Meet Jayme Washington of WashTone Media, Our November #GirlBoss of the Month

Jayme Washington is a POWERHOUSE of a woman. She’s a wife, mom, daughter, sibling, friend, breast cancer survivor, entrepreneur, and CEO. Jayme finds passion in helping brands stand out in the crowd using SEO, social media, and web design strategies.

As the top Black female social media influencer in the U.S., she has worked with several high-end clients such as Apple, Home Depot, Merrill Lynch, PayPal, Chik-Fil-A, and United Airlines. Known as a Digital Architect, she is also a nationally recognized Digital Consultant in SEO, content marketing & digital media marketing. Additionally, in 2018 Jayme was named an Ellie Fund honoree and a Boston Business Journal 40 under 40 finalist.

Her strategies help business owners and corporations utilize online space and social media for brand awareness, company growth, and client loyalty. Her focus is to assist businesses with organic growth, increased exposure, and more revenue.

Jayme’s experience in the following: eCommerce, Internet Marketing, Direct Response Marketing, Branding, Business Objectives, Publishing, Copywriting, Sales and Management, Team Development and Leadership has given her a unique ability to get extraordinary results quickly.

However, her greatest accomplishment by far is her family. She is grateful to be married to Brian Washington for 17 years and incredibly proud to be a mother to Victoria, Sabrina, Rachel, Brian Jr., Brenden, and Braylon (who sadly passed away shortly after birth in 2011).  Jayme is also a breast cancer survivor and knows if she could tackle that, she would be able to tackle anything that comes her way.

Even with Jayme’s busy schedule, we had the chance to ask her a few questions. Check out our conversation below!

QC: What pushed you to start WashTone Media?

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JW: I started as a freelance Social Media Manager for A list celebrities and athletes.  One of the greatest things I learned from one of my Professor’s at Berklee College of Music, Dennis Montgomery, was to network with my classmates because you never know if they could be the next big thing. I took that advice to heart and by the time celebrities began really using social media, I had years of experience on the personal and business side of many platforms.  Moreover, my friends from college were now in studio, on tour, or musical directors for numerous celebrities (I am under non-disclosure agreements so naming my clients would violate those disclosures). It was very natural for me to offer to manage their social media platforms. My business grew very organically and by word of mouth in those two industries. When I had 12 clients, I was ready to PULL my hair out. I could no longer manage 4-5 social media accounts for 12 clients all by myself. I made the decision then that I was going to open WashTone Media, hire staff, teach them what I knew, and scale up.

QC: What did it take to bring your business to life?

JW: A dream, a vision, and passion. I had to literally see myself in the future and auto reverse on how to get there. Banks denied me due to being a high risk business. No one was requesting a business loan to open up a digital agency focusing on social media and helping businesses drive more customers to their business from the internet.  In 2010, many media outlets thought Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram were a fad and going to fail just like MySpace. Therefore, I had to bootstrap it and hustle. I needed to lease a space, purchase equipment, hire staff, go to Staples LOL. There were days, weeks, and months that my dream, vision, and passion was the only thing that kept me going.

QC: What advice do you have for anyone who wants to get in to the Digital Marketing industry?

JW: Currently, Google has stated that the Digital Marketing industry is a $700 billion dollar industry. It is one of the best and most lucrative industries and with a budget such as $700 billion, there is more than enough to go around the table. So many big companies are out here spending billions of dollars on TV commercials, even though nobody's watching them. But here's the punchline for you: over the next few years, the biggest companies in the world will finally understand that. And then, they'll pour their money into Facebook and Instagram instead.  When they do this, they will be looking for digital agencies to fulfill their requirements. There is no better time than NOW to find a mentor that is successfully and actively working in this industry, follow them and do exactly what they tell you to do.

QC: How has being a Breast Cancer survivor, mother, and wife helped to push you to become the woman you are today?

JW: In July of 2016, I was diagnosed with Stage 3C breast cancer and with the type of cancer I had, the doctors gave me 6-12 months to live. I felt as if my entire life flashed before my eyes. I could not comprehend the notion that I would not see my children grow up nor would I be with my loving husband. I chose not to accept the doctors' report. With the help of the Lord, I was determined to find a formula that would cure my type of cancer. The cure was found but it was going to be tough and long road ahead. I needed to use all the faith, hope and endurance to help me get through this battle that was before me. Through 24 chemotherapy treatments, 7 biopsies, 10 surgeries and multiple stays in the hospital, in November 2017 I was cancer free.  Throughout those 18 months I learned that certain things that you give so much energy to are not even worth it . Family is important and life can be short so treat every day as if it were your last. Most importantly, I am more grateful for LIFE than I was before cancer.

QC: What advice would you give your younger self or your daughters now, that you wish someone gave you on your path to growth?

JW: You have a supreme God that truly has a supreme destiny for you. There is a supreme moment of destiny and calling on your life. Your job is to feel that, hear that, and move in that.  Sometimes when you’re not listening, you get taken on the wrong path but listen to the voice of God and He will bring you back on the path that He desires for you. Get as much understanding from your failure as you do from your successes. Failures are not setbacks, they are feedbacks.  So, relax, relax, relax. Be still and ask God: “what are you trying to teach me from this and what is the next move”? Also, in 1998 a weird company called Google is going to go public and offer 900 shares for $1,000. Take your babysitting money, smash your piggy bank and all your allowance, and buy at least $1,000 worth. In 20 years that stock will be worth $1600 per share. You will thank me.

Jayme Washington is proof that as women, we can have it all! But not without fighting through some hardships and adversity.

You can learn more about WashTone Media on their website and follow Jayme Washington on twitter at @JaymeSpeaks.