Celebrating 15 years at ALHAUS
Image: Alex Anczewski
Since setting sail on its content marketing journey in 2003, ALHAUS has taken to creation and content management like a duck to water. Many waves of new trends and ideas have hit the good ship ALHAUS along the way, but after 15 years in business we are now on the crest of the wave and enjoying the journey even more.
We take a look back at some of the changes and technology high points of the past 15 years. Some say that content marketing began with cave paintings, but we say it began when ALHAUS was born…
MySpace and Skype were the hip and happening new kids on the block in 2003 and when Google bought the web platform Blogger, a new era of content marketing began. It was also in this year that ALHAUS began its journey of creating exciting and engaging content in a new blogcentric world, taking on clients including BT (British Telecom), Bank of Ireland and Microsoft in its first year.
The world’s most popular social media platform, Facebook, took its first baby steps into the online world in the halls of American universities and colleges. Image and video hosting website Flickr took off, offering an online space for users to store visual content. ALHAUS continued to build in the Irish market, working with the Arts Council of Ireland, Citizens Information Board of Ireland and Assist Ireland to name but a few.
Bebo became the new MySpace while YouTube launched a fresh angle on marketing using video content… but was mainly used for watching funny cat movies. As ALHAUS is more of a dog company, our interest in YouTube was completely for marketing purposes only. Honestly.
In the three years since ALHAUS’s birth, things escalated at an astounding rate. Social media was becoming a big player and a new platform called Twitter was amongst the front runners. With Facebook gaining traction partly due to a new algorithm-driven news feed, businesses started to pay more attention to harnessing social media to grab consumer attention, and companies like Blendtec made it an art form with the use of their “Will It Blend” YouTube videos.
Wanted to star in a live online video in 2007? You could, thanks to Justin TV. Tumblr also came to life, offering another platform for the world to share their blogs and of course as a tool for businesses to reach their audience.
In 2008 Facebook hit a magical milestone by having 100 million users on the platform with a 178.38% monthly growth. AOL tried to breathe life into Bebo by acquiring it for $850 million but despite dropping wads of cash on it, Facebook’s growth left them in the shade as they signalled their intent to open their European HQ in Dublin.
China got their own microblogging website Weibo in 2009, allowing Chinese business an opportunity to get on board the social media train. Facebook continued to dominate in the Western world and bought FriendFeed, a real time feed aggregator allowing them to pull in more content from other platforms. This acquisition helped to grow their user base to 300 million users and it became obvious that businesses should ignore it at their peril. It was in this year that ALHAUS formed what was to become a long-standing content partnership with Fáilte Ireland, Ireland’s national tourism board.
The decade ended with a lot of new products entering the digital fray, including Pinterest, Instagram and Quora. ALHAUS was now firmly established as a company that delivered high-quality content presented in a creative, design and user-driven format online.
Online content was fast becoming one of the most valuable marketing tools, and new platforms such as Snapchat, Keek and Twitch TV were important for reaching the youth audience. Billed as a B2B social network, LinkedIn was born and Google added Google+ to their suite.
With Facebook firmly in place as the world’s favourite social media platform with over 1,000 million users, now was the time for them to go public with their stocks. Buying Instagram solidified their position. For those looking for love in the digital age, the new dating app Tinder was launched. The world of content marketing was spoiled for choice as many companies flirted with various platforms to gain more attention. This year saw ALHAUS work on content for the Houses of the Oireachtas in Ireland and expand its tourism and cultural offering with Discover Ireland and the National Museum of Ireland.
Video content was fast becoming the way forward and Instagram got on board in 2013 with their new video sharing. Google also created Hangouts for messaging, voice and video calls. Marketeers had to continue to evolve to keep up with the ever-changing digital environment and ALHAUS were not left behind, forging ahead with new clients including Eternal Press and Damnation Books.
As things moved on, Justin TV realised its time was up but Snapchat continued to grow and Amazon bought Twitch TV for $970 million. It was becoming more obvious that live video streaming and short, video messaging was key when trying to capture the attention of the market.
Video content platforms continued to pop up, with Periscope the most popular of the new breed. Facebook was however still the king, with over 1,500 million daily users on the platform. ALHAUS continued to engage with the newest SEO platforms, ensuring that clients were utilising quality creative web content to reach into an ever-expanding digital world. In 2015, ALHAUS embarked on work with Visit Dublin – a new, modern website aiming to attract international visitors to Ireland’s capital city.
As things slowed down in the world of online platforms, things took off at ALHAUS. New contracts meant expansion was on the cards for the company and we took on work with Ireland’s Ancient East and Jones Engineering. Google’s SEO algorithm went through a major change this year with the introduction of Penguin 4.0. The new version of Penguin devalued bad links, rather than penalising, in a more gentle approach to ranking.
Snapchat took to the stock exchange and was valued at $33 million. Companies became more conscious of the “Fake News” trend and spent a lot of time and money demonstrating their authenticity, and Google launched the Fred update of their SEO policy. ALHAUS grew and formed working relationships with Cunnane Stratton Reynolds, The Circle Club and Meet In Ireland. By the end of the year, ALHAUS had launched a new product – ALHAUS magazine – showcasing content, travel, lifestyle and culture encased in a cutting-edge, boutique print publication.
With 15 years under its belt; ALHAUS magazine going from strength to strength; a new look website and exciting client partnerships, there is a lot to celebrate at ALHAUS as it firmly cements its place in the business of making other businesses grow. Expect the next 15 years to be even more exciting as ALHAUS and the tech world continue to change and evolve.