Coaching helps web firm grow

Less than two years after 
being established, a Berwick-based online marketing firm has won new contracts and added to its workforce.

First 4 Websites now employs nine people including two new recruits – graphic designer Laura Turnbull and 17-year- old apprentice Reece Vail after taking part in a business growth programme.

The firm was established by husband and wife team David and Sarah Williams in January 2012 providing clients with the full range of design, internet and social media marketing services.

“In our first 18 months of trading we experienced steady growth working closely with clients from a wide range of sectors,” explained Sarah. “However we felt that to enable First 4 Websites to reach its full growth potential, we would need to enlist some expert support.”

She turned to Oxford Innovation, the business coaching specialists tasked with the delivery of the £1.35m Business Northumberland High Growth Programme.

Mike Jobson, programme manager at Oxford Innovation, worked with Sarah, David and their entire team, advising on marketing strategies and growth plans.

Having now completed the programme, Sarah is more 
optimistic than ever about 
the future of her business.

She added: “Since taking part in the programme, we’ve recorded our most successful month of trading, we’ve added Laura and Reece to the team to help ensure we’re resourced for future growth and in November we’ll re-launch our own website.”

Reflecting on his work with First 4 Websites, Mike said: “The company’s success had been based on the quality of its product and the relationships the team enjoy with clients.

“That’s fundamental to any successful organisation so we had to preserve that but if First 4 Websites is going to reach its full growth potential the team have to work on their business as well as in it. I’m convinced they’re now equipped to do so.”