. And of course at its ethos, social opportunities. And you know, we have a lot of clients as well, who are coming out of a relationship. So we know that, you know, going through divorce, obviously your social life is going to take a hit. You might lose some friends who are friends with your spouse.

Speaker 1: You might be starting over and meet up again is one of those great opportunities to hit the reset button. If you're not happy with your current social circle and what we've found time and time again with our clients is you go to one and it becomes addicting. It's like, wow, there are people who are really open to meeting new people. And if you're sitting here listening to this feeling like, man, you know, I go to these events. Sometimes I go out, I try to meet new people, but it doesn't happen. I'm not finding those opportunities. Meetup is that place where you will meet amazing people. Self-selecting for those who are curious open-minded and interested in connecting with one another. Now you have access to the data, Johnny and I have always been fascinated by the data. What are some unique meetup opportunities or unexpected things that you discovered through looking at the data and growing meetup that might surprise our audience members?

Speaker 3: First one I will say is the number one most growing in at least the United States, looking at the data in terms of types of outdoor meetup groups, I kind of referenced it already. So spoiler alert is pickle ball, pickle ball. Yeah, I

Speaker 1: Got it. So many invites to pickleball and I'd never heard of it before the pandemic. So I'm not surprised that it I'm hearing about it right now. Pickable

Speaker 3: As like a thing it's so big in so many states because we have this great search data. We know what people are searching for. And the kids were just like, we just don't really data of like what someone's, when it click on and like an ad they're willing to click on, go to get off their couch, get off their butt and actually show up to in real time. Like those are like genuinely deep interests. So biggest outdoor sport, kick a ball. The one, the, the, the something that's possibly going to become very big, which is shocking and growing in the UK and outside of the UK, believe it or not, I don't want to mispronounce it Quidditch. Oh, so Harry is Harry Potter. They're obviously not flying on brooms through there, but someone has figured out a way to play Quidditch. The other one, by the way, in terms of outdoors is, um, uh, this is also interesting and might be because of social distancing reasons, badminton, for some reason, there's tremendous numbers of people looking to start playing badminton and find badminton groups.

Speaker 3: So that's kind of on the outdoors kind of side. No surprise cryptocurrency is obviously going through the roof. But the cool thing is that I saw a video of Brian Armstrong, who is the founder of Coinbase. And he talked about how 10 years ago he founded Coinbase. And the first thing he did was started going to every single cryptocurrency related meetup that he could go to in order to talk to people about like what people were interested in it. So like the hot trends that, that, that people are, are, are talking about kind of end up on beat up. So like doge coin is actually like tons of people that are, that are looking for that now. So even though it was a made up thing, um, it may be worthwhile to invest who knows on the other interesting thing that we look at is the percentage of events that are happening in person versus online as potentially a predictor of kind of where things are opening up around the world.

Speaker 3: And we'll see, for example, pretty early Texas was just having a high number, like really, or like in the middle of the pandemic, Texas is having a lot of in-person meetup events. And, uh, I guess, you know, they're obviously very open to, uh, to, to that in terms of their ethos and, and, you know, countries like Brazil are still like an India are still 90, 95% online. So you could, you could really track, um, based on how the world is opening up. Um, I leveraged meetup data to see that because we're in 193 different countries and like every country, but North Korea. So I can't get much information on what's going on there, except for that. You can only have 10 different haircuts apparently. And Giannis would definitely not be allowed.

Speaker 1: No, I don't think they're encouraging meetups either. So that's fascinating. Let's unpack that a little bit of, obviously we get the outdoor and the sports and not working, but what are you seeing now that we are starting to reopen and not so much be concerned about social distancing or can meet indoors? What are those hot meetups that are on everyone's radar?

Speaker 3: The biggest one is our biggest ones around wellness. Biggest ones are our wellness straight up. The wellness category is like, I'm not kidding. It's like it's tripled in terms of number of events. So everything related to happiness groups, literally discussing happiness. And what does it mean to be happy? And how do you drive happiness in your life? There's all science, you know, around positivity, happiness. We have a lot of those groups, everything around meditation, uh, yoga, those are, those are also growing. Um, ecstatic dance groups are also, we're seeing like significant growth of people just wanting to get back out and like dance, like crazy on rooftops or, or wherever. So, so the, the health and wellness category is really exploding for good reason because the amount of kind of depression and anxiety that that happened during the pandemic was, is real and, and getting back in person, people want to do things to heal, and there's a lot of healing that's that's required. So that's, that's probably the not probably is definitely the biggest category of growth is around health and wellness.

Speaker 1: I mean, it certainly, it makes sense considering we had nothing but time to sit in doors and worry and think about our wellness and health obviously became a worldwide conscious awakening around this pandemic. So people being concerned about it, investing in their health and then wanting to get together with other people who share that viewpoint, I think is certainly huge. Is there a meetup group that just surprised you as you started leading the company and the data like, oh, I would never thought people would be meeting up around that

Speaker 3: We are so long tail and for the listeners long tail essentially means like crazy niche that I was surprised how niche we would get. So for example, like black lesbian photographers in DC, but, but you, we think that's, they have like a group of like 15 people that have found each other because there are all black lesbian photographers in DC. And they're so happy because the are necessarily that many black lesbian photographers in DC. Maybe there are a lot, I don't know, but I give that as just kind of an example, because when you have a, an identity that's particularly strong or meaningful for you, and you always think to yourself, as many people do, oh no, one's like me, I'm so different than any than everyone else. And then you are able to find a group that represents so many people who are so similar to your lifestyle.

Speaker 3: It's such a warm and meaningful experience. That's what has surprised me, which is just how Nisha gets like, you know, vegan lovers who love to run marathons, you know, like we just have very, very niche groups. And I think the beauty of those niche groups is what you referenced earlier, which is they're smaller groups. It's one thing to attend like a conference and have a thousand people at that conference and be totally overwhelmed and have like become a wallflower standing back against a wall, kind of maybe walking over and seeing a couple of people huddling together. As another thing with is only like the average meetup event only has like nine people on average that attend the event. So it's small. And when there's that few people, you're not going to stand on the sidelines, like there's going to be a greeter, they're going to welcome you.

Speaker 3: And you're going to get, they're going to get your name. They're gonna learn more about you. And, and it makes it very welcoming and, and people can be more vulnerable, you know, in smaller situations when people could be more vulnerable, as I'm sure you tell people, that's how you build deeper relationships. We're able to share things about yourself. Other people share things. And that the depth of conversation is a heck of a lot more meaningful than talking about like the freaking weather or like, you know, or whether or not, you know, the, a bucks are going to win the championships or, or

Speaker 2: I want to also add to that upon meeting in real life, you were manners and how you relate to other people changes completely in order for us to connect and build these relationships. Whereas whatever niche group that you might've found on the internet, there is still no way that that person can reach through the screen and punch you in the mouth. If you say something wrong or, uh, or you don't like what they had to say or the just there's somebody there for the specific reason of just trolling the group that doesn't happen in real life. And or if so, it's more than somebody is a sociopath. And there, they have to play a role for a while to make those connections, to do that damage. But people have a decorum that allows them to connect, act differently, allows for these things to, to transpire.

Speaker 2: And then this goes back to and allowing you to feel good and to feel connected because no matter what, no matter what you've been conditioned, think throughout the last 15 months of being online, you are salvation and feeling connected, feeling good, feeling positive, feeling a wonderful about the world around you is going to be through the connections and the relationships that you build in real life. Nothing is going to compare to that. And I'm going to also add that through this show. We had looked at a lot of research that has shown that though, I'm talking to you through this screen right now, this is the equivalent of an interaction. As a cheeseburger is a McDonald's cheeseburger to my health. It's going to fill me up in that moment, but in the longterm, uh, for the nutrients, it's just not there. And right here, yes, there's a connection we're talking, we're enjoying something, we're building a relationship. However, I cannot read your micro-expressions. I cannot be there in your presence and have that take over the interaction, which builds those connections and allow us to feel fulfilled in our connections and

Speaker 3: Relationships and bonding well said, empty calories, empty calories, right?

Speaker 1: Yeah. And I think another big factor with meetup is it doesn't involve alcohol. And I think going along with health and wellness, you know, so many of us have come out of this pandemic, looking at our health, looking at alcohol choices, hopefully consuming less like myself and being more intentional with it. And I think for many, they feel like, well, they have to go to bars. They have to go to events with alcohol and maybe even they have to drink to fit in. And they struggle with that. And a lot of our clients are, are trying to be healthy and trying to avoid poisoning themselves with alcohol, but they feel an immense amount of pressure. Like that's what I have to do to meet people. I have to go to bars and don't want to do that. But I have to. And meetup is that platform where, as you said, there's so much in the wellness space and people who are getting out in sun, which we know has been great for COVID and doing things that don't involve alcohol. So if you're one of those people who are cutting back or, or avoiding, or, uh, uh, being abstinent in terms of all alcohol consumption, meetup is a great platform again, to utilize, to remove that part of the equation, because we all been there. I understand it can help you overcome some social anxiety, but being seen and heard sober with like-minded open people is far more impactful on your mental health and building quality relationships in your life. Beautifully said,

Speaker 3: I think the average person gained whatever is 10 or 15 pounds during the pandemic. The number of people that have consumed more alcohol during the pandemic is also kind of off the charts. And I think when you're able to find people that create a comfortable setting, that's when you no longer alcohol, if you're, I spoke to a woman, who's an organizer of a Dungeons and dragons meetup group. And there was some social anxiety. She had a lot of social anxiety generally in life. And a lot of the people had social anxiety, but you walk into a Dungeons Robin's group and you're a person who loves Dungeons and dragons. You don't need alcohol to play Dungeons and dragons cause that's what you love doing. So, so when you find the thing that you're passionate about, and everyone has something that they can be, even if they're not now that they can be passionate about the need to have some external stimulation is just not needed because you have the best thing in the world. You have your internal chemicals that are natural, the oxytocin and the dopamine and serotonin, and the adrenaline kind of pumping, which is better than any kind of kind of drug are alcohol though. I haven't had many drugs. So I can't really say, but I hope I'll just say that to,

Speaker 1: Well, we can speak from experience on that realm. I think the key here is it's important to realize whether you're introverted or extroverted coming together, being in community, being fully seen and heard is important to your life, fulfillment your happiness. There are tons of studies that show this. As we talked earlier, you know, many of us feel disconnected coming out of this pandemic. And we encourage even our most introverted clients to host an event. And one of the excuses that Johnny and I hate the most is we send someone to meet up and they go, oh, well, there's nothing in my area with my passion. So why stop there? Why not be the one to start the meetup group for that passion and realize that meetup is a platform that will send like-minded people to you. So how many of us feel like it's, it's trying to find a needle in a haystack to find that Dungeons and dragons, loving photographer who also hikes on the weekend?

Speaker 1: Well, meetup, you can literally host an event, put that exact thing as a title, this origami, you're going to go on a hike and we're going to play some D and D after. And you'd be amazed at how many people in your area, no matter how big or small it is, are going to come out for that event. And I think that's the hidden gem. I think many of us feel like, oh, that's great for the extroverts. They want to host. They want to host events, but I can't find anything. I encourage the introverts to host. And now I want to talk about what you, again, going back to the data have recognized about the most successful meetup groups, the most successful hosts. What's the secret sauce. What's the recipe that makes some of these groups really sustainable and gives that host an advantage versus the other ones that just sort of get thrown up and then disappear on the planet.

Speaker 3: And you're right, much like when you teach, you actually learn more than anything else. Similarly, if you're an organizer, you actually gain more than anything else because you're organizing the group, the satisfaction that one gets because you were an organizer of a group that is changing 5, 10, 15, 30, whatever number of people's lives is just so meaningful. There are people that have said that, you know, they have a full-time job. You know, they have family, but they feel like the most meaningful thing that they've done is to, is to create this meeting meetup group that has helped people help. So many people that deal with whatever thing that they, that they have in life. So, number one thing by far, what you already said, a and Johnny is the organizer. What makes for a great organizer? So number one is persistence much like an entrepreneur. Meaning if you have your first event and two or three people show up, you might say, oh man, ah, Feld, whatever I give up, no two that's two or three people.

Speaker 3: That's a start. Like that's how you start a community. You start a community with two or three people. And then you ideate with those people and you bring those people in to be your co-leaders of the group. And then you go from three people to six people or eight people or 10 people. So if one has a need to get, you know, enormous success kind of day one, and doesn't understand that building a community actually really does take time. Then that's going to be a big challenge. So persistence is one kind of really important attribute of, of a, of a great organizer. The second, without a doubt is creating a safe environment where every person who's present can be as vulnerable and who they are and their authentic self as possible. If anyone feels like they're being judged in a meetup event, whether it's any kind of event, doesn't have to be just, I'm not just to my support events, we have every possible type of event.

Speaker 3: Then the best organizers are one who share things about themselves and create an environment where people are sharing experiences among each other. The third is just interactivity. There are some organizers that are just, you know, they want to just give a presentation or something like that. That just doesn't work. Um, the best organizer experiences is what you've also referenced, which is, is building relationships between, between people and really interacting with each other and having that like downtime, meaning the time before the event starts, the time after the event ends, it's almost like that parking lot conversation after an event with a three, four or five people that kind of are lingering around is the best part of a meetup. Yes, because it's, it's, it's that like it that's what leads to, oh, let me get your number. Let me get your email. Let's let's hang out sometime Johnny, you're going to say something. Oh,

Speaker 2: I just I'm agreeing with you. There there's so much that that happens after any sort of event. And there is a lot of bonding in what had happened. What did you see basically doing a debrief with, with the friends and who and the people who are most enthusiastic about being there. And we

Speaker 1: Saw this time and time again with our meetups in LA, you have the meetup had a topic around conversation and meeting more people becoming more charismatic. And then after the meetup ends, you're walking back to your car and here in LA, oh, what part of the city are you from? How'd you find parking and you just start having all the other conversations around logistics and what you're interested in outside of being charismatic or outside of hiking or a basket weaving or whatever the meetup is about. And that's the moment where the light bulbs go off and everyone like, oh, we should definitely connect outside of this. It was great that we had this meetup, but oh, this is where relationships are formed. Those

Speaker 2: People who are lingering afterwards are the most outgoing of the, of that group. They're the ones who wanted to meet people. That's why they're lingering. So it's just that much more social

Speaker 3: Well said. And I would say one last thing to point out that among great organizers, they welcome each person who becomes a member of the group personally. And they try to get to know them prior to the event. Yes. Because what's so terrifying for many people is to go to that event the first time and not know anyone and feel like, oh, I don't know what's going to happen it. But if you, if the organizer messages you beforehand and says, Hey, where are you from? Hey, what kind of stuff are you interested in? Um, where do you live? Whatever kind of, chit-chat kind of pre-conversation before the event, it's so much more valuable for that for in welcoming that member and increasing the likelihood that the member is going to show up to the event that they RSVP to then just, you know, having no communication, having all the communication only be at events. It's the communication before events. And it's the, the, the photos and, and other ways of communicating after the events, within the group that, that, that make for a building a great community as well.

Speaker 1: I think you hit the nail on the head. Number one, the photos are so key because we want to know where we're going. Right? How many of us, when we're looking at a restaurant or a new bar, we go to Yelp and we click, I want to see the indoor, the outdoor, where am I going as humans? We don't want that uncertainty around our environment. So great hosts will post up photos of the environment with people having a great time. Number two, they're going to start the outreach before the event to make you feel even more welcomed and feel like, you know, someone and number three, they may even introduce you to someone else in the group. So it becomes stickier because the more people, you know, the more likely you are through social pressure to be like, I got to show up to this group.

Speaker 1: I RSVP other people RSVP. I got to show up Johnny. And I think a big part of the secret sauce is in the followup. And we talk about this lot on the show around giving value. And there's really three pieces to giving someone value. Number one, it's your attention? So the hosts are not going to be on their phone. They're not going to be checking the app to see all the other RSVPs that didn't show up. They're going to be giving you their full attention. The second thing is, they're going to be appreciating you. So finding something about that person that you genuinely like, and ideally something about their personality, which is even stickier and more valuable than just a surface level compliment. Then the third is the acceptance piece. And the acceptance piece usually happens at the end of the event or before the next event where you welcome that person back, you give them a point of communication and contact after the event, why you enjoyed having them there.

Speaker 1: What about their perspective was greater a story they shared or some retail so that they feel valued for showing up. That's where the magic really happens because of course the platform meetup you launch, and you guys do everything you can to make that host accessible by making it more visible. And of course, allowing everyone to see this events going on. But the great hosts know that every single person that walks through the door is the most important person in the group. Not the people who are stupid and didn't show up and worrying about all the people who didn't come. It's focusing on all the people who did show up, who did park, who did hop on the subway, who took time out of their day, who put on their calendar, who were there for you, putting yourself out there, being the host. When you, you have that secret sauce in your group.

Speaker 1: And we've, we've talked to members, who've had groups running for years and years now and have built entire social circles around these groups. It's that level of care. It's not about throw it up. Hobo. Did people come? Oh, they didn't come. Oh, it was a failure. You hit the nail on the head, your first event, your first couple events, you might not have the numbers that you had hoped. You might not actually reach the RSVPs that you saw, but every single person who took time out of their to make the journey, they're the ones you need. The attention, the appreciation, that acceptance. Yeah. The next invite. And not only to your own meetup, what I've found, that's really fascinating is a lot of hosts know other hosts because great hosts will go to other meetups, too. Intel. How's this host running it. Oh, what are they doing?

Speaker 1: And now you can say, Hey, I'm going to check out this other meetup group. Obviously someone came to your meetup group, they're open to checking out other ones. And now you too, can tag team another meetup group that maybe you wouldn't thought of. And those are the small things that we've found over the areas to make, not only successful host, but if you can, then from the opposite end, as a participant, reach out to the host, thank the host for putting it on. What did you enjoy about the host? Was there something that they said or did that really stood out to you? We can do that even if we're not hosting. And that leads to more invitations that leads to more opportunities and maybe even invites to non meetup events, which we were talking about earlier. It happens at the end or after the event. Well, I might

Speaker 3: Steal the attention, appreciation and acceptance, cause that is really strong. And I love that organizing principle.

Speaker 1: Thank you. We're happy to teach your organizers on these exact concepts. I mean, we've been teaching our clients, these exact concepts to be successful. And it's funny because many people are like, oh, I don't live in New York city. I don't live in SF where there's thousands of people like me. I live in, you know, Wausau, Wisconsin. And I'm unable to find people who are like-minded drop that pin, create that event. And you'd be surprised how many people are lurking on meetup, hoping that someone else would have taken that initiative. We have had

Speaker 2: Our clients who went traveling in Europe or across the world alone. And what did they do to meet people and meet friends and folks in these towns to take them out. They joined meetup groups. They went strictly to meet up and Lisbon and a meet up in Milan and, and a meetup in London because they had, they knew now how to make friends now, wherever they had went using this incredible app.

Speaker 3: Yeah. Who wants to hang out? Yeah. With like a bunch of Americans when you're in Lisbon, I want to hang out with like people from Lisbon, so gone to like Iceland and it went to like a meetup event and when, okay. With Icelanders and that's a lot more interested in, Hey, you with a bunch of new Yorkers, way more fun, great way to actually meet kind of local people and people all around the world. And that's a, it's a great meetup. Or as employees when they travel, they know that the best way to travel is to check out what events are happening in the places that you're going to and go to those events because they're so authentic and they're real. And you'll have like a dinner with some random people that have all wine together or, or, or, or, and it's a, it's a real memorable experience where

Speaker 2: Everyone who's listening to this and you're planning your next vacation. Now that things are opening up. And perhaps you have a trip that you have to go alone on and I'm going to, I'm going to nod to the men on this, but they're ladies can take this tip as well. And you wanna meet lovely ladies, wherever you're going. So you could go to the touristy spot where everyone is hammered off their and just going balls out. Or you can go to this meetup where you're the tourist in this group of locals. And now they're all fighting over showing you a good time. So, I mean, there you go.

Speaker 1: There, there's a level of confidence in being a tourist, going to a meetup in a foreign place, it speaks to you being open-minded and someone who is interested in other people instead of, as Johnny said, focusing on the tourist spots or even worse, not taking that trip because your friends don't want to go. And we've had tons of clients after their bootcamp. Finally take that trip because there's no reason your friends should hold you back from the experiences that you want to be on. Now, you're also a professor and you teach networking. And we were talking a little bit earlier, Johnny, and I would love for you to share what you teach your students around networking. As now, we've learned how to be a great host. We've heard about all these different meetups that are happening. So I'm not hosting. I'm showing up at this meetup event. What are your tips to be successful in networking? Okay.

Speaker 3: So yeah, I teach um, entrepreneurship and strategy at Columbia and a big part of entrepreneurship is finding investors and finding employees and just going to networking events to help to build your business. So one of the, um, the classes that I teach is specifically around my best practices and networking as part of being an entrepreneur. So I'll just give you my top five and rather than the entire course, cause I don't know if we have time for that. There we go. So number one is in the debate of trying to build be more informal or more formal when networking be more informal, meaning too often when someone's networking, they'll say, and then I worked with this company for this number of years. I've worked at this company over this number of years. It's just very prescriptive and resume kind of stuff. I don't think people really want to hear your resume. They want to get to know you. So the more that you could pass the beer test, quote, unquote, would you want to have a beer with this person and be more informal, you know, the more success where you're going to be a networking. I want

Speaker 1: To share something there it's such an impactful tip. And when we think about, of course on an a networking event, we want people to know where we worked, what experiences we have, and maybe you're looking for more career opportunities. What's far more powerful and it's going to make you memorable stand out is if you share what you loved about that experience working there. So what you loved about Google, what you're passionate about in your role at Facebook, what woke you up in the morning? Ready to get to work at Netflix? It's going to be far more interesting in conversation than saying there's a data analysis at Facebook. And then I moved into digital marketing at Google. And now I'm looking for X, Y, and Z opportunity. When you speak to passion, it has emotion and that emotion is what people remember. So at the end of the networking event, when they're sitting there with a stack of cards and all these new contacts, your, the one that's at the top of the list that they have to reach out to beautiful.

Speaker 3: Second is just, I would say research, research, research, you know, I have one-on-one meetings with people who want to meet with me about a variety of different things. And sometimes I'll sit down and they're like, so what's this meetup thing. Tell me about that. I'm like, really? I can't you couldn't or just like Scott on our website for five minutes to know what that is or, or they'll say so, um, where'd you work before? I'm like, go on LinkedIn for God's sake, but I'm a CEO of a company I don't meet with anyone beforehand. Most junior person. Not that I don't go on LinkedIn beforehand. If I know I'm going to a meeting or I have a list of people that are going to be at some event and learn a little bit about the people and then find some commonalities, find some common interests, find a whatever, a nonprofit that they're, that they're passionate about. And people just don't take the two or three minutes to just do the research beforehand. And then there are going to be a lot less effective. So just do the research and you'll get them have a lot more interesting conversations.

Speaker 1: Yeah. You'll find those intrigue points. So even if you don't have a shared interest, what about their bio or their LinkedIn was intriguing to you and then asking them, how did you get started in this? Or what drew you to that again, breaks out of these boring surface level conversations that give networking a bad name, but people look at networking events to go, oh yeah, you have a disability, the little bit of research. You're setting yourself ahead of the pack. Okay.

Speaker 3: Awesome. Number three for me is don't ask always help. So what I mean by that, I mean, oftentimes when people are networking, they're like, Hey, can you, uh, refer me to this person? Can you try out my technology and see if it's any good people are busy. You want to build a relationship. You want a relationship to be sustainable. You say, Hey, uh, David, you're writing a book. Would you like to meet and give you feedback on the book that you're writing? Hey, David, you teach in class. I'd love to see your syllabus. And maybe I could recommend something there. Hey, do you want someone to check out the app and give you suggestions about, about our app? Oftentimes my students are like, but I can't help someone. Who's, you know, more senior than I am. Yes you can. There's plenty of ways you could help in referring potential employees. There's a million things that people can do. Even if they're 20 years, 30 years, quote, unquote, less experienced. And I think that's really important to have the confidence and find ways you can help an as opposed to just like, you know, asking for things from someone.

Speaker 1: So five minute favor is the mindset that we always talk about. What's a five minute favor that you could do somewhat for someone that you just met, right? It's not saying rewrite a thesis. It's not saying quit your job, take on a side hustle, but what's five minutes of your time that could help this other person. And I'm really happy that you brought up for those of us who are junior, because many of us feel like, oh, well they're so senior. There's nothing that I could really do to help guess what an extra set of eyes, extra set of ears and looking for ways to help instead of asking, how can I help? There's nothing more overwhelming as a leader than having an inbox full of. How can I help? How can I help? Well, I don't know about you, your skillset, what you're offering. And yeah, there's a zillion and one things that you could do to help, but I don't even have the time to tell you all the ways that you can help me. So do a little bit of leg work, spend five minutes, and you'd be amazed how you then unlock reciprocity. When you start doing favors for people, they feel like they owe you subconsciously. And when we tap into reciprocity, all of a sudden our networking efforts become scalable, become exponential.

Speaker 3: Exactly. My favorite five minute favor is just introducing someone to someone else. Cause it's like both sides benefit. And, and then they think better of the person who made that introduction. And I probably have done, uh, thousands of, uh, professional matchmaking, shall we say, okay, number four on list is staying in touch. Like I will have this amazing conversation with someone. They reached out to me. They want to, they want to build a relationship. And I thought we had a pretty fine time. I'm sure they did too. And then just like never again, they never follow up and say like, Hey, I'm back in the city or, Hey, it's been a couple of years. Would you like to get back together for breakfast? Not never, but it's a low percentage. Five being like, like operationally savvy and just putting things in your calendar a year later or saying, Hey, would you be open to getting back together for breakfast and six months from now? That's just going to be yes. If it's a great conversation, of course answers yet. Want to get, can we get have breakfast next week? No, I'm not going to get breakfast to go again next week. It's a little too quickly, but like six months later, three months, they're happily happy to do that. And people just don't make the effort to build that next second. And third and fourth kind of conversation. They have one and then somehow it just dissipates.

Speaker 1: Well, it's never awkward to reach back out. I think that's the problem. People fall out. They don't have systems in place. They don't have habits around reaching back out. And then a lot of pressure builds up and they're like, oh, I gotta make excuses for why this didn't happen. They don't matter. Throw out the invite, throw out what you enjoyed. And the other person will be happy to hear from you start putting your expectations in.

Speaker 3: I got something from someone five years later and say like, Hey, I'm in town. You want to get together? We got to go. I'm like, absolutely. So it's all good. And last one is just what I call the most important question, which, and the most important question in networking is simply, is there anyone else that you recommend that I spend time talking to? And that is a bit of an ask. So that goes a little bit against it. But if you hopefully have found a way to help the person as well asking the question of, is there anyone else that you think I should speak to both to help them, you know, or, or build a relationship with? I think people don't do that often enough. And whenever people ask me that at the end of a meeting, I'm like, I wouldn't have even thought, yeah, actually, here's this person, this person, this person, I'm happy to just send me your bio. And I'm happy to make those three email introductions. No problem. If they don't ask, they don't get and

Speaker 1: Doing it at the high point of the interaction is key. So waiting until the next day or three day rule or whatever the heck you're following odds are that person that you are so excited to talk to is already on two days later to something else. And won't necessarily remember that conversation. So striking while the iron is hot in the moment you had a great conversation, you see they're reacting. Well, it's gone really good in your mind, throw it out there. And in that moment, it becomes a lot easier than me trying to recall what we talked about three days ago when I was at an event where I also talked to hundreds of other people. And now I can't, I didn't take notes on you. So I don't specifically remember what exactly you need or who in my network could work. We spend way too much time waiting and we let these expectations of ourselves and others get in the way of the real connection that we're looking to have.

Speaker 1: So those are phenomenal tips. I'm so thankful that you shared them with our audience. So now we learn number one, meetup is for everyone, introvert extrovert ambivert. Number two hosting is the cheat code. So we encourage everyone here to become hosts. Don't go to meet up and say, oh, there's nothing in my area of interest. Be the one who puts the interest up. And number three, now we have some simple strategies. If we're not hosting to go to these events with, to keep in mind and realize that the more open-minded you are, the more amazing opportunities meetup.com provides. Now, Johnny and I love asking every guest of our show, what your X factor is. And as a CEO and a professor, what is that factor that's made you extraordinary in your career? Thus far

Speaker 3: Hard work. I see people work really much longer hours than I do, and I try to have a healthy balance. That's for sure. I don't know. Everyone always says the same way seeing and just in describing me, everyone always repeats the same thing, which is energy. I can probably tell. I have a lot of energy when I'm teaching out a lot of energy when I'm playing sports a lot of energy and when I'm working a lot of energy and that can be really annoying to live with, for sure, my poor wife and kids, but I would say, I think positive energy attracts other positive energy and it causes people to be more positive in nature. And I think that it causes people when you're more positive and optimistic and have positive energy to, um, want to be around you. So I would say, uh, without sounding boastful or whatever, uh, that probably is the, uh, X factor. Love

Speaker 1: It. And where can our audience find your podcast with all these great meetup tips and tricks?

Speaker 3: Sure. Thanks for asking. So it was called keep connected, uh, with meetup CEO, David Siegel, you could find it on, you know, uh, on every single podcast platform out there, uh, Spotify, apple podcast at your, whatever you listened to. You know, the whole idea of the podcast is if you are interested in building community, if you're interested in growing from community and it's, it's, it's hearing kind of personal stories about how community has changed people's lives, but also sharing best practices. Thank you for asking about it. Thank you for coming on [inaudible]

Speaker 5: Man.

Speaker 1: That was so much fun. Going deep into meetup.com strategies. I know Johnny we've been fans of that platform for over a decade and encourage all of our clients and fans to check it out. It's one of the best ways to meet people with shared interests anywhere in the world.

Speaker 2: Yeah. David is such a down to earth guy and he's certainly a very fun interview. I'm looking forward to us going on on his podcast.

Speaker 1: Can't wait this week. Shout out, goes to Rick who messaged us this week? He writes guys, I just wanted to let you know how much I've enjoyed unstoppable. I don't consider myself an introvert, but going to social events and parties. I realized that I was just sticking to the same people. And if I don't break this habit, well, I'll be dependent on my friends. My social circle is shrinking and it was time to make a change. Unstoppable has given me strategies to deal with my anxiety and finally be myself. I don't wait around for friends anymore. If I want to do something, I do it and meet people there. I know that wherever I go, I'll enjoy myself and make the most of my opportunities. I feel like I'm in control and making new friends who are aligned with who I am today. PS loved the podcast. Been a fan for years. We'd love for you to get results like Rick, stop waiting on the sideline and letting that inner critic keep you from the results you're looking for in your life. That's

Speaker 2: Great. Thanks for writing and letting us know. I love hearing great feedback such as that. If you listen to this podcast, we can make few assumptions about you. You're smart. You work hard and you take any edge that you can get the beat out your competition. You also want consistent results and social freedom to build your dream network and create fulfilling relationships. Here's the kicker, despite all the tools and the work you put in life's ups and downs gets the best of you and you become your own worst critic. It happens to all of us. This is why we've created unstoppable to give you an inside track into the psychology of the human mind, the advanced neuroscience that takes the reframe, your thoughts, rewrite your story, and truly become unstoppable because you shouldn't have to settle for anything less than extraordinary, unstoppable as jam packed with exercises, drills lessons, they get you more sales, more dates, and more confidence that sticks.

Speaker 2: This is unlike any course that you've ever taken, because it gives you the tools to go from feeling stuck, unfulfilled and disappointed to knowing that you are in control, powerful and unshakeable, whether you're in sales, presentation, dating or networking, you'll start changes in your ability to create powerful connections with people almost immediately just like Rick, you feel your confidence soar. And here's the thing. Learning to be able to enjoy the process and seeing the matrix work is so much fun. So not only do you start performing an incredible levels, you bring more enjoyment to your life. What are you waiting for? And just four weeks you gain life-changing confidence, a powerful self-image and an unstoppable mindset. Joanne is today@theartofcharm3-staging.uczbly1-liquidwebsites.com slash unstoppable. That's the art of charm.com/unstoppable. Before we go, could

Speaker 1: You do us in the entire Arctic Charn team, a huge favor. I don't know, over to apple podcasts and rate the show. It really means the world to us. And it helps bring amazing guests. Like we just had today on this very show, the art of charm podcast is produced by Michael Harold and Eric Montgomery until next week, go out there and crush it. Yeah,

Speaker 5: [inaudible].

Check in with AJ and Johnny!

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