To explore the wide range of experiences and opinions within the digital business world, we’re running a series of interviews, ‘A Few Minutes With…’.
Today, we’re speaking with Shaun Westgate.
Shaun is the Managing Director at WestgateComms, a communications agency specialising in Design, Brand Development, Web Design, Digital Communications, Digital Marketing, Public Relations and Social Media.
Tell us a little about your organisation’s digital activity
Westgate Comms is an integrated digital marketing company. Westgate creates integrated marketing plans combining digital and marketing skills which include: brand development, web design, content creation, social media, digital marketing, PR and SEO. We also work with lots of clients on one core skill such as web design, brand development, PR or content creation.
What digital activity shows you the greatest return?
Web design and branding give us the greatest return.
What great websites have you seen recently?
The Good Morning Breakfast website – awwwards.com recently caught my eye, it has great ‘stand out’ visual language with a very seamless user experience.
What great mobile apps have you seen recently?
I love technology and I love iPhone apps – especially ones that improve the way you live your life.
Here are a few of my favourites:
I use this app every time I’m about to watch anything, on TV or at the cinema. It has saved me many wasted hours! Not only does it offer a 1 to 10 rating with loads of interesting background info, it also gives you cinema details within a 30 kilometre radius. A real must for any film/TV buff.
Being a fair weather golfer, an accurate forecast is critical. This is the best weather app I have ever used with a five day forecast, with hour by hour detailed changes. It also has a really lovely user interface.
NatWest Business Banking
Online banking has come along way in the last couple of years and this app from NatWest really makes online banking a joy. It has detailed statements and its ‘easy to use’ functionality enables you to transfer funds seamlessly.
National Rail Enquiries
Commuting can be very frustrating but this app really does make your train travel easier, giving you most relevant detailed journey information including any disruptions to your service.
What do you think has been the most important landmark in the development of digital media in the last few years?
The development of mobile platforms to enable the user to have a far richer user experience.
What do you see as the next big thing in digital media and/or web design?
People with no coding skills being able to create and host a website and develop their own integrated social media strategies which will help to drive traffic to their website.
Can a business survive in 2013 without a social media presence?
An online business that relies on new traffic to their website really will struggle to survive without an effective Social/SEO strategy.
What pitfalls do you think businesses must avoid when developing a digital media strategy?
Spending too much time and money on developing quality content without supporting this with creative and innovative ways to share content and engage with key audiences across the most relevant channels.
What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve ever been given?
Do the very best work you can possibly do for every client you work for. That way you retain your clients longer and they tend to tell people how good you are.
What advice would you give to a business starting up in 2013?
The answer to the question above – Do the very best work you can possibly do for every client you work for. That way you retain your clients longer and they tend to tell people how good you are.
What advice would you give to a young designer or developer starting their career in 2013?
Embrace what users are looking for online and develop the most creative ways to give it to them through enhanced user journeys.
If you could change one thing about the digital landscape, what would it be?
We are now all heavy users of the internet, in so many different areas of our lives so we are consistently looking for more speed so we don’t waste lots of time waiting for stuff to load and work.
Where do you see the digital media in 10 years’ time?
Digital media will become very sophisticated – marketeers will hold very detailed profiles and data on individual consumers and will be able to employ very tailored strategies to engage and advertise to them.