Chris Penn: Marketing Technologist, Ninja, Knower of Many Things

Earlier this month I had the opportunity to sit down with social media ninja, Blue Sky Factory client, and good friend Jason Falls. In this 8 min, 13 second video interview,  Jason shared with us a bit about how he got to where he is today.

In today’s post, I was able to track down a different kind of ninja – a real ninja – name Chris Penn.

Chris Penn

I first met Chris in Boston (actually Gillette Stadium in Foxborough) in October of 2009. I was immediately impressed. He’s one of those guys who thinks a bit differently than others – in a good way. In a Blue Sky Factory TV interview I filmed of him chatting with Greg Cangialosi and posted in November of 2009, I called Chris one of the smartest people on the planet.

As luck would have it, a few months after that interview, Chris joined the Blue Sky Factory team as our Vice President of Strategy & Innovation. I was thrilled. 18 months later, he’s taken the company & our employees to the next level.

Chris is truly a special individual. Not only is he (still) one of the smartest people on the planet, he’s also very much into helping improve the lives of those around him. Chris is constantly sharing valuable information & testing new ways to “squeeze more juice” as he would say. A perfect example is his new #the5 Weekly Wrapup, a weekly email that gets sent every Saturday at 6AM ET summarizing the 25 best articles/blog posts he’s read from the previous week. I’d suggest signing up right now. Be sure to check out the landing page you are redirected to after sign up – very creative video thank you with some “instructions.” Finally, Chris wrote a book titled The Marketing White Belt – a must read for the digital marketer.

I’m honored to call Chris a co-worker, but more importantly, a friend.

Chris was kind enough to spend a few minutes with me yesterday via Skype. In this 11-minute video interview, Chris answers some questions about how he got where he is today, suggestions for growing your social network, and a quick take on Google+. I hope you enjoy the interview as much as I did.

Note: While some of my questions were unclear & a bit rambling, Chris answered them with grace & insight.

Can’t see the video? Try watching directly on YouTube.

Do you have an interesting story to tell about how you got to where you are today? If so, I’d love to interview you as well. No worries if you don’t live in my area (Salt Lake City). All you need is a Skype account and I’ll take care of the rest. Drop me a comment below & we’ll connect.

Photo: Flickr – C.C. Chapman

DJ Waldow
@djwaldow

5 comments
Tim Brechlin
Tim Brechlin

Love this post -- Mr. Penn really is one of the smartest dudes in the world. As I said to Jay Baer when I met him a while back, Chris is one of those dudes who knows at least a little about seemingly everything. Love the story, too ... and I thought my genesis (studied journalism and public relations, became a photographer, then became a video guy, then became a magazine and website editor, and now I work in destination marketing) was complex.

Christopher S. Penn
Christopher S. Penn

Many thanks for the kind words. As I recall, that first meeting also involved me repairing the BSF microphone setup on the camera!

DJ Waldow
DJ Waldow

"Chris is one of those dudes who knows at least a little about seemingly everything." BINGO!

DJ Waldow
DJ Waldow

Ha! Good memory, Chris. Very true. You also cornered me for a MoC interview AND I nabbed you for an email marketing interview on my iPhone (still have that by the way - need to clean up & post). Oh yeah, also met Chel that day when we all went to 5 Guys. Good times...

Tim Brechlin
Tim Brechlin

The best part is that I've reached the point where I'm not even surprised to see him writing about some incredibly esoteric topic like it ain't no thang. He could begin a blog post by saying, "As I was working on my prototype flux capacitor this morning, I was suddenly struck by a thought," and I wouldn't be shocked in the slightest.