Why Des Moines

I like Des Moines, Iowa.  That’s right, I like it here.  

I like running my ecommerce consulting and online marketing business, eComegy.  

I like living within 20 minutes of everything in the city.  

I like having a vibrant downtown that has recently been revitalized.  

I like that I helped start a major music festival in Des Moines.  

I like that I’m helping to build a new $12.5 million homeless shelter in Des Moines.  

I like the great entrepreneural community that embraces start-ups like eComegy.

I like owning a house in (West) Des Moines with its low cost of living.

I like that the low cost of living allows me to travel many other exciting places.

 

There are  lots of reasons to like Des Moines.  And one big myth to de-bunk – it isn’t a sleepy, borning town in the middle of a corn field (although there are lots of corn fields outside of the city). 

 

This week Forbes Magazine supported my belief by naming Des Moines the top city in the USA for Young Professionals.  Read the full article here: http://blogs.forbes.com/morganbrennan/2011/07/12/americas-best-cities-for-young-professionals/

 

And the Des Moines Register reported on the this story with some quotes and a photograph of yours truely here:

 http://www.desmoinesregister.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2011107130341

 

80/35 music festival

eComegy is back!  Well, we never really went anywhere, but for the past week (really for the past few months) I’ve been helping with the coordination of the 80/35 music festival in Des Moines, Iowa.  In my role as board President for the Greater Des Moines Music Coalition (DMMC – the non-profit that coordinates 80/35), I’ve had the opportunity to work with hundreds of volunteers and produce a two-day music festival in the heart of Downtown Des Moines.

 

People sometimes seem shocked when they find out that I don’t get paid for my work with the DMMC.  While I don’t receive cash compensation, the intrinsic rewards of helping to coordinate an event enjoyed by tens of thousands of people, and engages hundreds of volunteers is more than money could buy.  As an added bonus, the connections I’ve made through  my work with 80/35 have also lead to a number of business opportunities (for example, the owner of eComegy client GuitarKitsUSA.com coordinates the Kids Zone at 80/35).

 

What makes you passionate? What do you do to give back?   Find this and attack it.

 

And to everyone who I’ve missed  call from, or forgot to email over the past couple months… its catch up time now!

IRCE 2011

I spent last week out in San Diego at the IRCE (Internet Retailer Conference and Exhibition).  What exactly is that?  Well, it’s like kind of like the Super Bowl for ecommerce junkies (like myself).  This year over 7000 people attended – quite a bit more than the the first year I was at when less than 1000 attended.  It’s exciting to be part of an industry that is just in its infancy and growing at such a rapid pace!

 

Lots of great information from leading Internet companies like Google, Bing, PayPal and Amazon.  But the more interesting companies to visit were ones that you haven’t heard of like Payvment (Facebook Payment Solution), Trada (crowd-sourcing of PPC campaigns), and Shotfarm (free online image database).  Technology in the online marketplace is moving quickly, and it is difficult to decipher which new technology actually ads value to your site (increasing conversion rates) and which ones just look cool.  Over the next few months I’ll be contacting many of the companies I spoke with at IRCE to demo their offerings and hopefully try to weed things out.  I’ll keep you posted on what I find….