The Roast of Sangram Vajre
My friend and CMO peer Sangram Vajre just released his first book, Account-Based Marketing for Dummies. To celebrate, Sangram’s team at Terminus threw him a book launch party.
I was planning to attend and was asked by Lauren Patrick, one of Sangram’s team members, to do a “roast” of Sangram at the event.
I really like Sangram a lot. He actually helped me get my current gig at QASymphony. So I’d do anything for him. But, this was a tall order. You don’t just “do a roast”. You can’t just get up there and wing it. A good roast is very hard to write and deliver.
But, of course I’m a pretty agreeable person and I hate like telling people “no”. So I reluctantly agreed to do it.
I immediately regretted that decision. I agonized over this roast for an entire weekend. I spent hours watching Comedy Central roasts and reading good roast jokes online. I realized most of those jokes would not be appropriate for this type of event.
So, I wrote a first draft. Then I kept jotting down ideas. Then I wrote a second draft. I started running the jokes by my wife. She didn’t think they were funny. I kept working on it. Eventually I had what I thought would be a decent roast. I practiced for my team at work. They seemed to laugh at the jokes. But, I’m their boss, so they might not have been honest in their critique.
The nerve wracking thing about a roast is that you really don’t know how it will go until you get in front of the audience. If it works and everyone laughs, that’s great. But, if it bombs, there is nothing worse.
The evening of the event, I was super nervous. Sangram’s wife and kids were there which made it even worse. I didn’t want to make fun of Sangram in front of his family. Then the “roasting” began. But, no one was really roasting him. They were all doing nice toasts, talking about what a great guy Sangram is. How he helped them with their careers.
Hold on a sec. This was supposed to be a roast! Obviously, not everyone got the memo.
So then after the Sangram lovefest, it was my turn. For a second, I thought about calling an audible and just saying a few nice words. Screw that! I worked hard on this roast. I was going to do it whether the crowd liked it or not.
So I got up there and grabbed the microphone and went right into the material:
“I’m here to honor one of the smartest, most creative, most innovative marketers in Atlanta. Unfortunately, David Cummings couldn’t be here. So, I’ll talk about Sangram.”
Right away I got a big laugh. I looked over at Sangram and he was laughing hard so I knew it would be ok.
Who knew @jeffperkins8 was the king of Roasts! Congratulations @terminus and @sangramvajre on the book launch pic.twitter.com/8iHjvdwRC2
— QASymphony (@QASymphony) April 19, 2016
I’m very glad the roast went well. I’m especially glad that Sangram liked it. At the end of the day, that’s the most important thing.
@QASymphony @jeffperkins8 @Terminus @ericspett @TonniBennett – best roast ever!
— Sangram Vajre (@sangramvajre) April 19, 2016
So for those who missed the roast, here’s the complete transcript. Enjoy!
I’m here to honor one of the smartest, most creative, most innovative marketers in Atlanta. Unfortunately, David Cummings couldn’t be here.
So, I’ll talk about Sangram. But before I do, I know the Terminus team is here.
Where’s Eric Spett? Stand up Eric. Oh, you are standing. Sorry. (it’s a short joke)
Now I met Eric a few years back when Terminus was just and idea. It was just a powerpoint. Eric invited me over to Tech Village so he could pitch me. The thing I noticed about Eric right away was very bright and very sweaty. I mean he was sweating like crazy. I asked him, if he just out of a Flywheel class. He said, “no I just peeled an orange”.
Eric sweats so much that his sweat sweats.
Eric sweats so much the Governor of California thinks that Eric could be the solution to the drought problem.
Of course my friend Lauren Patrick is here. Many people don’t know this, but Lauren and I worked together at AutoTrader many years ago. Even back then, Lauren had big dreams. I remember she said to me once, Jeff one day, I’m going to help write a “for dummies” book. And you’ve done it! But, what I’m really excited for is her next book, “Marketing Automation for Seniors”.
So now on to our guest of honor – Sangram. Entrepreneur. Thought leader. Email spammer. Fashion Icon.
I first met Sangram over 2 years ago at a Sirius Decisions event. The thing I immediately noticed about Sangram was that he’s the happiest guy I had ever met.
I mean Sangram makes Elmo look like a manic depressant.
Sangram is so happy that Pharrell wrote a song about him.
I think the question for Sangram is, what drugs are you taking and where can we all get some. Seriously.
So, when I met Sangram, he worked at Salesforce. He was a senior marketing exec there. And I know that Salesforce pays their execs very well. Now Sangram is at a startup. I won’t say he’s not well paid. But I called Uber to bring me here tonight and Sangram was the driver.
You know may not know this but Sangram had to leave his job at Salesforce due to illness. His boss got sick of him.
Sangram is very fashionable. You know at the first FlipMyFunnel conference, Sangram wore a oversized blazer, with red/black lumberjack shirt and rolled up sleeves. It looked like Justin Bieber got in a fight with a picnic table. Look at my Twitter right now to see what I’m talking about.
Love that @sangramvajre rocks the blazer with rolled up sleeves. #trendsetter #FlipMyFunnel pic.twitter.com/ZQ4xQoeQnn
— Jeff Perkins (@jeffperkins8) August 11, 2015
FlipMyFunnel has been a BIG success. Now Sangram has a FlipMyFunnel virtual conference. You can watch online in high def. Which makes sense. Because to enjoy it you’d have to be either high or deaf.
Now, we are here to celebrate Sangram’s new book, Account Based Marketing for Dummies.
I’m sure the Terminus sales team is super excited to present their prospects with a book that basically says you’re an idiot. Right Toni? It’s a very innovative innovative sales approach.
I was going to buy Sangram’s new book, but I figured I’d flush $17 in the toilet. Same effect.
You know I haven’t been sleeping well so I went on Amazon to buy some Tylenol PM to help me sleep. I noticed it said Users who bought this item also bought Account Based Marketing for Dummies.
Sangram getting a lot of exposure lately. He’s was awarded marketer of the year, he was named one of the top marketers to follow on Twitter. And now he’s a published author. I’ve heard that when he travels he has to get 2 seats on the plane. One of him and one for his ego. And the ego needs an extender seat belt.
On a more serious and sincere note, Sangram I do want to congratulate you on this book. This really is a big deal. The book is terrific and is going to help a lot of companies transform the way they do marketing. Congratulations to you and your great team – Erik, Lauren, Nikki, Toni, Sydney and others – what you are doing is great for marketers and it’s great for the Atlanta tech community. Keep up the great work.
And I also want to say a BIG thank you to Sangram. Sangram was the guy who introduced me to QASymphony. If it wasn’t for Sangram, I wouldn’t have left my high paying job as an executive in a large company to join a startup. Now I’d like to stay here longer, but I just got a notice from Uber that I have a pick up. So I gotta go.
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