Road Not Taken

It may be trite or cliched to kick off a profile with a line from a world-famous poem, but the conclusion to The Road Not Taken is one I’ve held close for many years. In a big way, I feel anyone with an entrepreneurial bone in their body can relate. The path of most resistance is not ventured by the majority for the simple fact its obstacles can be mind-bending, frustrating, plentiful, and takes a ton of guts and sacrifice to overcome. But those who persevere and discover their successful niche in this life know full well that taking the road less traveled can make all the difference in the world.

Jason Cercone ProfileMy name is Jason Cercone and I am a brand development, copywriting, digital marketing, sales, and customer experience professional for innovative, dynamic businesses in the beautiful, up-and-coming city of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. My first business venture unfolded when I was 14 years old in my hometown of Bradford, PA, as I owned and operated a small sports card business where I set up at various shows at local malls and sold my wares to enthusiastic collectors. For a kid with no bills at a time when sports cards were at a peak in popularity, business was boomin’. I loved doing what I did…even if a lot of my profits went towards “inventory” (more cards)…inventory that now collects dust in the closet of my childhood bedroom.

Anyone want to buy some Grant Hill rookies? Mint condition…

Squandering profits on more cards to feed my own collecting hobby not withstanding, that little business taught me many lessons. In hindsight, I wish ABC’s Shark Tank would’ve existed when I was that age to give me much-needed business direction…but I digress. My humble little biz taught me no matter what direction my life took, I wanted to own and operate my own enterprise. Build a legacy. Obtain success on my own terms and let nothing prevent that vision from becoming reality.

Since the age of 12, my work/career path has been closely related to customer service in some way, shape, or form. Whether it was something as small as helping a customer find the bread crumbs while working at a grocery store through high school and college or consulting one on one with current and potential clients in high-pressure, direct sales scenarios, I’ve built a wealth of knowledge and intellect for creating the memorable consumer experiences. I firmly believe in a thorough approach that ensures the best long-term results for every company and client I encounter.

Over the years, my professional existence has been filled with ups, downs, triumphs, defeats, good times, and bad times. But through it all, positive or negative, I’ve gained experience. Experience that enables me to help other businesses in numerous ways. Experience that I’ll carry with me until everything is said and done one day. As the great Van Wilder once said, “Experience doesn’t just enhance life. It is life.”

Life is nothing if you’re not learning something new; never miss an opportunity to level up. To hell with complacency.

Since 2014, I’ve been growing and developing my company – Cercone Mediaand specialize in the following areas of focus

  • Brand Development
  • Event Planning, Management, Promotion, and Execution
  • Sales, Marketing, Content, and Media
    • Social Media Strategy Consulting
    • Content Creation & Editing
    • Libations Media, Marketing, and Content Curation
    • Sales Strategy & Implementation
  • Enhancing Customer Experiences

Underneath that umbrella, I created Breaking Brews – a website that started as a craft beer blog and has grown into a full-scale libations hub featuring content about the thriving beer, spirits, wine, cider, and mead industries. My mission is to push libations culture forward, in Pittsburgh and beyond, by connecting enthusiasts to bars, breweries, distilleries, and organizations through education, conversation, commentary, and entertainment.

I am also at the helm of Pittsburgh Libations Week. This initiative is being built to amplify this region’s adult beverage industry through the cornerstones of education, entertainment, camaraderie, and community. We focus on delivering memorable events to consumers in an effort to bolster the libations culture throughout Pittsburgh 24/7/365.

Though a major area of my business focuses on libations culture, my expertise is applicable to a wide scope of business. I am always on the lookout for new opportunities and professional partnerships, be they in the libations and service industry or with small, medium, and large organizations of similar philosophies and directions. My skill set has evolved immensely over the past 20 years, earning me experience that’s valuable on numerous levels. My approach is direct and hands-on, evaluating where you stand and where my services can best help you and your brand move forward. No two businesses are the same, therefore the initiatives and action steps I execute are diversified in order to ensure they deliver results.

My body of work over the past two decades has broadened my skills in marketing, social media initiatives, brand development, copywriting, relationship building, sales, business management, communication, networking, content creation, client acquisition and retention, client relations, customer service, employee management and engagement, and leadership. The knowledge I’ve gained through this diverse experience allows me to quickly adapt to numerous situations and perform the duties of my position to the highest degrees of success.

On a personal level, I’m an avid sports fan. I’ve always possessed a competitive instinct and that philosophy exists in all corners of my world. You can’t always be the absolute best. But if you’re not striving to be, you’re doing it wrong. This mentality most likely explains why I can enjoy just about any sport that’s in front of me…whether I’m participating or a spectator, the thrill of competition is one of the most powerful forces I’ve ever encountered.

Me and MackennaThe driving force behind my plight is my daughter. Mackenna has been part of my life for over eight years and is unequivocally my biggest motivator. She inspires me to work harder each and every day in the hopes that someday, should she choose, I’ll have built a legacy she can carry into the future. And if not, at least she’ll see that possessing a strong work ethic can take you places in life and nothing positive comes without effort, sacrifice, dedication, and perseverance.

I strive to enhance all brands I come in contact with through dynamic, innovative marketing strategies and incomparable work ethic. My goal is to make your business stand out at every possible juncture. Period. But equally as important, I strive to build a long-lasting business relationship with you, one built on mutual respect and a shared desire to reach the pinnacle of success for yourself and your brand.

I look forward to partnering with you and helping your brand evolve.