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I grew up in the wonder years of southern California when you could surf and ski in the same day, and pluck an orange along the way. My first job was at Disneyland. Steve Martin worked in the Magic Shop. Richard Carpenter played honky tonk piano on Main Street. And I was one of the Three Little Pigs.

I was always curious about the world east of the Hollywood sign. So after college I became an early adopter of Montana (prior to Tom Brokaw, Ted Turner and Harrison Ford). Under the big sky, I promoted camping, tourism and oil rig equipment.

After too much clean living, I returned to LA and worked as a copywriter and creative director in consumer advertising and healthcare marketing.

I eventually made my way to Chicago in 1991. Discovering Italian beefs and gardinare peppers has kept me here ever since.

Along Lake Shore Drive I've done stints in moment-to-moment audience measurement (the squiggly lines on the televised presidential debates), heading the Internet business strategy at Citigroup Diners Club, and helping pharma clients with their e-detailing and CRM programs.

This eclectic journey eventually led to the world of influence mapping and profiling of key opinion leaders so big pharma and biotech clients could engage the right people in the sandbox.

I think the web-based process models I've used to understand the drivers of influence in big pharma can work in a lot of industries. And now social media presents an efficient and scalable linear platform to identify, profile and engage very vertical influencers. It's worth exploring.

The comments on this blog reflect my own opinions, and not those of my past, current and future employers. I'm a terminal optimist.


Glenn Raines