"Do you prefer 'Joe' or 'Joseph" is one of the first questions I usually get. The answer: I typically introduce myself as Joseph and from that point forward I refer to myself as Joe because it is shorter.

The next question I usually get is: "When did you start going gray?".  The answer: I started going gray when I was 12. Apparently, I still have a little dark hair on the side of my head, but I am sure that will be gone in no time 😀

I grew up in Cardiff, California spending a lot of time in the ocean and skateboarding around town.

The ocean is where I found my love of photography and videography. I would capture footage of friends surfing and bodyboarding and we would then make videos. It was awesome.

From there, I went to the Brooks Institute of Photography in Ventura, California focusing on Commercial and Music Video Production.

During my time in college, I worked as a Production Assistant with Ridley Scott Associates (RSA) and after 2 years figured out I wasn't cut out to be in LA.

After graduating college, I pivoted and decided I wanted to move to the Bay Area.

Lo and behold, I got a paid internship at Yahoo! as a photo editor.

I helped the editorial team edit and crop photos before they were published on Yahoo.com.

Advertising was the main revenue driver for Yahoo!, especially the front page ad placement. I sat right next to the front page team and quickly started to ask more questions about what they did. Then I started asking them what work I could do for them that they didn't want to do.

Each evening and weekend I would spend time doing campaign recap decks for a lot of the team. It wasn't overly exciting work, but I learned a lot and the team appreciated my help.

As my internship came to an end, I was offered a full-time offer to be a Yahoo! Front Page Campaign Manager. At that time, I was the youngest person to get a full-time position at Yahoo! at 21 years old.

For the next  2-3 years I grinded away at Yahoo!. It was a great experience but I quickly got burnt out.

I then moved back to Santa Barbara, California, and worked at Venture Visuals. I was able to work for an old friend from college alongside my best friend that I have known since kindergarten.

Then the economy collapsed.

San Diego seemed like the right place to move back to which is when I started working at Bridgepoint Education.

Social Media was still getting started. I am a nerd so I was paying attention to the trend and actively learning about it. When the CMO of Bridgepoint asked if anyone wanted to be a part of the new social media team, I quickly raised my hand.

I spent the next 5-6 years building a sizeable social media following for Ashford University and the University of the Rockies, which fell under the Bridgepoint Education umbrella.

Everything including organic social, community management, and eventually paid social media fell under my job description.

Next up, I was recruited to help create the digital marketing presence for a sports technology company called Blast Motion.

Everything digital marketing was my focus. It was another great learning experience. I found a lot of enjoyment in generating leads for the sales team through digital marketing. This includes standard lead generation but also ABM programs to help capture top-tier clients.

After 6-7 years at Blast Motion, I started at IntelePeer focusing strictly on generating leads. I built and implemented the first ABM program at IntelePeer which quickly saw positive results.

Unfortunately, I was part of the first round of tech layoffs and was let go.

It was the first time in my career that I was let go. But everything happens for a reason, right?

After a trip to Baja to clear my head, I started to focus. Job applications weren't getting me anywhere. I decided to finally listen to my wife and best friend and try my hand at freelancing full-time.

This lead me to start Hayes Digital. My freelance business helps small and medium size business grow their business through digital marketing. I help brands with their email strategy, content creation, organic social media, paid social media, lead generation, and really everything else in digital marketing.

It has been awesome and I am just getting started.

Have a question? Message me here.