Here we are. In the previous post, we saw how and why cgstudiomap took birth. The website ran for over 3 years, before being turned into a business.
The project, at first a simple google map, switched to a map based directory. Users could add compagnies and ask for updates. Slowly but surely, the database started growing up. I input myself the first studios to create tractions while Tryltweb tackled bugs and featured requests.
From the beginning, all our communication efforts were focused on words to mouth to spread our name. Mid 2010, I joined MPC, London.
London is a major place for the CG. It was an asset to have a member of the team in the Big Smoke -- beer o'clock hype! ;) -- and people were actually really enthusiastic to put a face on the project. In May, we climbed our first step: 1000 studios. The project then attracted attention of some significant websites (1) (2). The word to mouth took off and the number of visits rose, with +58% in Q1 and +41% in Q2. We had more visits in Q1 2011 than during the year 2010.
Word to mouth stayed our best channel to extend our user pool. Our work on social network didn’t make the expected results. We also reached our users face to face during event like SIGGRAPH and FMX. Before, I was joining events for the fun then I was meeting compagnies, trying to reach influential people, having schedules and targets. The developer was turning into a project evangelist machine!
End of 2011, the database had already more than 1600 studios, and, at this point the studios were added by the community itself instead of being done by the team.
At this point, we started reviewing our mission and core value.