Your Passion Is Infectious

David Ahearn with DMS and the No Fun Guitar

Dr. David Ahearn with David Meerman Scott and the No Fun Guitar

This is Dr. David Ahearn of Design Ergonomics. I just wanted to make a quick introduction to my friend, David Meerman Scott (or DMS, as we affectionately refer to him here at Design Ergonomics). While DMS and I have a lot of shared interests, and a lot in common, there is one big difference between us. I’m an introvert. DMS is not. And DMS has taught me, and my team, a lot recently about the importance of sharing what we’re passionate about. I’ve always connected with my clients over a shared passion for dentistry and providing great care for our patients. But, there’s so much more that defines who we are as people, and that will help us make meaningful connections, personally and professionally. Below is a blog post from DMS where he talks about the importance of sharing what we’re passionate about. His latest book is the Wall Street Journal bestseller Fanocracy: Turning Fans into Customers and Customers into Fans. The new 8th edition of his international bestseller published in 29 languages The New Rules of Marketing and PR releases in May, 2022. Thank you DMS!


David Meerman Scott

This is an edited version of a post by David Meerman Scott that originally appeared on his blog.

People are naturally attracted to those who are passionate about the things they love, and this passion builds fandom. Yet too few people share their personal passions in their business life.

The reluctance to share personal details is true of people who work in all businesses. However, I notice it more often with healthcare professionals than other industries.

When my daughter Reiko and I were conducting research for our Wall Street Journal bestseller Fanocracy: Turning Fans into Customers and Customers into Fans, one of the most surprising things we learned was the power of passion. There is no doubt passion is infectious.

Sharing your passion isn’t just about attracting others who share the same love as you, rather it shows that you are an interesting person and would be good to work with.

Dr Marashi - the skateboarding dentist

The skateboarding dentist

For example, Dr. Jon Marashi, a dentist in Southern California, competes with hundreds of other dentists for new patients. While every dentist these days has a website, and many have a Facebook page or Instagram feed for their business, very few stand out.

Since the services offered by dentists are seen as interchangeable by most prospective patients, the website and social feeds are among the only ways to compare one dental practice from another.

The problem is that nearly all dentist websites and social media are only focused on dentistry. They all look the same — you know with that ubiquitous photo of dirty teeth on the left and clean teeth on the right.

Dr. Marashi is different. He loves to skateboard and shares this love on his social media feeds.

He has photos of him skateboarding on the “about” page of his practice website.

Most interesting to me is Dr. Marashi’s Instagram feed, which he uses to promote his dental practice. Sure, he has photos of him doing dental stuff. But there’s also plenty of skateboarding photos and videos. And he’s got nearly 30,000 followers.


View this profile on Instagram


Dr. Jon Marashi (@drjonmarashi) • Instagram photos and videos

Dr. Marashi measures how new patients find his practice and how much they spend. He told me that his Instagram feed was responsible for 30 percent growth in new patients and 23 percent growth in new revenue.

Potential patients love that he has a passion outside of work, something that allows him to stand out from all the other dentists in the area.

For Dr. Marashi, his passion for skateboarding is good for business because people are naturally attracted to those with passion.

Share what you love

David Meerman Scott No Fun Wolf

Most people don’t share what they are passionate about. Instead, they keep their business social feeds focused only on business.

It doesn’t matter what you love – a sports team, a sport you love to play, cooking, birdwatching, an author, or musician – your passions are infectious.

Many of my readers know that I am a massive fan of the Grateful Dead. I saw my first show when I was 17 years old, and I am still going to see live Grateful Dead music. I wrote the book Marketing Lessons from the Grateful Dead with HubSpot co-founder and Executive Chairman Brian Halligan and the NBA basketball hall-of-famer Bill Walton.

Heck, I even collect artifacts from the band. I recently purchased a guitar called “No Fun” that was played on stage by Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead for about 100 shows in the mid-1980s.

I celebrate my love of the Grateful Dead. I don’t hide it from my business contacts. This has led me to many important business contacts, has been directly responsible for bringing on new clients and getting booked for speaking engagements.

Your passion is infectious. Sharing your passions is good for business. And good for the soul too.

Photo of me with No Fun and Wolf at Tank Recording Studios by Ben M. Collins


Every day I focus on living this extraordinary life I’ve been given with passion! By participating fully in the things I love, I’m energized to fulfill my mission to help others succeed in whatever it is that’s important to them, whether it’s marketing a product or service, creating art, generating attention, or developing fans.

I write about strategies to turn fans into customers and customers into fans. I also share ways to use real-time strategies to spread ideas, influence minds, and build business.