When it comes to dependability, the guys at Shoot to Thrill Media, a web design and development company in St. Petersburg, FL, are unparalleled. We feel like we hit the jackpot when we met Matt Foreman and his partner, Mark Lombardi (who you’ll get to meet soon as well). Friendly, responsive, smart, creative, AND fun … we knew we needed to Spotlight them. We are proud to call them Pinstripers, and simply love working with them on our web projects.
Name: Matt Foreman
Company: Shoot To Thrill Media
City: St. Petersburg
Web site: shoottothrillmedia.com
What inspired you to start Shoot to Thrill?
I love businesses! While I was freelance web designing I noticed I was helping out many different types of businesses. So as an entrepreneur I knew I would be able to provide a service that could help other businesses grow online. I knew I had an incredibly talented friend/partner in Mark, so it wasn’t a hard decision to pursue something bigger than freelancing. Shortly after, Shoot To Thrill Media was born.
What do you like most about the your industry and community?
Web design and marketing allows (and rewards) creativity. Whether it’s a new type of design or a new service we start offering, I love being able to think outside the box.
What challenges does your industry face?
I think one of the biggest challenges that the web design world faces is the fact that many people try to cut corners when it comes to web design. Whether it’s a DIY web builder, cheap hosting, or even just not knowing or understanding the value of a strategically built website. Your online image is one of the most important aspects of your business and there are so many things that can tarnish that image that may promote itself as “cheap but effective.”
How do you measure your success?
I think I measure success a little differently than most. I love taking (calculated) leaps of faith, so I put myself in a position of struggle when I’m at a point of wanting/needing to grow. Typically these ‘struggles’ either impact my personal life (like skydiving or riding a motorcycle) or my work life (offering a new service or investing in an unproven system). I measure my success by determining if those decisions are no longer a struggle, but a thrill or a successful endeavor.
What has been your greatest accomplishment in your career?
Being able to help other businesses grow while successfully growing my own business. Our one year anniversary is right around the corner, so knowing that we survived while shouldering all that responsibility is a huge accomplishment for me.
What do you think is the biggest mistake companies make when working in your industry?
Over-promising and under-delivering. We see it all the time, where a company or freelancer will bend the truth (lie) about their skill set just to secure a client. It’s hard to watch clients get away, especially ones with big dollar signs behind them, but knowing your limits and holding yourself to those limits to not harm the client and your own reputation is a great skill to have and it should encourage you to continue learning.
What is the most interesting trend you see in your industry?
I think it’s interesting (and great) that people are realizing more and more the importance of a mobile friendly website. It’s been super important for a few years now, but we’re really starting to notice clients being proactive in ensuring their website is mobile responsive.
How has technology helped/hindered your work?
Well, we wouldn’t be a company without technology, so we appreciate the strides technology has made in the recent past. But specifically, WordPress has come such a long way. It now powers more websites than any other platform, and it continues to grow at such a fast pace. Rightfully so. WordPress is amazing!
How do you stay on top of your field?
I can always admire and appreciate other great websites. It often times encourages me to learn a certain new design, or website function. I personally like to stay on top of my field by always learning and keeping an open mind when it comes to design, so as not to get stale.
What resources do you recommend? (Books, magazines, web, etc.)
If you’re interested in learning WordPress yourself, I recommend Treehouse. Some great courses that definitely helped me along the way. If you want to learn the basics, and how to troubleshoot, check out WPBeginner.com. And as always with WordPress, check the WordPress codex for all your technical questions.
If you could give one piece of advice to Tampa Bay companies, what would it be?
Keep crushing it! Tampa Bay is doing some amazing things. Growing up in the entrepreneurship community here has shown me how creative and determined the community is. Also, look for strategic partnerships. They’re SUPER beneficial for both parties and it’s always great knowing another expert has your back when you need them.
What was your first job?
I worked at the car wash down the road from my house when I was 15. I dried the cars that came out of the wash. Hated the job. My neck was permanently sunburnt.
What are your hobbies?
I love to travel, especially out of the country. I’m always up for an adventure, and the more physically demanding, the better!
My grandpa’s t-bone steaks. They’re out of this world!
Last book you read?
Startup Stories by Jordan Raynor. Loved the book so much I reached out to Jordan, and eventually interned for him. Now he’s a great friend and mentor of mine.