Joaquín Cuenca is CEO and co-founder at Freepik Company, parent company of image bank Freepik and other digital design websites. In this ‘Day in the Life’, we find out more about Joaquín’s role, the growth of Freepik, and wider trends in visual web design.
Tell me about your role… What does a typical day look like for you?
Each morning I spend some time reading the latest publications related to the industry, checking the company’s metrics and the latest updates on the company channels. I have regular meetings with different departments; I may bring some new ideas, or just listen to what the team has come up with and discuss it.
Part of the work is to present our results to the board, and for that I need to understand things that worked well and things that failed and why. When I have some free time, I like to learn about something that I’m not supposed to do, like review recent code, look at potential optimizations, at SEO results, etc. Quite often I find interesting things to bring to the meetings and to discuss with the relevant teams.
What industry trends or innovations do you see coming to the forefront of your industry in the next 12 months?
Since our company intersects with technology on one side and design on the other, we have been at the centre of new developments and innovations in the AI space. With the likes of DALL-E and Meta both releasing their own AI artistic tools, we are convinced that images generated by AI will be a revolution for graphic design.
We are already investing heavily in integrating AI into our software with Stable Diffussion. Wepik – one of the several products that are provided by Freepik Company – allows users to explore the AI-generated image gallery and integrate them into their projects. So, while AI is currently in its very formative stage of development, the technology can still be harmoniously integrated with the human creative flair to limitless potential. We are excited for what the future holds for us with regard to innovations in AI technology and how it will benefit our platform moving forward.
What has been the key to Freepik’s success?
By obsessing over user experience. UX is not constrained to web interaction. Part of the UX is to have the content that users need and make it accessible, sometimes for free and sometimes at a very affordable price. We took the hard route – we have a big team creating custom content based on the data from our platform. We are improving the attractiveness of our subscription daily, creating the content that people miss and improving the existing content.
We also invested heavily in the website search engine, giving custom results that depend on each user. We recently received over 100 million visits per month, almost double the traffic of our closest competitor. 2021 was a particularly great year for us, with a 37% increase in revenue from the previous year – it surpassed our expectations and was driven by new markets that we were seeking to expand into.
Web design and marketing has transformed in the past 10 years. How can brands stand out from the crowd in 2023?
Brands can stand out from the crowd by diversifying their offerings and always innovating to maximise creativity.
With FreePik Company’s recent acquisition of UK-based Videvo, we now also have a world-class collection of videos and sound effects in our portfolio – opening the door for even more creatives to use our services.
Positive user experience is also crucial for success. That’s why we’re aiming to integrate all our content on a single easy-to-use platform. With users wanting to design from their devices anywhere around the world, developing an intuitive and streamlined platform will enable brands to cut through the noise.
What are your long-term plans for Freepik Company?
We are constantly looking for new ways to grow as a business and cater to an even wider audience. We have over 38 million graphic resources available on our service network that are used by over 61 million unique monthly users. But there is always room to make our services better.
Since 2020, when we partnered with our now-majority shareholders EQT, we have been focused on our strategic expansion into North America, South-East Asia, and Latin America. While we are a Spanish company, Freepik’s contributor network combines 23,000 professional designers from over 100 countries across the world – we’re aiming for visual asset world domination.
Freepik Company not only provides an essential service to artists and graphic designers, but also to anybody who enjoys being creative – and that’s how we will measure our long-term success.