Meet our Graphic Designer

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Happy Friday and welcome back to our ongoing series, “Meet the Team,” where we’re giving you a chance to get a personal look into the lives of our fantastic team members here at OpenPotion.  So far you’ve had the chance to get to know our customer service expert and web developer Morgan, our awesome projects manager Esteban, our British assistant to our CEO Helen, and the members of our content team,  Adam the Content Wizard and Starr the Content Goddess.

This week, we’re interviewing our visual virtuoso and graphics guru, Michael.

"Never give up!"

“Never give up!”

What’s your background as far as work?

– Started my career as a freelancer graphic designer, operating my own business for 5 years
– Worked for a year in the marketing department of Rockwell Automation as a marketing coordinator
– Worked as an ad coordinator for a farming magazine for a year
– Worked as a graphic designer for 5 years at Greentec – electronics recycler / Thinkrecycle – electronic recycling fund-raising program
– Worked for one year as a graphic designer at Bailey Creative – web design agency

What do you bring to our Team that is valuable?

– 17 years of design knowledge and experience

Where do you live, and with whom?

I was born and raised in Kitchener-Waterloo Ontario Canada, HQ of Blackberry (formally RIM) and the largest Octoberfest next to Bavaria. I currently reside in Stratford Ontario Canada, hometown of the likes of Lloyd Robertson, Peter Mansbridge and Justin Bieber. I live with my partner Carri-Ann, her two children Hannah and Grant, toy poodle Maxwell and teddy-bear hamster Charles. My son Kyle also live with us on a part time basis.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

– Train in the martial arts
– Watch movies…love movies
– Road trips…explore new places
– Send time with my son Kyle
– Draw, read, camp

Where do you hang out at when you’re not at work?

Working from home, I don’t get out much…when I do go out, its usually to the dojo where I train twice a week in Aiki Jujitsu and Goju Ryu Karate.

If you didn’t work for OpenPotion, what would your dream job be?

Honestly, I have a passion for designing mobile apps. I’d love to do more of that type of work. I think I’d do well teaching martial arts at my own dojo as well.

What is the best part about working from home, and one of the biggest challenges of working from home?

Best part – The flexibility and freedom to set my own schedule and hours
Biggest challenge – Staying focused and disciplined and avoiding distractions

What is your favorite advice that you like to give to clients about their website?

I like to remind clients that “its all part of the process”. Developing a website consists of incremental stages that build on one another to create the final product. Not to worry, the wire-frame isn’t how the final website will look, its just the beginnings of the process.

What has been your funniest moment working at OP?

I find it amusing that the team feels compelled to say my name with a British accent all the time. Now I just need to convince them to add “Sir” before it.

Which projects have you enjoyed working on the most and why?

I like working on the projects that require multiple components such as 0lgo, wir-eframe, style tile, mock-up, business card, etc. This way I can help clients to build a brand, not just a website.

What’s your favorite food?

Sushi and chocolate, not together though.

What would your rapper name be?

Throw down

Favorite movie?

Sooo many to choose from… I’ll go with “Saving Private Ryan” for the purpose of this interview.

If you had a super power what would it be, and why?

The same one Bruce Wayne and Tony Stark have.

Editor’s note:  So, Michael wants to be a highly intelligent rich man with lots of fun toys.  I can dig that. 

Share a favorite meme from the internet.

aliens

Starr, Content Goddess

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Meet Our Content Goddess

In this Meet the Team Series, we’ve been introducing you to our amazing and talented team members here at OpenPotion.  You’ve had the pleasure of getting to know  Morgan, one of our developers and customer service experts, our project manager, Esteban,  the Content Wizard,  Adam, and most recently, Helen, assistant to our CEO and part-time super hero.

 

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Today, we’re going to give you the inside scoop on our Content Goddess, Starr.   In addition to content writing, Starr is our Social Media guru.  She manages all of OpenPotion’s Social Media Marketing, and assists our clients in setting up their social platforms.

Starr is a nerd

“Choose a job you love, and you will never work a day in your life.”

What’s your background as far as work?

I actually come from a healthcare field background.  I worked for many years in recreational therapy in nursing and assisted living homes then as a program instructor in a day program for adults with disabilities.  Eventually, I was a certified med tech and doing direct care.  I thought about going into Nursing, but then I decided to pursue my dream.  When I left the healthcare field, I took a leap of faith and began my career as a freelance writer.  My dream has always been to write for a living, and I took a big chance when I went after it.  Fortunately for me, it panned out.  I spent two years freelancing for many different clients writing everything from instruction manuals on household items to magazine articles.  (I’m even published in a few books.)  It was during this time I discovered blogging and Social Media and became a self-taught expert.  Jason found me through a job posting last year, and the rest is history.

What do you bring to our team that is valuable?

I’m self-driven and very proactive.  If there’s “nothing to do” you can bet I’ll find something to do that benefits our company or our clients.  My years spent writing are a definite benefit, I like to think of myself as a qualified wordsmith.  My knowledge of blogging and Social Media brings a lot to the team and has helped OpenPotion as we continue to grow.  I’m a quick learner and willing to do just about any job, because I don’t like being boxed into my title as “just a writer.”

Where do you live, and with whom?

I currently live in Pittsburgh with my boyfriend and my two tween boys part-time, as I share custody with their father.  Ha, I say two tweens, but this weekend one of them becomes a teenager.  :)

What do you like to do in your spare time?

Write for fun – I write a blog, dabble in fiction, and am part of several writing groups.  I love to read almost anything I can get my hands on.  I enjoy Netflix binging, movies, and nerdy board games like Marvel Legendary.

Where do you hang out at when you’re not at work?

I’m a hermit, and other than mandatory errands, I like to stick close to home.  Home is where the heart is, after all, and nothing beats spending an afternoon with the boys playing games or watching movies.

If you didn’t work for OpenPotion, what would your dream job be?

Working from home as a writer really is my dream job.  Although, it would be nice to be a New York Times Bestselling author.  ;)

What is the best part about working from home, and one of the biggest challenges of working from home?

There’s many benefits to working from home.  I make my own schedule, the commute is a simple walk from the bed to my desk, I can take my breaks when I choose, go for walks to break up the day, and shower on my lunch hour if I want.  I’m always available for my boys if I need to be.  The downfall? Well, sometimes that urge to sleep in late is too easy to say yes to.  Distractions can be bad, too, but you learn to get a handle on all of it and balance work and home life with practice.

What is your favorite advice to give to clients about their websites?

I always tell our clients that the content on their website should act as an employee speaking directly to a prospective client.  It should tell a story, but speak to each visitor as if it were written just for them.   I give a lot of advice about “search engine optimization” which I think is fun – but I’m a writer, I think weird things are fun.

What has been your funniest moment working at OpenPotion?

Oh, wow, there is not one specific moment.  We’re a pretty funny bunch of folks here.  There’s been some HILARIOUS typos that sent me reeling into fits of laughter.  There’s been a few instances Adam, our other content writer, or Helen had me laughing so hard I had tears rolling down my face and I was literally snorting.  Sometimes, Jason sings to us or does his silly impressions in our face-time meetings, and that’s always fun.   We’re serious about our work at OpenPotion, but we’re a fun group.  I really enjoy working with all of the team members.

What projects have you enjoyed working on the most, and why?

My favorites were the healthcare websites and the nursing and assisted living homes we built sites for. Writing the content for those projects was a lot of fun for me.   It was like mixing my past work-life and present career into one big ball of writing fun.

What’s your favorite food?

I love a good burger.

What would your rapper name be?

Starry Knight – Ha ha, that’s awful.

Favorite Movie?

That’s like asking me to pick a favorite child.  I will say that the Horror genre is my favorite.

If you had a super power what would it be, and why?

The ability to manipulate time.  I’d finally have enough hours in my day for everything I want to accomplish and I’d never age.    It would be like crossing the eternal life of a Vampire with a Time Lord’s ability to time travel.  (I did mention somewhere that I’m a total nerd, right?)

Share a favorite meme from the internet:

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Starr, Content Goddess

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Meet Jason’s British Brain

Welcome back to our Meet the Team series after the long holiday weekend last week.  If you’ve been following along, we’ve been giving you a chance to meet our fantastic team of experts.  We hire only the best content writers, developers, and designers in the industry.  We search the internet for these rock-stars and are extremely proud of the team we’ve built.  

meet_the_team

So far you’ve been introduced to Morgan, our customer service expert and one of our developers, our project manager, Esteban, and our Content Wizard,  Adam.   This week, we would like you to meet an invaluable member of our team.  Helen, lovingly referred to as Jason’s British Brain, is personal assistant to our CEO Jason Hull.  Helen is so much more than an assistant; she is customer service, sales, organizer, writer, editor, and info graphic extraordinaire.  Without Helen, things around OpenPotion would not run as smoothly as they do.  She’s the glue that keeps us together, the director behind the scenes.  

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Helen was recently engaged- and we must admit, her Jordan did a fantastically romantic job of proposing.

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From the traditional pose of proposal all the way to the releasing of the doves; Jordan nailed it.

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Congratulations Helen, all the best from your OpenPotion family!

What’s your background as far as work?

I worked in the ‘real world’ as an admin assistant, secretary, writer, and marketing person for the last 13 years. I’ve also freelanced as a writer since 2009. Jason ‘stole’ me from a company that wasn’t treating me right, and it was the best decision I’ve ever made.

What do you bring to our Team that is valuable?
I’m proactive about getting things done. I’m firm but fair(ish) and am willing to be the one to crack the whip, despite perhaps losing a few friends that day. Also I’m the extra RAM for Jason’s brain.

Where do you live, and with whom?
I live in an apartment in Knoxville with my fiance Jordan and two cats Professor T.J. Snuggles and Melon.

What do you like to do in your spare time?
I’m part of a rather eclectic friendship group and we like going to ‘burns’ – they’re a bit like music festivals but more centered around art and expression (a la Burning Man). I also love climbing, running, yoga, cooking, and the occasional responsible wine drinking ;)

Where do you hang out at when you’re not at work?
At Urban Bar in the Old City. I’ll be the loud one in the corner. I can also be found in a field with a bunch of smelly hippies, setting things on fire in the name of art. Or in England with my folks, when I can afford it.

If you didn’t work for OpenPotion, what would your dream job be?
I LOVE the science behind marketing, so something in that industry. I also LOVE cats, so I’d be running a catch, neuter/spay, release program for stray cats, if money wasn’t an issue.

What is the best part about working from home, and one of the biggest challenges of working from home?
I love being able to cook up wonderful things for lunch, instead of relying on whatever fit into a Tupperware box at 7am that day. In previous freelancing jobs, it could get very lonely and I was in a constant state of cabin fever. I don’t have that with OpenPotion, we’re all pretty noisy, sociable people :)

What is your favorite advice that you like to give to clients about their website?
Identify the path you want your site visitors to take, and the ultimate goal you want to achieve, and have the navigation designed to make that easy to do. Don’t have elements that take them off the page if you want them to stay and complete an action. Talk to Jason, he’s the magician of on-site optimization!

What has been your funniest moment working at OP?
Starr occasionally makes outbursts in the team room that are hilarious, including one awesome spelling mistake that left us laughing for about 20 minutes. Also, Jason in general – he’s a funny guy (sometimes unintentionally!)

Which projects have you enjoyed working on the most and why?
I’m going to be diplomatic and say all of our projects are a blast – Jason makes sure we only work with the most awesome of clients, and I love chatting with them when they call. We do great work with great clients – it would be impossible to pick a favorite!

What’s your favorite food?
I’m on a high-fat, low carb diet (the Ketogenic diet) and so I love anything fatty and juicy. The pig is a wonderful animal for this purpose. Sorry pigs.

What would your rapper name be?
If left to my friends to decide, probably something like DJ Ginger Foghorn. But don’t listen to them, my hair is strawberry blonde.

Favorite movie?
True Romance

If you had a super power what would it be, and why?
Not really a superpower as such, but I’d love the ability to make legally-binding laws in an instant. One of my first ones would be to make it illegal to say the alphabet while singing the alphabet song. The goal? To cause total anarchy.

Share a favorite meme from the internet.
I love Business Cat.

Starr, Content Goddess

Starr Bryson

Property Pointers: 4 Simple Steps to Improve Property Management Websites

Managing a busy property management business requires business owners to carefully prioritize their time, as they work to resolve tenant issues, find new clients, and remain profitable. Establishing a dynamic property management website can help you do exactly that, but you can’t expect incredible results with a cookie cutter webpage. Instead, your business needs to invest in a comprehensive, fully-functional site that caters to real estate investors and tenants alike.

If you’re tired of your property site’s lackluster results, using the following simple tips to overhaul your marketing efforts.

1. Invest in the Right Foundation

It might feel fundamental, but you’d be surprised to learn how many property groups try to cut corners online. Sure, investing in a professional property management site might prove expensive, but how many customers are you already losing due to an ineffective site? Before you try to fix a big problem with a tiny little Band-Aid, bite the bullet and bring in the development pros—you’ll be shocked to see how your conversation rates improve.

2. Keep Your Website Updated

If you ignored one of your client’s properties for months on end, you’d be in deep trouble. The same principle is true for your website. A whopping 97% of all consumers search for local business information online. How many of those would-be tenants are you missing because of a poorly optimized site? Keep your content fresh with new listings, blog updates, newsletters…you name it!

3. Interact with Your Site Visitors

Crafting great marketing copy and implementing savvy optimization techniques helps to pull in site visitors, but don’t let those would-be clients slip away. Work to engage with your audience immediately. At OpenPotion, we utilize live chat systems to give every site visitor a chance to ask questions, get more information, and learn more about what we do. Consider using the same approach to bolster your own success on the web.

4. Keep a Close Eye on Feedback

User reviews and testimonials have turned the online world on its head, with everyday buyers relying on this crucial information when considering your company’s services. While it’s one thing to feature glowing reviews on your site, you want to make sure negative feedback doesn’t get splashed about the web. Use a tool like GatherKudos to block out the negative stuff, while simultaneously funneling positive reviews to sites like Yelp, Google+, and Yahoo! Local.

Your website should serve as your business’ most effective salesman. It sells around the clock, and when performing optimally, should pull in a steady stream of new clients. If your site isn’t pulling its weight, make the decision today to invest in the resources that will stabilize your long-term profits.

Call us today to learn how OpenPotion can help.

Adam Zetterlund

– Adam, Content Wizard

Meet our Content Wizard

meet_the_team

Welcome back to our Meet the Team series.  If you’ve been following along, we’re taking the time to introduce our fantastic team of experts via a fun interview and Q &A session.  Here at OpenPotion, we hire only the best designers, developers, and content writers in the industry.  We scour the world for these rockstars and are pleased to have each and every one as part of our team.

So far you’ve had a chance to meet Morgan, one of our developers and customer service experts, and Esteban, our project manager.  Today, I welcome you to meet Adam, our content wizard.  Adam came to us only a few short months ago, but in that time has proved himself as a talented, invaluable addition to our team.  Adam brings his amazing creativity to the table, and coupled with his expertise in marketing and sales writing and tech knowledge, he really is a content wizard.

Adam Z., Content Wizard

Adam Z., Content Wizard

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
― Maya Angelou

What’s your background as far as work?
I got into the content creation game while living in Paris. I had the opportunity to intern in the
offices of a luxury real estate company during my five year tenure in Europe, and in that position
I worked extensively with the British press. I guess you could call it a “light bulb” moment, as I
began writing for a myriad of companies after that experience.

What do you bring to our Team that is valuable?
I thoroughly enjoy the branding process, and I feel quite fortunate to have worked with a
plethora of multinational brands. Working with the big boys has equipped me with an intimate
understanding of the ins and outs of digital marketing, and I love working with small business
owners to breathe new life into their respective companies.

Where do you live, and with whom?
New York City, with my Cocker Spaniel, Oliver.

What do you like to do in your spare time?
Perhaps unsurprisingly, I’m an avid reader and spend a significant portion of my free time
devouring any book I stumble across. I also enjoying playing my guitar, exploring the city with
friends, and seeking out that elusive perfect cup of coffee.

Where do you hang out at when you’re not at work?
Local cafés, Washington Square Park, and independent bookstores dotted across NYC.

If you didn’t work for OpenPotion, what would your dream job be?
Working as an independent contractor IS my dream job!

What is the best part about working from home, and one of the biggest challenges of working
from home?
I’ve always been a bit of a control freak, and I appreciate the solitude of working at home. I find
it easiest to brainstorm, create, and pull out the red pen when I’m left with my thoughts. On the
flip side, working independently means I have to remain self-motivated…and everybody has
moments when they just want to stay in bed for an extra 15 minutes!

What is your favorite advice that you like to give to clients about their website?
Your website is an extension of your brand; make certain it reflects your vision and serves as a
cohesive link to your external marketing endeavors.

What has been your funniest moment working at OP?
Working long hours makes all of us loopy, and I constantly collaborate with the other members
of the OpenPotion team via video conference and chat. At the end of a long week, we’re all a bit
punch drunk really, and as you can imagine, hilarious hijinks ensue.

Which projects have you enjoyed working on the most and why?
I really appreciate the chance to work with property managers and real estate groups, as it affords
me the opportunity to research the neighborhoods in which they operate. It’s like a virtual field
trip!
What’s your favorite food?
It’s hard to beat a great taco, but I’m still a kid at heart, and you can always win me over with
candy.

Favorite movie?
So many choices, so little time.

If you had a super power what would it be, and why?
Teleportation; I’ve had the chance to experience life in so many places across our beautiful
planet, and I’d love nothing more than to spend the day with some of my favorite people, many
of whom are far, far away.

 

Starr, Content Goddess

Starr Bryson

Responsive Design: 4 Key Reasons Your Business Site Needs It

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Earlier this year, mobile web usage in the United States overtook traditional desktop browsers for the first time in history. With millions of connected devices scattered around the nation, consumers have more access to the Internet than ever before. Long gone are the days when users had to peruse subpar mobile sites that lacked the functionality and visual appeal of desktop platforms. Today, companies can create dynamic, responsive sites that bring the full desktop experience to the small screen. If you’re contemplating whether or not you need a responsive site, consider the following four benefits.

Responsive Sites Reach More People

Google estimates that more than one in five searches are now performed via a mobile device. Furthermore, 25% of all Internet users in the U.S. connect solely via a smartphone or tablet. If numbers like those don’t sway you, consider this: more than half of all local searches conducted last year came via mobile platforms. The figures don’t lie; if you neglect mobile web users, you’re missing out on a huge segment of your target audience.

Search Engines Play Nicer with Responsive Sites

If you’ve spent any time familiarizing yourself with search engine optimization, you understand the importance of your site ranking. Google and its competitors rely on bots that canvas the web every day, indexing websites and using a series of complex algorithms to determine a site’s rank. Responsive sites give search engines one destination to index, as opposed to businesses that opt for separate mobile and desktop sites. This single indexed site is often better received by the search engine algorithms, in turn ensuring a high rank for the online destination.

Responsive Sites Produce Better Results

As a business owner, your primary concern is ensuring that your website provides a positive user experience and generates real results. Not only are responsive sites tailored to the smaller screens of mobile users, but these websites also produce better conversion rates. Furthermore, the majority of social media activity now occurs on mobile devices, and web users are eager to interact with businesses on the move. With a responsive site, you make it possible for visitors to reach out to you immediately, no matter where users happen to find themselves.

Responsive Sites are Easy to Maintain

Attracting new business and retaining your current customers is likely one of your largest priorities as a business owner. Do you really have spare time to waste updating a mobile site frequently and ensuring it plays nicely across a myriad of different devices? A professional, responsive site shouldn’t be difficult to maintain—in fact, it’s quite the opposite. These simple platforms make it easy for you to communicate your business’ message to the masses, regardless of how they choose to access your online destination.

Harnessing the digital tools available to you is the best possible way to build a brighter future and work to stabilize your monthly revenue. Utilizing responsive web design is merely one of the diverse options available to you, but the results these sites create speak for themselves. If you’re not already using responsive design and are ready to take the plunge, get in touch with us today and learn how OpenPotion can breathe new life into your business’ approach to online marketing.

Adam Zetterlund

– Adam, Content Wizard

Meet Our Awesome Project Manager

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Our team of rock stars are the super stars of the web design industry- from our developers and designers to our content writers and management team, we employ only the best of the best. Over the next few weeks, we’re going to give you an inside look into the lives of OpenPotion’s team. We believe in transparency, and there is no better route to that then to introduce you to our team members and give you a realistic look at the people behind the scenes.

Last week you were introduced to Morgan, one of our developers and support techs.  This week, please meet Esteban, our Project Manager and resident Rock Star.

 

Esteban Zenteno, Project Manager "There's always a bigger fish."

Esteban Zenteno,
Project Manager
“There’s always a bigger fish.”

 

What’s your background as far as work?
I studied Systems Engineering at UCINF University in Chile until 2008, and then I did an internship at ABBOTT Laboratories in Santiago de Chile. I went back to Bolivia where I begun working as a Jr. Project Manager for GCGi and quickly made it through to become a Project Manager, handling teams of web development programmers and learning both SEO/SEM and QA.

In the last 4 years I’ve worked with several web design companies in the UK and USA mostly, making websites and e-commerce stores for security companies, hospitals, dentists, e-cigarettes, universities, churches, clothing and designer stores among others until I joined OpenPotion in 2013 and started focusing on Property Management websites.

What do you bring to our Team that is valuable?
Commitment. I’m the kind of guy you know is willing to run the extra mile to get things done right, whatever it takes, and always makes sure clients are happy with the results.

Where do you live, and with whom?
I currently live in Cochabamba, Bolivia, renting an apartment with my cousin. My whole family is here and I try to spend as much time with my parents and my younger brother and sister as I can.

What do you like to do in your spare time?
I spend my time listening to music, which I have always loved, and also enjoy hanging out with friends and playing video games over the weekend.

Where do you hang out at when you’re not at work?
I’m usually at a friends place, my parents house, or at a bar.

If you didn’t work for OpenPotion, what would your dream job be?
My dream job would be to be an executive at Apple or Google.

What is the best part about working from home, and one of the biggest challenges of working from home?
Working from home is great because you don’t have to spend time commuting every day to work, which means having more time to focus on work and more free time to spare. The biggest challenge of working from home is keeping everything as organized as possible to ensure non-work related stuff is not getting on the way during working hours.

What is your favorite advice that you like to give to clients about their website?
Keep it updated, and optimized. Security issues come up mostly on older websites that haven’t been updated for months, and if you have a website that is Search Engine Optimized for doing it’s job, which is an on-going process, you’ll find yourself with a growing business all the time.

What has been your funniest moment working at OP?
There’s not a single one, but almost every morning at the team meeting there’s something funny happening. Someone always ends up cracking jokes that make the rest of us laugh our asses off.

Which projects have you enjoyed working on the most and why?
I enjoy most of the projects I’ve done so far, but one that comes to mind right now is Property Management Select, because working with Nick to get his website done was a breeze. Things went as smooth as possible, and we did a great website for his business.

What’s your favorite food?
Barbecue. Can’t beat a well grilled meat with some fries and a fresh salad.

What would your rapper name be?
Me, a rapper? I would be a rock star instead, but I haven’t put thought on the name yet.

Favorite movie?
Star Wars, of course. Can’t beat the best saga ever.

If you had a super power what would it be, and why?
I would like to live forever, there’s just too much to enjoy, and very little time!

 

 

 

Starr, Content Goddess

Starr Bryson

Online Marketing 101: 3 Simple Steps to Maximize Your Digital Impact

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After several months of collaboration with a talented web design company, your website is finally live! Now what? If you’re like the vast majority of business owners, you might not have the first clue as to what to do next. While a dynamic website forms the cornerstone of your company’s online web presence, you won’t unlock your site’s full potential until you develop efficient marketing strategies that will expand your clout, build a dedicated following, and ultimately, lead to more sales. Whether you’re a seasoned marketing pro or this is your first go-round on the online marketing carousel, the following simple steps are an easy starting ground for anyone looking to dip their toes into the digital marketing space.

1. Develop a Strategy

While it might seem simple, many amateur webmasters totally overlook marketing plans in the digital world. It’s true that the practical rules of marketing online differ from traditional methods, but the fundamentals of efficient marketing remain the same. Slapping a few blog posts up on your site and sending out sporadic status updates won’t get you very far—instead, you need to build a game plan.

First, think about who you’re trying to target. Are you reaching out to existing clients? Do you want to connect with potential buyers? Reflect on the demographics of your intended audience and create your content accordingly. Next, you’ll want to build a thoughtful outline. Consider how often you want to interact with your followers and how you plan to do so. Finally, put the pedal to the metal and jump onboard! Small steps might not seem like they have much impact, but together, these little actions can create a tidal wave of success.

2. Partner with the Right Professionals

Time and time again, business owners try to jumpstart their marketing efforts on their own, only to find themselves frustrated with a lack of results. Hey, there’s no shame in trying! At the end of the day, however, you might need to partner with a professional with a keen understanding of what you’re attempting to accomplish. Hiring a blog writer or a community manager might feel like a big step, but investing in a more polished marketing product will inevitably bring about greater results.

3. Develop a Long-Term Perspective

Everybody wishes they could coax in visitors with the drop of a hat, generate thousands of sales leads in a single day, and push their company into the stratosphere of success. Those dreams are great and they might keep you motivated, but the magic simply won’t happen overnight. Connecting with consumers on the web serves as an invaluable way for business owners to grow their companies, but this strategy isn’t foolproof. You’ll need to pour your sweat, blood, and tears into your marketing efforts if you expect them to generate tangible results. Just like the tortoise who beat the hare, focus on building upon your previous endeavors day by day, in order to build a truly powerful brand online.

Building a jaw-dropping website is the first priority as you go on your first foray into the digital marketing realm. After that site launches, however, you’ll want to pay close attention to your marketing efforts. It’s easy to place the blame for your lackluster success on a million different parties, but ultimately, poor marketing has the power to sink your ship. Instead, invest the time and energy necessary to reach out to your customers online. As your marketing approach comes together bit by bit, you’ll begin to witness the incredible fruit of your labor.

-Adam Z, Content Wizard

Adam Zetterlund

Meet One of Our Awesome Website Developers

meet_the_team

 

Here at OpenPotion, we hire the rock stars from our industry to craft a team of knowledgeable, experienced, and awesome team members.

Meet Morgan, one of our website developers.  Morgan lives on the East Coast of Canada, a few hours drive from Maine.  He spends a lot of time at work, so you’ll usually find him at his computer.   Get to know Morgan with an exclusive peek into his world in the following interview.  I think you’ll like Morgan as much as we do.

Morgan

Morgan Farris Website Developer

 

Tell us a little about your background in website design:

I began my professional career as a Graphic Designer. I started freelancing for a couple of New York’s marketing firms including Hachette, Fillipachi, New Media, and Primedia  just to name a few. I have worked on projects for Nissan’s Altima and Pathfinder, Chevrolet Corvette, Car & Driver, and ELLE magazine.

One day, I found something called Joomla. I loved it ,and it enabled me to create an entire dynamic website all by myself, without requiring a team of programmers anymore. Since that time, I focused my energy more on websites than graphic design. I learned a lot about Joomla, created some interesting sites, and am always excited for each new release. In the last year or so, I’ve also been creating with WordPress, and plan to test out PageKit when it’s officially released this fall.

Sometimes I marvel at how times have changed – when I started, a good website cost clients $10,000 to $15,000. In fact, I even worked on a website project whose total cost was in the $100,000 range. Today,  you can get a website that does MORE than those sites did for a fraction of the cost!

Tells us about your work for OpenPotion:

At OpenPotion, I spend a good chunk of time handling Support Tickets. What I like most about handling support is that in order to fix some of the issues, you need to know a lot about all of the various parts of the website — this keeps me on my toes.  I learn new things every day.

 What do you like to do in your spare time?

Bike on nearby trails and  play “Assassin’s Creed” or Battlefield 4” on  the PS4.

What is your favorite advice that you like to give to clients about their website?

I typically ask clients to think about the ONE THING that they want their website to do – the one goal they want their website to accomplish for them – and then we’ll make the website do that for them successfully.

It’s not that websites only do “one thing” – but it’s that often clients want their website to do EVERYTHING, and that results in a website that, quite frankly, doesn’t help the user accomplish what they came to OpenPotion for in the first place. By asking the client to think about the most important goal they want their website to do, they realize the importance of  a focused website.

What has been your funniest moment working at OpenPotion?

There’s a couple, in the sense of chatting with the team members.  Everyone is pretty cool, so you can joke around with everyone and have a good time.

What’s your favorite food?

Pie.

What would your rapper name be?

I can’t rap. So that’s not even an option.

Favorite movie?
A L | E N S and Critters

Share a favorite meme from the Internet with us.

I’m more into classics than fads. So I tend to ignore things like that.

If you had a super power what would it be, and why?

Never thought about it. Not something I usually fantasize about, I suppose.

Editor’s Note:  If you ask us, Morgan’s super power is his super sonic speed when it comes to support tickets.  He works fast, expertly, and handles everything with aplomb and excellent customer service skills.

~Starr, Content Goddess

Starr Bryson

Blogging Blunders: 3 Simple Reasons Not to Overlook Content Marketing

blogging blundersMaintaining a company blog with frequent posts often falls pretty low on the priority scale for small business owners. After all, what real impact does a blog post have on a company’s success? If you’re tempted to say “not much,” you might be surprised to learn the actual answer. In fact, a single blog post can have a massive impact on your company’s future. Best of all, updating your blog doesn’t require the same resources necessary to launch an expansive ad campaign or invest in traditional marketing efforts. The following 3 explanations outline some of the key reasons content marketing matters for businesses of all shapes and sizes.

Content Establishes Authority

If you’ve been in the business world for very long, you understand how essential it is to demonstrate your authority to your clients. Whether you sell used car parts, consultation services, or property management solutions, your clients want to feel like they are partnering with a business professional who knows what they’re talking about. While it’s easy to toot your own horn and proclaim your amazing prowess to the world, demonstrating your know-how takes a bit more work. Believe it or not, a humble blog post can go a long way towards establishing your position as an authority in your field.

When you write a blog, don’t focus on trying to make a quick sale. Instead, talk about interesting subjects that correlate with the underlying theme of your business. For example, if you’re a property manager, why not write a post extolling the delicious fare at the top eateries in your neighborhood? If you’re an interior designer, write about the trends taking over the industry. Your blog gives you the opportunity to sell yourself as an expert in your field. Don’t over-complicate things—instead, write about what you know.

Quality Content Spurs User Interaction

Business owners work hard every day to make sales and draw in new clients, but the customer relationship doesn’t end once a sale is made.  Instead, you want to encourage that relationship to grow deeper, as you gain the trust of those who patronize your business. Creating interesting, informative content is a surefire way to build user interest in your company and continue the conversation with your customers. Sharing your posts across social media networks can further capitalize on this opportunity, as you invite others to join the discussion. Not only does content strengthen the bonds you share with existing customers, but it also generates new leads for your business.

Content Creates a Following

As a business owner, one of the biggest challenges you face is spreading the word about your company. With an endless array of competitors salivating over your segment of the target market, you don’t have the luxury of sitting on your laurels and hoping for the best. Instead, you need to continually invest in reaching out to those who might be interested in the products and services your organization provides. By focusing on crafting content that informs, educates, and intrigues, you will organically create a larger online following. Of course, this serves as a nice ego boost, but the real benefits extend beyond the bragging rights. As your clout grows, the number of interested clients will follow.

Writing blog posts might feel like nothing more than a chore, but the results a company blog can generate should make you passionate about creating content that makes a veritable impact. Whether you write your own company posts, or you instead contract with a stellar partner like OpenPotion, focusing on growing your blog is a savvy move you don’t want to overlook. Although progress often feels hard to measure, the potential your single blog post represents is impossible to ignore.

-Adam Z, Content Wizard

Adam Zetterlund