Name: Chris Sumida...or just “Sumida”
Title: Business Development & Digital Marketing Strategist
Hometown: San Diego, CA
LeaseLabs: With such a wide variety of responsibilities, what is your average day at the office like?
Chris: Day to day you can find me working on several very...very different projects, haha. One day I could be developing our content strategy for the upcoming month and how to distribute and promote that content on all of our digital channels; I might be writing up a web development and marketing proposal to bid on an upcoming project; maybe writing and producing our video content; or traveling to various cities and meeting with clients.
Not one day is the same for me and that’s how I want it to be. If I come into the office and do the same task day in and day out, I’ll lose my mind.
LeaseLabs: Sounds a little hectic. How are you able to keep organized with so many projects running concurrently, plus travel?
Chris: I use every Google App: Google Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, Calendar, Analytics- I use it all.
The Marketing department’s projects always involve collaboration in one way or another, whether it be with a member on the development team or with a creative team member. Being able to work, save, and share documents from my phone is extremely important. That’s why these apps have become my life.
I also carry around a little black notebook that has all my daily and weekly to-dos, as well as my monthly goals. My priority tasks shift everyday so the notebook gets a little messy, but it keeps me on track.
LeaseLabs: Tell us what first brought you to LeaseLabs.
Chris: It was sort of a natural progression of education and work experience. Back in college I was originally a Business Marketing major at San Diego State University, but switched to Political Science when I was preparing to enter Law School. I was writing 2-3 papers a week, along with writing and editing legal briefs everyday for 2 years at a law firm I interned for.
Come senior year, I decided law wasn’t for me and positioned myself back into a career in digital marketing. I then worked my way up a nightlife company and became the Promotional Director for the San Diego College Area, then grabbed an additional 8 month long digital marketing internship for a web-based startup company. My business and digital marketing knowledge was definitely put into place during this time period; it was just myself, an additional employee, and the founders crammed into this tiny incubator (along with an additional web company). Because we were bootstrapped, I was put on all sorts of projects, marketing, sales, product development, web development, wireframing, pitching- you name it. It was all a pretty awesome experience.
By then I graduated SDSU, knew digital marketing was the path I wanted to pursue, and was ready to tackle the agency world. This is where I found LeaseLabs!
I guess you can say I transitioned from writing legal briefs to creative briefs, since then I’ve never looked back.
LeaseLabs: Sounds like your past experience had you active in numerous roles as well, is this why you enjoy this challenge so much in your current role here at LeaseLabs?
Balancing my time between projects I’m involved in between different departments has by far been the most difficult, but also the most enjoyable. Being able to shift gears from a marketing meeting to a product meeting to a business development meeting is the best part of my job - the challenge of creating a B2B marketing service that works and delivers results, to positioning and distributing that service in various marketing channels, to educating your audience on that service, and finally to the sale of that service is fascinating to me.
My projects involve so many moving parts, and being able to connect our marketing, business development, and product development efforts is extremely rewarding.
LeaseLabs: How do you stay up-to-date on digital marketing trends?
Chris: I read. Alot. Between numerous web publications I’m subscribed to and reading Fast Company and Inc., the more you know about the latest and greatest in tech, advertising, and marketing the more you are able to share and initiate ideas within your own marketing campaigns.
I especially like Moz, SEMrush, Hubspot, Think With Google, and Fast Company. Fast Company is by far my favorite.
LeaseLabs: When you aren’t juggling multiple deadlines at LeaseLabs, what do you do in your free time? What do you like to do to unwind?
Chris: I have a slight obsession with discovering new music - especially electronic. Electronic music has limitless sub-genres and new sounds are being developed and created every day by either professional sound engineers or a 12 year old kid messing with MIDI effects.
Literally everything on the web is getting reposted and claimed as original content. Every piece of originality is being duplicated. Whether it be the same article on “Top 5 Ways To Become Productive” (seriously, how many times can this be rewritten) or the same synth variation in every song. It really is a breath of fresh air when you discover something unique, especially in music.
I’ve also been an avid redditor for years ┌( ಠ‿ಠ)┘. You can find me perusing r/gifs, r/formative, r/nottheonion, and r/showerthoughts when I’m eating lunch.
Oh, and I own a cat who semi puts up with me.
LeaseLabs: Tell us more about this cat...
Chris: Well, his name is Oliver, he’s a short haired domestic and he enjoys the following:
1. Playing with wine corks
2. Staring at me until I wake up
3. Meowing loudly in corners of the walls because it echoes
4. Sitting on my laptop keyboard/charger because it's warm
5. Finding the deepest darkest spot in my apartment to sleep in
LeaseLabs: Yup, that sounds like a cat.
Chris: He's full of clichés.
LeaseLabs: Lastly, what’s been the most amazing memory thus far with your time at LeaseLabs?
Chris: I’ve had many! But I think to best sum up my experience thus far is the time spent with all the employees. The people you work with here aren’t those that you just say “morning” and “have a good rest of your day” to, but the type of people that become your good friends and enjoy hanging out with, whether it be going on a walk during a break or grabbing a beer at happy hour.