Ben and Todd

Apprenticeships helped me start my digital agency!

Now we’re hopefully on the other side of a global pandemic I caught up with Ben to see how the last couple of months have gone for him and his new apprentice Todd. Ben is the Creative Director, and Co-Founder of Space Discovery, a brand-new Bristol-based digital agency taking its first big steps in the industry. Ben says none of this would have been possible without apprenticeships and here’s why…

When I left school, I knew two things about myself; I absolutely wanted to have my own agency one day and secondly, I didn’t want to go to university. I wanted to learn from the amazing creative people in the industry, so I enrolled as an apprentice working under a talented lead designer in a publishing house. This gave me the knowledge and practical skills I needed to land my first designer role.

Jump ahead a few years, I was happy to have found success in my role, but with some freelance work as well, building websites, logos, flyers etc on the side. It was at this point I realised I had the design skills, but I needed the digital marketing knowledge to go with this if I was going to have my own agency. That’s when I found Professional Apprenticeships, I took a bit of a crazy decision to leave my well-paying job of then 4 years and enrol onto another apprenticeship, this time in digital marketing.

It was during this apprenticeship that I finely felt truly ready to provide the full package to my own clients, I learnt everything from SEO & social strategies to powerful email campaign management. Professional Apprenticeships supported me the whole way through.

The lessons I had learnt started to give the content I had been making a real purpose and direction to drive results for the first time. This meant big things for me and for my clients, namely WestSpring IT who I’d been working for on the side, helping them improve their website and marketing strategies.

The partnership with WestSpring IT grew so strong, they in fact made me an offer, “when you complete your apprenticeship, come over to us and we will build a new digital agency together”. That’s exactly what I did, I now stand at the beginning of an exciting future for Space Discovery, (a trading name of WestSpring IT).

To make things even better I’ve been able to hire the first apprentice of my own, Todd. He is just a few weeks in and has already become a huge asset to the business. Here’s a quote from him, “I’m so happy to be starting a Digital Marketing Apprenticeship, to be able to work hands-on in the industry and be paid while I do it!”.

I’ll never forget the opportunities that apprenticeships have presented me and will also always be so thankful to Professional Apprenticeships for their support along the way.

Written by Charlotte Gazzard
Digital Marketing Apprentice

Find me on Linkedin

Written by Ben Cridland
Creative Director & Co Founder of Space Discovery

Find me on Linkedin