What an amazing time I had yesterday. I am back home after watching Jerry Seinfeld live in Oslo. I had a fantastic time along with 20,000 other people. This is the first time I have seen him live, actually, it’s the first time I have been to a stand up comedy show.
The show was brilliant and fantastic. It was just amazing to see him on stage, alone with his microphone in front of 20,000 people. He was hilarious, but the the one thing that impressed me the most was that he didn’t pause for even 10 seconds during the close to 2 hours he was on stage. And not one word was misplaced. Everything was perfect, for 2 hours! That was just incredible. I couldn’t believe that this was happening. How can a person be on stage in front of a crowd of 20,000 people and talk non-stop for 2 hours without any pause and any misplaced words? I have no idea.
The experience of buying an iPad
You are probably going to say that what I’m about to tell you is all my fault. But let me just say that I didn’t know what I was expecting. This is the first time I have been attending a stand up comedy show, and I didn’t think that it was going to be like a rock concert. The first two hours I was at the arena was a lot like the AC/DC concert from last year. Well, except for a completely different crowd of people. This time people looked a lot more like me.
And, it was also similar to the experience of buying an iPad. It felt like chaos, and it seemed that nobody had any idea what was happening.
The ticket said that the doors opened at 6.30 pm. I was there at 6.30 pm, and so was at least 10,000 other people. We were stuck. Piled up. Next to the restrooms (I was lucky, it didn’t smell). If we wanted something to eat or drink, we had to stay in another line. That other line was hard to find. I could only see people everywhere and there was no line for anything, just people.
I waited in line for about an hour. Then, once I was inside and found my seat, I waited for another hour. Nothing happened. It was just people everywhere. I was excited. I was looking at all the other people surrounding me, and they looked excited too. But, after more than fifty minutes in my seat, looking all excited, I ended up playing Angry Birds on my iPhone.
I heard one man talking, he said he heard a rumor that Jerry Seinfeld was going to enter the stage at 8.30 pm, and that got me excited again. I looked at my watch and then I looked up from Angry Birds and at some of the other people. They were drinking beer and already laughing.
It was past 8.30. Nothing happened. Then. Bam! Lights out and George Wallace, another comedian entered the stage before I even got a chance to put the iPhone back into my pocket. From that moment, it was 2 hours of fantastic entertainment. George Wallace was amazing. Jerry Seinfeld was brilliant. I had a fantastic time.
Now, that the show is over, and I’m back home, I have started to think about what really happened yesterday.
I came to the arena the exact time they told me to be there. I stood in a line that was not really a line, but hundreds of lines going nowhere. It was more or less chaos. I wanted something to drink and something to eat. But, because it was people everywhere, I didn’t buy anything. I got bored. But, maybe I was suppose to get bored? Maybe it was part of the whole experience?
The more bored I am in the beginning, before the show, the better the show will be? Doesn’t sound right, but what do I know about waiting for a superstar like Jerry Seinfeld?
The experience I had yesterday reminds me a lot about Apple, and especially the experience when it comes to buying the iPad. It seems that the longer we wait, and the more everything feels like chaos, the better quality we get. We need to wait for the best things in life (I’m not saying that the best things in life are Jerry Seinfeld and an iPad, but you get my point).
I have been to the store and asking about the iPad 2 lately. First, the day it arrived in the stores, it was a line outside. Then it was confusion. And even now, several months after it was launched, the people working in the store have no idea when they’ll receive it and how many. This is the current situation in Norway. Hopefully it’s easier to buy it in your country.
I don’t understand how this is still possible in the year of the thank you economy and at a time when content marketing is more important than ever. But I understand that the rules are different when it comes to the most popular products and brands. We have no other choice than wait and do what is necessary. If we don’t, we won’t get what we want. Unfortunately, that’s how the market (still) works.
Should a small business learn anything from Jerry Seinfeld?
Yes, any small business should. But only from the time he was on stage. It was fantastic. The energy, the enthusiasm. Flawless.
But, as a small business owner, you can’t afford to think like a superstar about what happens before and after the actual show. Because everything is part of the show. You can’t afford to make people wait.
I would have organized things a lot different. I would have added entertainment outside the arena. I would have added 15 more sales tents (or more). Looking at the lines of frustrated people, I was not the only one that didn’t buy a thing. They could have earned a lot more money, and people would have been a lot more happy.
As a small business owner, I would have wanted feedback. When we left the arena we didn’t get any chance to tell what the experience was like. I didn’t get a chance to tell them why I didn’t pee, and why I started playing Angry Birds.