What was the scope of their involvement?
I provided precise creative briefs and did the marketing ideation. Whitesmith implemented the work.
We haven’t done any massive digital builds, but we’ve done several projects that made interesting use of UX [user experience] and applied their knowledge of why people share things online.
For the UK election two years ago, they helped us track every potential candidate’s Twitter account, using an algorithm to surface the best tweets.
On another project, they tracked the Twitter accounts of nine international football leagues, looking at which players were following other players. That gave us insight into which players were transferring from one club to another, since they would be likely to follow their future club mates during those periods. Whitesmith built a bot that checked accounts every five minutes, and then presented visually appealing graphs online. It was one of the more complex projects we worked on.
From Whitesmith’s perspective, the goal of the work was not to get certain traffic numbers, but that’s my constant consideration. I often give them creative briefs, and they come up with suggestions in terms of technology and UX elements. They’ve been very much involved in determining what would work best creatively.
What is the team dynamic?
I’ve worked with an account manager, a project manager, as well as with designers and specific developers— mostly frontend, Node.js developers.
How did you come to work with Whitesmith?
I had a large following on Twitter, and tweeted an invite for people to retweet me. I was approached by around 35 companies within a day or two, spoke to a few, and made a shortlist of 12, based on various criteria. Whitesmith was our second choice. I didn’t like the work done by the first company, so I chose Whitesmith for the next project.
Their contact gave me confidence that he knew what he was talking about, and they had competitive pricing. With many development companies, we often find that there’s a lack of understanding about UX and design. From some of their work, I knew that Whitesmith would be good at this, but they were much better than I expected.
How much have you invested with them?
Our projects range between £5,000–£25,000 [$6,000–$33,000] each.
What is the status of this engagement?
We started working with Whitesmith in September 2014. We have an ongoing project at the moment: a paranormal map of the UK.