Employee Spotlight is a blog series that takes a look at the hard-working people who drive success for our partners. Belo + Company has some of the most skilled, knowledgeable, and fun people in digital marketing and we are excited to shine a light on them.
A lot of the work here at Belo + Co is done behind the scenes by expert operators, tacticians, and digital strategists. We recently sat down with one of our Sales Director, Colin Hayes, to learn more about his areas of specialization and how he is already delivering results for our clients.
How did you get started in the Digital Marketing Industry?
I started out selling hyper local print and digital campaigns for the Dallas Morning News. Prior to that, I was involved with my college newspaper (the University Daily Kansan) selling print ads to businesses in Lawrence, KS looking to engage with students, staff and faculty at KU (rock chalk Jayhawk)
What is your favorite thing about your job?
Getting to talk with and learn about different businesses and industries, understanding their challenges and then building a solution that works. Nothing is better than earning trust from a client and seeing your plan drive results for them. Making my clients look good is the best part of the job.
What’s one thing about marketing or sales you wish everyone knew?
From a marketing sense, is the idea that consumers have the power over your brand and every decision made should be with the customer in mind. Does my customer find value in my product/service? Are we delivering that value during every brand interaction? Are we understanding our customer’s journey and pain points prior to delivering messaging?
The answer to these questions (and more) help define your marketing strategy and the idea that the customer is the center of everything you do is why I’m such a believer in the Inbound Philosophy of marketing.
What’s your favorite marketing blog/resource for staying on top of the latest trends?
I love the daily newsletter, The Hustle. It’s not marketing specific, but it does an amazing job of showing trends and business case studies but through a marketing lens. It keeps me in-tune with emerging industries, marketing trends and success stories from all different types of industries.
Before working at Belo + Company, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?
My first job was working at Minksey’s pizza. It wasn’t unusual or interesting, but it did show me how hard some people in the food-service industry work and made me appreciate how far customer service goes with regards to building brand loyalty. If you mess up an order, admit it, apologize and fix it. I like to call it “jumping on the grenade.” When customers feel heard and understood, they’re much more likely to forgive and forget. When they feel like they’re getting the run-around, then things go south quickly for the brand.
What’s your proudest moment while working here?
The growth and maturity I’ve experienced as a professional and the self-awareness it takes to actually evolve. As humans, I think it’s a natural reaction to get defensive/shift blame onto someone or something else rather than take responsibility for our own actions or lack of action. I figured out after about two years into my career that I am in control of the outcomes I experience, both good and bad. It’s extremely liberating to only have yourself to blame. It means you have control over your life. But it’s difficult to swallow the pill of “this is my fault, or I didn’t do a good enough job here.” Sometimes it can take a few months or even years to come to that realization.
What advice would you give to people just starting in the digital marketing industry?
It’s perfectly acceptable to not know something. This is a huge, fragmented industry. When you come across a product, concept, strategy you’re unfamiliar with, Google it.
And, a positive attitude leads to positive outcomes.
What’s something interesting no one knows about you?
My family last-name (blood-line if you will) is actually Summers, not Hayes. My pops was legally adopted after my grandma remarried, so we took the last name Hayes. So if there’s any Summers out there reading this, we could be related.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
Golf, Golf and Golf