It has been a big year for Bonfire. Not just big in terms of growth (although that’s been significant), but big changes in clients, culture, and the space we call home. And I’m excited to walk you through what we have been up to.
Bonfire brought on more clients this year than ever. Ranging from startups to Fortune 100 enterprises, we’re proud of the integral part we’ve played in their individual successes. We also retained over 95 percent of our clients from 2014 by providing innovative solutions for their digital marketing needs.
Although we were once known for just our digital marketing (and more specifically, social media), we had a deliberate focus to build out our core functionalities: design, marketing automation and retargeting, SEO, SEM, and email. Our capabilities have scaled in tandem with the quality of work we can deliver, and as a result, we’ve built a reputation for our speed, accuracy, effectiveness, creativity, and ability to foster seamless partnerships. All of our clients come to us with unique challenges, and I’m proud to say that our enthusiasm for finding solutions has only grown in the face of new and bigger hurdles.
We believe that employees should be given as much autonomy as possible, but we also believe that complex organizational problems require formal operational structure. This year, we began the difficult process of solidifying our departments and team roles. Previously, we determined teams according to clients; today, our teams are structured within departments. The shift has allowed employees to focus on specialist roles and perfect their craft with a higher degree of focus.
There are still designated account managers and writers for specific clients, but the segmentation of departments has brought higher-quality work with less thrash. We’ve also given six people promotions to senior- or director-level positions to ensure the highest degree of procedural control. Our adjustments have shown vast improvements and it’s something I’m personally very proud of see in action. The applause, the laughter, long nights, early mornings, and electric curiosity has never been stronger in the halls of Bonfire.
We moved our headquarters this year, and it’s been momentous. Our last space was suitable for who we were three years ago, but we started to outgrow its size and functionality quickly. An office space should not only be a safe, comfortable, and friendly environment, but it should also flow in a way that enables creating excellent work. We were given the opportunity to start from scratch and build the space out ourselves, and everything was meticulously selected to guarantee our spatial success.
After long hours of preparation and an excruciating amount of work getting the space ready for the team’s first day, I can safely say it’s been an overwhelming success. Reliable technology, large screens for ideating design, ample whiteboards for brainstorming big ideas, a kitchen, bathroom, storage lockers, and quiet meeting spaces that encourage creativity. When the team finally arrived, there was plenty of exploration, followed by a well-deserved toast, and then we were back at our computers, kicking ass for our clients.
At Bonfire, we’re driven by the knowledge that the best marketing is meticulously ideated and prepared for every possible circumstance. We carried these values into the build and the results have been astounding. It’s sometimes difficult to imagine how a work environment could create such an innate sense of well-being, but this one has. The new space is a culmination of my team’s unrelenting effort and our clients’ trust in the work we do. I couldn’t be more thankful, confident, and excited with the direction we’re going and the team we’re going with. Although we’ve accomplished an enormous amount, this is just the beginning. We have the tools, people, processes, and vision to revolutionize digital marketing. And we’re driving our mission forward daily.