We're kicking off our Glug Editors at Large with a little brief intro on our chosen ones; meet Matthew Blanchard from Fein! Keep an eye out for his upcoming articles.
Instagram: @fein_digital @matthewblanchard1
First of all… big up and congrats for being one of the very first Editors at Large ever to have been chosen in the history of Glug (hehe). How does it feel? You stoked?
I was certainly happy to receive the email from you guys, it’s just one of those things you fill in and kind of forget about thinking you won’t win. So when I got the email it gave me a pick me up. I’m mostly looking forward to the platform that it creates for me to be able to speak to some of the coolest people in the industry. Bring it on...
For those Gluggers who’s never heard of you, who are you and what do you do?
I’m Matthew Blanchard, 32, born and grew up in Liverpool, live in London, run an agency called FEIN and we specialise in UI, UX, VR & Content Creation currently, but we are on a mission to transition into becoming an "agency of the future”.
Could you tell us a bit more about how you ended up doing what you’re doing now? How did you get there and what have you been up to before that?
I finished university at 21 and enrolled on the LJMU entrepreneurs programme, you submitted your idea, pitched to a board like Dragons Den and I won. That was 10 years ago now and it was for a clothing brand called GUILT EDGED which was an ethically sourced, organic clothing brand. I loved every minute and it was such a fun ride starting a brand from scratch, from then I was hooked on being an entrepreneur, I still also have the award proudly on my sideboard at home. Big up to my University LJMU as always!
During launching the brand though e-commerce was still in its infancy so my cousins husband who was a programmer teamed up and built the site for it. From there my focus shifted to digital and I ran an agency called The Lucid Agency till the beginning of 2017 when I rebranded and launched the agency under the name FEIN.
Tell us something that no one knows about you…
I’ve got a couple of new and exciting startups brewing in the background that I’m about to launch. Shameless plug but I’m openly now seeking investors.
When you started out in the industry, what would be the one thing that you wish you knew?
I wish I’d known how cheap we were in comparison to other agencies at the time, but that said we had to start somewhere and it got us in the door with some good clients I guess. I wish I’d known how important it is to build a good team too, you can’t do it on your own! Also I wish I’d know that things don’t always happen as fast as you think they will, in 2013 I launched a fashion tech start up called The Counter which was a similar concept to Farfetch, amongst a number of reasons we had to shutter it under a year after launching. One of those reasons was thinking we had missed the boat in timing, but now looking at where Farfetch is as it’s about to file a £5.5 billion IPO we definitely hadn’t.
You either win or you learn.
So, maybe an obvious question, but, why Glug? What was it that made you apply?
I first found out about Glug through Ian Hambleton when he spoke at Spencer Gallagher's Agency Collective event last year. He shared a status on Linked In and I thought I’d submit some titles and here we are!
What will you be covering for us? (Don’t go into too much details here, just a little overview!)
Very much the future of the industry as we know it tech and agency wise. Since I began in this industry in 2008 I’ve always had a kind of anxiety about the future and been keen to keep looking at where things are headed and perhaps.
Ok, and the final question… If you could choose anyone in the world, who would you wish to see on a Glug stage in 2018?
I think Sharmadean Reid is doing interesting things in the world of tech/retail and she’s great at getting out there so she would be cool for you guys to have along. Jose Neves from Farfetch for what he’s done with that company in such a short space of time, it is seriously impressive. Finally you unfortunately can’t people back from the dead but if you could Steve Jobs, never got over his famous commencement speech to this day.