- As co-founder and CEO of Digital Surgeons, what inspired you to create the agency and what drives your entrepreneurial spirit?
- I understand you have major clients, like Unilever, but as an entrepreneur, you’re passionate about working with start ups and other entrepreneurs. Tell us a little more about that.
- Describe for us the types of things Digital Surgeons does to help entrepreneurs build their brands and businesses?
- Can you give us an example of a start up that you and your agency helped bring from idea or innovation to a viable business today?
- What would you say from your experience, are some of the common mistakes you see startup’s make?
- What advice would you give other entrepreneurs wanting to get started in the world of digital marketing, either for their own business or their brand and products.
If anyone is passionate about working with innovators, startups, mavericks and thought leaders, it’s David Salinas. While the offline and online worlds continue to blur into one, he helps brands create experiences that crossover into this new territory, which is what inspired him and business partner Pete Sena to co-found New-Haven based Digital Surgeons, a world-class digital-first creative agency. With an impressive roster of clients ranging from Fortune 100s to venture capital funded start-ups and early stage companies, they’ve produced award-winning results for the likes of Lady Gaga and Barneys, the NY Islanders, Fender Music, Vince Camuto, Sharp Electronics and Unilever, to name a few.
As CEO, David continually pushes his team beyond the strategy and tactics of traditional and digital agencies, spreading his love for building businesses and creating engaging and memorable brand experiences, While the offline and online worlds continue to blur into one, David helps brands create experiences that crossover into new territories, all of which has led him and his team to produce award-winning results for the likes of Lady Gaga and Barneys, NY Islanders, United States Tennis Association (USTA), Epic Games, Fender Music, Numark Industries, Vince Camuto, Sharp Electronics and more.
Along with his extensive marketing experience ranging from search engine optimization, digital media planning and buying, social media and other digital communications, David’s most notable successes include: leading the digital go-to market strategy for the USTA kids tennis rule change, including content strategy, user experience, campaign platform, media and the design and development of the Content Management System; directing strategy for a number of publishing partners within the Travora network, formerly know as Travel Ad Network; crafting the strategy on the rebranding and search strategy for Worldatlas.com, resulting in unique traffic increase of over a 400 percent; and, driving the global rebranding and digital strategy for several Fender Inc. brands, including Ovation Guitars and Gretsch Drums.
In addition to his CEO role at the agency, David is a steadfast and ambitious entrepreneur, inspired by creating, building and incubating businesses that through an advanced approach to design, technology and innovation, bring to consumers creative ways to get inspired, engaged and make their lives better and easier.
One of David’s business developments is the ever-growing Fresh Nation, created to give farmers market operators a one-stop place for gleaning practical knowledge and real, workable solutions to bring fresh produce to local consumers. Fresh Nation connects farmers, food artisans, farmers markets, and consumers who love to eat fresh local food via a robust online platform that enables these groups to communicate and conduct commerce, all while improving the farmers market experience and building a healthier nation of thriving local business and the communities who get to benefit.
In his quest to help others quit smoking, David also saw a future in the benefits of alternative methods, such as vaping, which is fast becoming one of the hottest trends in consumables today. The Steam Company, based out of Orange, CT, is a vape shop, lounge and e-liquid brewery founded by former heavy smokers who, thanks to vaping, were able to finally shed themselves of the smoking habit. After many years of smoking, and many failed attempts to quit, David felt compelled to spread the vaping culture to every smoker willing to listen. It was that passion that gave birth to the company.
Other creative businesses David concepted and launched include Shoot Local and Gumby. Shoot Local is a social utility for photographers and videographers to scout, shoot, share and discover locations all from the ease of their mobile devices. Gumby is an amazing responsive CSS Framework that allows for easy, customized development of mobile friendly websites.
With his insatiable appetitive for creating and curating new businesses, David also plans to soon launch a new app in partnership with creative agency Crispin, Porter + Bogusky, to help members of the skateboarding community easily access best places to street skate and engage with fellow skateboarders. In addition, David and his business partner at Digital Surgeons are currently planning to further invest in a couple more businesses with in the next 12 months.
David fiercely believes in the positive impacts of community engagement and giving back. He has built a company rooted in creativity and innovation that has allowed him and his team to commit the important time and resources needed to making a significant difference. From driving economic development to helping those with less to focusing on educating youth, David’s dedication has been realized through his board seats with the United Way of Greater New Haven; the New Haven Economic Development Corporation; and the Motivational Edge, a non-profit organization that uses culturally relevant music and arts as a motivational platform to inspire inner city youth toward academic achievement, increased self confidence and build successful life skills.
David is a bonified “foodie,” owns a deep collection of bourbons, and most importantly, is the proud father of five year-old daughter Brooklyn. He considers her, and his father, an immigrant from Peru his life inspiration and heroes.
Follow him on Twitter at @igrowbrands.
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