I enjoy speaking at conferences—not just because I like sharing something new with my audience, but because I most always walk away inspired myself. There’s very few people in media, technology and entertainment that I don’t know but, until I spoke at the Aspen Sports Institute, I had never met nor had any business dealings with Mark Cuban.
I always appreciated his dabbling in entertainment, his new media understanding and, of course, his “all in” with sports teams.
I was hopeful to meet him at the conference, though, I do confess, I am not one to go out of my way to meet anyone unless I really have something to say.
Surprisingly, at a dinner reception, Mark came up to me and pulled me aside sort of out of the blue and said “I know who you are.” So, naturally, I said “Great, I know who you are too. And I’ve been a big fan of your direct, fearless, tell it like it is style in which you take things on.” Needless to say, there was some chit chat.
During the course of that conversation, he gave me some of the best advice I had heard—focus on the real people, the fans and not the press and bloggers.
You see, at that time, the press and a group of bloggers had created some controversy for the Dallas Mavericks owner in branding the upcoming season “Mavageddon”. Now, it is catchy, but it was also unwarranted—they were trying to shame Mark into acquiring some of the overpriced free agents that were available for the team.
They created over 2,000 negative comments, but Mark did not budge. Rather, he did some analysis on the comments and their commenters learning that about 95% were from the same 7 people using different names and computers.
He told me focus on your real audience, the fans, the people that really know you and want you to succeed, not the circling sharks wishing for your demise. “I get a death threat a week” he said. “It used to bother me, but now I just have security check it out and continue with my day.”
He also said, “Brian everyone knows you’re terrific reputation—or at least anyone who matters. They know who you are and what you can do and that is all that matters.”
While Mark may not remember the above, I certainly do. He was spot on. And I am sure it’s just one of the many reasons he’s both a billionaire and a world champion.
Brady must be careful in trying to prove his innocence