[codepotato] was never setup to be another “standard” web agency. For one thing, I decided that from the outset I was going to focus on the industry I had been working in for four years prior. This, I’ve since found, is quite unusual for a web agency especially at the early stages of trading.
I had spotted an opportunity in the Financial Services profession to provide bespoke websites to all types of financial advisory firms backed up with support that was second-to-none. The industry is saturated with providers of low-cost template sites and had one or two extremely high-end providers who practically required you to sell bodily parts in order to cover the costs of the products they offered.
I had always dreamt of running my own company and as is always the case with these sorts of stories, an opportunity (redundancy!) arose where I could finally put my plan into action and start [codepotato].
That was April 2011.
Since then [codepotato] has never had a quiet moment. As an avid user of Twitter there are a number of success stories which confirm how applicable social media is in current times. One of the more notable achievements as a result of Twitter was becoming threesixty services preferred supplier of bespoke websites; something which happened as a result of a daredevil late night tweet to @philyoung360.
Just before October 2011 I purchased my ticket to the IFP conference with the incentive that I was going to meet a number of clients I had never met before and contacts that I had been talking to through Twitter for some time. A client and good friend @petematthew had suggested I read Gary V’s “Crush It” book, and whilst reading it I came up with the idea of taking stickers to the IFP conference as a guerilla viral marketing attempt.
Every time I met someone at the IFP conference, I handed out one of my “I’ve met @cssgareth” stickers and a business card. One of the highlights that I can remember of the day was that at some point I spotted a tweet from one of the industry’s magazine publishers saying that my stickers were the talk of the conference. Amazing coverage as a result of stickers that cost around £25 to produce.
Since October I’ve continued to push [codepotato] towards becoming the industry’s preferred supplier of all things “web”. I’ve met more businesses and key industry people than I thought I would in [codepotato]‘s first year of trading, and now that we’re into year two of this adventure I’m determined to continue “connecting”.
In June 2012 I redesigned our site to put it more inline with what we offer and the types of projects we’re getting involved in each week. In the past couple of months our team has grown to include three self-employed associates and a cluster of professionals. There’s lots on the horizon for 2012, including launching at least 2 of our own web-apps and projects with some top industry names.
For now, that’s our story.