Want to find out what your clients and media contacts are really made of? Jump out of a plane with them.
Want to find out what your clients and media contacts are really
made of? Jump out of a plane with them.
That was the path taken by NYC-based boutique The Geek Factory, which
coordinated a skydiving expedition for an army of 75, including pals
from Juno, Deutsch Advertising and xceed.com, as well as Forbes and
Business Week reporters. PRWeek, alas, was forced to bail out, citing a
’bad back’ and ’acute cowardice.’
’We were brainstorming about ways to have some fun,’ says head Geek
Peter Shankman. ’Atlantic City? Boring. Rent a boat? Boring. Then
someone suggested skydiving.’
Shankman adds that organizing the trip wasn’t difficult. ’My parents are
both high school principals, which made getting the buses no problem,’
he says. ’The toughest thing was to get people to drag six-foot-long
hero sandwiches to our offices.’ Sponsors including eWomp.com, Icon
Nicholson and mimeo.com chipped in with foot cream, disposable cameras,
frisbees and footballs.
The Geek gang plans to repeat the jaunt later this summer, with a
whitewater rafting expedition and a ski trip to follow. In fact, shortly
after returning, Shankman and his cohorts registered the domain name In
saneNetworking.com and started plans for gonzo networking events. ’You
can only go to so many open-bar parties,’ he says.
And don’t think Shankman wasn’t thinking about his agency while planning
the event: ’If you’re choosing among five PR firms and you’ve jumped out
of a plane with one of them ... well, that pretty much takes care of the