Web frustration turns into all-round good idea for North Somerset couple

June 19, 2012

Husband-and-wife team Marguerite and Tim Pople have launched a business creating visually-stunning walk-through tours for websites – the result of the frustration they experienced when trying to book a holiday online.

The firm, 36TY (www.36ty.co.uk), produces 360-degree panoramic and virtual tours that allow businesses to create a real experience for their online visitors.

The couple, from Clapton in Gordano, North Somerset, say the concept is perfect for any company with a product, service or location to show off.

Marguerite said: “Three out of four of us research products and services online so, in order to stand out from the crowd, businesses need to be more creative with their websites.

“Having photos is great, but when looking at something online – say a restaurant, property or holiday destination – a flat image can’t give you the full picture. With an online 360-degree panoramic virtual tour you can ‘wander around’ and see absolutely everything – where the best seats are in the restaurant, what the views are at a hotel or holiday home. It leaves no stone unturned.  

“Plus it sorts the wheat from the chaff. If what you are selling isn’t up to scratch, there’s no hiding. But of course, if your product is top notch, it will really show it off.”

Marguerite, 55, is a keen amateur photographer and the creative brains behind 36TY, while 54-year-old Tim, who has an extensive corporate career, is developing the technical side. The pair know they work well together because they have been running successful energy-saving business Intelligent Energy Saving for the past seven years.

Tim added: “We are always looking for new and exciting avenues to get involved in. Marguerite has always loved photography and felt passionately that businesses should be able to show off what they have to offer properly, which is how the idea for 36TY came about.

“Although 360-degree panoramic virtual tours are not new, up until now they have been held back by broadband speeds. Now, around 70% of the population has good broadband speed, so it is essential that businesses can deliver the fantastic HD quality visuals that their customers are now demanding.”

Marguerite and Tim say they hope to work with a wide range of different businesses and organisations as it is not just estate agents, shops, holiday companies and hotels that can benefit from a virtual tour. They say the possibilities are almost endless.

“The technology can be used for educational purposes too, for example, training videos,” added Tim.

In addition to the basic virtual tour, 36TY can also offer a range of other features including virtual presenters, music, sound, video clips, images, maps, 3D pictures and pop ups.

“Extra features can really make the virtual tour come alive,” said Marguerite, “As they say, a picture paints a thousand words and we are here to help paint them.”


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