It's hard to believe that business once operated effectively and efficiently with typewriters, rotary telephones, pencils and erasers. Today, however, computers, email, websites and countless shapes and sizes of wireless devices have all become industry "standards."|
The magic in all of these technologies, in business terms, comes from understanding their potential and exploiting them to their fullest. It's about finding ways to make them enhance corporate value and deliver reasonable returns on investment. It starts with a few basic ideas:
1. Websites can become the focal point, and underlying infrastructure, for your business.
2. A well designed website enhances credibility and conveys professionalism.
3. Internet-based technologies can be tailored to support, qualify and quantify specific business functions.
4. Internet-based technologies create efficiencies, generate revenue and facilitate growth.
5. As an electronic tool, websites are not limited by time or place.
6. Websites are only as good as the people that build, manage and maintain them.
7. You get what you pay for.
Be Prepared. It's important to have a well-defined business objective, a clear picture of how your company operates (both internally and externally) and a manageable budget before you start planning an online strategy. There's no point in pursuing technology, developing new systems and implementing change if you haven't done your homework and set realistic goals.
Once you have a clear idea of what you expect from a website, it can be tailored to suit specific organizational, departmental and/or individual needs. Of course, the degree of customization impacts directly upon cost. This is when a fully defined budget becomes important. In addition, and based on recent experience, there are issues relating to ownership, including copyright and intellectual property, which are often left undefined and legally unresolved. Along with marketing and technical support, legal counsel is an important part of this process.
Websites Are Portals. There's really no limit, other than imagination and budget, to what degree a website can be used to help you effectively and efficiently operate and grow your business.
One of the best aspects of interactive technologies is that they can be developed, implemented and maintained from a central location while the organization and its operatives are active throughout a variety of locations. In other words, both internal and external staff operating throughout the country (or the world), can view, retrieve and submit data. As long as there's internet access, and with just about any computer or PDA, tablet or smartphone, you can have secure access to company information from a myriad of locations including airports, tradeshows, hotel rooms and conference sites.
Additionally, internet-based technologies are no longer the domain of sales and marketing professionals alone. They are frequently linked to business support and operational departments - from supply chain management and inventory control to finance and human relations. What's clear is that websites offer the flexibility to become "windows" to every aspect of your operation.
Websites Are An Extension of Your Brand. The web has become the go-to resource for due diligence, regardless of product or service. When you acknowledge that buyers are craving convenience, coupled with the way business relationships are developed and transactions are made, it's easy to understand how websites have become influential marketing tools and dynamic sales environments.
Recognizing that tracking can be quite involved, there are numerous solutions that will help you gain valuable insights about visitor activity and website productivity. With the right tools, you can identify links and/or search terms, quantify visitor activity, and gain insights regarding visitor trends and agendas.
Now that you have some idea of what can be accomplished with websites and the internet, here's a short list of things to consider:
1. Have a clear picture of what you want to achieve. There's no sense in making investments if the need is not fully defined.
2. Establish a budget. It's important to roll out technology, as with any other business expenditure, in a manner that is prioritized, appropriately funded and provides meaningful financial returns.
3. Pursue quality. The effectiveness of technology is directly related to the level of training and experience your services provider has to offer. Make sure there's a proven track record before you hire a web development company or technology consultant. It's not uncommon for companies to invest in technologies that are poorly planned or fail to perform. You'll get what you pay for.
Keep in mind that interactive technology is in a constant state of change. What was considered state-of-the art last week may be outdated today. Don't be intimidated or confused by what you don't understand. There are experts for that. Your role is to be expert in what's best for your company, supports operational efficiency and promotes organizational growth.
If you've recognized the need for a more efficient and dynamic web presence, or would like to learn how you can automate some of your business functions, please call 866 787 8761 - ask for Jeff Spear. You can also contact Jeff via email: email@example.com. To see some of the interactive environments Studio Spear has built, or examples of our full range of creative services, click here.
STUDIO SPEAR WINS TWO NATIONAL DESIGN AWARDS|
While our clients have always been quite happy with our work, it's nice to receive recognition and praise from leaders in the design industry. Just last week, Studio Spear received notice from Graphic Design USA - a respected design journal - that the creative solutions produced for Gulf Wild (website) and Roseda Farm Burgers (packaging) had been recognized for design excellence. We could not be more pleased.
Special thanks go out to Jan Pilant, Patrick Carter, and Vince Lupo, all valued contributors to Studio Spear's ongoing strategic, creative, and interactive endeavors.
AT THE MOVIES|
With clients on every continent except Antarctica, and recognizing that we endure a lot of travel at Studio Spear, most of our movie watching takes place on airplanes, in hotels, or online. With shorter, darker, and colder days ahead, these titles are sure to warm your soul.
Based on the extraordinary true story of President Francois Mitterand's private cook, this is a charming and delicious tale for foodies of all stripes.
HECTOR AND THE SEARCH FOR HAPPINESS
If you've always wondered about the meaning of life and finding true happiness, this endearing adventure sets the record straight.
This one is for the futurists. Director Alan Garland gives us a new perspective about machines taking over the world... or at least outsmarting their creators.
THE OTHER ONE: THE LONG STRANGE TRIP OF BOB WEIR
A "must watch" for anyone who has listened to, and enjoyed, the Grateful Dead. There is more to this enduring band than Jerry Garcia and a cult following of Dead Heads.
The critics were way off base about this wonderful sci-fi confection. With George Clooney, Hugh Laurie and a roller coaster of a story, it's a ride worth taking.
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About Studio Spear
Studio Spear is a globally recognized and award winning marketing consultancy specializing in consumer packaged goods and lifestyle-oriented brands. The company relies upon thorough research, strategic planning and emotionally charged creative solutions to produce significant and statistically proven growth for its clients. "It's our goal to enhance your product's reputation, generate higher levels of sales and see your brand outperform its competition," says Spear.
If you'd like to learn more about what Studio Spear can do for you, call, write or email Jeff Spear at:
PO Box 51291
Jacksonville Beach, FL 32240
Phone: 904 685 2135
Toll Free: 866 787 8761
Fax: 410 486 9492
Welsh Rabbit (Rarebit)|
When the hunter came home without catching a rabbit, all that was left was the cheese sauce and the toast. No complaints here.
2 T butter
1 T flour
3/4 lb. cheddar, extra sharp, grated
1/2 C pale ale
1/4 C milk
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp dry mustard
2 egg yolks
Tabasco, to taste
6 slices bread, toasted, cubed
black pepper, to taste
Melt the butter in a large saucepan over a medium high heat. Whisk in the flour to make a roux. Slowly whisk in the ale, followed by the milk, until fully incorporated and creamy. Whisk in the cheese, a little at a time, followed by the Worcestershire sauce, and mustard, making sure to keep the sauce smooth and creamy.
Since you don't want the yolks to cook and harden, you need to take special care. Start with a separate bowl and whisk the yolks. Add a small spoonful of the warm cheese mixture and whisk until fully incorporated. Repeat this step several times until there is more cheese sauce then yolks. Once the sauce and yolks are fully incorporated, you can transfer the mixture back into the main pot and whisk it all together. Add a few dashes of Tabasco, to taste.
To serve, arrange the toast cubes on 4 plates (as an appetizer) or 2 plates (as a main course). Ladle equal amounts of the hot cheese sauce over the toast. Finish with freshly grated black pepper.
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