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Alumni News

Telling Your Story

June 24, 2013

It’s all about relationships. That was one of the main messages Darrell Keezer conveyed to alumni at a business networking event on June 18. The Founder and CEO of Candybox Marketing and a 2005 Business Administration – Marketing Co-op graduate, Darrell touched on lessons learned throughout his journey and offered some tips for success. 

Darrell started his company in 2008 after being laid off from his job as a project manager. With a new house and a second child on the way, things were tight, but Darrell proceeded to build a successful digital marketing business with a client list that includes Fox Entertainment, Glee and So You Think You Can Dance. 

Along the way, he recognized the value of storytelling in gaining and maintaining clients. 
“Building successful business relationships comes down to the stories you tell, as well as the stories other people tell about you,” says Darrell. “Not only do personal stories let people know about you and your product, but they forge a connection between you and your customer which is so important in the long run.” 

A great supporter of Sheridan, Darrell volunteers his time to speak to students, alumni and faculty, alike. Currently, he is helping to enhance Sheridan’s business program offerings in the digital marketing realm. These efforts to give back are part of his quest to maintain a balanced life, which he counts as another key factor to business success. (With four children under five years old, he likely knows a thing or two about balance!) 

Following his remarks, Darrell participated in a speed networking session with alumni that capped off the evening. Faculty members Doug Greenwood and David Nowell were among the professionals who took part in the session which attracted both current and would-be business owners. 

The event, which took place at the Hazel McCallion Campus, was presented by the Sheridan Alumni Ontario Colleges Marketing Competition (OCMC) Committee. 

Here’s a snapshot of Darrell’s guidelines for business success: 

  • Don’t try to make a thousand connections. Make one meaningful connection a thousand times. 
  • Do more listening than talking and ask lots of open-ended questions. 
  • Don’t just talk about your product; tell a story about your product and the people involved with it. 
  • Be the author of your own story on the Internet. Don’t let someone write it for you.