$500K seed round, growth to over 7k users, Saatchi & Saatchi, and the All-Blacks
Building something great
Two years of bugs, sweat, tears and a team that's hungry brought forward Chainy.com. Chainy is a platform that helps creatives showcase their craft and work with brands on projects. Our preliminary goals were to grow an engaged community which represented Chainy's main asset, it's listed creatives. This video kickstarted phase 1.
As the creative director and co-founder at Chainy, my goal was to communicate a brand that was for anyone who has a passion for creation. Chainy classifies creatives by the skills they have and matches them to work opportunities related to their craft. So, the website works. Now it’s all about making it interesting and growing this asset of creatives.
I tell stories through film and made sure it was the way we worked on a relationship with our creatives. It’s the reason I am part of the team. I am the creative one, sometimes outrageously-creative, nevertheless that’s how I got my job title after all. My commitment to the company was because of a passion for creation and the motivation of tapping into that same niche that resonates with this passion. Job posting websites are dry and there lie many opportunities in interaction. Take projects/jobs on freelancer.com for instance, which are initially great if you’re good enough. However, when the website is over crowded, how do its users accurately determine if they got the biggest bang for their buck? Did they work with the best freelancer for the budget they’ve set aside?
Hard to tell.
The vision was to build a user base of passionate creators, keep them passionate, and have them collaborate together and work with brands through creative briefs and bespoke pages that we provided as the host. We wanted to ensure that the environment created on Chainy will be welcoming and creatively- stimulating. Job listing websites kept it all very transactional and didn’t introduce any social element to the process.
Our partners presented an opportunity to reach out to organisations with confidence to bring phase 2 into effect. Phase 2 was getting brands invested in our concept and encouraging them to create activity on the platform. Our partners at Front Row Group included Sean Fitzpatrick, ex-captain of the All-Blacks and an advisory board including the likes of Douglas Daft, chairman and chief executive officer of Coca-Cola 2000-2004. It's safe to say we had our foot through many doors and came in with quite the conversation starter. Now, onto execution.
One of our highly recognised projects was in partnership with Distill Ennui studios, Saatchi & Saatchi and the University of the Arts London. This project aimed at challenging the creative industry and bridging the gap between its different divisions. We created an artist residency with globally-renowned artist Alexander James whose clients are the likes of Apple, Samsung, Versace, Vogue and Chanel to mention a few. The goal was to bring together creatives from the extremes of the industry to work together with Alexander James; 10 creatives to be exact. The bigger picture was to demonstrate that Chainy worked.
John Pallant, Regional Creative Director of EMEA of Saatchi & Saatchi and Professor Robert Kesseler, Chair of Art, Design & Science at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London were invited to curate the selection process and hand-pick the most deserving applicants from a list of 300.
This project’s successful completion facilitated the clarification of the purpose of our website and it’s effectiveness. Best of all, it manifested itself in the form of poems, installations, and videos that will always remain an ambassador to what we've accomplished together within Alexander James's collection of works. Alexander James has been the interest of many mainstream media publishers and has been featured by the BBC and Saatchi & Saatchi for his work. To learn more about this partnership with Chainy, click here. To view the artworks produced during this partnership, visit distilennui.com. We channeled over 10,500 unique page views to the project's landing page in a couple of weeks. Eyes were on us and we milked that opportunity. That significant traffic that this project generated was translated into new sign ups and further demonstrated the true value proposition that Chainy offered to its listed creatives.
Now, they're interested.
This project paved way to what the website’s foundation envisioned and introduced various other similar projects over the span of the business’s operation including the IGA campaign which was our biggest achievement yet.
Chainy grew to a network of over 7000 listed creatives who are accessible to brands with a few clicks. Our creatives truly are the asset and the heart of the business and what we aim to deliver is access to high-quality and large creative contributors that will work with you on your next global campaign.
Building something that's your own is liberating. It sets you apart from everyone else who hasn't taken a chance on an idea, an impulse or even a passion. Through my experience as the creative director and co-founder at Chainy, I’ve met clients from the world’s most successful brands, prepared creative briefs with daring ideas that the clients supported, have felt truly valuable for the creativity I have and the overwhelming ideas that inhabit my head, have experimented with my creativity, and have learned how to build something I am passionate about with partners I would do it all over again with.
Now we separate fellas and find our way and I wish you all the success in the world.