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We Do Fruition Ltd – Member Focus Article

Member News 5th October 2017

What does your business do?

We like to think of ourselves as a different sort of digital marketing agency. We specialise in working with small to medium businesses or those who are just starting out to help them connect with their customers, whether that’s through strategies, rebranding, social media or good, old-fashioned ad campaigns.

My background is in helping larger organisations at the start-up phase – I worked at CableTel, which became NTL, which grew into Virgin Media; I worked at Glasgow Science Centre from when it was just a portakabin in a field and helped turn it into the national attraction it is now; I worked at Scottish Canals during their transition from just moving boats to building icons like The Kelpies – and I’ve brought those ideas and experience to We Do Fruition. We provide big experience without the big budget.

What are you most proud of when it comes to your company?

It’d be rebranding the UK National Parks partnership – bringing together 15 world-renowned national parks from all over the country and developing an umbrella brand to represent them. We’re a micro business and to work with organisations of that scale on the international stage was incredible. It’s a testament to our portfolio of work that they were willing to take a chance on us and let us show off what we can do.

Aside from that, it’s got to be shaping and developing the brand for The Kelpies and The Helix. Every time I drive past them or see them used to promote Scotland as a great place to visit, I feel proud to have played a wee part in a project that’s captured imaginations all over the world.

 What do you find most enjoyable in day-to-day business life?

 It’s meeting people, without a doubt. Just sitting down with business owners, having a cuppa, and just hearing the passion pour out of them. One of the best parts of my job is helping visualise people’s ideas and map out solutions to their problems – and the best way to do that is to sit down, face to face, and just talk it out.

That said, we don’t do pages and pages of business plans – a strategy shouldn’t sit on a shelf; it should be something that everyone buys into and feels a part of. We involve the whole business in what we’re doing – it’s about being inclusive and making sure you’re doing things with people, not to them.

What are your ambitions for the future?

We want to keep working with passionate start-ups and small to medium enterprises with ambitions to grow. We want to be their digital innovation team – on call but without the overheads of an in-house marketing team. We want to keep the small, nimble, affordable, innovative and reliable service we’ve built and grow alongside the businesses we’re working with. We’re committed to being a business that’s down-to-earth and approachable. No fuss, no palaver, no jargon – and no ties!

How has the business changed over the years?

People are starting to realise that we’re more than just web developers; that we offer more than just websites – we’re more than just a product and a service. We help small businesses understand what’s out there; sometimes there’s so much infrastructure and opportunity that it’s almost confusing. It’s about advising the best routes to develop their business, whether that’s digital strategies, funding routes, or just the right way to communicate with their customers.

What are your top three priorities?

To stay small and nimble as a business; to constantly evolve and adapt to new technologies; and to always be approachable.

That and maybe open a remote office in Palo Alto, California!

Can you offer three tips to new-start businesses?

Seek advice – there’s so much support out there for small businesses, from Scottish Enterprise to Entrepreneurial Spark, and even friends and family; everyone has something useful to tell you.

Start! If you don’t try it, you’ll never know what you can achieve. There’s a cracker of quote from Canadian hockey player Wayne Gretsky – “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take!”

And last but certainly not least – stay positive!

Why is Renfrewshire a great place to run a business?

From working in Glasgow and other places in the past, Paisley is sometimes looked down on – and nothing could be further from the truth. There’s so much going on in Renfrewshire and I want to be part of continuing the transformation and helping businesses make the most of what’s hopefully to come in the run up to Paisley’s starring role as the City of Culture in 2021.

More than that, my heart’s in Paisley. My great, great grandmother worked in one of the Paisley Mills and I love the thought that although the means of production’s moved on, there’s still a Burns working hard in Renfrewshire.

Has anything weird or wonderful happened in your working life?

I feel like I’m being stalked by The Queen. I was on the inaugural journey up the Glasgow Science Centre tower, I was at the opening of the The Falkirk Wheel, and I stood in the shadow of The Kelpies – and every time I turned around she was there! Maybe I’ll bump into her again at Paisley 2021…

What is the main thing you have learned since being involved in the business?

No-one else is going to do it for you. You’ve got to get out there, speak to people, and build relationships. Word of mouth and building your reputation is key. We’re at the cutting edge of digital technology but nothing beats making a connection and helping someone out in person. You can have countless positive reviews online but nothing beats someone coming to you because a client has pointed them in your direction.

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