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Last week I was in Baltimore for Brand Camp 2013 put on by Peter van Aartijk and Rick Morgan. This was the second brand camp I have attended.  Different than last year’s focus which was the anatomy of your brand, this year’s focus was on the ripple affect.  I have been talking about this event for the past six months and have been extremely excited to attend my second brand camp.

Brand Camp is about two things: networking and marketing.  This year the attendees blended unbelievably well, making Brand Camp rich in valuable, relative content to our industry.  Recently I have posted a few blogs talking about insurance professionals investing in their agency and how we need to meet influential agents who have succeeded in areas where we struggle.  In order to get better we need to associate with people in our industry that are better than us. This year brand camp did not fall short; the attendees really made this experience special.

The past year I have joined a group called insurance masterminds in which we have a monthly hangout on Google+.  I’ve gotten to know many wonderful people such as Linda Ray, the Insurance Goddess, the one and only Carry Reynolds and other great industry leaders. This year, these wonderful industry leaders attended Brand Camp and I personally feel I have great takeaways from spending time with these amazing attendees.

One major aspect I really enjoy about Brand Camp is the ability to rant. The reason why this is so important is because we have people coming from all over the country and not all rants were the same! In fact, many of the rants were so different. Ranting  Sounds extremely negative but we were able to turn it into a very positive experience by finding solutions to our current problems. These rants were why brand camp was all about the ripple effect. What the ripple effect means to me is the power of what we post in the Internet world and how it travels through so many minds and how it leaves an image that may be different to each and every person. We really need to be aware of what we put out to the media outlets but more importantly the image in the brand we are trying to bring across to her prospects and our clients. For all those we have not attended Brand Camp I would highly recommend you taking the time out of your busy schedule and attending for these three major reasons:
1)  You would have met many industry leaders  that think differently than just the average industry person.  This means learning to be creative in an industry that lacks the creative innovation.

2) New marketing and/or branding ideas that will help grow your business. When you work in your business it’s very hard to grow so start to work on your business.

3) Amazing friends. I have made amazing friends in an amazing industry and I have to say the people I have met in this last Brand Camp have absolutely helped me push the envelope and make my business better in so many aspects.

I personally challenge you that the next time Brand Camp (2014) comes around, that I see you there because I can assure you there is no way I’m going to ever miss a brand camp.

Special Thanks to Aartijk,Peter,Rick,Charles,Liz and the whole Team  for their commitment and dedication to our industry. Without you guys we cannot prove the McKinsey report wrong, and with your innovation,handwork  and your creativity we will show the industry that the McKinsey report is wrong about the independent agencies demise. We are proud Independent agency owners and industry leaders which makes us community activists.