Pulling from her experiences, Kiley Peters, shares her look on Chicago networking and what Milwaukee can see to build.
Kiley Peters is the Owner and CEO of Brainchild Studios, a boutique, full-service web design and digital marketing agency with locations in Chicago and Milwaukee. She has a decade of experience in the advertising industry and has managed digital strategies for over two dozen B2B and B2C brands. Kiley is a three-time entrepreneur and has worked in all aspects of digital marketing thanks to a wide breadth of experience with industry leaders.
What are the challenges of a virtual agency that your team are addressing (1:08)
“One of the biggest things is making sure that you are building the team with the right people. At the end of the day, it is a matter of really trusting your team. Making sure that the right people are in place is crucial – to any business – but especially a virtual agency.
Over-communicating, it is not a problem. We don’t see each other every day so it’s very important that we are always communicating.”
Coming from Chicago, what are some of the networking differences in Milwaukee? (3:03)
“There are so many different opportunities in Chicago, but I didn’t realize that I was spoiled by the amount of opportunities to connect. It is a bustling place especially for digital marketing. I was excited to make a splash, but when I got here I was like where is everyone? There is certainly a group here in Milwaukee, but it took me a while to find them.414digital, Tempo, BizStarts, MKEsearch, but even after finding these new resources I still appreciated the casual nature of digital marketing nerds getting together and hanging out. Something was still missing so I started one on the first Tuesday of the month at Camp Bar in Milwaukee here.”
Do you see different networking opportunities presenting themselves towards women and men? If so, what are the differences? (6:02)
“With recent movements there’s a push to put more of a spotlight on women and giving them opportunities to shine. But with that comes a stigma of competition, and stereotypes, but what I’ve witnessed, and thrilled, is that there are so many more opportunities for these women to support each other and connect. It’s just something I’ve started to see, and I hope there is more of that to come.”
Can you share with me your most successful or favorite networking story? (7:55)
“I attended a lot of different events in Chicago, and as I’ve been thinking through this, a few years ago I went to a digital marketing summit and this guy presented, I’ve never heard of him before. He really resonated with me, saying things that others didn’t necessarily believe, but I went to a workshop of his. I took the opportunity to introduce myself to him after the workshop, long story short he has become unofficially this mentor of mine. He was so kind, sat down and had an honest conversation with me.”
How do you stay in front of your network or community? (11:45)
“In general, I like people and enjoy hearing their stories. I try to attend as many events as often as I can and have authentic conversations with people. Additionally, I am big supporter of Women in Tech and so that’s been important to me to support or facilitate the initiative in some way.”
What advice do you have for business professionals looking to grow their networks? (13:16)
“Focus on being genuine and more than anything be a good person. Focus on meaningful connections Those are the ones that are really going to stand out. It’s okay if it’s quality over quantity.”
Digital networking or traditional networking? (16:50)
“I think it’s beneficial, from a professional standpoint you need to figure out what you want to get out of it. Having tactical goals, figuring out why you want to reach out to these people. But traditional networking, it is always better to have that face to face conversation. I try really hard to have those face to face conversations.”
If you could go back 20-year-old self, what would you tell yourself to do of regarding your career? (18:23)
“I was never that cool kid. I was doing freelance work when I was 20-year-old, I was staying home Thursday and Friday doing photoshop work. But I would say “good job Kiley,” but don’t care and worry so much about what other people think. It’s easy to get caught up in what other people, be honest with yourself. Have faith in who you are and trust yourself – it will help you when you’re in some tricky situations.”
What book are you reading right now? (21:30)
“I read three books this weekend – all on Saturday – Just finished reading Entrepreneurial You by Dorie Clark, it changed my perception on so many things, straightforward and tactical, not a lot of fluff. I just finished Go for No, and then I am just starting to read Remote, Office Not Required., started by Basecamp.
Any final words of advice for our listeners? (23:40)
“I would say: Don’t be afraid to ask. One of the best pieces of advice a former boss gave me is, you must ask for what you want, no one is going to give it to you. The best thing I did for my career was just asking for a few minutes of someone’s time. The worst thing someone will say is no… And finally, be respectful of others time.”
How can you get in contact with Kiley Peters?
Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow her on Twitter @Kileypeters