Today is the day that Ard Digital Ltd evolves into Punch Digital Services Ltd!
It's official! Paper work complete! But why I hear you ask? There are numerous reasons behind this change, which I will mention in a minute, but I first wanted to say that fundamentally nothing is changing.
We're the same folk, working as hard as ever to produce work we love. It may sound vague, but then again we've never really seen ourselves as fitting into too many boxes, and that's the way we like it! We don't like to pigeon hole ourselves. We love the journey a different client or project will us, and I believe that by being diverse and open to trying new things means we will always have a fresh perspective on our work.
Also let me say, the change we're making is not to hide from anything or anyone. Our phone numbers, address and all the boring stuff are staying exactly the same. Even the Punch Digital logo is a re-working of the Ard Digital logo to help with continuity. Ultimately we just feel it's the right move at the right time.
So why the change of name if nothing is changing?
I like things to be clear and simple, it a philosophy that's worked well for us in the past, but the name Ard Digital has never really fit that philosophy.
Ard Digital is not very clear to say. When speaking on the phone, 90% of the time I end up spelling A R D Digital. It's not a difficult work to spell, but difficult for others to hear. Maybe it's my Yorkshire accent too, but I can't do anything about that.
I found many people also pronounced Ard Digital as A R D Digital. Rather than correct people, I would sometimes dismiss the mispronunciation. Again this isn't such a big problem, but if it's ARD Digital, folk would sometimes ask "does ARD stand for anything?". Backtracking isn't my style, so having to explain it's Ard rather than ARD isn't exactly a great conversation starter! I did consider using ARD and making up some acronym to fit, but this would always be false and would never fit.
Another problem is Ard Digital is that I always wanted the name to be part of myself. My surname is Punchard, ard being the last letters. When I founded the company in 2012 I thought the name was clever and held meaning. Perhaps it does. But having to explain the meaning isn't great, and again not very clear. Instead Punch is a much more obvious connection to myself, and if the connection isn't made for what ever reason, then Punch is just a cool, catchy name.
So what will change?
As well changing names we have also made many big and small changes. Firstly the website has been completely rebuilt and the web address has changed too. The old Ard Digital website was due to be updated, and so the change to Punch Digital was only an extra step.
When re-writing the website, and editing the content, we have found ourselves becoming more self aware of who we are, where we're at, and where we want to be. I believe we are more focused on what we want to achieve, and perhaps have a better understanding of what we need to do to achieve our goals.
A friend of mine once told me to "focus on your focus". At the time I didn't fully understand it, but now I do. The change to Punch Digital has focused us. And now focusing on our focus is actually quite easy. Now we know what we're aiming at, the focus comes more naturally. I think I've said focus too many times now.
When I started Ard Digital, I know I didn't have the same goals, ambition and philosophy as I have now. OK somethings will never change; honesty and punctuality are key traits to myself, and I will continue guide Punch Digital on our integrity and high morals. However we're now more open about our work, a little more care-free with ourselves, and perhaps more willing to take calculated risks with our future plans and developments. Not knowing where a journey will end can be one of the best journeys to take!
Hey, look over 'ere!
We also want to standout from the crowd. It's easy to say that, but tricky to do, trust me! So what are we doing? Firstly we're vlogging! Check out (and subscribe) to the Punch Digital YouTube Channel, and see what we have to say. We talk about projects, work, technology, developments, testing and much more. For us it's also about being more open and letting you guys see who we really are. You never know, some of you might even like us!
On the YouTube channel and Instagram account, you'll also see The Daily Animation clips. This is something we're trialling, and is a daily way to test, play, experiment and push creativity, even on the dull paperwork days! I'm very excited about this and I will vlog about this very soon, so subscribe to the YouTube channel so you don't miss it!!
Punch Digital will of course be on social media. Social media for myself has always been a bit of an enigma. How does it work. Is it right for us? How much time to I devote to it? Which platforms are best? To be honest I've tried a lot, and only a few feel right.
So what does feel right? Instagram is currently our favourite! Check out and follow the Punch Digital Instagram account. We like Instagram, it's quick, easy, and straight to the point. It's also a great source of visual inspiration.
We're also on (and updating) our Dribbble, and Behance pages. We think these are great platforms for sharing our work, whilst also being inspired by others. Please follow us on there too! Punch Digital is on Facebook, but I'm not too sure whether I like Facebook as a business to business media. Anyway, you can find Punch Digital on Facebook, but don't be surprised if this isn't there next year! Then again who knows!
Finally we have Twitter. We've fallen a bit out of love with Twitter in terms of broadcasting our voice. To us it's like standing in a room where everyone is shouting, and no one can be heard. Personally that's not who I am, and we really need to think about if Twitter is right for Punch Digital. You can of course follow Punch Digital Twitter account, and maybe drop us a mention!
Firstly, we will continue to produce our amazing CGI imagery and animations. We always strive to improve in quality, speed and customer experience.
In the pipeline we are developing virtual reality applications. Currently we're putting together a proof of concept to demonstrate just how amazing VR could be! Our belief is that mobile VR is going to be huge in 2017!
We are also launching our interactive configurator. We've had the proof of concept versions running for a few months now (check them out on the Interactive Configurator page), and the response has been great. We're a the final stages of the build now, and within a few weeks it will go live!
There are many reasons for the change, but ultimately it feels right! If one thing I've learnt over the past 4 years 9 months as Ard Digital, is that feelings and gut instinct are very important. Sometimes you have to dive in with all your fingers and toes crossed, and work harder than ever to make your gut instincts pay off!
So just as Red Dwarf started their first episode titled "The End", I'll end the start of Punch Digital here!