What does it mean? There are three facets to our name: heritage, craftsmanship, and pride.
Our founder, Matt Smith, is a third-generation creator. His grandfather Homer was an industrial designer and inventor for Kodak. Matt’s father Stephen was a farmer, sign painter, and school teacher who invested heavily into his community. Matt Smith is an industrial designer by education (Georgia Tech, 2001), but dove into web design one night in his dorm in the late 1990s.
“Smith” is a familiar name, and for a good reason. In generations past, we had blacksmiths, goldsmiths–tradespeople who took pride in the work of their hands. They built useful and beautiful things that made the world a better place. Their craft was so important to them that they adopted their tradename as their own–Smith.
Today (ca. 2014) we are in the earliest years of a renaissance that respects the craftspeople, the makers, the growers. We bring this same passion and attention to detail to what we do. We take something raw–code, a black piece of paper–and create something useful and beautiful.
How is smithHOUSE different from other creative or design agencies?
We’re not a just a design or creative agency. We’re techy designers, yes, but ultimately we are problem solvers for companies in a competitive marketplace. We believe that strong branding, web/mobile/social, all wrapped into a comprehensive communications strategy will give your company a significant competitive advantage.
How we can work together?
People hire us for three different kinds of services:
For a project. We get to know your company, your marketplace, and the challenge ahead of us. We present and execute solutions, but we don’t waste time with exhaustive project plans with excessive overhead. We move quickly through projects because we are good at what we do, plus we understand business. We work hard, and we work smart. Of course, projects very in size. But in general, we estimate projects between $150-$250/hour. To understand it another way, a small quick projects is around $5000; an average-sized project is around $20,000; a sophisticated, multi-channel project can exceed $100,000.
Consulting. Companies hire us as consultants when they’re trying to get their bearings, but aren’t ready to dive in and invest in a major overhaul of their communications strategy. When we “consult,” we get to know your company and the marketplace, and we give clear direction for how to navigate through problems to find a solution.
On retainer. Some companies have us manage their social media channels. Or they have us on retainer to offer creative support for their organization. For example, on some weeks they’ll need some new features on their website, and other times they’ll need some print media work as well.
Another way to look at it is to start with your budget. You tell us what you have to spend, and then we can talk about how to get the most bang for that buck.
What is it like to hire smithHOUSE?
We can put you in touch with our other clients for a full picture, but here’s a quick glance:
We like to succeed. We like winning. We like helping our clients dominate.
We aren’t afraid to share unpopular ideas if we believe that it’s good for your company.
We don’t have account managers. Your team works directly with our creative team.
We have strong project plans with excessive communication. You always know where we are.
We are happy people who enjoy what we do.
I don’t know if you’ll like our project. It’s pretty complicated.
We like solving problems. The more complicated and more awkward the problem–the more excited we get because the project will test our limits. We love to hear these kinds of things from clients…
“There’s a lot of debate about the direction of our website…”
“We have a great product, but somehow our competitors beat us to the customer every time…”
“We’ve been spinning our wheels on this project for several months…”
“There’s a lot we don’t know about this space in the market. We want our product to look good, but we don’t have the resources to make an epic debut…”
You get the idea. We love beautiful design, but only when it’s a solution to your problems.
We are a non-profit organization. Can you hook us up?
We have worked with many beautiful, fearless people who lead non-profit organizations. Who doesn’t like working with someone like that?
What do we offer for non-profit organizations:
A reduced rate.
A lot of love.
In exchange, we expect our non-profit clients to give 100% of their attention toward the project. We agree that both teams (ours and yours) work smart and work hard.
Where are you guys located?
We work from Phoenix, Arizona, but we have clients all over the map.
Minneapolis / St. Paul, Minnesota
San Diego, California
Also, our president Matt Smith likes to spend summers in San Diego, so you are likely to see him at a coffee shop near the beach.