A Toronto network of Information Technology professionals.
Through serendipity and the internet, our client Alex had befriended Washington-based thinker, writer and speaker Dan Pink, www.DanPink.com.
After Dan’s second book, A Whole New Mind was published in 2005, Dan went on a book tour that included Toronto.
Our client’s goal was to have Dan Pink speak to an audience bigger than the network of Toronto information technology experts Alex spearheaded and founded, www.NewPathConsulting.com
While our client had the personal connection with Dan Pink, he did not have a distribution list that would reach thousands of people who would be interested in Dan’s book, he had no marketing nor PR people who could assist the logistics effort (such as finding a hall or theatre), and he had zero budget to make this happen.
Get really creative and find an organization that was full of smart people, which had a very large email list and had some budget to mount an event. Our answer: Rotman School of Management. We pitched Rotman on producing a show, with Brian Kilgore interviewing Dan on stage, with supporting PowerPoint slides, and audience prizes.
We worked with Dan for 6 weeks to tailor the PowerPoint presentation, using photos from Toronto neighbourhoods to illustrate the six main points that Dan made in his book.
We gathered prizes for audience members and also got the Design Exchange www.dx.org involved, since one chapter of Dan’s book was devoted to the importance of good design—organizational design, graphic design, industrial design.
Rotman sent out an email to its Toronto distribution list, telling of the special event.
The event was attended by about 160 Rotman alumni and NewPath Consulting members. The event received print coverage in The Toronto Star, written by Ellen Roseman, and there was an article about the event in Rotman’s alumni magazine.
The event was also captured on video by both Rotman and TVO. The Dan Pink event was re-broadcast a number of times in 2005 on TVO, as part of their “Big Ideas” series.