Corp America March 2017

30 CORP AMERICA / MARCH 2017 , Brooke Boyd, Founder of creative agency Hype Group, tells us how the firm came about and why she will always keep her feet firmly on the ground. Hyper Active Hype Group is a full-service creative communications agency with a strong focus on branding, design, public relations and social media. Hype Group serves clients throughout the country, with its headquarters located in downtown St. Petersburg, Florida and a second office in Austin, Texas. Brooke Boyd is founder and president of Hype Group, here she tells us more about her role and responsibilities. “On any given day, I could be cultivating a new client relationship, shopping new talent, long-term planning and strategizing, networking, overseeing brand managers and design teams, or even watering the plants,” jokes Brooke. “Essentially, my day-to- day activities ensure that Hype Group continues its upward momentum in all aspects. In addition to business development and the behind-the-scenes work that goes into running a creative agency, I make sure my team has the support and tools they need so that Hype Group succeeds in meeting and exceeding client goals.” Brooke launched Hype Group in August of 2009, after moving to Tampa Bay. Previously, she had worked at various agencies in Southwest Florida, but upon moving she discovered that she really wanted to do something of her own. “Starting my own company from the ground- up became more and more appealing, and the Tampa Bay area was (and still is) ripe with new local businesses, restaurants, breweries, etc. It seemed like the perfect city to grow in, and grow with.” “I started working from the living room of my house, managing a few accounts and freelancers. Pretty early on it became clear that I needed an office and a full- time employee. Consequently, Hype Group was set up in its first official office in 2010, with zero financial backing or loans of any kind, which remains true to this day. Since then, the company has continued to grow exponentially and is now a 10-employee firm managing hundreds of clients throughout the country.” Over the years, Brooke has learned that managing a team is an art that must be continually honed. “No one team stays the same and nor does the company,” she states. “If these are stagnant, something isn’t right. While we’ve grown at what feels like the speed of light over the past few years, I’ve made it a point to make sure each employee knows their role, what is expected of them, and most importantly, that we are truly a team. At Hype, every single employee pulls his or her weight to keep our business moving at the pace it does. I’ve found that if you hire genuine, talented people that are eager to learn and grow, these individuals produce great work we can all get excited about. “They know my door is always open, and that I’m an open book. I’m available to support, provide constructive criticism, inform and encourage. But I’ve found that it is just as important to maintain an element of excitement and fun, too. We joke, we laugh, we vacation together. We just fit.” Brooke and her dedicated team strive to ensure that the firm offers the very best services it can, something that has proven very successful. “The majority of our clients come to us after being referred by someone else we’ve worked with,” she explains. “This word- of-mouth system has allowed us to save money on advertising and marketing ourselves and, in turn, we’ve been able to put those funds right back into the business. The latest computer programs, cameras, and media contact databases are just a few of the things we invest in that result in first-rate services and client experiences. “We also keep up with industry trends in a variety of ways, but the two biggest are through social media and industry publications. We follow leading creative agencies around the world to get a glimpse of what they are up to, and what they are doing that is new and exciting. Instagram is a great tool for this, especially with the integration of the ‘story’ feature. We are also a little old school and get publications delivered to the office, like Adweek. I’d say a majority of our time researching the latest trends is spent on digital outlets like PRNewser, Fast Co. Design, PR Week, GDUSA, and others.” Whilst Brooke has aspirations of growth for the future she is also adamant that the firm will keep its feet firmly on the ground. “My aspirations for this firm are to increase our client roster with more big-name brands, as well as to work on more quality, all- encompassing brand projects. We do our best work when a client comes to us with an idea and a flexible budget, and they let us run with it. In five years’ time I see Hype Group opening offices in other markets, like we’ve done with the Austin office. With growth like that, there is no doubt in my mind we’ll also incur some more incredible talent along the way. “However, while I have loved seeing Hype Group grow into the agency it is today, I will always make it a priority to maintain a close, tight-knit team, no matter what office it’s located in. Hype is known for being young, creative, and fun. Clients love us not only because we produce great work, but also because they can chat with us over a beer if they want. We don’t put on airs, and those that choose to work with us know that. Our boutique vibe and ‘open door policy’ has helped us maintain excellent working relationships with both current and past clients. “ K Company: Hype Group Contact: Brooke Boyd Address: 360 Central Avenue, Suite 300, St. Petersburg, FL 33701 Email: [email protected] Telephone: +1 727 623 9085 Website: 1702CA51