company 18th anniversary

We were in a party mood recently, as you can see by watching this video! We celebrated our eighteenth birthday, and it’s fair to say that a lot has happened over the past eighteen years. In fact, a lot has happened in the business in the past year alone! There are always ups and downs when you’re in business, but the challenges of 2020 were something else; we all found that out pretty quickly, that business as usual was not going to cut it in a year when all the rules seemed to go out of the window…

A birthday isn’t just an opportunity to party, it’s time to look back and reflect on our journey. Our story, like everyone else’s, is unique, and it’s pretty amazing to think about how far we’ve come from our small beginnings some 18 years ago. If there’s one word that describes things well, it’s ‘humble’ – our company wouldn’t be celebrating 18 years in business if a family member hadn’t loaned us the money we needed to get up and running.

So how did we start? It all began with a bad experience with a photographer who didn’t seem to know what they were doing. They might have been good from a technical standpoint, but not from a human standpoint, and that’s a large chunk of the battle. If you can’t get something done, then do it yourself! And that’s just what we did. Work came in pretty fast, and before we’d even fully figured out what we were doing, we were taking photographs of hundreds of children, literally, as one of our earliest jobs was shooting at a santa’s grotto for 5 weeks!

You learn fast when you have to, and that’s just what we did. We integrated the latest technology — which would provide photographs in seconds — into our equestrian photography operations and wowed people who were used to waiting for weeks for their photographs to come through previously.

Things were going well until the financial crash around 2009/10. You had to look at more affordable ways to market your business, which is what we did. In the process, we unwittingly became experts at Google Ads and quickly began running other people’s campaigns. Understanding that there was a gap in the market, we passed the Google Partner Program and diversified our operations by offering video/photo and web design and traffic services.

As time went on, it became clear that photography in a traditional sense was losing its value in the customer’s eyes and that digital marketing was on the way up, so we decided to focus exclusively on digital marketing. And boy, has it been a journey!

It’s funny to think about how we went from photos of children to having digital marketing clients all over the world and a growing team of staff able to deliver anything a client may need to help their online marketing activity. So, what have we learned? That if you’re brave and bold, put the time into learning, and work hard, then success will come your way and that every challenge you overcome in your business journey is another step closer to the success you are hoping to attain. 

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About Uzair Kharawala
Uzair Kharawala is the Co-Founder at SF Digital. He is a Certified Google Partner, is a Cricket fanatic and loves Photography.
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