2017. The year that saw a TV personality become president of the United States, another hung parliament for the UK, salt bae became a thing and the sobering realisation that we have to wait until 2019 for the final season of GoT.
While the world seemed to burn down around us, we were rolling up our sleeves, getting to work on creating brands and websites to help keep the world turning.
Now that we’ve reached the end of 2017 (well almost), we’ve taken some time out to look back over our year.
Blowing our own trumpet
Working with established brands and startups, we launch tens of projects a year. From logos and icons to websites and printed media, and most of the time projects that encompass all of the above.
While we can’t list every project, we’ve highlighted a few to give you an insight into the wide range of work we’ve been involved with this year.
The Wow Company
The Wow Company is an ambitious accountancy firm based in the UK with a belief that businesses deserve more. They’ll take you on a journey, make your life easier, and offer sound advice to help your business thrive.
Classic Ford Broncos
Classic Ford Broncos build the closest thing you’ll find to a 2017 Ford Bronco. The project starts with an original Classic Ford Bronco produced from 1966 to 1977. Add new metal, a new engine and transmission, off-road tires, a hint of luxury, and of course, a modern brake system. It looks mean. It sounds great. It performs like a boss. Pure fun on the road, or off.
Digital Visitor is a social media agency based in Bristol. They create engaging campaigns for major clients from Barbour to All Nippon Airways, uniting digital expertise and progressive marketing, to target the right customers to help grow their brands.
Red Lorry Yellow Lorry are a B2B Technology PR agency based in London. Clients range from innovative start-ups, leading technology brands, and world-famous multinationals.
Papercast specialises in solar-powered bus stop displays. Developing e-paper technology to combine features such as sunlight readable, weather, and vandal proof units. It’s the future of passenger information.
Connect is the sister company to Vital Wifi who provide a wifi management platform for businesses looking for a private, self-managed wireless network. The online store is another way of connecting with customers and streamlining their services.
Wilderness Today is your authoritative resource for everything to do with hunting, survival, camping, and the great outdoors. It’s the perfect destination if you’re a fisherman, survivalist or camper.
With an established fan base and one of the most prominent men’s magazines in the USA for everyday carry, GearMoose took the plunge and created a shop to sell the gear they review.
The Savvy Backpacker
The Savvy Backpacker show you how to travel Europe on a budget. With in-depth, exciting articles they will give you the skills and knowledge to travel more and spend less.
Over the years we’ve established ourselves in the online magazine space. Working with top ten lists, men’s magazines, and self-development magazines. Men’s Gear is updated daily with cool stuff for guys featuring everything from gear, style, rides, tech, whiskey, and other manly interests.
Property Geek is an online resource to make property investment accessible and fun. It cuts through the “make a million by next Tuesday” nonsense that makes up a lot of the industry and offers sensible, real-world advice and tips.
Kitenge is an ethical clothing brand investing in local industries and building on their expertise. Lovingly handmade, Kitenge designs are created from small runs of African wax print fabrics. Every item is individually hand-cut, made by Tanzanian tailors, with each purchase helping to improve their livelihoods and support their excellent craftsmanship.
Cutting room floor
Sometimes our best work doesn’t see the light of day. That’s a real shame when you consider the amount of time that goes into it.
On occasion we can re-purpose these designs but ordinarily they get forgotten, racking up hundreds of forgotten logos and concepts over the years. This year we’re highlighting these works of art.
We’re known for building successful partnerships with all of our clients – we become an extended part of their team, and ultimately we become friends.
Sometimes we go a step further and engage in a collaborative partnership to share our skills for their reach. The best part? We get to work on experimental projects, creating new platforms we wouldn’t usually have the chance to build.
In 2017 we embarked on the latest of these partnerships with one of our existing clients, The Wow Company. So far we’ve worked on several projects such as an internal proposal platform and a survey and reporting system.
It’s not all work, work, work, we do get some time off. Well, when our clients let us. When the world isn’t shooting itself in the foot, we like to get out, eat something other than a poorly made sandwich, cringe at some lousy humour, and attempt to forget that Firefox, Safari, and Edge ever existed.
Whether we’re escaping from a puzzle room, geeking out at the latest Marvel film or just having a good ole catch-up, you’ll find our team outings revolve around food and craft beers. Because who doesn’t enjoy a beef patty, grilled meats or chicken?
Sharing your problems
Sometimes a part of growing up means you have to talk and act like an adult.
While we weren’t dragged kicking and screaming to a meet up called The Agency Collective, it wasn’t high on our list of goals in 2017. Wrongly, we’d assumed it was like any other stuffy networking event, forcing you to sell within the group. We couldn’t have been further from the truth.
If you’re a growing agency, have questions that need answering, have advice to share or you just fancy speaking to other agency owners then The Agency Collective can help. It’s a place to chat, share your problems, and gain some valuable insights.
Over the past two years, we’ve grown as a company, which means we have a team of people who depend on us. It’s no longer just a lifestyle business. As owners, we need to grow as individuals, and with these events, we hope to improve our ‘management skills’ and help develop the team.
Taking the bull by the horns
As a smaller team, we’ve always found it easy to be fluid with our workflow; everyone knows what each team member is working on, how long it will take, and what’s coming up next.
In 2017 we welcomed a change in work with more significant projects knocking at our door. The complexity of these projects meant we had to get serious about our project management and the way we approach them going forward.
Introducing processes and tools to help the team we went through several project management tools before settling on Flow. Now we have a system in place to monitor timelines and assign daily tasks to keep us on track.
A quick clear out
If you’ve popped in recently, it might be a surprise to see some of the guys standing.
Sick of looking at beaten up old desks and odd chairs around the office we’ve given the place a quick clear out and spruced the workspace up with standing desks and plush Herman Miller chairs. No more bad backs and slouching for us! Plus the standing desks keep our minds alert and our bodies active.
Going for glory
We don’t tend to blow smoke up our arses, but sometimes it’s worth a shot.
Wirehive 100 was a chance to get the team together, suited and booted, wined and dined while celebrating our hard work.
We didn’t win – which sucks – but we did make it as a top six finalist for Rebrand of The Year. Something we’re proud of and rightly so. Hopefully, it won’t be the last final we make, and next time we can add to our awards haul.
What’s next after 2017?
With less than a month of 2017 left, we’ll be launching a couple more sites, enjoying a Christmas get together, and looking forward to shutting down the office to recharge our batteries and to welcome in 2018. While wondering if our UK Apprentice star will become Prime Minister?
We’d love to hear your goals and ambitions for next year. Why not drop us a message and let us in on your plans?