It was 1999, dial-up internet was the rage and the dot-com bubble seemed like it’d never burst. A college sophomore was building his resume and landed great gigs at global conglomerates that allowed him to learn from professionals that were the early digital architects. That led to freelance work and more referrals than he could imagine so a brand name was needed thus, an agency was born.
While we started building websites before Y2K, we also understood business and general marketing, so we strangely (at the time) started offering more complete end-to-end solutions for clients marrying online efforts with offline marketing approaches. Of course today we call this integrated marketing, but back then it was a common sense way for thunder::tech to take care of its clients.
We didn’t miss a beat through the early 2000’s recession as every business was starting to pay attention to how marketing was changing and we started hiring. Our third employee is still with us today and has worked himself up to become our first Vice President.
Many of our perks, practices and philosophies were molded in those early days such as the realization that every agency is in the professional services space and customer service should be a guiding principle. Since our founder never worked inside a Mad Men-era agency, we never picked up those bad habits that our industry can be known for...
St. Patrick’s Day was formalized as a paid holiday, we had team member #2 raise her newborn at the office (the beginnings of our family-first approach) and started working with brands from all over the country and we were making regular trips to IKEA to add desks to our growing office footprint.
As quick as mobile phones (track wheel optimized sites for Blackberry!) and social media (message boards and MySpace) were coming about, we were adding services and talent to serve clients that also needed foundational brand and marketing strategy help. Our media practice was formed, we marketed two movies in time for Oscar consideration, landed work with one of America’s largest amusement parks, brought on Fortune 500 clients and continued to attract many middle market brands looking to modernize their approach to marketing.
Over the years we built a density of accounts throughout the Great Lakes region, especially in Ohio, Michigan and Illinois. That’s why we have office space in Detroit, Chicago and Cleveland today. At the same time we were fielding opportunities in Canada, Europe and other points across the globe as clients took us with them. Over the past few years, we have been fortunate to have been chosen by brands such as Henkel, eBay, The Pro Football Hall of Fame, Cedar Fair, The Country Music Hall of Fame, ServiceMaster, Davey Tree, thyssenkrupp, Kichler Lighting, Munchkin Baby Products, USA Track and Field and many other incredible partners.
We continue to aggressively pursue R&D in emerging areas of marketing which will allow thunder::tech to continue to evolve for our next chapter of growth.