Update - what the heck have you been doing?

I just realised it's been bloody ages since i wrote anything on here about what i've been working on lately. So here is an update on the things Preview has been busying away on lately...

1. Sneaking out the new Preview website
A bit of a Quiet Beta Launch™ on this one, as we are taking an iterative approach to developing the content and functionality. Over the past year we've been working like busy bastards to refine our strategy and this is one of the most visible outcomes. The ux took some time to develop and we've added lot's of little treats throughout. If you've got the time take a look and give me some feedback

2. Working on the Low Cost Travel account
At the end of last year we were drafted in by Lowcostbeds to skin their website and help them move from lowcostbeds to lowcostholidays.com. The work has since developed in to direct marketing, email marketing, more digital work on thier sub brands and we are currently working in partnership with AIS to pull together a definitive brand strategy and guidelines.
See some of the initial work on our site

3. Hiring a New Business Manager
We've taken on a new business manager (Stephen). He is researching sectors, qualifying leads and basically picking up the phone to people we want to work with. I'm surprisingly excited at the move, it's not often sales gets me excited. We are in the process of pulling together all the tools Stephen needs to make his full frontal attack on the branding world.

4. Going back to school
We've had a great deal of interest from the education sector lately and we've been talking with a number of education institutes about strategic work. As well as client work, we've recently had a coupe of interns from Northbrook in our studio helping out.

5. Planning our birthday
Last month Preview hit a milestone. We celebrated our 15th birthday by sneaking out after work for a company meal (and drinks). We have plans for a much bigger celebration later in the year which will involve venue hire, clients, suppliers, friends, invites, balloons, strippers, well maybe not strippers but it will be great.

6. Flogging dead horses Until very recently we were working with a Brighton based web company who came to use (via the Design Council) for some strategy and rebrand work. A really group of people with a nice little business proposition. We produced some initial design and positioning work that we were pleased with. However it never went any further. They thanked us for our time, paid their bill and went on with their business. Never at any point in the process were we able to extract a clear direction from them and every meeting turned in to a long debate on who they should be targetting and where the company was going. Shame, i was looking forward to the relationship growing. Odd one.

7. In the studio, listening to... Bat for Lashes, Elbow, Lasyhawke, Macabees, yeah yeah yeahs.

8. Hammering Threadless
I just can't stay away from the site. I've ordered four tees this month alone. The site a beauty to behold, the tees are fantastic and the packaging itself is worth the delivery charge. good times.

9. Getting, reading, writing briefs Roughly translated - we've been bloody busy. Downturn? we've never been busier. We've got a couple of very nice new rebrand projects coming up and a pitch scheduled in next month.

10. Getting techie
The end of year figures are in and the time has come to polish our tools. Updated software, updated hardware, bigger file server, faster network etc etc it's a kick in the wallet, but it's the nature of our business. We need tools people.

Just caught this year's round of idiots on the Apprentice, taking on a branding project. Now i'm gnashing my teeth at the hope of getting that same brief. I would love a brief like that, to take in a city's (or town, or region) history, culture and create a fresh positioning is something i would revel in. In a previous post i've stated my intentions for Brighton, but it goes beyond my hometown and is something i'd apply to any interested area.