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Meet Amanda Herr of Digital Desk

Today we’d like to introduce you to Amanda Herr. 

Hi Amanda, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
I grew up in Sterling Heights, MI with my mom, brother, and sister. My mom was and is an amazing role model. She always told us we could do and be anything that we wanted to be. She instilled in me the ability to dream. She did this all while working three jobs to make sure we always had what we needed. 

I never knew what I wanted to be growing up, in fact, I still don’t. I just knew I was driven and I was smart. I began working early through a high school co-op program and by the time I graduated I was an office manager for a plastic injection mold company. When they were purchased, I was forced to make a career move that ended up shaping my entire career. 

I was accepted as Executive Secretary at Campbell-Ewald at the age of 19. Campbell-Ewald was one of the largest advertising agencies in the world. I worked hard and learned everything I could. I would work until 1 AM if needed to help anyone. I didn’t have a college education so I couldn’t be in the “rotation” group of talent, but I could support them as an admin and I did as much as possible. I learned enough that they did move me into the group and the rest is history. 

After 2 years at Campbell Ewald, I moved to A&E and then CNN. I spent 17 years at CNN moving from Planner to Vice President of Advertising. I was in charge of groups across the country and had the opportunity to do many exciting things in those years. 

I decided in 2014 to move away from the role and start something on my own. My entrepreneurial spirit was ready to step out and take control. My goal in creating something new was to support others in their career journey. Along the way, I became an ICF Certified Executive Coach, Adjunct Professor of Digital Marketing at Macomb Community College, and I created Digital Desk, my digital marketing solutions company. 

I spend my free time with my teenage daughter and our two dogs, Nora & Alice. If you would like to know more about Digital Desk please follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram @hiredigitaldesk. 

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
Creating your own company can be exhilarating and exhausting at the same time. When working for someone else there is generally a path to follow. Systems are in place. You know what your role is and everyone knows what needs to be done and when. 

When you are an entrepreneur who creates something that exists only in your brain, there is no path, structure, or clean line to success. A true entrepreneur is invigorated by this even though sometimes it can feel overwhelming. If you are not a true entrepreneur this is the part where you will fail. Resilience, courage, and a little bit of crazy is what gets an entrepreneur to keep going. 

Another challenge can always be what I call “Olympic-grade squirrel chasing”. Entrepreneurs, including myself, are by nature innovators. They are idea factories. So, knowing when to develop the idea and when to put it on a list for later is critical. Those unfiltered ideas (squirrels) are what will move your focus away from success and into gold medal squirrel chasing. 

Appreciate you sharing that. What should we know about Digital Desk?
Digital Desk provides digital marketing solutions to entrepreneurs, businesses, and non-profits across the U.S. My team and I support our clients by taking the digital marketing tasks off of their desks so they can do what they do best. My 28-year advertising and marketing background gives me a unique perspective when developing plans to execute the right strategy at the right time for our clients. 

Supporting clients with anything from email marketing, lead generation to full website development makes every day something different, and I love that. Digital Desk never asks for a retainer for digital marketing support. We work from what we call the Debit Card system. This means you are only paying when we are working on your business. Some of our clients purchase 5 hours and take a year to use them up, and others will use 10 hours in a week! This flexibility was built to support the needs of our marketplace. 

As owner, I am so proud that I have created a company that has a foundation of honesty and integrity. I work with clients to grow their businesses in new and exciting ways. I watch their success and it is our success as well. Our solutions are never cookie-cutter. They are created in honor of our client’s needs. We are also transparent in our reporting and offer training to anyone who would like to learn how to market for themselves. We are truly a partner, not a set-it-and-forget-it model. 

Who else deserves credit in your story?
I have been so blessed in my career to have so many mentors and role models. A few that stand out are Gene Boivin who was my boss at CNN/HLN, Suzanne Shawn who was my boss at Campbell Ewald, and of course my mother, Charron Hudson. The original mentor. Each of them saw in me potential and worked to help me succeed. Without them, I am not sure I would have had the confidence to break through the walls in my way. I’m truly thankful. I strive to be someone like this for others. That is why I continue to coach for Inforum here in Detroit. I work with mid-level executive women who are looked as the “next leaders” in their organizations. I learned so much from my mentors that I hope to pass along to them. I believe that when someone reaches out a hand to you that as you grab it you should turn and offer your hand to someone else. 

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