Any meeting without a written agenda should be cancelled. On the contrary, regularly scheduled, focused, short, small meetings designed to get updates from team members and assign tasks and deadlines
Excellent at creating, finding and seizing new business opportunities.
Very professional. Hard-working. Excellent follow-through. Adept at selling new products in challenging environments. Creative and resilient problem-solver.
I have performed nearly every role in starting and running a small company — including planning planning, sales, marketing, operations, logistics and distribution, supply management, customer service, finance and PR and more — with a heavy emphasis on business development.
At the end of 2012, I traveled to Montevideo, Uruguay to close a customer-lead I had been developing for several months. Despite never being to Uruguay and not speaking Spanish, I closed a sale for a 150kw solar installation, and then sold the company additional LED and induction lighting products.
Below is a short video about the project and a testimonial from our customer about this unique project.
When I joined the team working to market and sell condominiums in the EVO buillding in late 2008, the Los Angeles and national real estate market was at its absolute lowest point in 80 years.
EVO (see the property: here) had more than 300 condos to sell and fewer than 10 closed.
It was a great turnaround challenge, but with a combination of intelligent marketing, strategic sales tactics, events and constantly revising and reworking our strategies, we managed to sell hundreds of condos at EVO. It was the kind of huge success that only comes from a tremendous challenge and is only the result of an excellent all-around team of professionals. By the time I left the project in mid-2010, it was more than 90% sold.
Here are testimonials about my work from two key EVO sales managers:
- Michelle Velky:
“Chris Hain is an amazing marketing and sales professional. During the 2 years I worked with Chris in Los Angeles, I was very impressed with his creative marketing ideas, passion for real estate sales, and his never ending drive to attain results. Chris was an important part of the creative team at EVO in downtown LA and his real estate savvy produced extreme results that assisted in positioning EVO as the best selling new luxury condominium project in southern California. Chris has a strong work ethic that generates passion and excellence from co-workers as well. As a team member, Chris will rise as a leader formulating strategic plans, setting goals, and networking with professionals to ensure positive results for any project. I endorse Chris Hain highly as a great marketing and real estate sales professional and I look forward to working with him again soon.”
- Bridget Reeves:
“Christopher is one of the most dedicated, hard working, reliable and passionate person I’ve had the pleasure to work with! Whenever there is a task at hand you can rely on him to get it done as smoothly and swiftly as possible, even with the most difficult one he is still smiling…..he will go the distance! Christopher is creative and has great insight as to what one needs and knowledge on how to execute a good plan! I highly recommend him!!!!”
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More about Chris Hain
Growing up in a small, Midwestern town, I’ve always embraced hard work, persistence, determination and integrity.
After working for more than 14 years on the east and west coast, I’ve built on that foundation with professionalism, business savvy, people skills and a broad range of work experiences.
All this has enabled me to close international deals, generate new business from scratch, introduce new products and constantly innovate in the areas of sales, marketing and business strategy.
For the past four years, I’ve used these skills to sell solar energy and energy efficiency in B2B markets for my own company.
Now, I’m focusing my talent and efforts on helping other companies.
Building off my degree in journalism and mass communications, I’ve accumulated tons of experience in the media, including: newspapers, radio, blogs, internet news, and book publishing. I worked for 10 years as a staff writer, reporter and editor for five different daily newspapers in Florida, Nebraska, Colorado and Arkansas. Additionally, I’ve been hired for several paid freelance writing gigs: including food writing for the Los Angeles Times, gift book publisher Knock Knock, blog and podcasting for thelatest.at/podango.com, and more.
My first sale was a $2.5 million home in the Hollywood Hills, and I followed that up with several other sales and a high-point of $10 million in listings. I created a local real estate blog that was singled out for its excellence by the Los Angeles Times, and leveraged this early success into media exposure: in Business Week, in the Los Angeles Times, an appearance on HGTV, and consulting gigs with two luxury home developers. I also picked up a few commercial real estate clients. Alas, the crash of the real estate market in 2008 not only destroyed our country’s banking system – it pushed me into real estate consulting with The Mark Company.
At The Mark Company, I was part of a sophisticated sales and marketing team working with several large real estate developers to sell condominiums at the bottom of the market. It was a great turnaround challenge, but with a combination of intelligent marketing, strategic sales tactics, events and constantly revising and reworking our strategies, we managed to sell hundreds of condos at EVO and Barker Block in downtown Los Angeles, WestEnd in Marina del Rey, and Blu in Long Beach. All turned out to the kind of huge successes that only come from tremendous challenges and are only the result of an excellent all-around team of professionals.
In 2010, after several months of planning, I was given the opportunity to lead a solar-energy startup in Los Angeles backed by a successful German solar company. I built a nationwide distribution business from scratch – developing customers and marketing the company and its products via: sales visits, online marketing, trade show booths, relationship networking, and good-old-fashioned cold calling; purchasing and importing products; setting up warehousing in California and New Jersey; coordinating local and national deliveries; closing sales in 12 states, Mexico and South America. Some of our products were new-to-market brands, but I still closed first first-time sales for solar panels, inverters and mounting products. For two of our customers, I raised funds to provide extended construction financing for larger commercial installations of 100kw and 129kw in size, increasing the profit margin and then arranging for receivables factoring to keep our business liquid.
In 2012, we began planning to shift the company focus from wholesale distribution and its declining margins to solar project development. Within the six months, I negotiated agreements for nearly $8 million of solar projects – including 7 projects with a Fortune 100 company and 4 projects for the country’s largest utility.
At the end of 2012, I traveled to Montevideo, Uruguay to try to close a customer-lead I had been developing for several months. Despite never being to Uruguay and not speaking Spanish, I closed a sale for a 150kw solar installation, and then sold the company additional LED and induction lighting products.
I’ve taken online courses and self-taught myself HTML, CSS, WordPress, basic SEO and search engine marketing. I’ve developed a few sites of my own, including: a) cowmonkeyfish.com – Conceived, built and marketed online t-shirt store that quickly sold $3,000 of t-shirts in the first month, Built, wrote and publicized a real estate blog named in 2009 as one of the region’s best by the Los Angeles Times, and c) thelatest.at – paid daily blogger and podcast script writer for tech-industry site.
What have I sold?
I’ve sold real estate in the most competitive market in the country – earning listings against much more experienced brokers, and closing sales at prices well-above a declining market price.
I’ve sold solar equipment nobody’s ever heard of to people I’ve never met.
I’ve sold construction services in a country I’ve never been to, in a language I’ve never spoken – and then up-sold the customer for more.
I’ve sold real estate, equipment and services. I’ve sold online, over-the-phone and in-person. I’ve developed my own leads, maximized leads handed to me, and helped other salespeople improve the leads they’re getting.
But most importantly, I ask questions of the customer, listen intently, follow-up and always ask for the close.
It wasn’t until after I had been selling for a few years that I realized – even though my career took a media and marketing detour – that I’ve been selling since I was young. As a child, I sold door-to-door magazine subscriptions and candy for my school and cub scout troop. As a teenager, I sold 7up in the stands of University of Nebraska football games, earning a bonus as the top-seller every single game.
As a kid it was just hard-work, persistence and charm. But now, I have added experience and a dedication to constant improvement in the art of selling. (Check out my sales-heavy blog: Growth Ninja).
My marketing toolbox is overflowing with strategies and tactics in a way that only comes from diverse experience tackling a variety of urgent, marketing challenges in multiple industries – both on my own, and as part of a large team. Strategies I’ve planned and managed include: advertising, PR, email, internet, events, trade shows, articles, videos, blogs, networking, street teams, word-of-mouth (“buzz”) generation, and much more. Most importantly, only smart, targeted strategies that are constantly tracked, measured and tweaked can maximize marketing ROI. If it’s a worthy marketing endeavor, I’ve done it.
I’ve held a number of operational roles throughout the years, including: setting up and managing warehousing and distribution locally, nationally and internationally, managing office operations, planning and running events, and much more.
I’ve held several consulting roles – both on staff and freelance. While working for The Mark Company (see: Real Estate), I offered marketing consultation to a series of large real estate developers regarding advertising, marketing, events and sales activities for their large condominium projects in Southern and Northern California. As a paid freelance consultant, I helped performed multiple functions, including: a) helping two real estate developers plan and write development proposals and find investors for various projects, b) hired by a German insurance company to conduct market research for a specialized insurance product for the U.S., c) consulted with a local hotel ownership company on new strategies for marketing and raised money for a hotel redevelopment project, d) together a friend in China, I solicited Chinese companies interested in American investment for expansion and presented several companies to U.S. investors.
I live in the Silver Lake section of Los Angeles between downtown and Hollywood with my girlfriend, Amanda. She’s teaching me how to swing dance. I’m teaching her to love college football. (Go Huskers!). I also enjoy hiking, container gardening, live theater and music, restaurants, and occasionally play the acoustic guitar very poorly.
- Twin Solar USA
- The Mark Company
- Freelance Consultant/Writer
- The Palm Beach Post
- Lincoln Journal Star
Twin Solar USA Los Angeles, CA
- Transitioned company from wholesale to project services by quickly landing contract to build 7 projects for a Fortune 100 company.
- In first 6 months, landed a total of $8.5 million in project contracts together with joint venture partners.
- Traveled to Uruguay to negotiate, sign and plan a contract to build a 150kw installation including solar PV, LED and induction lighting.
- Developed and negotiated two key joint venture partnerships, including 4 solar farms for the nation’s largest utility.
- Started a wholesale distribution business from scratch, developing business plan, budget, marketing plan – setting up east and west coast warehousing and delivery options.
- Sold to customers in 12 states, Mexico and South America, growing distribution business to $1.5 million in revenue in the first 18 months.
- Helped market and sell multiple new-to-market brands, including solar panels, inverters, mounting, LED and induction lighting.
- Worked directly with overseas factories and managed international shipping.
- Offered and found capital to finance construction of four commercial solar projects ranging from 68kw to 129kw.
- Raised funds to expand the company.
The Mark Company Los Angeles, CA
Sales and Marketing Consultant 2008–2010
- Led and assisted marketing and sales efforts for brokerage specializing in the selling of large new construction condominium buildings.
- Successfully, opened and sold some of the most successful developments while dealing with the fallout from the real estate collapse and global economic meltdown, specifically:
- Developed EVO (Los Angeles) from a new project opening in November 2008 amidst a global economic meltdown to selling more than 200 units in 2009.
- Launched WestEnd (Marina del Rey) sales effort in summer 2009 with more than 20 sales in the first week and 60 within the first six weeks.
- Improved Barker Block (Los Angeles) sales to the project’s best 6 month period from June to November 2009.
- Opened blu in Long Beach in December 2009 with 15 sales and more than 30 by the end of February 2010.
- Other projects: Ritz-Carlton in Napa (proposed), Bridgewater (Emeryville)
Ramsey-Shilling Associates Los Angeles, CA
Real Estate Agent 2006–2008
- Real Estate Agent working with residential and commercial properties. Managed office operations, working with agents, vendors and general public.
- Sold multiple properties despite the declining market, including a $2.3 million home.
- Operated one of the highest-traffic, LA-focused residential real estate blogs – named one of the best in 2009 by the Los Angeles Times.
- Consulted with residential developers on future projects.
- Appeared on HGTV and in Business Week and the Los Angeles Times.
Freelance Business Consultant 2008–2010
- Consulted for several real estate developers putting together development proposals.
- Researched U.S. market possibilities for German solar energy insurance company.
- Helped small hotelier create new development and marketing strategies.
- Assisted Chinese manufacturing companies searching for U.S. equity to grow their businesses.
Freelance Writer/Editor 2005–2007
- Wrote e-books, articles and blogs about real estate.
- Book ghostwriter, researcher, and copy editor for Knock Knock Inc., Venice, CA.
- Restaurant/entertainment writer for Los Angeles Times’ Metromix site.
- Blog/podcast writer for Podango.com, writing about eBay, iTunes, Facebook, AOL and Microsoft.
The Palm Beach Post –A division of Cox Enterprises West Palm Beach, FL
Staff Writer/Reporter 2001–2005
- Researched, interviewed sources and wrote newspaper articles. Recorded radio news. Collaborated on information graphics, art and photos. Covering local politics and investigative stories.
Lincoln Journal Star – A division of Lee Enterprises Lincoln, NE
Staff Writer/Reporter 1997–2001
Bachelor of Journalism and Mass Communications, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
- Editor-in-Chief – Daily Nebraskan (campus newspaper), 1995–1996
- Managed staff of 120, overseeing news coverage, production, hiring and budgeting.
- Dean’s List
Microsoft Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, Outlook, blogging, social networking, basic HTML, basic Search Engine Optimization, some Adobe Photoshop.
Companies I’ve Worked With or For
CONTACT CHRIS HAIN