The Evolution of Agreda.com
The Ever-Evolving Website of Agreda Communications
Working as a Silicon Valley marketing communications manager in 1996, while starting to take on freelance design jobs, I decided to register my first web domain. Nelson.com was taken.
O, el evolucion de Ágreda
Rene and I had been making plans to get married, move North, and start our own consulting firm; so I registered this domain, agreda.com. It represents the root of Rene’s last name (Agredano), and literally translated it means to usurp, or overcome. This was perfect for the full service marketing solutions we intended to offer. Little did we know how meaningful that would become for us, or how this site would evolve in so many different ways over the years.
After recently overhauling our company website here—to more clearly describe exactly what it is we do—I realized this was the fifth iteration of this website in nearly 20 years. So, I spent some time using the Wayback Machine to preserve some moments in Agreda history, for posterity sake…
Yes, that’s the Netscape web browser with my first HTML website—complete with rollover effects, submission form and bulletin board access!
How It All Began
Working out of the walk-in closet in our third story San Francisco walk-up, I was taking on small graphic design jobs while researching large format printers for the business we would soon start up in rural Eureka, California. It all started as JCN, Jr. Marketing Communications, Print & Publishing Services. With Rene on board, plans to start our own graphics firm, and the agreda domain registered; that quickly evolved into Agreda Communications.
Agreda itself would evolve incredibly over the years.
The First Decade
When we moved to rural Northern California, and purchased our first 36″ HP printer, we positioned Agreda as a full-service marketing communications firm offering in-house large format graphic solutions. The majority of our clients were still in Silicon Valley and all over the country, so we had to maintain a professional web presence.
From 1999 through 2005, we continued to grow our design business while developing a new business model for our graphic solutions.
The Marcom & Pop Years
My next big brainstorm stemmed from being sick of developing custom proposals and estimates for our design and graphic solutions. After a couple painstaking years in development, we launched the Marcom And Pop marketplace for Marketing Communications Design and Point of Purchase Graphic Solutions. I was ahead of my time, there are now numerous websites that allow you to purchase design services and graphics with shopping cart checkout.
It was the sale of this website and business model that would eventually allow us to hit the road after our CFO (Chief Fun Officer) Jerry lost a leg to cancer. But I digress.
The First Real Makeover
Credit for the first major overhaul of this site goes to my nephew Tim. He joined us for a brief design internship in 2005 and I tasked him with bringing our Agreda website up to date. I was quite impressed with his work, and I owe him for introducing me to using CSS for the first time. Today, Tim never ceases to amaze me with how he has evolved as a designer. He has that San Francisco Art Director job I always wanted, in my previous life. But there I go digressing again…
By the summer of 2007, we had already been using the WordPress site I installed at LiveWorkDream.com for about six months to market the sale of our business. Rene was the one who insisted we need a blog. Well, it did help us reach potential buyers and quickly sell the dream live/work experience we had created. But after discovering WordPress—and later, the power of multisite networks—my life has not been the same since.
The first Agreda blog was basically a placeholder for whatever was to come of us. After we sold the business and hit the road, Agreda Communications as we knew it, was no more. It was and still is our company, but we were not operating it as a business of any sort really.
The Next Big Thing
Once our little sabbatical in search of the next big endeavor for Team Agreda turned into a full-time lifestyle, I redid the website to once again present a more professional appearance.
We focused all our efforts, however, on growing the Tripawds network and our Live Work Dream blog. As we developed multiple revenue streams to support our nomadic lifestyle, we started using this site to sell our e-book, Income Anywhere! We had drafted much of the content to generate leads for our Work At Home United team of remote marketing executives. But WAHU was never our primary focus, and Rene always hated those “real estate” photos, as she likes to call them. So that inspired the latest makeover.
Our home page here now more clearly directs visitors to our three primary endeavors:
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