Hey everybody, I’m Tom Finley. There are all sorts of ways to describe me profesionally — a digital polymath, a T-shaped designer, a generalist or a multidisciplinary designer – I call myself a visual developer.
I’ve been evolving as a visual developer since college in the late 1990s, and my love for craft beer has been with me for about as long. I’ve held roles alternately as designer, developer, and marketer in educational institutions, small agencies, and on corporate in-house teams.
- Husband, father, microagency owner
- Motorcyclist, avid concertgoer, beer and t-shirt enthusiast
- 20+ years web design/dev experience
- 12+ years WordPress experience
- Formerly a designer and developer who favored Genesis Framework
- Currently a WordPress Full Site Editing advocate
On to Business
My main gig is running my micro-agency, PRÜF Creative, just outside of Washington, DC. My specialty is creating custom WordPress sites for clients in the craft beverage and hospitality industries. But beyond creating websites, I place a lot of importance on creating a full-fledged digital presence for the brands I work with, tying in the associated processes and systems that come with modern digital marketing, back to my client’s websites in ways that simplify what they have to do every day to market themselves.
The problem with digital marketing agencies tends to be that, when you come to them, you’re signing up to be placed into every box they prescribe and there’s no room for flexibility. Usually they’re handing your project off to a freelancer like me anyway. A hallmark of our times is that scaling for efficiency is everything… until you’re the one not being centered and heard.
The first step in my process is to learn about your brand and to determine where we best fit together. After we’ve taken that serious look inward and identified the best overlap between your needs and existing assets, and my skill-set, we get to producing deliverables.
That starts with developing a framework for messaging that resonates with the people you want to reach. It has to make sense for your business and it has be modular because you’re going to need to use it in a LOT of different digital places. Then we collaborate to create a website (a platform, really) that YOU control on your terms. From there we’ll bubble out additional digital and traditional marketing materials for the various channels that make sense for you.
We’re answering 2 questions:
1. How does [X] matter to your customers?
2. What is the deeper ‘why’ for your business?
And all of this really culminates toward one central goal: setting expectations and prioritizing the best experience for your customers. In turn, this motivates them to visit you for the first time or to keep coming back as your loyal advocates. After that, we’ll fine tune for elements of modern digital marketing, like SEO and optimizing for speed.
On a More Personal Level
Cat dad, dog dad, human dad, lifelong dad-joker. Empowerment is one of my core beliefs: that everyone has a right to access the tools they need to live and thrive. Simple acts of creation like designing t-shirts, curating killer playlists, and growing my own food are big passions of mine.