1. In your own words – what do you do?
We are a digital marketing agency! We’re 100% focused on collecting and converting online audiences. We develop intelligent, cost-effective and scalable solutions for achieving that across the most valuable digital channels.
2. What’s the most exciting thing about what you’re doing?
Growing fast, with double the revenue and team in the last year. We've run record breaking campaigns for the entertainment industry for some of the biggest acts in the world. This includes global album and music campaigns for artists like BTS, Coldplay, Shakira, Metallica, Nick Cave, and many more. We're doing this with a small team based in the Workshed at Swindon.
3. What are you most proud of so far?
Growing flashpack.com from a small travel agency to the fastest growing start up in the country, driving the majority of their online revenue and helping them gain 400% growth for two years in a row, into the leading operator globally in their niche of solo travel. More on their story here.
4. What have you found most difficult about being a startup?
Finding the right kind of technical talent to meet the lofty standards we are expected to deliver. We aim not only to run world class campaigns but to outperform other media buyers who run global campaigns, so the standards are high. Maybe we would find this easier if we showed off our experience more - which is why I'm doing this interview! We haven't even updated our website properly in a few years, so new candidates might not even know what we have achieved.
5. What would you do differently if you started now?
I would have pushed harder and faster because I didn't realise how far ahead of the Facebook Ads curve we were in 2015/16. Since then the world has woken up to it and a lot of people are getting good at it. So we're focusing on diversifying from just campaigns and further into market research to find new opportunities, both for us and our clients.
6. Where do you think you’ll be in 12 months?
The aim is to have a full team across all departments - employees have been very focused on delivering client work, but we are starting to hire for other internal operations so I don't become a bottleneck as the company founder.
7. What tools/people/services/organisations helped you most?
I've had a lot of support from the team at the Workshed and local chamber Inspire. I have learned a lot from business coaching. We depend on Asana and Spark email to organise everything and using them effectively has made us far more productive - this is the most relaxed new year ever whereas previous years felt like chaos.
8. What’s the best thing about being based in Swindon?
Excellent work life balance. I live in the countryside and can afford a home for my family of five - this would be much harder in a major city like London. Swindon has clear investment and I've seen a change in just the 1.5 years we have been based in the town centre here. The talent pool is also improving.
9. What support does the tech scene need in Swindon?
More of what you are doing. There are several amazing teams doing remarkable work and we need to show them off more because, like us, they are often too busy to tell the world that awesome world class work is right here in Swindon - a lot of talent move to London or Bristol thinking they need a big city to find meaningful work, and could be missing opportunities on their doorstep.
10. Where can we find out more about you?
Our new website will launch soon at www.digitalmarketingspecialist.co.uk. Facebook and linkedin have more updates on recent work: https://www.facebook.com/digitalmarketingspecialistltd/ and https://www.linkedin.com/company/digital-marketing-specialist-ltd/ And of course people can call me to find out more!