Over the last 17 years, Iowa company Spinutech has established itself as a leading provider in digital marketing, web design and content management, working with clients in all 50 states. The company has offices in Cedar Falls and Des Moines, and in December Spinutech opened a third office in the Chicago suburb of Elmhurst.
How Spinutech works
Marc Reifenrath, Adam Lewis and Cory Schmidt founded Spinutech in 2000 when they were still students at the University of Northern Iowa. At the time, the dot-com bubble was just bursting, and they were looking for something that could prove the value of their work. Jobs were in short supply, so Spinutech could serve as a resume builder until something better came along.
Instead, Spinutech started to get regular work, culminating in deals with Hy-Vee and Bridgestone/Firestone in 2003.
“Early on, we looked really young. We got asked if we were still in high school a lot,” Reifenrath said. “We had to work to legitimize ourselves. But when you can walk into a room and say you work with Hy-Vee, clients would instantly drop their guard. Especially in Iowa.”
The trio built their own content management system in a time when many companies had a full-time IT person on staff to update their website. Spinutech pushed its product as a way to allow anyone to update a company’s website, freeing up resources to be utilized elsewhere.
Spinutech opened a second office in Des Moines in 2004. Its list of clients includes John Deere, the Des Moines International Airport, Whole Foods, Electrolux and others.
At the end of 2016, Spinutech opened its third office, targeting the Chicago market. Webitects co-founder Todd Reifenrath (Marc’s brother) is overseeing the new office. Marc Reifenrath expects Spinutech to add 10 new positions in 2017 across the three offices.
“We always felt we could grow into a larger city, and Chicago felt like a natural fit,” Reifenrath said. “We were fortunate to have existing relationships in Chicago, and we were able to assemble our team there very quickly.”
More expansions in 2016
In addition to the new Chicago office, 2016 saw Spinutech add Pella Windows and Doors and The Iowa Clinic as clients, as well as multiple Delta Dental Associations. The additional clients lead Spinutech to grow its staff to more than 40.
“Our team has been growing at a quick pace, and it’s been fun to see how they’ve embraced that growth,” Reifenrath said. “Where a lot of companies fail is during growth. We’ve always been very focused on finding the right employees to fit in with our culture and what we’re trying to do.”
Focusing on a new city
Spinutech is still looking to fill a few more positions in Chicago while trying to establish itself in the new market. Reifenrath said Spinutech is going after targeted opportunities in the Windy City to make sure they can keep up the quality of work that has started in Iowa.
From there, the company will focus on staying ahead of the curve in a field that is constantly changing.
“I always equate our years to dog years, one year is like 20 in the digital world,” Reifenrath said. “I like our position for growth. As corporate budgets continue to shift and traditional media runs to digital, what we consume digitally will only expand. I think we’ve positioned ourselves to help companies wade through those digital mazes.”
Joe Lawler is a freelance reporter based in Des Moines.