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How to Start Your Own Creative Agency (With Zero Overhead)

General Assembly

Wednesday, January 23, 2013 from 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM (PST)

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Single Ticket Ended $25.00 $2.37

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How to Start Your Own Creative Agency (with zero overhead)
Wednesday, January 23rd from 7:30 pm - 9 pm
Alan Stuart, Founder and Creative Director, One Long House

The economy is in a slump. It has been for a while. But that can bode well for creatives. Crappy economies are where good ideas float to the top and bad ones crumble and fail. Consider it capitalism's natural selection.

Contrary to popular belief, opening a small studio/agency/shop doesn't take a bunch of money. In fact, there are a ton of advantages to starting and scaling your creative team in a super lean fashion.

In this class, Alan will share all of the good (and terrible) experiences of opening his creative cooperative, One Long House, in an attempt to encourage creative growth and prevent redundant mistakes. Students will not only learn of the decisions and problems that come with starting a small creative agency, but their potential solutions as well.

Student Takeaways:

  • Tools and strategies for team building and retention
  • Client acquisition (and rejection)
  • Spending prioritization (When to spend money and when not to)
  • Specific tools for the modern creative shop (time-tracking, accounting, file-sharing, wire framing, networking, and more)
  • DIY marketing and tactics


About the Instructors

Alan Stuart is the founder and creative director of One Long House. After working for years in publishing (Wired, The New Yorker) he went into advertising... but not just any type of advertising. Alan was a senior art director at Green Team, the world’s first socially and environmentally conscious ad agency. After helping big brands like Johnson & Johnson, Environmental Defense, and Scotland Tourism find ways to do the right thing, the economy tanked. He (and a bunch of other creatives) were back to freelancing. But freelancing had many limitations and zero credibility, so they formed One Long House, a creative cooperative.

One Long House was founded in 2009, in the middle of the housing crisis and economic collapse. We were a group of creatives that knew we didn’t need a 5th Avenue rent to create good work. So we ventured it ourselves and built an agency based on a network of creatives all over the world.

This type of model is not without its challenges: many time zones, keeping the team motivated, and doing our own bookkeeping are all things we have to constantly struggle with, but for us it’s all worth it.

We are not bound by geographic restrictions, or the burden of high overhead. We turn down more projects than we take on, and we’re proud of that. We work on things we love.


Can't make it? Sign up at http://generalassemb.ly/la to stay in the loop on future events and classes.

Our Refund Policy: Plans change? We get it. But if you can't make it to a class/workshop, please email us at classes@generalassemb.ly at least 7 days before the scheduled event date. No refunds will be given after this timeframe.

Have questions about How to Start Your Own Creative Agency (With Zero Overhead)? Contact General Assembly

When & Where

General Assembly LA
1520 2nd St
Santa Monica, CA 90401

Wednesday, January 23, 2013 from 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM (PST)

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General Assembly

General Assembly transforms thinkers into creators through education and opportunities in technology, business, and design. Learn more at https://generalassemb.ly/
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How to Start Your Own Creative Agency (With Zero Overhead)
Santa Monica, CA Events Class

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