VOL. 132 | NO. 139 | Friday, July 14, 2017
Paradigm Innovating, Evolving in 25th Year
By Michael Waddell
Charles Gaushell founded Paradigm Marketing & Creative 25 years ago while working as a design architect. The full-service agency offers a range of services, including branding development, website design and management, video, photography and social media management. (Daily News/Houston Cofield)
Following major cancer surgery three years ago, Paradigm Marketing & Creative’s owner and chief idea architect Charles Gaushell decided to focus less on growing his company’s size just for the sake of growth and more on the quality of its clients and helping them to best tell their stories.
Over its 25-year history, Paradigm has evolved from being a pioneer in the area of 3-D and building websites when the internet was just emerging into a full-service agency with branding, web, video and even social media management.
Now the company is in the process of spinning off and experimenting with two sister companies: Paradigm Motion for virtual reality, video and 3-D projects; and Paradigm Digital for apps and other websites.
As an example of how much things have changed, Gaushell cites a recent student housing project in Texas where developers did not have a model home, so Paradigm created a virtual walkthrough.
“We’ve created videos, illustration and animations for 25 years for construction clients, developers, etc., to do that,” he said of such walkthroughs. “But now it’s more immersive; when you put on the head gear, you can interact more and walk through at your own pace as opposed to prerecorded video.”
Paradigm is also looking at ways to make virtual reality a more interesting gaming experience.
“It’s interesting watching the technology evolve, and we’re always looking at opportunities that make sense for our clients,” Gaushell said.
The company recently celebrated its 25th anniversary with a party at the company’s offices at 89 N. Cooper St., in a building Gaushell bought a couple of years ago and converted.
Paradigm Marketing & Creative has won numerous awards since its inception, being recognized both locally and nationally for its innovation as well as its marketing efforts. (Daily News/Houston Cofield)
“It’s like our second home, and I think it’s been more conducive to working with our clients because people like coming here. Overton Square is just three blocks away,” said Gaushell, who launched the company in 1992 while also working as a design architect. That’s when he became interested in the early stages of 3-D visualization, illustration and animation.
“It seemed like something that was going to really help clients’ projects tell a story,” he said.
Paradigm started out working with architects, developers, churches, schools and others that needed to previsualize something to tell their story, mostly for fundraising or preselling. Over the next few years, clients began asking for other collateral marketing materials, and the business slowly evolved into a full-service company that was developing websites by 1995 and producing interactive CDs by 1996.
The company now has seven employees in-house, including three full-time designers and three people handling branding and strategy, along with a couple of people who work full-time remotely.
“When the economy tanked in 2007-2008, at that point I was looking at doing 100 percent of everything in-house, but we work with more contractors now,” Gaushell said. “So there’s a lot more options and flexibility on how to staff than there used to be.”
In 2010, Gaushell officially changed the company name to Paradigm Marketing & Creative to better reflect its focus. Today the firm’s client roster includes a range of companies. Among them: Pyro’s Fire Fresh Pizza, Buff City Soap, The Pet Hospitals, Semmes Murphey, Linkous Construction, EdR and AnovoRx specialty pharmacy.
“Today we have a real diversity of clients, and one of things I’ve always been attracted to is helping clients tell their story,” Gaushell said. “The common denominator for our clients is they want to really stand out in the market. They’re either branding or rebranding.”
Paradigm has worked with Pyro’s since its inception in 2013, and the concept has quickly grown to eight locations today, including five in the Memphis area.
“They helped us craft the original branding of Pyro’s, and we’re very pleased with the way it has taken off in the Memphis market,” said Chad Foreman, co-owner of Pyro’s Fire Fresh Pizza. “They were instrumental in creating the logo and helping us work through several iterations of that, helping us define the name, creating a voice and imagery for our brand, and developing our website and social media.”
Most recently, Paradigm assisted Foreman with the branding for the Levee Creamery, a new restaurant venture in Collierville that combines the sale of locally roasted coffee and locally made ice cream.
Paradigm also is working with Flat Hat American Ale, a new lifestyle beer launching soon in the Memphis market.
“Paradigm has done a really great job for us, and we’re very happy with the work they’ve put in on our website and the design of our logo,” said Mike Sadler, FedEx pilot and co-owner of Flat Hat.
As a result of Gaushell’s battle with cancer, Paradigm is also now working with Gilda’s Club (named for actress Gilda Radner), a nonprofit that offers counseling for cancer patients and their families, to set up fundraising for a future Memphis chapter.