Brad Nye and VIC (Virtual Interactive Community) are synonymous with successful networking and the interactive community in Los Angeles. And while the organization suffered low attendance in recent months like every networking group, their event on Wednesday, August 15th was a return to the heady big party days of years gone by. In fact, among the 500 attendees, all professionals in the new media, advertising and Internet industry, I overheard many conversations exclaiming how they felt like it was "back in the day" and "felt like old times." They were good times, weren't they?
Brad glided throughout the large hall in the Academy of Motion Picture and Sciences keeping a close watch on all the guests, making appropriate introductions and making sure the event ran smoothly. I enjoyed some of the delicious brie while chatting with Golenberg Schmitz Capital Partners Lindsay Connor and Heidrick & Struggles Angela Klemantaski about other cultures and living in LA. American Anvil Entertainment CEO Barry Collin and ValueClick account executive Victoria Mondet and I spoke briefly and Mysize Systems president James Gentry told me about his firm that takes 3D measurements based on 2D images and selects the most appropriate size for garments. They have a big business with uniform companies. Flipside.com Stephanie Jackson and Molly Hunter were bubbly as they networked around and Goto.com account exec Karyn Dobbie and I met over a glass of refreshing white wine. ABC.com account manager Anthony Behar and I chatted about his site and ABC's presence at the Webby Awards a few weeks ago in San Francisco.
Among the sponsors for the evening I spoke to Grier Ross of MonsterMoving.com and some folks from the Ad Club of LA, the co-host for the event. Before heading into the panel discussion I saw Bizrate.com's Tim Hand, who was formerly at Salon but looks like he's well off for his new gig. The topic of the night was the exhilarating discussion of "Entertainment Marketing - Ad Fusion: The Integration of On & Offline Campaigns." Woowoo! Moderated by Hollywood Reporter publisher Bob Dowling, the discussion revolved around the expertise of Universal Pictures VP of New Media Marketing Kevin Campbell, Soap City VP/General Manager Mary Coller, eUniverse president Shawn Gold and ABC Cable Networks/Disney Channel Marketing SVP Adam Sanderson. Afterwards I met Love Mondo (helpllc.com) and The Knitting Factory Hollywood's biz affairs veep Matthew Neco. The big crowd and energy in the room was sufficient to keep me going for a while, which was good since I had to head from the there to the airport for my red-eye flight home.