Three years ago this month, I started a blog called "Cachaçagora."
Long story short, my wife is from Rio de Janeiro and her mom and stepdad are evangelists for well-made cachaça (pronounced "ka-SHAH-suh"). Distilled from sugarcane juice, cachaça is the national alcoholic beverage of Brazil and the third most-distilled spirit in the world. Of the 1.3 billion liters or so that the country produces among its more than 5,000 distillers of widely varying quality, only a fraction of a percent makes it to the northern hemisphere. (The balance that stays in Brazil amounts to about six or seven liters for every man, woman and child in the country, which perhaps helps explain Carnaval to some of you.)
One day while in Rio, generally relaxing with my laptop and waiting for folks to get ready, something occured to me while I was going through some feeds. It seems that the sole notion of "community" that the majority of Web 2.0 PR/marketing royalty actually understands only extends so far as how they leveraged that community, and the mainstream media interest around same, to make themselves famous. Making the leap from that experience to helping a client manage its own reputation online is a much bigger chasm than many believe.
I came to the conclusion that blogging about PR and social media alone (which I had done since 2001) was meager gruel with which to feed instinct and understanding about the following:
- Who are these empowered online enthusiasts we're always yammering (small-"y") about?
- What really makes them tick?
- How do they squeeze it between a day job and the rest of, well, life?
So... 90 minutes of messing around with TypePad and GIMP resulted in Cachaçagora, where I try my best to give North American (and global) audiences a sense of the versatility and uniqueness of Brazil's national spirit. There's also a companion Facebook group and Twitter however, commitments being what they are, they only serve as more or less as notification engines. I feature different brands, cocktail recipes and, scarce time permitting, the occasional distillery feature.
Years later, my presentation "Everything I (Now) Know About PR I Learned from Cachaça" is one of my most popular talks. (It gets even more so if I pass out a sample or two, believe me.) I've delivered this five or six times now.
The full presentation is a ten-point list. Here are three airplane-bottle-sized samples after the jump.