September 14, 2020

The Virtual CMO Podcast
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Contact Us About The Podcast

Agencies and the Importance of Digital Marketing with JC Hite

The Virtual CMO Podcast:

Season 2, Episode 12

Host:

Eric Dickmann - Founder/CMO of the Five Echelon Group, Twitter or his personal website.

Guest:

JC Hite can found online at Hitedigital.com, on Twitter @HiteJc, and YouTube


Summary:

This week, host Eric Dickmann interviews JC Hite. JC is the CEO and founder of Hite Digital, a white label digital marketing agency. He has started several successful business ventures including a language learning app. Now, he’s scaled his agency from 1 to 50 employees in just 2 years and counting.

As CEO of Hite Digital, JC believes his job is to focus on people and culture. His first priority in life is family; both at home and at work. He tries to foster a culture of support, growth, and care with a focus on hiring and developing people who genuinely care as well.

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Transcript: Season 2, Episode 12


**Please note, this transcript was generated by an artificial intelligence engine. It is intended only as a rough transcript and there may be some grammatical, spelling or transcription errors.

Eric Dickmann:   Welcome to  season two of The Virtual CMO podcast. I'm your host, Eric Dickmann, founder of The Five Echelon Group. 

Our goal is to share strategies, tools, and tactics with fellow marketing professionals that you can use to impact the trajectory of your company's marketing programs. We have candid conversations about what works, and what doesn't, with marketing tactics, customer experience, design and automation tools. Our goal is to provide value each week with a roster of thoughtful and informative guests engaged in a lively conversation. 

So with that, let's introduce this week's guest and dive into another conversation with The Virtual CMO.

 Today, I'm excited to welcome JC Hite to the program. JC is the CEO and founder of Hite [00:01:00] Digital, a white label digital marketing agency. He has started several successful business ventures including a language learning app. Now he's scaled his agency from one to 50 employees in just two years. 

As the CEO of Hite Digital, he believes his job is to focus on people and culture. And his first priority in his life is family and at work is priority is the family that he has created there. I'm excited to have this interview with JC today and hear both about his growth in his own company and his focus on people and culture.  

JC welcome to The Virtual CMO podcast. So glad you could join us today. 

JC Hite: Yeah, man. I appreciate you having me. Hopefully we can add  lot of value today to some people.

Eric Dickmann: How did you find yourself down in Nicaragua? 

JC Hite: You know, I brought 'em. Long story short. It's a woman, I guess. Can we just end there or do we need to keep. 

Eric Dickmann: Well, it's a good place to be with COVID taking hold here in the U S how is it bad down there? 

JC Hite: Dude  it is  really bad. but, it's,  interesting, you know, in the U S it's, You, [00:02:00] you know, when you're, when you're strong enough to fight you fight and you have options. Right. But when you're in a third world country, there are no options. You know, there is no quarantine, everyone works in manufacturing are farms. There is no subsidy checks like in the, you know, we got in the U S or stimulus checks like, 

That doesn't happen? there is no, I mean like healthcare is free, so it's over one. So it's just, it's just different, you know? So here it's not like, what can we do to fight it? It's. Do there's nothing we can do. Let's just keep working and let's keep, keep going at it. So you have the, you have the very wealthy that are like at the beach and like trying to play it safe, but really 95% of the country is still rolling. 

Eric Dickmann: So there was no intent to become a digital nomad? 

JC Hite: There is dude. And, you know, especially whenever I tell people, I spend most of my time in Latin America, people think beach life. Right. And right now, like I'm. I'm not standard, but we have a, we have a beautiful office in the city.  we work from seven to four, Monday through Friday, you know, like we're in that corporate, I guess, corporate America [00:03:00] world. It's just in Latin America, but.  You know,  I spent more time with my family than I have in a long time. I just found out last week, we're expecting our second child. 

And so like, It's a beautiful time for me right now. So, I can't complain. It's just different, you know, it's just different. 

Eric Dickmann: Well, let's rewind the clock a little bit. Give everybody some background into you. How did you get into digital marketing? 

JC Hite: Yeah. So very blessed. you know, from a young age I was into entrepreneurship. I I'll tell you a background story. So when I. When I was 13, 14, every day after school, I'd go to my grandparents' house where I would, number one, I would eat a huge bowl of ice cream, like huge, I mean like peanuts caramel, they had all these like crazy toppings. 

And then number two, after that, my granddad and I would always get out the paper and we look at the houses for sale. And we would dig into like, you know,  what it could be profitable. Right. So we would,  my granddad was big in real estate. And, we would take a house. We'd look at the value. How much could we rent it for all this numbers? Then [00:04:00] sometimes he'd be like, let's go look at that house. And then every once in a while he'd actually buy the house and I would be there for that whole process. 

When I was 14 years old and my family is very much a like a. My family is one of those families that the money never gets passed down. they always give it away, you know, at the end of the generation, Just simply  like, we're going to teach you how to fish type of family. And so at 14, we went and looked at a house and it was an awesome house. It was beautiful. 

it, cashflow is going to be there. My granddad told me Nope. Honest to God truth. You should buy this house 14 years old and I'm like, okay, sure. Of course. I didn't know anything. And I was like, sure, yeah, I think I should. How do I do this? Well, I knew how lending worked at this age, blah, blah, blah. What I now know is that we were good friends with the vice president of the local bank. my granddad and me had the same name. And so I went through this whole process of buying this house, then renting it out and all this thing, of course. 

It was actually my granddad's name. It's just that we were the same. Right? So at 18, I got to turn it over, but this kickstarted, [00:05:00] my entrepreneurial, you know, life. then from the time I was 18 to 24, worked in finance, which was a great, great thing to learn how to manage money and budget and invest. And so, and then. 

It started a tech ed company that I got rid of to IBM. And they got into the digital marketing space quickly after that. And, it's been a blast, man. That's just. Learning and growing and failing miserably. And, you know, it's just a beautiful journey. You know, 

Eric Dickmann: Well, that brings up a great point because scaling a business is tough, right? And a lot of entrepreneurs, a lot of small business owners are going through that growth period and they make mistakes and they correct from the mistakes and sometimes those mistakes are good because you learn along the way, but it's also great if you can short circuit some of that and not make the same mistakes that others have made, what have been some of the unique challenges that you've experienced and maybe some advice that you could pass along to other entrepreneurs or business owners to say, don't do this. 

JC Hite: Yeah. You know, it's so [00:06:00] one thing, I think it's important to understand what scalability is because it's different to every, every person, right? Whether you're, Oh, I want to become a billionaire or I want to sell for 10 million or I want to. how'd that nomadic life for me, it's creating jobs. So, so I've been very blessed, you know, with business. And now I'm like kind of my, I want to create jobs that creates stability for people. And specifically I'm in central America where there's not a lot of stability. You know, the economic, the economy goes crazy with the president or political situation. And so I want to create stability  for people. 

And so for me, scalability is safety. It's security. It's providing jobs that pay well to my single moms and single dads and all this good stuff. Those things are really important to me. So. I think for me, when it comes to, to scaling is, you know, Simon Sinek talks about the infinite game versus the finite game. It's about staying in business. 

Forever, you know, like how do we create a business model than just his perpetual? I am [00:07:00] probably one of my proudest moments in business so far is that we went through COVID in a marketing agency that serves SMB small businesses. We did not fire one person and we did not have one salary cut. And the reason as much as I hate you, I hate him or love him is I'm a big fan of Dave Ramsey. And so we have no debt in the company. we have no debt in a company. We have a cash savings. And so whenever ever. 

And we have no longterm contracts, which is a big deal. We have no longterm big contracts with any of our providers, whether that be. some type of service or a debt that we're contracted to.  what did that allow us to do when we cool? The hit, where a lot of businesses, you know, they had debt. The margins weren't as big. They couldn't get small. We got small. I called up Salesforce and was like, look. I need a discount. Well, because they didn't have a long term contract. They gave us 75% off. I called up Brian Halligan. Who's owner of HubSpot. He gave us 80 per actually he gave us three months for free. Right. So we were able to do all this stuff. They're able to get us really [00:08:00] small, really quick. Right. And so balancing this idea of when we think scalability, we think just, I want to invest. I want to ramp. I want to grow like crazy, but offsetting  offsetting that with security, worst case scenario, what happens if I lose my biggest client? What happens if I, lose 50% of our margins or whatever? Right.  we play that  one of the most important numbers in our company that we look at it as a leadership group. Is  our, our get small budget, which I recommend everyone personal and business to have this, but we look at,  if we lost every client we had tomorrow, tsunami came. I mean, like crisis hit. How long could we pay our team? 

Before we ran out of money, right. With a savings we have. Right. So right now we're at five months or two, we're a two year old company. We're at five months if something crisis. So those types of things give you security. Now that now when COVID hits, hopefully you slow down. You don't panic.  Hey, let's take a week to make this decision and make the right one. Oh, let's, you know, let's actually negotiate with our partners and have a little bit more leverage. Oh, let's, you know, so on and so forth. Right. 

I think the biggest thing was. [00:09:00] What was that security? Right?

Eric Dickmann: I love that. And I love that you mentioned HubSpot Brian Halligan, because that's really one of the things that I took away from our initial conversation before we jumped on the call, is that there is a culture that you're trying to build at the company and my perception is that for many companies, culture is one of these checklist items that they say, well, we'll get to that later. Once we're profitable, once we're bigger, then we'll start to do that because I think a lot of the look at culture as a free coffee and a ping pong table. And it's a beanbag chairs. They don't look at culture as a foundational element of what their company is and what it stands for. And it sounds like as you've built this company that has been very foundational . So you went into this, wanting to build a company with us very specific culture. 

JC Hite: You know, I'm a big  and I agree, you know, most people are the free coffee, the free launch, the free, you know, those types of things we try at [00:10:00] least to go much deeper than that. Okay. So,   we don't have free food yet. It's hopefully it's going to be, you know, going to be sued. We don't have the free gym yet. Hopefully that's going to be soon. But what we have done is we've tried to focus on things that, you know, really matter to people. Right. And so we really try to get to the core,  not superficial. 

You know what matters to you, but like really what changes your life? So we've invested a lot of our culture, one has to do with education. So every single child at height is on full scholarship  for education. So. Keep in mind, most of our individuals that are in our offices in Latin America, in Nicaragua, specifically the average, the average education level is the fifth grade. 

The naked eye. What today? 2020, which is fricking insane. And education is expensive. So an English education, and you're looking at, you know, if someone makes, you know, a thousand or $2,000 a month, which is a really good salary, you're looking at 40% of that would go per child. So at height, we, we put all of our kids on scholarship and that we also do experiences. So every year, last year we took our entire company and their [00:11:00] families and their kids to Costa Rica, all inclusive. 

The year before that we flew them to the Caribbean. And so when we're building a culture, I think it's like.

And maybe this sounds like arrogant or ignorant, but we had to think of it almost as parents, right? Like there's things that we do for our kids that are like, okay, you can have the ice cream, which is what I think like the Coke is. But then there's also things like we're going to give you violin lessons, right. Which is going to give you more, like, it's really what you need and what's gonna make use into something. Right. And so I think as leaders, we've got to not only look at the fund, but we are gonna look at like, what, what really matters to our people and how do we, how do we help them scale? If that makes sense.

Eric Dickmann: Well, it does make sense because I think that sometimes people look at workplace culture as a retention strategy, what do we need to do to retain talent? And, you know, there's logic in that, but what you're talking about is workplace culture, making it a good place to work. It's good for people and, and doing the right thing [00:12:00] because work life balance is important, right? You don't just show up at work and leave your personal life at home. It's important that we're contribute to your overall sense of wellbeing and happiness. 

JC Hite: You know, I was taught something, I think very basic. And I don't know why I feel like more CEO's or owners should be thinking of it this way, but this company is going to literally be the thing that pays for my  daughters' education. This company pays for every vacation. I have everything that I'm getting in my life right now, and that are. 

Beach resort at guacalito. look it up. It's one of the luxury places in central America. Morgan Freeman was here. The owner of GoPro has a lot down here. Like. The reason I'm doing that is because of this team. And whenever I turn this around, it's not, it's not, Oh, they have a job because of me. It's no, like everything I have is because of this team. 

And when you start to turn it around, you start to hopefully ideally be more humble and be more, how do I help them more? So. When you start to listen to you, ideally when we're listening to our [00:13:00] team, we're trying to do COVID hit in February. And dude, I mean the board, my salary was the only, I say we didn't cut a deal with salary. My salary was cut 100%. I didn't make anything. 

February March or April. Not because I was a great guy, but because dude, if I don't save my team, if I don't give them the ability to fight through this, what am I going to have in the end? Right. It's almost it's selfish, I guess, maybe in a way. Right. And so I think we have to start looking at culture  in a more, like, I dunno how we treat our wives. Like I don't treat my wife good. So she doesn't leave me. I treat her good because like, I love her, you know, like as you know, the everything right. And. And then we start, I think getting more to the brute, it started becoming started becoming more real. 

it starts becoming more of a relationship. and then once you have that relationship, once you, once you build those levels of service up to like an unbelievable level of service, if you're, if you've read any of Ron Kaufman's books, you start to build rapport with people that can last, you know,

Eric Dickmann: Well, you talk about relationships and you mentioned before reaching out to Brian and others, when you needed some relief on the [00:14:00] contracts that you were in but here you're working in Latin America. I'm sure your customers are spread out, but you have a number of customers here in the States and you probably got team members up here as well right, so talk about relationships, building relationships in this virtual world  and really the importance of relationships in growing your business. 

JC Hite: Yeah. So right now, 95% of our business, it's in the U S and if it's not in the U S it's in it's in Europe. And,  we actually don't deal with very many Latin American businesses and lists are very, very large. And so, and Oh, by the way, through COVID I gave the example the other day, I feel like the most beautiful girl wearing a face mask right now. 

like the biggest part of working at Hite and being a part of us is our culture. Like that's who we are. The, you know, we go bowling, we have all this fun. And right now through COVID, it's like I'm wearing a face mask on this beautiful face and no one can experience it. And, you know, we hired, I think through COVID like, since we went remote, we've hired, I think. 

Right at 10 fulltime [00:15:00] fulltime people. None of them is experienced our culture, you know? And that's been a thing, man. my wife works remote with Salesforce and she doesn't have the culture. They don't,  she's an employee, she's a number she's  a cheaper labor than in house in California. Right. 

And. For me, you know,  we've tried to do a lot of things. Number one. Is his phone call. So like today, one of my girls messaged me and was like, Hey, JC, I, you know, I have a couple of questions. Well, instead of just messaging back, I called, I did avoid a video call. Hi, how are you? How's the family, all this stuff. Like. 

I think we have to ask ourselves as leaders, not how do we show we care? But like, do we actually care? If you actually care, you will start doing some of these things. And then we, a lot of practical stuff. So. We started doing virtual yogas. So we got a yoga teacher that does yoga via zoom every Wednesday with our team. And I think every Monday or something like that. And then we have  a hit trainer that does like cardio whatever, and is on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Right. So we try to do as many of those types of things as possible. 

It's difficult, man.  It's really [00:16:00] complex.

Eric Dickmann: We'll be right back after this brief message. Marketing is the engine that drives demand, but too often it takes a back seat to other priorities. Awareness, fails to materialize demand drops in sales falter. Don't wait until it's too late to build your brand awareness and demand generation programs. If your company is struggling with their marketing strategy, we want to help let's schedule a call to talk about your unique situation and what options might be available to get your marketing program back on track.

To learn more text C M O to (407) 374-3670 that's C M O two four zero seven. Three seven four three six seven zero. And we'll reply with further details. We hope to hear from you soon. 

 

Yeah. I've been a remote worker for 20 plus years and there've been good periods and bad periods, but I think COVID is really changing things. Because when I looked at, when I look back [00:17:00] at my career, the times that were good were the times that there was regular person to person interaction with my team. The worst times  were the times where they said no corporate travel you're stuck at home. And this was really before a lot of zoom calls and things like that. So it was just on the telephone was conference calls. It was terrible. 

So now we're in this world where remote work is a reality. It's going to be part of everyone's work routines, but we still have to figure out a way to build culture. We have to build that connection, those relationships, right. 

JC Hite: Yeah. And , we're looking at that right now. I mean, our goal. You know, Lord well, and we'll be able to go back to the office in, in October, November, that's our goal. And we are very blessed that we don't have to take the risk. So our entire company is built on Salesforce.  There's nothing that hinders our operation by working remote fundamentally. Right? So we've with leadership. We've said, Hey, why risk it? You know? So, so our goal is to go back in November. 

But like this, you know, we've, there's probably 25% of our people that like, dude, I'm so much more productive at home. I love being [00:18:00] able to, if I need 10 minutes to go tuck in my child or, you know, whatever, like. And so, and then we get probably 50% going I'm about to die. Like it you're either going to have to get me psychiatric help or you're going to have to like open up the office. Right. So. 

Everybody's different. I think we are coming into a world where potentially there's gonna be a lot more options. Like companies are going to be more, potentially more open to. Okay. What do you, what do you want, what type of work experience do you want? Here's the deliverables. And then unless you're. 

Not executing those deliverables. There's going to be more flexibility. It's definitely cheaper. Like, dude, I mean, I we've spent a lot of money on that stinking office. I mean a lot of money,  so there's definitely some benefits of. Have not. I mean, even myself, right? Like. 

I'm someone that if I have an office and I making other people go to that office, I need to also go to the office. Right. We need to lead by example. And so, so I've never been able to have that nomadic like, Oh, I'm going to go take a month vacation and let my VAs do the work. Or, you know, like, because everybody would know [00:19:00] if I was gone and then, 

 when the cats are gone, the mice will play so to speak. And so right now I've got this beautiful opportunity where even I'm, you know, kind of, nobody knows if I take a six hour lunch or I go to the beach with my daughter at 9:00 AM. so it's, it's interesting

Eric Dickmann: Well, I love the way you frame it in terms of options, because there isn't a one size fits all personalities are different. Some people really require that social interaction. Some people, you know, work just fine at home. And when you focus on productivity, you focus on your deliverables. How you get it done during the course of the day matters a whole lot less than just getting it done. 

And that leads me to my next question, you talked about scaling, growing your business. So as you look to add people to your business do you hire for cultural fit or do you  hire for skills and experience? 

JC Hite: Man. That's a great question. it's something I would love to say. I think like every leader would like to say, Oh, I hire for culture. I hire for fit. That's th that's a good thing to say, but like, Right now we're looking for a Facebook ads manager and I've got someone who has four years of [00:20:00] experience. You don't think, I mean, that's beautiful. That's amazing. You know, I wanna, you know, bring them in. Here's what I will say. If they don't, if they don't fit our culture, we don't hire them. 

Right. Like, period . And  so for us, and we have a very weird cult. Like our culture is weird. I'm weird. in a lot of ways, number one, I'm very family driven. My daughter's in the office all the time. Like if you're not someone I want my daughter being around you  won't last in our company. I don't know if that's right or wrong. I may get sued someday for this, but it's just. 

That's how I'm gonna work. Right. So, so in the same context, like other people have their kids around, I've got a single dad that every morning, his daycare is across the street from our office. So every morning, the first hour, his daughters in our office with us, he's like seven, you know, And so, so we have to always have that like type of culture. So if you don't fit in that culture, you won't work with us. Right. If you're cursing all the time. 

Or you know, not doing stuff appropriate, like it just won't work. I'm also a very religious person. So if you're, if you have a problem with that, like, I might not be a good fit because [00:21:00] I'm going to say stuff like. You know, heaven forbid or, you know, God help us. Or I may like, Hey guys, we got to pray about this for a second. You know, like, so  there's a lot of things now I'm in Latin America where  99.9% of people will at least say they're Catholic, even, you know, so on and so forth for a little different context. But, you know , I think those values are  important. I think even beyond the values is what we're committed to. So. My commitment is to create a thousand jobs that empower people. All right. That's like who, what I'm doing. If you can't get behind that. 

It's gonna be difficult cause we make decisions on that, right? Like as an organization, 

We may not give someone a raise because it means that we need more stability for the bigger goal. Or we may not like there's a lot of things we do because we're trying to get to the thousand. That doesn't make sense. If your goals are mega profitability or your goal is to sell, or your goal is to do these other things. Right. So when, when we're aligned in our end goal, it allows us, I think, to at least understand the processes and the roadmaps to get there. If [00:22:00] I don't know if that makes 

Eric Dickmann: All right. No, I love that. I think more businesses would benefit if they had a longer term goal like that. They really knew what they were shooting towards besides just having a profitable company. You've built a business now that does digital marketing, but you specialize in working with other agencies. Have you built out a specific skill set that you can white label to other agencies that is  a better option for them then building those skills internally, building up their own staffs. 

JC Hite: Yeah. You know, so, so right. We do white label fulfillment for agencies and the biggest. So when you're building an agency, let's think of a micro or small agency. So anything between three employees and 10 or 15 employees, like, see, you always have this balance between cost and quality. So if I'm going out and I want to find a really good SEO person, because I want, I want to give a good, nobody wants to give a crappy service. So I want to give a great service. I want to find a good SEO person. 

They're expensive. They're not cheap. Like, I mean, [00:23:00] good SEO person in the U S is like at minimum 80,000 a year. Right. And now you have that overhead and so on and so forth at minimum. Because why? Because they'll go out and get three jobs and they'll make that themselves being a freelancer. Right. 

And so by working with us, we were able to lower that cost dramatically. But yet at the same time have great efficiencies and quality of work because we have a training department, we have a QA department, all of this stuff. So you, you have the high quality, you have the low cost and you have no overhead. Right. So right now we're thriving and COVID, I mean,  we took a huge dip with our partners and now  we're ahead of where we were pre COVID just simply because like, people are realizing they need us. So two reasons, I think number one, people hire us because they just don't have enough. Need for a full time, right. Or they don't know how to do it. So it's an SEO company that wants to add PBC or a web company that wants to add SEO. So they just need to add the team to be able to do it. Or number two, it's a larger company that's looking to cut costs. 

You know, so they use us. I will. And I'm super excited about this. [00:24:00] I haven't talked about this on any other podcast. 

But we all are. Super pumped on in Q4 we're launching our franchise model. so we're actually going to be one of the top or hopefully one of the fastest growing franchises focused solely on digital marketing. Right? So we, we give the website, we give everything, we get the fulfillment, we get the prospecting, we give the brand, we get the name. I mean, everything you need to really scale your agency  is about to launch for our, through our franchise model, which is really, really exciting 

Eric Dickmann: That does sound really exciting. And I'm curious because, you know, as I advise clients, we talk about usually a mix of in house resources and then farming workout to either agencies or freelancers, but people who are truly experts in what they do, because it's very hard and expensive as you said, to build all that expertise in house, whether you're at a company or at an agency. 

When you look at digital marketing and especially with, you know, new channels coming online and the complexity of it [00:25:00] and changing algorithms, what are some common mistakes that you see businesses making just in terms of their overall strategy? 

JC Hite: Ooh, that's a good question. so we're talking about businesses making mistakes when it comes to market. So I think number one, People are too worried about like perfection versus just getting out there. I think nowadays the market almost looks for in an imperfection. Like they expect it, like they're okay with it. They want to, they want to talk with someone that's real, someone that's personable. And so now more than ever, I mean, what you're doing right now with the podcast and people that are doing, I think  every digital marketer should either have a podcast or YouTube channel one or the other, because it's just, it's such a great way to connect with your audience. 

A lot of businesses don't go because they're afraid. Oh man. But I don't know exactly what to say. I don't know exactly what to do. Oh, my pitch isn't that's okay. Like people, people don't need that. Right. Will always get an Oh, by the way. Even if you did have the perfect thing to say is through experience that we start to get better.

Just [00:26:00] get started, just do something, you know? And, and then I think it's just a matter of, of, of, of, of finding the right team. Right? So the. As a small business, you know, working with a. Not an agency. That's perfect. But agency that, you know, we'll figure it out for you. So marketing is variable. Marketing is not always black and white.

I signed up for PPC and here it goes, it's about figuring it out what works in your market for your business, for your message for your price point. And so you gotta have a marketer, not that's. Promising you the world right off the bat, but one that's going to go, okay. Here's strategy a here's plan B here's plan C. We're going to keep working in fighting and shifting and molding until we find the perfect sauce to be able to give you that ROI. You know? So, these agencies that can do more now, a days, I think, than just have a one-step solution are going to be more and more and more valuable, 

Eric Dickmann: It's so interesting what you said, because I think that there have been these factors that have come together. it's not only COVID, but it's technology. It's things like, we [00:27:00] have FaceTime on our phones so we can communicate that way. People have just become more comfortable getting in front of a camera and that is building that level of trust. You know, we see it on the evening news where people are reporting from their homes in their living rooms. And the cat is walking by. 

And there is this level of acceptance. Now I think that it doesn't have to be perfect and that's okay with people. I think one of the big things that's happened with zoom meetings is that people were forced to finally turn on the camera and say, okay. Yeah, this is my living room. this is my office. Yeah. And it's a little messy in the background or whatever, and that's okay. 

And for the first time, I think people are really getting comfortable putting themselves out there. And I think it's a great opportunity for brands to start to build that level of trust with their customer base. And I know you have a YouTube channel where you talk to the audience about your company and your growth and your very real and honest with what you're trying to do there. 

How have you found that [00:28:00] whole experience? Just being real with your audience? 

 

JC Hite: You know,  youTube. It's funny. I hate YouTube. I hate getting on there. I think it's weird. in fact, this morning I was talking to  a YouTube coach that we're considering hiring. And  I was being vulnerable with it. I was like, dude, I, who am I? Who am I to be out there telling people what to do? You know, I'm 31 years old. I've had some success, but I feel like. 

I feel like I can get it wrong more than I get it right. Sometimes. And, and so, and shoot, what if I tell someone the wrong thing, you know, and he said, that's all good. You know, like that was what, like, that's perfect because the people that just start talking like those are the guys you  have to watch out for, but you're, People want realness, you know, 

And,   that's where we, you know, and I've, if you go to my YouTube channel, I've, I've slacked off of the last couple of months, because I've been so focused  on podcast and watching the franchise. And so, it's it's but man, the value is  so huge  for a digital marketing company. 

I will say that. You know, it is good for sales, but it's also good for retention. One of my clients go there and see that, Oh man, like he's [00:29:00] actually producing content. He knows what he's talking about. Like, Oh, JC man, he's got a top 200 podcasts. Like he must know what he's doing. Oh, he's, you know, all of these things, a writer for entrepreneur, like all those things add up to the credibility, which helps you in the long run. Give you a time with your clients, you know? 

Eric Dickmann: So you mentioned podcast. I know you've got one that you host The Digital Agency Hacker podcast is obviously the title implies that it's mostly focused on the digital agency crowd. Is it broader than that? Does it also cover general digital marketing topics that a broader audience would relate to as well? 

JC Hite: Yeah. So , I would say specifically to digital marketers, if you're a digital marketer, it's a great podcast to go listen to, but I will say I'm very broad on it. Right? So. You know,  I had a podcast the other day when I talked about faith. I had a podcast the other day when I talked about mindset. And so for me , it's the holistic  livelihood of a digital marketing agency, owner, or executive officer, things like that. And then we get, we get [00:30:00] tactical. I got a podcast releasing, I think tomorrow on top 10 stupid things people do on Facebook. Right? So like Facebook advertising. And so, you know, there, there there's some real technical stuff as well, but we try to, we try to gear it specifically towards digital marketing agency owners or, or leadership. Right. 

Eric Dickmann: I think that's great because you've got to have a niche, right? You've got to have a focus area that you can find your audience. So that's awesome. And I'll make sure that we have links to all of that in the show notes. So, this has been a really fascinating conversation. I really enjoyed it. Tell people how they can find you online. 

JC Hite: Yeah. So I'm pretty much, I guess, everywhere. Some of the channels I run, some of them are marketing department runs, but LinkedIn, JC Hite, Instagram. JC Hite. Twitter. I think I'm on Twitter as well. I will say Instagram is probably the one I'm I try to be most active on or LinkedIn. So, or you can hit us up at. 

at, at hitedigital.com. as well, if, if there's any fulfillment needs or anything like that, I think we're all booked up right now. But if you want to check it out, [00:31:00] but, yeah, I love to connect this stuff. I am. I love digital marketing. I love working with entrepreneurs. So any way we can connect and have conversations like this it's highlights of my day. So it's really enjoyable.

Eric Dickmann: JC, this has been great. A lot of valuable content here, and I love what you're doing with the business, and I wish you all the success. It sounds like you've got some exciting things that are coming in the fall, as well as what you're doing with the podcast. So best of 

JC Hite: Appreciate it. Yes, you as well. You as well. It was, it was a, it was a pleasure. 

Eric Dickmann:   that wraps up another episode of The Virtual CMO podcast. As a reminder, if you'd like to learn more about Virtual CMO, strategic marketing consulting services, or anything else discussed here today, please visit us at fiveechelon.com. There's a link in the show notes. If you'd like to send us comments, feedback, guest inquiries, and your five-star reviews on Apple Podcasts are always appreciated.

If you'd like to reach me. I'm @ EDickmann. That's E D I C [00:32:00] K M A N N on Twitter. If you'd like to connect on LinkedIn, please let me know. You heard about me through The Virtual CMO podcast. I look forward to talking with you again next week and sharing some new marketing insights on The Virtual CMO. 

Resources:

The Five Echelon Group - Resources to Restart Your Business

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