Year Established: I’ve been doing freelance web design on the side since 1996, and in 2007 I created 3232 Design and started treating it like a business. In January 2010 I quit my day job of nine years as a Creative Director to concentrate on my business full-time, and it’s been nothing but awesome.
Business/Organization Name: 3232 Design. ‘3232’ is my address, possibly the least imaginative business name but I currently dominate the market for people searching Google on ‘3232’. Take that, RFC 3232!
Owner/Executive Director Name: That’s me, Richard Mueller. No full-time employees yet, and I’ll always keep it small because that’s how I can deliver the highest quality design with the most minimal costs.
Product/Service: Graphic Design, specializing in web design but including brand identity, print, and advertising for small and medium-sized businesses. I love working with creative types.
Unique Features/Competitive Advantage: I’ve won design awards, yet at the same time I’m a great web coder. Finding both in one person is highly unusual, and it allows me to look ahead to take advantage of coding tricks in my designs that save tons of time and money for my clients while delivering agency-quality design.
Notes/Misc other: Though my design is often envelope-pushing, my business is very conservative. It was getting obvious that I wasn’t going to get laid off and if I wanted to do 3232 full time I’d just have to quit. I’d spent two years saving everything I made on the side into a capital cushion so I wouldn’t have to take out a start-up loan. Still, it was one of the scariest decisions I’ve made. Would I lose the house? How would I feed my family? The net result is, I’ve been profitable from my first day, and the freedom is very rewarding.