Creative Spotlight: How ED. transformed into an award-winning agency
ED. is a creative agency that has a deep love for branding, design, and building incredibly interactive (and visually stunning) websites. This Australian team of thinkers, designers, and developers is spread across three offices in Sydney, Melbourne, and Canberra. We think they’re pretty neat (and apparently so do their mums) so we thought we’d ask them a few questions about starting small and evolving into an award-winning agency!
What sparked the idea to start an agency?
Our mission was to build brands and websites that were quite different, so we needed to find incredible people and build up a team who could do this. The biggest challenge was building a portfolio of work to attract talented designers and developers to join ED. Once we were able to find valuable team members, we then could do nice work and build a portfolio that would help win the clients we were looking for.
How did you grow into a flourishing agency?
We think it’s pretty simple. Our team created incredible work for our clients, which led to work great enough to win awards. This continued to push us and inspired us to create even better work. After being featured by Awwwards, SiteInspire, and DNIZ Best Awards, it started bringing in quite a lot of attention within the community and brought us new talent to the team!
How did your team find its niche?
Our team spans across the entire spectrum of marketing and advertising. Everyone has come from very different backgrounds; some from the traditional advertising/design paths, others from art school, engineers, marketers, and a few with no schooling at all. The team’s into robotics, animation, illustration, design, problem solving, user experience, and art. The list goes on and on.
When brainstorming ideas for a project, our combined backgrounds come together and put some crazy ideas on the table. This is usually when the concept is hatched and at that point, the team hits the ground running.
We also encourage our team to continue specialization with an initiative called Made. It’s basically just a way to turn our talents inward and allows room for exploration and experimentation. Made has become art projects, written word, coding, crafted objects, 3D printed gadgets, works in progress, and so much more.
How do you find new clients?
We’ve been really thankful to be featured on some awesome award-winning sites, which always helps us spread the word about what we’re capable of doing. It also helps when companies post articles about us and share them on their great Instagram feeds. 🙂
What happens after you bring a new client on?
The first step is either branding, rebranding, or learning about their brand. We’ll never build a website unless a brand has been completely defined and understood. As the brand is the visual voice of the organisation, it’s so utterly important that the website is on brand. The brand also helps us make decisions and answer questions like what the website will be, how far we should take it creatively, and if it will add value to the website’s visitors.
There are a lot of agencies out there. How do you set yourself apart from your competitors?
The best part of our industry is that every agency is very different. In our case, we have a very unique style and our clients have chosen us because they love what we have to offer for them.
When producing a website, it’s always underpinned by the client’s brand, which we then dedicate several hours to a discovery workshop. This gives the project a unique touch along with a hint of our style, which is usually closely matched to the client.
What’s one piece of advice you would tell to a new agency or freelancer?
Focus on what you love doing (which is very hard, as most of the time it won’t pay in the beginning). It’s so easy to be sidetracked and work on projects that bring in short term money, but this won’t – in most cases – help you get to where you really need to be in the long run. Again, just focus on what you love, and I guarantee you that it will pay you back in full (and you’ll be much harder to compete with).
TL;DR Be the craftsman who works day and night until the craft is perfected. Your product will be loved (and probably hated) by many. Don’t be blah!
How does Flywheel help you do your best work?
The time saved deploying allows us to spend more time adding the shine to our development work. The piece of mind knowing that our sites are secure and always online keeps our clients incredibly happy, and it lets us enjoy our holidays (and sleep). The quick creation of a site in Local or a staging environment has streamlined our development workflow, and has not only saved time but human error. The idea of going back to cPanel blows my mind.
You can keep up with ED.’s brilliant brand on Instagram.
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