Interview with Daniel Booter
Daniel Booter is no stranger to being surrounded by great company. The young CEO of D.B. Marketing Group has years of experience helping brands level up their marketing and storytelling skills via social media, branding, press relations, and much more. Some big organizations he’s worked with: well I’ll just drop the NBA and The White House just to name a few! But the big collaboration that is front and center on Daniel’s mind is his partnership with the fashion mogul Jeff Hamilton. You most definitely have seen Jeff’s work before, imagine large leather jackets with bold and loud graphics, worn by the likes of Michael Jordan and the late Kobe Bryant. Jeff’s work is iconic, so it only makes sense that Daniel is partnered with Jeff to help him bring his jackets and brand to this new decade. He let me know that this collaboration is truly two powerhouses coming together to create something great. On one July evening, Daniel took some time to talk to me over the phone about Jeff’s partnership, his humble beginnings in business, and the vision for his marketing company.
Marquita: So tell me, what work do you do?
Daniel: I founded my marketing company in 2013. We do all things social media, branding, press relations, crisis management, and more. I’ve worked with quite a few celebrities as well as the White House and the NBA.
Marquita: Do you have a team or do you do this all by yourself?
Daniel: When I started, yes I was by myself, but then I started to form a team around people that have their own specialties. I formed a network of people I know, I got a website designer, someone to do graphics. It’s about fifteen plus people who help.
Marquita: What was your motivation to start a marketing business?
Daniel: Well I had a business in high school cutting hair, and the barber shop became so big I had to make a website.
Marquita: Wait! You were cutting hair yourself?
Daniel: Yes! It got so big, people we’re calling me up asking if they could work with me. My mom asking [me] if people could get haircuts and other moms asked if I could cut their son’s hair! It was the start, then I went to university thinking I would study psychology, so I closed the barber shop. But somehow I went into photography and that led to marketing.
Marquita: Wow, so you were always hustling is what you’re telling me?
Daniel: Yes. That’s how it started. But yeah, I started becoming interested in the luxury market and with the photography opening doors, I started making so many connections. But of course the first time I saw a celebrity, I was not like “hey help me!”
Marquita: Right, you were very intentional.
Daniel: Exactly. I wasn’t trying to make fake connections and [wanted to see] if I vibed with people. I don’t want to get to a place where I don’t respect myself and the work I’m doing.
Marquita: On that note, take me into this collaboration with Jeff Hamilton.
Daniel: Jeff is very big in the fashion world. And my connections in LA are very deep. A few friends [of mine] met Jeff at Complex Con and referred me to him.
Marquita: So your friends are the ones who referred you, talk about deep connections.
Daniel: [Laughs] Yeah, so I ended up having a conversation with Jeff about his mission and he liked what I had to offer. So we were like yeah let’s do it. He’s been in the game for a long time and is so experienced. He was making millions of dollars within a year of starting his business. He truly has a fascinating trajectory.
Marquita: Where do you come in?
Daniel: I helped him re-do everything. He’s been trying to relaunch for the past two years but it never happened. He’s very smart, so I let him know what we needed to do [for success]. Started to look at the things around him and was like there is capital here. So we will take the money from selling highly valuable jackets and put that into the relaunch. Pretty much I help him with his day to day proceedings. There are some big things coming on the horizon for this partnership, I’m excited.
Marquita: As am I, so tell me where do you see your marketing company in the next few years and do you have any advice for those starting out as an entrepreneur?
Daniel: That’s a really good question. I’m getting clients that are really big, so to that end I want more of that [laughs]. In the next few years, I really do want to use these connections to keep growing my clientele. I want clients of a larger size, not necessarily bigger in terms of celebrity, but larger companies. As for advice I would say, work really smart, not hard. Work smart so that you don’t have to work hard. Use all of your assets and build those connections. Don’t get discouraged, because you have to keep going. The best way to put it is: Success is not the day you reach your goal, it’s the journey of hard work that it took you to get there.
Marquita: Wow, that’s great advice.
Daniel: Yeah, it’s really the journey.