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HMG Creative Unwrapped: The Whole Story

HMG Creative Unwrapped: The Whole Story

Posted on Aug 22, 2019 by

The Bold Beginning

At the age of 18, James Trumbly enlisted in the Marine Corps, kickstarting a lifetime of ambitious pursuits and bold endeavors. Four years later, after completing a tour in Iraq and Kuwait in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, James returned home, wrapping up his military career and embarking on the next exciting phase of his life: business ventures. With an entrepreneurial spirit, James joined a friend in opening a car dealership and auto brokering business. The business flourished, bringing a host of opportunities and connections, as well as a need for improved marketing resources. James knew a web presence would be crucial to the business’ continued success, so he took on the task of designing and developing the company’s first website. 

Completely self-taught, James learned development skills while pouring his efforts into the auto business. During this time, James was introduced to a small business owner whose local company sparked an innovative idea: an online hub to synthesize content for specific geographic regions. With new expertise in web development and the gusto of a true entrepreneur, James launched 411NorthCounty.com, an online community sourcing local content for eight North County cities of San Diego. The site integrated several resources for each county, including a directory, events calendar, local news, classifieds and job listings (think Craigslist meets Local News Source), fueled by sponsorships from small businesses.

The Early Years

As James and his team approached businesses for advertising services, it became evident that many lacked the resources for robust marketing and creative efforts. As a solution, 411NorthCounty.com expanded its offerings to include creative and marketing services for businesses in need of supplemental marketing support. The creative side of the business took off, so James sold 411NorthCounty.com to a local publication and honed his focus on the newly-founded creative agency… HMG Creative.

During the initial stages, James ran HMG out of a friend’s small rented room where he lived at the time. Even still, the agency continued to grow and thrive, with expansion hinging on the addition of a talented designer/creative director. Fortunately at the same time, James’ childhood friend Johnny Jeffers, located in Austin, TX, was ready for the next step in his career and looking for a creative position. The two decided to partner up, and the rest is history.

The Big Move

After a few years, HMG Creative upgraded from coffee shops and in-home offices to its first physical location, an office space in Vista, CA. Team members like Johnny continued to work remotely until 2011 when HMG made its biggest business move yet. In an effort to bring the whole team under one roof (and bring James back to his Texas roots), HMG moved its headquarters to Austin, planting HMG in a booming market, positioned for wild success and exponential growth as an agency expert in the creative industry.

The Climb to the Top

From our beginnings as a simple, home-grown agency to a well-respected, award-winning top agency, HMG has continued to provide quality digital marketing and creative services to clients for over 15 years. Throughout our years of growth, we learned that our key to success is not trying to be everything to everyone, but to find out what we’re good at and focus our efforts there. We’ve since been able to build a well-rounded, talented team with a sweet spot in mid-market companies where we feel we can offer the best services and value at a competitive price. We’re privileged to work with clients like RetailMeNot, Ikea, Thermo Fisher Scientific, and State Bar of Texas as a collaborative partner for their creative needs.

As we continue to grow and evolve, HMG aims to be the go-to creative partner in Austin and Central Texas for brands seeking their next level of business growth. With unmatched reliability and talent, our goal is to provide the best ideas, expertise, and experience any agency can offer.

Sarah Hetrick

Marketing Coordinator and Social Media Guru at HMG Creative; B.A. in Communications. Dallasite-turned-Austinite. Obsessed with photography, travel, fitness and new adventures. Follow her on Instagram @sarahdhetrick

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