Social media definitely occupies and important place in the business world. Where else can fans rave about your products and services, and tell hundreds of their friends—all in one easy motion, as simple as clicking a “like” or share button and then typing a few well-chosen words? It’s the basis for creating buzz about your brand, and going viral. (Of course, on the flipside, fans and friends can criticize just as easily . . . but that’s a topic for another day!)

Yet we can’t all hide behind our laptops, tablets, and smart phones day in and day out. There is great value in making personal connections—in “Shaking Hands and Kissing Babies”—and in the spontaneity and unpredictability of meeting in the flesh. Think about all the great ideas and innovations that come about when people get to network face-to-face, brainstorm, and share ideas. Do you think Bill Gates and Paul Allen could have founded Microsoft by tweets alone? (Plus, how’s a monkey supposed to meet other monkeys, stuck behind a firewall? It can get pretty boring.)

Now, I’m not suggesting two Next Gen billionaires will be in attendance, but I am planning on going to “The Business Forum Networking Expo” in LA next week because—well, you just never know what might come about from a chance encounter, swapping business cards, an offhand remark, and the kinds of ideas gleaned from hearing from expert speakers.

When? Tuesday, March 22, 2011 from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Where? Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles.
More info?

See you there!