McCartney Multimedia is a digital agency with offices in LA, Vienna and Sydney. We spoke with founder Ruth McCartney about 20 years of web design, having a Beatle for a step-brother and why her un-tech-savvy clients like Hightail.
We started in the early days of HTML
In 1994, my husband and I moved to Nashville after losing everything in the LA Northridge earthquake. We learned this newfangled thing called HTML then started dialing the names in our Rolodex and building websites for them. More than 20 years later, McCartney Multimedia, Inc. now has offices in Los Angeles, Vienna, Austria, and Sydney, Australia.
Our focus is on the lifestyle and entertainment industry
By 1998, we were using FileMaker Pro to invent and code an email marketing and fan intelligence service aimed at musicians and artists called iFanz.com. Today we manage almost seven million data records and create email newsletter blasts for our 1200 subscribers, who range from pop stars and bands to comedians and Michelin-starred chefs.
My step-brother was in The Beatles, which helps with new business
We typically deal directly with the artists rather than their management. We’ve always had a strong network in the entertainment business thanks to our own involvement in music and, of course, because Sir Paul McCartney is my step-brother. When I go to entertainment industry launch parties and red carpet events, I meet musicians and artists who tell me that they need a new website, branding, logo, content or video. I’m always happy to help, although full disclosure – we didn’t build Paul’s website;)
We’re currently shooting a documentary about my mother and women’s roles in the 50’s and 60s
It’s called Your Mother Should Know and is about her witnessing all the changes that happened from 1959-69, especially how feminism came on in leaps and bounds. She’s 87 now but still has her own businesses, Mrs. McCartneys Teas and more recently, Mrs. McCartney’s Wines where she sells sweet dessert wines that go great with afternoon tea. 10% of the sale price goes to the Linda McCartney Breast Cancer Centre.
Hightail cuts down our production cycle
Before we were sending design files back and forth via email for feedback. Hightail is great because we are now able to visually communicate and collaborate in real-time. It’s also useful for client negotiations. On one recent project the client had requested more than 100 changes so we used the Space to show them that they had moved away from the initial brief and they agreed to pay us an additional fee. We’re very happy about anything that increases our cash flow.
A lot of our clients are not tech-savvy
We work with touring musicians or chefs running three or four restaurants across the country. They’re on-the-road people who don’t have time to sit around and figure out new software. But they find Hightail very easy to use. We’re even using it to teach our artists how to create and manage their own blogs. We upload step-by-step screenshots to a Space and send them the links, so they just need to bookmark that one link to find the instructions.
Try Hightail for free at www.hightail.com.