I met Julius via Twitter and Lolly, almost at the same time. Our common passion, coffee, proved to be so crucial that Julius suggested #coffeetalk on Twitter. I also met him personally on Monday and did a short interview. Before you read it, check his Eventmanager blog (brilliant check-list for event organisers), LinkedIn meet-up, very impressive LinkedIn profile (7500+!) and Twitter.
Syl: You have a strong presence on-line. When did you start blogging and why?
Julius: I started in 2004 for fun but took it seriously at the beginning of 2007 with www.eventmanagerblog.com I always had a passion for events and my interest in social media was skyrocketing after I studied online marketing. I felt the need to share my opinion with like minded individuals. I like arguing and I have a strong opinion on how business should be made. Blogs are amazing media and the user generated component make them powerful enough to keep me hooked up.
Syl: When did you start getting involved in events organising and how did this involvement evolve into social media event organising?
Julius: I started organizing club/disco nights when I was 16. I always had a passion for events and the feeling of getting in touch with people you like. When I got a better grasp of how events such as conferences, meetings and congresses are run, I started to develop my own opinion. I am against control and breastfeeding customers or attendees. Social Networks gave me the chance to experience new forms of aggregation such as Meetups or BarCamps.
Syl: I saw your tweet today saying that London Meet-up reached 200 members – congratulations. What audience are you aiming with those events? Can other bloggers attend?
Julius: Linked in London is a Meetup for those who have a profile in professional networks such as Linkedin or Xing. The aim of the meet up is to bring your network live. We welcome people for a number of different industries and we also do themed nights. Next one is for event planners. We’ll soon have a speed networking session and social networks specific nights.
Syl: It must be great to see your ideas kicking off. What is your next one?:)
Julius: Next one is ecoCampLondon , ecoCamp is a BarCamp about the environment and sustainability. I co-organize that with Carmen from Green is not a colour. We organized it already in Italy and it was a great success. We are planning to replicate here in London. We’ll be hosted by UnLtd, a great organization who support social entrepreneurship projects.
Syl: You have proposed #coffeetalk hashtag on Twitter for all coffee lovers. You have also mentioned an event happening on the 1st of November in London. Are you the organiser? Tell me more about it?
Julius: No, I am not the organizer, but I will be a very active participant. I discovered the group on Meetup.com and I am looking forward to the next one. Being Italian, my espresso comes first and I need to express that socially!
Syl: Apart from your blog, meet-up presence and Twitter are you active somewhere else online?
Julius: I am a strong user of Linkedin. I have more than 7500 direct connections there plus more than 3700 people in my Event Planning and Management Group. I recently discovered Xing and I am becoming a great fan of it! Obviously I am on Facebook and also on A Small World, a very secluded one. I use also delicious which is great for bookmarking.
Syl: What is the role of your online presence in your life? Do they affect each other?
Julius: I try to keep my personal life out of the online world. Online is my work, hobbies, passions and interests.
Syl: Talking about drinks and food – I am usually posting part of the interview on my Polish Bar Mleczny initiative and I would like to do it now if you agree, so I will have a few questions related to your expat life in the UK, ok? Do you cook? If so, is it Italian or rather local food?
Julius: I cook Italian food obviously. But Italian is not my favourite to eat. I am a fan of Thai, Greek and Japanese. In the above order.
Syl: Do you know any Polish dishes or drinks?
Julius: I am very ignorant about Polish food but definitely interested in knowing more. I enjoy polish beer though.
Syl: Would you be up for a social media event based around cooking Polish food, let’s say in Oxford?:)
Syl: Just going back to events – do you organise events focussed on Italian culture, expat life in the UK or for Italians living here?
Julius: Not yet, although I definitely have Italian coffee/wine event in mind. Oops I already disclosed too much information.
Syl: And the last one: what are your plans for the next 6 months?
Julius: I learned not to make long term plans, so we’ll see what happens
Syl: Thank you!