36 hours isn’t enough, but it makes for a jammed packed visit to Las Vegas.

Establishing CES shot

Establishing CES shot

It included two work dinners (with great Vegan options) – Allegro at The Wynn and Jaleo at The Cosmopolitan.  Even the luncheon I attended at the Four Seasons included a great vegan plate with tofu and vegetables.

Scott Dorsey was thoroughly impressive during the Brand Matters keynote, reinforcing what an innovative company ExactTarget is, and what a great leader he is.

CES is a great environment for inspiration, and specifically what we (ExactTarget) could do at our own conference, Connections.

I made it to O at the Bellagio with some colleagues. My tweet sums it up.

Meetings occur everywhere around Las Vegas during CES. Here’s my view from one meeting I had. The 67th floor of The Cosmopolitan. There isn’t a moment where I take my job for granted. I feel so fortunate.

View from the Cosmopolitan

There were a few celebrity sightings. Ryan Seacrest, Vanilla Ice and John Holloway (Sawyer from LOST) were all withing hugging distance. I did not.

The CES floor(s) are intense. It’s part running of the bulls and small electronic city. I actually wish CES would become it’s own country and exist 365 days a year. You would just need a passport and visa to enter.

Amazing Sony booth

Some things I took away from the CES floor experience –

Go big or don’t even show up. Sony, LG, Samsung and Polaroid (to name a few) nailed it. Some of their competitors didn’t, and it honestly made me judge them for missing the opportunity at CES. If you’re going to attend CES, make it matter.

The real estate consists of square footage and height. Yes height. Two-story booths made the most of space and offered great spots for VIP meetings. So smart.

Samsung knows curved TV's

The Mercedes Benz brand is beyond beautiful. They consider every little detail – something any brand could emulate. Yes, their budget must be impressive, but they take into account all aspects of the brand experience. As I’ve been saying recently: An exceptional brand is a consistent one.

Beautiful Mercedes booth

36 hours is not enough.

I left Las Vegas wishing I had one more day to tour the floor. I guess that’s how you always want to leave Vegas. Free advice.

And lastly, a big thank you to Yahoo and Flickr. I stopped by their booth and when they learned I had been with Flickr since 2005, they could not hide their appreciation. For me, it was like meeting a famous person, but to them, they were simply genuinely thanking a customer (and giving me some gifts). Keep up the great work (especially on mobile).

Thank you CES. Here’s to 60 hours next year.

flickr at CES