Happy birthday to us.

Rare archival footage. Robert, Woody, and Rich.

Picture it. Charleston, the year 2000. The streets are quieter. The restaurants seat guests without reservations. The beaches still belong to the locals. And a creative pulse is beating throughout the city. Just then, a Minnesota musician/designer, a burnt-out ad exec from Atlanta by way of Houston, and a computer science grad/former defense contractor from DC converge on the Holy City, lured by the beauty and laidback lifestyle.

While working in their respective specialties, Woody, Robert, and Rich would soon cross paths and unknowingly conceive a creative agency that would stand the test of time, with the belief that the best way to win business tomorrow is to produce a kick-ass product today.

Blue Ion office #1… yet this very same photo could have been taken today.

Soon after joining forces, the three gave Blue Ion its name and a home in a 250 square foot room above Demetre Jewelry on King Street (as pictured above). The work that took shape in this tiny space would set the pace for their next two decades in business. Where some of their most long-standing relationships would form (looking at you, CVB and CRDA). It’s where they dreamed up a different way of working — giving way to epic loft offices high above Wentworth, and now King Street. Where their reputation for quirky humor, good parties, and even better work originated. Through it all, they’ve stayed true to their original idea, to create an environment where creative people can do great work, have fun, and have a life — in one of the world’s most beloved cities.

The tech bubble burst (perhaps you heard?)
CD-ROMs. Dead.
Flash? Also dead.
Search engine optimization / search engine marketing
Google everything
Digital marketing
Smart phones
iPads / tablets
Responsive design
The Great Recession (perhaps you heard?)
Above the fold. Also, also dead.
Social media

Amid these technological advancements, we’ve seen our growing team through everything from home purchases, weddings, and babies to illnesses, deaths, and moves — all while producing work that boosts brands and businesses locally, regionally, and nationally.

Today, the Blue Ion crew is 22 people strong, and building upon our original pillars of design, strategy, and tech, with ever-growing capabilities and expertise in everything from animation, to conceptual writing, to public relations to paid media. We’re still in downtown Charleston – and since 2016, also in Greenville’s burgeoning West Village neighborhood.

Twenty years later, we’re still curious, hungry, and cracking weird jokes. The truth is, we couldn’t have done it without you: clients, supporters, partners, friends, and family. So thank you.