This week, I had the pleasure of doing a fun Q & A with Twenty Over Ten Co-Founders, Ryan Russell and Nick DiMatteo. They shared the story behind the founding of Twenty Over Ten and also their thoughts on the company’s direction in the coming years. Read on to find out more, and be sure to watch the video at the end!
Hi guys…Okay so who came up with the idea for the name “Twenty Over Ten”?
Ryan: Nick and I actually came up with the idea to name the company Twenty Over Ten when we were first brainstorming for the app. We wanted to create a name that stood out from our competitors and one that had a strong, memorable concept. Since our mission is to help our clients and partners achieve their vision for their own online identity we began playing around with this idea for our own name. We give people the perfect site (sounds like perfect sight). Twenty Ten vision is actually considered to be perfect vision and most people can only achieve it with the intervention of new technologies. This seemed like a perfect metaphor for our company, and became the inspiration for our many features within our app.
It is so original! As co-founders, what are you most proud of?
Ryan: I’m most proud of how our app continues to evolve based on feedback from our clients. Since we’re a lean team we are able to move quickly and deploy updates that are necessary for our clients to better engage current and potential users. In addition, our team has grown to include some unbelievably talented people. This defining trait makes our app the most intuitive and innovation website tool for financial advisors.
Nick: I’m incredibly proud of how far our app has come in such little time, certainly because of our core group of talented individuals. I think seeing and hearing how easy our clients are able to use our app is the most rewarding feeling.
How do you balance design and usability/functionality?
Ryan: Nick and I both have backgrounds that are heavily rooted in user experience. Our users have unique capabilities and needs but are also limited in what they can do by a strictly regulated industry – finance. Each decision we make for the features and functionality of our app is based on those capabilities and limitations of our users to give the best possible experience and give them the opportunity, regardless of the level of technical expertise, to manage their websites and online identities.
Nick: The balance comes from actually listening to our clients needs and limitations. While we both are very much design-oriented, the key is knowing how to pair that with an appropriate user experience for our audience. This is why our platform is the easiest and most painless website builder for the financial industry.
My next question is about the Twenty Over Ten frameworks – How did you go about creating the customizable frameworks that advisors can choose from? What elements were important to include?
Nick: In designing our base frameworks for our users it is important to ensure they comply with the highest web standards of today so our users stay at the forefront of the web, not in the past. To do this we ensure that all of our themes are responsive, meaning they work perfectly on any browser or device. While our inspiration spawns from a variety of sources and web trends of today, we make sure each theme has it’s own unique look and feel. However, it is equally important that they all are versatile enough so that our users can quickly customize them so that their site stands out.
Ryan: All of our frameworks are highly elastic. As we design these we always want to ensure that elements can be easily customized for each client to ensure that each site stands out from others and aptly adapts to their brand. Our themes offer a wide range of functionality to meet the needs of every financial advisor or compliance professional.
What do you see as the biggest challenge to growing the company in the next five years?
Ryan: We’ve been incredibly successful this past year, and with success comes growth. The biggest challenge for us is to continue to bring in the best possible talent as we continue to grow. (Take a look at our blog to meet some of our team members).
What do you feel is the biggest accomplishment that Twenty Over Ten has went through thus far?
Ryan: As we’ve grown, we’ve continued to maintain the excellent support and customer service our clients expect and require. This is something that sets us apart and that we are very proud of. Those who choose to have us build their website as part of our bundle packages work directly with our design professionals and those that build sites on their own have access to the most intuitive and innovate app in the industry. Our clients always have the ability to connect with our professionals when they have questions (our support is second to none and we don’t charge additional fees for “premium support”).
Nick: Our biggest accomplishment has been continuing to put our clients first. At the end of the day, they are what makes Twenty Over Ten and we wouldn’t be here without them! We are transparent with our clients in all that we do; from our prices, to showing what our platform has to offer (check out our webinars or product demos) to our one-click cancellation.
As an online company, how do you aim to keep employees motivated, organized, and on task?
Ryan & Nick: We value all of our employees input and invite them to give feedback on a lot of the behind-the-scenes stuff. We have weekly standing meetings on Mondays and Fridays to discuss what’s on the docket as well as any problems that may have come up. It offers a great support system and helps keep people on track. We also make it a point to share accomplishments in these meetings – to call out those that offered a unique suggestion and then implemented it, or went above and beyond to make something happen.
So we all want to know…what’s next for Twenty Over Ten?
Ryan & Nick: We can’t say much at the moment, but we have some very big news coming in the next few months, so stay tuned!
Lastly, if you can describe Twenty Over Ten in one word, what word would it be?
Ryan & Nick: Front-edge. From our designers and developers to our marketing team, we have some incredible thinkers who continue to redefine websites and marketing within the financial industry. We are the most innovative and intuitive website builder for financial advisors. Don’t believe us? Come check us out for free and see how easy it is to create a website (on your own or with our team).
Thanks to Ryan and Nick for taking the time to answer my questions! (Want more? Nick and Ryan were profiled in our Meet the Team Posts – check them out!). For fun – watch the video below to hear Ryan talk more about the founding of Twenty Over Ten.