This is a letter I’ve always dreamt of writing.
Most entrepreneurs become entrepreneurs to build things that change the world. Entrepreneurs often dream about selling their companies to live beyond them—to take their dreams into a bigger, and more impactful future.
And as of January 2024, that dream, for me, has come true.
SimplyBe. Agency has been acquired by Hawke Media.
Hawke Media is a marketing agency that founder & CEO Erik Huberman launched on the principle that every business needs CMO-level guidance to support its marketing efforts. Since its inception in 2013, Hawke has grown its portfolio of services to include a wide variety of performance-driven solutions, including media buying, web design, performance ads, lifecycle marketing, influencer marketing, affiliate marketing, Amazon services, and now… personal branding.
Before I take you into what’s next, let me take you back. If you would have told me seven years ago when I started this business, swimming in credit card debt and a sea of insecurity, that I would be running a 25-person best-in-class agency, had written a #1 best-selling book, became a host of a #1 Apple ranked podcast, and developed a trademarked branding methodology, along with having hundreds of executive leaders as clients, I would have laughed or cried in your face. I didn’t believe then this could be possible. But I just put one foot in front of the other, day by day, tying up bootstrap lace by bootstrap lace, until it was.
Something else remarkable happened over these past seven years: I didn’t just build a company. I stretched myself as a leader and I became a CEO. I often say that leadership is personal development school on steroids: it’s humbling, heartbreaking, healing and painfully exquisite. While this company has taken my entire beating heart and all my blood, sweat, and tears, I wouldn’t take anything back. I truly left it all on the table.
Around the same time as SimplyBe. was named one of the Inc. 5000’s Fastest Growing Companies in America last summer, I got a call from Hawke Media (who, in full disclosure, had been knocking on my door for a few years). I felt it in my bones—the time was right, the partner was aligned, and most of all, I was ready.
There were a few criteria that had to be met for me to move forward:
✔️It had to be a financial deal that made sense based on the value of the brand, the business, the team and the equity in the market I had built
✔️There had to be space and capacity for me to launch my new endeavor, my third business (which you’ll be hearing about next month)
✔️I wanted the ability to stay involved and continue to share the magic of what we do in the space of personal branding (check my new title, EVP of Personal Branding at SimplyBe., A Hawke Media Company)
✔️And above all, both my team and clients had to stay in fully in tact and be set up to continue to thrive
Six months later, I’m happy and proud to say that Hawke Media met every single one.
Back in 2017, personal branding was, to be frank, kinda weird.
It was a relatively new concept, especially for executives and CEOs. If you were risk tolerant and willing to follow the “trend,” (not to mention, courageous enough to be seen), you took the gamble.
Seven years later, personal branding is no longer a trend but the smartest strategy any company can implement into their marketing today. Hawke Media knows this as much as I do, and by joining forces with this incredible company, we are now able to multiply our impact in a way we could never have done alone.
So, I write to you today as the EVP of Personal Branding while also spreading my wings and launching my next business. So keep your eye out for not only SimplyBe’s growth, but what I’m going to be able to offer the market as I shed the identity of the CEO of SimplyBe. and step into my next, authentic chapter, and follow a bit of my own personal branding advice. 😉
SimplyBe. is still SimplyBe… A Hawke Media Company.
This partnership gives us the ability to serve our community with a plethora of new offerings such as…
- Paid Search, Display & Programmatic
- Paid Social
- Amazon & Walmart Services
- Social Media Management
- Enterprise Management
- Creative, Branding & Design
- Traditional Media
- …and now, Personal Branding!
By getting the SimplyBe. trademarked methodology into a larger company, we’re not only able to scale our business, but we’re able to scale authenticity. And that has always been, from day one, my mission.
To everyone who has supported us over the years, followed our journey, opened doors for us, shared a post, referred a client, became a client, or simply sent us good vibes through the airwaves…
I want to thank you.
Changing the world does take a village, and you have been ours. I will never take for granted the support that this community has given me and this company for the last seven years.
We have a saying at SimplyBe…“the sky isn’t the limit, it’s the beginning.” So I’ll leave you with that final thought—that this is not the end of SimplyBe. but truly only the beginning.