The real Ad:Tech got started once the sessions finally ended yesterday with Tribal Fusion's reception in the vendor hall.
They had beer with Tribal Fusion labels (tasty).
I finally got to meet Tig Tillinghast, whose articles I've read (well, ok, sometimes I skim) since I started working online. He's writing for Marketing Vox now, which is fine blog.
I didn't recognize him at first because he's shaved off his beard.
Pamela Parker of ClickZ introduced herself too - again it was nice to put a hand shake and a voice to the people I've been reading for so long.
I also grabbed one of the Comission Junction train whistles. It's wooden and makes a nice toot when you blow it. I had to work for it though - I talked with Kerri Pollard and tried to understand what exactly they do (sell ads, right?). I struggle some when I'm outside the comfortable confines of SEO. And when I've had a few beers.
Party number two awaited upstairs at the close of the reception hall, and so I walked up with Tig and one of his fellow bloggers. Upstairs I met Troy Perkins, President of Vocal Minds. They own Pay Per Click Analyst, a company and article resource for PPC buyers.
We had another couple beers while listening to the three piece jazz band. It was loud and got louder when I met up with Barbara Coll, better known as Web Mama. And I can say that's when my trouble really started (just kidding - hi Barbara!).
She introduced me to the suave, debonair, and uber connected Joeseph Morin of boostranking.com. He was talking on his cell phone every five minutes and making jokes in between. He and Barbara are what I consider to be party drivers - they're boisterous, fun, and are always ready to move on to the next event.
In other words, perfect people to hang out with at Ad:Tech.
With the addition of Lucas Morea of Latin Edge we made our way to the lobby and waited. Because Joe had to go to his room for a minute.
While sitting in the atrium I both lost my cell phone - my boss's BMW cell phone he got when he got his BMW - and spoke with Rob Friedman of digital envoy, one of the companies suing Google.
I got his card, but didn't get much of a scoop from him on how the law suit is going. I will.
So Joe finally got downstairs and we marched over to the W, a San Francisco hotel where Go Toast was hosting a party. Well, actually it was Atlas. Go Toast changed their name. I ate calimari and drank no more beer - at this point I was, as we say in Kentucky, lit up. Which explains, I like to believe, why I lost my cell phone.
From the Atlas party we bopped over to the business.com party over at the Thirsty Bear (after Troy and I popped into the Double Click party). Well, we rode in the limo, which Joe had arranged - he has friends in New York - even though the bar was only just across the street. Debauchery I tell you!
I ate a plate full of rice at the Thirsty Bear to put something besides beer in my belly. The party there had started to wind down though and we were all ready to head over to the Suede, where Tribal Fusion was hosting the Ad:Tech after party.
Joe called his limo buddy, and Web Mama took half the crew off to eat. I got impatient and jumped in the trafficbuyer.com stretch hummer limo, hoping to make a quick trip to what I thought would be the main event.
The limo was an interesting ride. First of all it was a hummer, and I've never ridden in a hummer before, much less a stretch limo hummer. It was a little flashy for my taste and cramped once we had filled it up with other revelers.
So why did TrafficBuyer drive us around? So they could talk about their products. Pretty interesting idea too. The ride to the Suede took a little longer than it should have, which led me to believe the driver had been instructed to cruise some.
I got to talking some with a fellow by the name of Ari Paparo of Control K. He's a blogger too, and finished the New York Marathon in 6 hours. Yes, that's about 4 and a quarter blistering miles an hour. (Ok Ok, he DID go for 26 miles and that's impressive.)
On the ride I also met an SEO by the name of Garry Grant, a big booming-voice kind of guy who hustled us through the line at the Suede with a hundred dollar bill.
The Suede: pseudo-swanky, smokey seeming without there being any cigarette smoke and packed with marketers. Ari was kind enough to get me a water (yes, after my comments to him about his turtle's pace in the marathon) and I stood and watched the hired girls twirl light sticks and lighted hula hoops in time to the slamming techno music.
Chris Eaves of cogbox tried to get me to drink one of his vodka and tonics - he'd gotten two and wanted to pass one off. I wasn't having it though - even though it was only 12 in San Francisco it was 3am in Kentucky time.
So I left, still not knowing what it is that Tribal Fusion does. I did get my phone back though, after an anxious call to the trafficbuyers to see if I'd dropped in their limo. No - it was here at the Palace, and I gave a hefty tip to the attendant who returned it to me.
Lesson: bring as little as possible with you when partying at Ad:Tech... six parties may induce the loss of personal belongings.