I’m a craft beer guy
Well, by day I’m an IT guy, that’s how I earn a living. But outside of the IT world I’m a craft beer guy. For the past couple of years I've been a participant in Craft Beer Nation. And these days I’m one of their Moderators and their Hangout On Air Technical Producer. You can read about my road to Craft Beer Nation here.
As part of the Craft Beer Nation I've been paying a lot of attention online to people in other industries. We’re at that stage where we realize we want to build Craft Beer Nation into a brand, into a revenue generator. We want to make money at something we spend so much of our non-working time at.
No I don’t want to emulate you
Now, one might think the best way to go about that is to study other successful craft beer bloggers and emulate them. But I’m not really interested in that. Yes, I look at what people are doing in this industry to see what they might be good at. But I’m not really interested in being like them. There doesn't seem to be a point, to me, to just do what they do.
So, I've been studying Social Media people. Marketing people. Entrepreneurs. Solopreneurs. People who have conquered Google+, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, etc. I've become interested in what the people that I pay attention to do, and how they do it. What they concentrate on. And one thing I've noticed as a common thread among them is their actual care about their audience. They genuinely care about their audience, taking the time to interact. Taking the time to present everything they do as a service to their audience and not for their own self-gratification. And yes, they are earning a living at this but they are less about pontificating and more about giving back, about sharing their own experiences, failures, successes.
Paying it forward
This is one of the things I love about the Craft Beer world. It is big on paying it forward. On sharing their time and their stories with anyone who is interested, large audience or small. There’s very little pretension. There are countless stories of breweries sharing their hops with competitors because they love what they do, their industry so much, they can’t do it harm.
On a side note, I’m a huge Science Fiction and Fantasy fan and the same is true of authors in those fields. They are the most generous group of people I've interacted with online.
I think, as I write this, I see a pattern forming. In the end I gravitate towards genuineness. Towards kindness and compassion and caring. Everyone is on a different rung in the ladder, some on their way up and others on their way down. And it is the ones who are helping others that resonate with me.
I want to help Craft Beer Nation go from a group of people who just started hanging out online every Friday Night to drink and goof around to an actual presence and participant in the craft beer world. I want us to be a source of information and comradery and a venue to connect people who share a common passion from all around the world.
And I want to be me while doing it. I don’t want to be you or anyone else. Just me.