DIARY: When these Geeks say ’jump,’ bring your business card

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.

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

trust factor.’



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