10 Years of FIREBOX

This week FIREBOX celebrated its ten-year anniversary.
To mark the occasion, we sat down with the Founder James Pidgeon to discuss his experience starting a business, importance of culture, and what it will take to be successful moving forward.
How did you start the business?

FIREBOX was started whilst I was at University in Bournemouth. This was the evolution of something called K2 which surfaced around 2000 whilst at school; a website which mostly ripped “Flash” games so we could play them in class by getting around the filters!

How far we have come! The development of both has given me so many lessons in branding, marketing, design and development that led to the eventual creation and success of FIREBOX.

What accomplishments are you most proud of?

The past 10 years has seen us work with some amazing clients, large and small. Being a freelance operation – but with agency experience – has enabled us to bring a higher standard of inspiration and industry knowledge to a much wider audience. Both agency and freelance have their merits, but I think we’ve managed to find a great balance between the two and bring the advantages of this to businesses where it would otherwise not be possible.

For me, one of the biggest markers of success is our sustained relationships with clients over time.

I’m proud of the reputation we have in the market, the following we’ve cultivated, and the fact that many look to us for inspiration all things brand-related, not just websites. When I think about the amount of work we have done – clients, projects, pitches, even the ones that got away. That’s a massive impact.

What will it take to continue to be successful in the future?

With the fallout of COVID about to take its hold on business, the next 12 months are going be especially challenging. I hope we’ll still be producing great digital solutions in another 10 years, but like everyone, we’ll have to weather the storm ahead and use our experience to help others.

If you were starting all over, what do you wish you knew on day one?

Effective and regular communication with your team is worth more than we’ll ever know! Web design and development can be inherently quite a lonely practise. It’s sometimes a ‘headphones on— get it done’ kind of industry.

That’s all well and good, but it’s amazing how much more you can do with great team co-operation and taking that extra bit of time to check-in with partners and clients and get feedback as often as possible. Over the 12 months we’ve reflected on this ourselves and made some great changes to optimise feedback and review, and now with the fallout of COVID – and increased usage of tools like Zoom and JIRA – this will only be improved further.

What clients have you worked with over the years?

We’ve had the privilege of working with brands of all shapes and sizes.

From household names like the BBC, The Premier League, TeamGB and Canon to SME’s such as RHL, Pelican, Hungerford House and Creative FIx. We’ve also worked with government and education partners to deliver a variety of content-rich solutions.

How do you see the next 12 months in the business?

We’re all about to face huge challenges in adapting to the post-COVID world. The idea of bouncing back isn’t going to be straight forward, but ensuring every business is portraying themselves in the best way – whether that’s on their own site, socials or even search engine results – they really need to be on their game to get customers back through the door.

You’re due to launch an initiative to support this?

Yes, I really want to try and give something back to small business, and in turn of celebrating a decade of the business, we’ll be offering a free website and marketing package to a small business, worth in excess of £1500! Details to follow shortly!