Recently I have started a HangOut Meetup to all entrepreneurs and affiliate marketers in NJ. This is different from our IANteract Meetup202 in New Jersey as these hangouts happen weekly or bi weekly. Instead of having a monthly meetup and having a speaker, we actually just hangout and grab a beer and network.
I started this because I wanted to surround myself with friends that are in the industry and where we can share the same insights of marketing, especially affiliate marketing. I don't mind hanging out with my friends, but I can't discuss money with them. For example, if I tell them I had a bad day because I lost an X amount in a week. Their remarks are not supportive and it then becomes a joke, "You could have given me $X,XXX". Some of my friends respect what I do and I def enjoy their company, others is a different story.
The mindset of my friends are totally different from an entrepreneurs mindset. I love my friends and no disrespect to them, but sometimes it is hard to discuss my passion for the internet with them.
... so the NJ HangOut Meetup has been created. It allows me to network and friend entrepreneurs in the NJ area. This way I can ping the group and see if anyone wants to ball out. Traditionally, a response I would get from friends is they do not have money, they are broke, they just paid their bills. Understandable. Now I can hangout with a group of friends who is always about making more money and expanding their business.
The Hangout consists of some affiliates like Rohail Rizvi, NJ advertisers, and even an NJ affiliate network - CPA Staxx, which I have yet to meet. There are others as well that do big numbers in the affiliate space and some are also starting out but at least have done affiliate marketing.
The purpose of the hangout is to grab a beer on a weekend, relax, and talk whatever is on our mind. Not only do these hangouts become just a weekly networking event, it becomes a close circle of friends who enjoy the industry and enjoy talking about marketing. I know personally I have grown attach to the group, making friends and enjoying everyone's company. We don't always talk business, we talk about life, vacations, clubbing, and everything in between. The group isn't JUST a networking event, but more of friends you can talk in depth business with.
Preview of the HangOuts:
Our hangouts are becoming more of a place to hangout with friends who enjoy the industry and become close friends. I have a tattoo on my arm saying:
"He that walks with wise men, shall be wise, but a companion of fools shall be destroyed." - Proverb 13:20
This is true and I got this tattoo done because I started going back to the old me. I started hanging out with friends that are not as driven as me and are in situations that I do not want to be part of anymore. It was a chapter of my life and I want it to be just that, a chapter. I wanted to keep a reminder to myself, who I hangout with I will become. Making sure I am with the right people at all times.
This is also another reason why I travel a lot to multiple trade shows and conferences because I am surrounded by people who are passionate about the internet industry as a whole.
I will never leave or forget my friends I grew up with, I even invite some to these hangouts in hope they can get some encouragement to do even more. Without my circle of friends that I grew up with, I do not think I would be in my situation now. So I will never forget who they are, especially the ones who support what I do.
They say you are who you are base on your surrounding environment and this is the case with friends and people who you are with.