Happy 20 years to us!
It’s party time in the Zest-y office! This time 20 years ago, the Zest doors were opened for the very first time, taking on our first of *many* local and interstate clients.
What started out as a traditional advertising agency has grown and evolved into a full-service marketing agency, employing 16 staff, and supporting countless clients along the way.
As we celebrate our 20th year in business, it's got us reminiscing and thinking back to how we got here. Grab a coffee, and strap in!
A very young Andrew and Amanda Cowley opened the doors of Zest, then known as Cowley Advertising.
Before he had a chance to officially “start” the business, Andrew had signed his first 4 clients – Buckby Motors, Faull’s Shoes, Cascade Brewery and Furniture City. This was closely followed by The Importer (then known as Jenerick Warehouse), who, along with Buckby Motors, remain the longest-serving clients of Zest. It’s safe to say we love them, and they love us!
Pictured here we have Andrew, taken circa 2009, for a business tips article in The Examiner newspaper.
We went national!
The Forest Industry Association of Tasmania required national advertising in regards to the focus on forestry in the elections, so just months after launching Cowley Advertising Andrew was booking advertising space in national papers including The Herald Sun, The Australian and The Financial Review.
Sounds crazy now, but at the time we just did what had to be done to get the job done!
Impression Promotional Products was born
Andrew and Amanda made another *huge* business decision - to launch a promotional products business. Enter, Impression Promotional Products!
A constant demand from clients to provide branded merchandise led to the launch of our sister business, Impression Promotional Products, which still operates alongside our Zest office today. And we couldn’t be more thankful - they’re a fun bunch to work with!
The internet came knocking!
We realised quickly that marketing solutions couldn’t just be limited to TV, print and radio, so worked closely with our clients to launch our very first website. One of these first websites was for the TRC Hotel, which is still live to this day (you must check it out!).
Thanks to our working relationship with Motors, we started working with Geelong-based motor group Winter & Taylor. This helped us to really broaden our advertising connections, with regular advertising in the Geelong Courier and local radio stations for almost a decade.
Zest was born
By now, Cowley Advertising had become so much more than a traditional advertising agency. It was time for a change, and the Zest brand was born!
North West Coast expansion
When a shopfront became available in the Fourways, Devonport (William Street), we thought, why not!? It was a great opportunity for us to have a crack at developing a bigger footprint in the North West market for website design and promotional products in particular.
While not a failure, it was a business move that wasn’t as fruitful as we had hoped, so our second office location only last one year. After that, all our staff were based our of our head office in Launceston. It was definitely a positive experience, and to this day we service *loads* of great, regular clients on the North West – they just don’t need to see us in a second office!
It’s all about design!
This was the year that branding and creative design really took off for Zest, with our graphic design studio expanding. With a larger creative crew, we started to become the go-to for logo and brand development in Northern Tas (which we loved!). Small, medium and large local businesses have continued to come to us since then in need of new logo designs and branding refreshes.
With some amazing designs over the years, logo and creative design has grown to an integral part of the Zest business today.
Time to get digital!
With a decline in traditional advertising, it was time for Zest to transition from traditional advertising to digital marketing, and what a transition it’s been. With many businesses now trusting us to manage their social and digital marketing needs, we have established Zest as a go-to digital and social media marketing agency.
Some of our favourite
There’s been *many* amazing moments across the last 20 years, but here are some of the memories that stand out to us:
“That’s what I want, that’s what I want from Motors”
By the early 2010’s, we were managing many clients, but none bigger than our caryard clients, both local and interstate. During this time, we were responsible for launching our first jingle for Motors, which you may remember from numerous TV and radio ads at the time – “that’s what I want, that’s what I want from Motors”.
The Spreadsheet ad
With a focus on newspaper advertising in the early days, Andrew spent many occasions planning ad content and layouts with Crichton at Buckby Motors. This often required the ‘big guns’ – a dot matrix look alike list ad, to look like an inventory report. While some may have questioned the approach, after more than 10 years it always sold cars!
We need IT!
Around 2 years into Cowley Advertising, Andrew quickly realised he needed IT support, for the business and clients. Enter, a young Nathan from Ascari, who helped setup the first ever Zest server ad various IT needs over the years. To this day, Nath is a pivotal cog in our wheel, offering daily support and general genius.
Every year as we roll into spring, we can’t help but refer back to our favourite radio ad – Cheap Cars Big Kev (IYKYK). It always makes us smile, and just *nails*the demographic!
The Advocate association
With a background in advertising sales at the Examiner for a number of years prior to starting Cowley Advertising, Andrew was the perfect person to take on the Advocate agency in Launceston. For many years, a member of staff from Cowley Advertising looked after Launceston clients who wanted to advertise in the Advocate, including Gunns, Mitre 10, and Begents.
so. what’s next?
In 2023, Zest employs 16 staff, and offers our clients a range of services that has grown to include social media marketing, digital advertising, website design, logo design and branding, creative design, printing, merchandise, and the occasional traditional advertising.
We’re going to continue to work with our amazing clients, and welcome new clients to come and experience how easy Zest make marketing.
Get in touch with our Zest-y team to discuss your next project – our swarm of creative ninjas are poised and ready. Call direct, email us or swing by our head office in Launceston – we look forward to chatting with you.(03) 6334 3319