• 2018 - A Retrospective

2018 - A Retrospective

A look back over the events that shaped a memorable year at 67 Degrees

  • Published: 24 December 2018
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It’s not so long ago that we were all basking in the relentless heatwave that was summer 2018 as the England football team came tantalisingly close to qualifying for a World Cup final for the first time decades. Suddenly before you know it Christmas is upon us. What better way to wind down for the festive period and New Year celebrations than pausing for a moment to take a look back over what has been a very exciting year for all involved at 67 Degrees.

With the end of our third full year of trading rapidly approaching, we have gone from strength to strength as we not only added loyal customers but new members of staff too, to our ever expanding team. 2018 was also a year that saw us collect a total of 5 industry awards for our work alongside, a number of commendations. One of these commendations saw us finalists in the  ‘Agency Team of the Year’ category at the prestigious Wirehive100 digital agency awards.

Away from the awards podium, we have taken part in a number of events, one of which was our first foray into the annual Bangers4Ben charity rally which saw our very own Stuart and Susie take part in an Only Fools and Horses themed entry. More on that later, but Bangers4Ben wasn’t our only charity event of the year. Back in May, our marketing man Stuart Harvey took part in the Edinburgh Marathon, to raise money for automotive charity Ben.

2018 has been a fantastic year. But before we head into 2019, below are just a few of our highlights which have made this year such a memorable one.

March: Auto Excellence Awards

March was to witness our first awards win of the year. Present at the inaugural Auto Excellence Awards we were delighted and honoured to see three of our customer's websites make it to finalist status in the ‘Dealer Website Excellence Award’ category in the run-up to the awards.

On the night of the awards, we were thrilled to see all three of our dealers seal the categories top spots with Big Motoring World sealing the overall award win, whilst Uber GT and Premier GT both received 'Highly Commended' status. Speaking on the night, Big Motoring World’s director of marketing Darren Miller had this to add, “It’s very humbling, thank you very, very much for this award. A big thank you must go to our web development team at 67 Degrees who make it all happen”.

You can read our full event review here.

May: CarDealer Expo

In May we attended our first CarDealer Expo. Taking place in Manchester, the event bought together both automotive suppliers and retailers from across the automotive sector to share and gain valuable insights on current and future industry trends. With a range of speakers on hand from the likes of Twitter and AutoTrader, it was an opportunity to broaden our knowledge alongside meeting both automotive colleagues old and new.

May: Stuart’s Edinburgh Marathon

May also saw our very own marketing man, Stuart Harvey, take on his first ever marathon. Picking the Edinburgh event as the location of this milestone, Stuart chose to run the marathon in order to raise money for our charity partner, Ben. Designed to support members of the automotive community that may fall on times of need, Ben provides a variety of care to those who require assistance.

Speaking in the run-up to the event Stuart told us how he first got into running and why he wanted to take part, "having previously been the total opposite to the dictionary definition of 'fit and healthy', I got into running after being inspired to by my Dad, who himself has run marathons and Ironman's. From there I got bitten by the running bug and I'm doing this to see how far and how fast I could push myself!".

After putting in the training miles, Stuart lined up on the start line and completed the full 26.2-mile course in an impressive 3 hours, 38 minutes and 53 seconds, raising £310 for the charity in the process.

June: CarDealerPower Awards

As the summer months approached, so did the CarDealer Power awards. Taking place in June, it was a trip to Portsmouth and the Spinnaker Tower, where the awards ceremony would take place. Being nominated for an award prior to the event was already an achievement in itself but it was a real privilege to make it through as shortlisted in the 'Website Provider for Independent Dealers’ category.

On the night it was a real pleasure when our Director, Justin Woodford was invited up to the podium to collect the overall award. After receiving ‘Highly Commended’ status in 2017 in only our second year of trading, it was fantastic to go one better and scoop the overall prize.

Furthermore, and somewhat unexpectedly, we bettered this result by also winning the prestigious ‘Extra Mile Award’. An award with no public shortlists, it was a real surprise and a humbling experience as Stuart Harvey went up to collect the award.

An award designed to celebrate the company that has gone above and beyond for their clients, this award represents far more than just a trophy. For us 'The Extra Mile Award' means more than any other award to date. It is everything we stand for and we thank everyone who nominated us.

You can read our full event review here.

July: Motor Trader Awards

In the midst of a six-week heatwave, July saw the annual Motor Trader Awards take place at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel. With the awards being presented on the night that England took part in their World Cup semi-final, the atmosphere was electric.

Unfortunately, England wasn’t destined to prevail that night, but where England faltered, Big Motoring World flourished as they picked up the overall prize for ‘Dealer Website of the Year’ against some strong opposition. To date, this is the fourth industry award win for Big Motoring Worlds website and helped to cap a very memorable summer of award successes.

August: Arrival of our account manager, Susie

August bought new talent into the 67 Degrees fold as Susie Ancell joined us as an account manager. Coming with a wealth of industry experience which spans several years, Susie is well placed to assist our dealers with getting the most from their 67 Degrees services as well as being able to advise on a variety of best practices. She will also be a point of contact out on the road for a number of dealers and will become a familiar face. Welcome Susie, it’s a pleasure to have you onboard.

October: Bangers4Ben Charity Rally

Now a permanent fixture on the automotive calendar, Bangers4Ben took place in October and in 2018 was celebrating a major milestone, it’s 10th anniversary. Put together by industry publication CarDealer magazine, Bangers4Ben is a charity rally designed to raise money for the automotive charity Ben.

With up to 40 teams tasked with buying a ‘banger’ for no more than £750, each team is required to decorate said banger in an eye-catching fashion, including fancy dress for the drivers and raise as much money as possible for charity. Come the close of the rally each banger would be then auctioned with all the proceeds of the auction going to charity.

Our first participation in the event as a company, we sent Stuart Harvey and Susie Ancell out for this adventure. Managing to get hold of a part exchange van from one of our customers, Ideal Commercials, we settled on recreating the famous Nags Head pub from Only Fools & Horses fame. To complement the pub we sent, Stuart, dressed as Del Boy and Susie, as uncle Albert. Quite a sight on the roads as you would imagine, but it wouldn’t be just the Brits getting to witness this sight as the rally took in France, Germany and Belgium before finishing at Rockingham motor circuit in the UK.

Post-event The Nags Head went under the hammer at BCA Blackbushe alongside the other fellow banger machines. Rolling over the blocks last we were pleased to see a flurry of bids as the hammer fell at £1825. Making the most profit on the day, we accepted the prize for most money made at auction with pride. Taking into account donations made alongside the event we were pleased to deliver a fundraising total of nearly £2500.

You can read our full event review here.

October: Wirehive100

As the nights started to draw in, the prestigious Wirehive 100 agency awards would be the highlight of our October. Designed to recognise outstanding agency achievements from businesses across the South East and specifically outside of London, a Wirehive award is highly sought after.

At this year's event, we were honoured to receive finalist status in the ‘Agency Team of the Year’ category alongside some major players in the marketing world. One of only five agencies to receive this status it’s a testament to the dedication and the hard work of everyone at 67 Degrees who have put us in a position to achieve this status.

November: Used Car Awards 

Wrapping up the year was the annual CarDealer magazine Used Car Awards. An annual fixture, the Used Car Awards bring together the best of the best of the used car sector within the UK. With dealers eligible for a variety of awards, it’s always a highlight of the year as outstanding achievement gets recognised in front of industry peers.

This year we had the pleasure of making it through to the finals of the event with our customer Targa Florio Cars. Making it into the final five in the ‘Dealer Used Car Website of the Year’ category was made even sweeter when televisions very own Mike Brewer announced Targa Florio as the overall winner of the award.

Taking to the stage in the absence of Targa Florio was our own Stuart Harvey, who just so happened to be celebrating his birthday the very same day. Upon being announced as winners, They were acclaimed for the impactful design of their website, a design that places full emphasis on the prestigious vehicles that they sell.

It’s also pleasing to receive an award of this magnitude for the second year running after we succeeded in the category, at last years running of the awards, with Big Motoring Worlds website. Big Motoring World also had success again this year winning the award for ‘Used Car Supermarket of the Year’ whilst Premier GT received ‘Highly Commended’ status in the ‘Best Dealership Use of Video’ category.

You can read our full event review here.

And... that’s a wrap!

2018 has been a truly memorable year and each of the above moments will be remembered fondly alongside the enjoyable team and customer days that we had at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, Paris Motor Show and the Brands Hatch Porsche Festival.

From a product point of view, our multiple awards have validated our belief in our philosophy of providing unrivalled and award-winning customer service. Something that has also been backed up by our maintained 5-star rating across Facebook and Google.

As we take a break this week, we would like to thank each and every one of our customers for their unwavering support throughout 2018. In addition, we must also thank all of our family and friends and industry suppliers and partners. Thank you all for helping to make 2018 such a memorable year. We wish you all a very happy and healthy New Year.

Here’s to 2019.