Kelly Davis ’23 on growing an online following

When Kelly Davis ’23 wasn’t shooting arrows with a bow, she was shooting video with a camera. In high school Davis was a nationally competitive archer, and she liked to take her camera to every tournament, producing content for archery companies and organizations.

“I’ve always had that freelance mindset,” Davis said.

Now a sophomore studying marketing, entrepreneurship and emerging enterprises, as well as television radio and film, Davis has taken her freelance skills to the startup world. She is now the chief marketing officer of Thinc-Hub, a one stop platform for entrepreneurs starting their own business. Thinc-Hub is a company forming out of Blackstone LaunchPad at Syracuse University that allows entrepreneurs to connect, ask for help, form a team and brainstorm ideas.

As CMO, Davis is growing Thinc-Hub’s social media following, starting a newsletter and coming up with the company’s marketing strategy. She is making sure that the company is ready to market their product once they release it. 

Davis is also the new Syracuse Blackstone LaunchPad and Techstars communications manager.  In that role she oversees outreach communications at the LaunchPad, including the popular weekly newsletter, Startup Thinking.  She is also helping grow the following on social media and increase website click rates, and she will also be producing short digital video content for the LaunchPad.

Davis discovered Thinc-Hub this summer as internship opportunities dried up in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. She found the position on Handshake, applied, interviewed and knew immediately that this was the company for her. She instantly clicked with ThinkHub’s founder, Patrick Prioletti, a LaunchPad Rubin Family Innovation Mentor, and she got started right away.

To grow a social media following, the key is to use hashtags, Davis said. Each hashtag has a following, and growth hackers should use some that are broad and also some that are specific. This will appeal to the widest audience. Davis also says that is important to post four to five times a week, because that will keep the followership interested. She also suggested telling other people’s stories on social media.

“People like to see other people,” Davis said.

As she works to grow following for Thinc-Hub, Davis said she has moments all the time where she doubts herself. She asks herself, “Is this going to work?” and “Is this sustainable?” But, she always reminds herself of the dream, that Thinc-Hub will blow up in the coming years. And she recalls her passion, helping others to succeed.

One of the people helping her through that process is Elizabeth Wimer, a faculty member in Whitman. Davis stressed the importance of finding a mentor who challenges her. “She continuously pushes me,” Davis said.

From archery competitions to startup competitions, Davis brings her entrepreneurial spirit to everything she does.

Story by Patrick Linehan ‘21, LaunchPad Global Fellow; photo supplied by Kelly Davis