Welcome to my [space].

Hi, I'm Steve. I'm a content creator, marketing professional, and former ad agency exec who's obsessed with where the world's going.

Welcome to my little corner of the web. This is where you can learn a bit about me, my passions, and my journey as a digital storyteller.

This is my story.

My goal in life is to help people realize the power of storytelling through consistent content creation and investing in their personal brands.

Of course, this wasn't always my goal. At first, I think I wanted to be an astronaut ๐Ÿš€...

But anyway, here we are.

Growing up, I was obsessed with technology from an early age. โ€œCan Steve come over and look at our computer, please? Weโ€™ll pay him...โ€ quickly became a regular phone call at our house. ๐Ÿ“ž

When I graduated from Penn State ๐ŸŽ“ in 2008, I had completed project work with companies like Accenture and Deloitte, tested an online virtual world called Second Life (which I can hardly believe was 10 years ago now), and was effectively ready to enter the job market as a Systems Analyst or IT Consultant.

The only problem? There was no job market at the time. ๐Ÿšท NONE. ๐Ÿšฎ

Invented while I was in school, I quickly found myself spending all my time on platforms like Facebook and Twitter, familiarizing myself with their inner workings and eventually writing about it as a part-time Staff Writer for popular tech blog MakeUseOf.com. โœ๏ธ

In essence, I started building my brand.

In 2010, I took an unpaid internship at a small startup in NYC, got hired, that startup ๐Ÿ’ฅEXPLODED๐Ÿ’ฅ into a full-service digital agency, and I emerged some 7 years later a full-fledged expert in digital storytelling. ๐Ÿ‘จ๐ŸŽ“

That startup was owned by Gary Vaynerchuk and his brother AJ and it was called VaynerMedia. ๐Ÿคฉ

Today, it's an 800-plus person agency, and I had a front-row seat to its ascent as a company and brand. ๐Ÿ“ˆ

My last 6 months at the company, I helped launch a new initiative: the VaynerTalent department, VM's personal branding wing.

Then, in April 2017, I left New York so I could pursue a new life with the woman I love. โœˆ๏ธ๐Ÿ’•

I picked up everything I owned, moved 1,700 miles west (+1 mile above sea level), and jumped out of an airplane my first day as a Colorado resident (I thought it would make for a pretty good story).

Now, I'm in search of a new adventure, and building The Ascent. ๐Ÿ”๏ธ

This is my work experience.

When I first graduated from Penn State University in 2008, I absolutely could not find a job. So, like any other self-respecting Millennial, I turned to social media.

I started a blog, began writing and working on my personal brand, and eventually, I scored an opportunity in late 2010 to go work at a startup in New York City... for free.

That startup was owned by Gary Vaynerchuk and his brother AJ, so I saw it as a huge opportunity.

Some sixty days later, when I was all out of money, they asked me to stay, offering me a full-time position at the company.

Since then, I've learned a ton, and I continue to gain new experiences in social media and marketing every single day.

Experiences like:

Starting and growing the initial Facebook and Twitter presences of the NHL, New York Jets, and Brooklyn Nets.Researching stories and facts (i.e. "sawdust") for Gary Vaynerchuk's best-selling book, The Thank You Economy, and promoting it on the ground at SxSW 2011. Launching GE's live-stream presence on Periscope by filming a StarTalk Radio segment with Neil deGrasse Tyson and Bill Nye. Spearheading a hugely successful #EmojiScience Snapchat campaign involving a weekend in NYU's science lab, hundreds of user-generated emoji snaps, and science experiment & emoji videos featuring Bill Nye. (P.S. I'm the bearded guy in the back.)Leading voice development of Stride Gum's brand revival on social media, which coincided with professional skydiver Luke Aikins's Heaven Sent jump: 25,000 feet without a parachute. The stunt garnered over 1.5 billion impressions worldwide.Live-streaming a 5-day flying drone tour (called #DroneWeek) of 5 GE facilities, where they build jet engines, locomotives, gas and wind turbines. (Where I also visited 9 airports in 8 days.)Devising, writing, and helping to cast and direct a socially-driven commercial for RITZ Crackers that aired in parts of the US and Mexico and was viewed 5.6 million times online.Leading content and campaign for a Top Rank boxing event in Las Vegas involving Manny Pacquiao's triumphant return to the ring.Facilitating the transition of a cultural iconโ€”the Hess Toy Truckโ€”into a digital platform where consumers could purchase the top-selling holiday toy online for the first time ever.
All told, over the span of my 9-year social & digital marketing career, I've worked with over 100 brands, comprised mostly of household products and names in a wide range of verticals.

When I left VaynerMedia in April 2017 to move to Colorado, I took the wealth of knowledge I'd gained from the experiences above and started growing The Ascent into what it is today: a community of documenters and top-100 Medium publication with 50,000+ members.

Now, I'm looking for my next big opportunity to make a positive impact in the world.

This is my contact info.

I love connecting with people. If you have an inquiry for me, business or otherwise, the quickest and easiest way to reach me is through Twitter.

Or, if what you have to say happens to be longer than 280 characters, you can reach me via email here:

steve(at)theascent(dot)biz

I'd also love to connect with you in any/all of these places:

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