9 Digital Marketing Tactics for 2019

With every new year, there is always plenty of new things: new ideas, new tech, new moments, new predictions of the future, new trends, and more newness. With all this, it is easy to think that most of these new ideas aren’t worth learning and that they are just fads that will past. We decided to dedicate our first blog post of 2019 to 9 digital marketing tactics you can no longer ignore in 2019. Still don’t believe us? We have the stats to prove it.

  1. Chatbots—Maybe you’ve noticed when you visit some pages on Facebook, the messenger box comes up and in it there’s a message that offers you answers to questions you could possibly have. With 1.4 billion people interacting with chatbots, it’s easy to see why businesses are starting to save majorly. People like chatbots because they’re responsive, give answers quickly, and never lose patience.

 

  1. Personalization—we truly hope you haven’t been ignoring this one as it proves time and time again how valuable it is to marketing. Even 96% of marketers believe that personalization is a main driver in the customer- business relationship. In email marketing, personalized emails are 3 times better than just blast emails.

 

  1. Video marketing—Now we know this can seem like a lot of work and expensive with having to buy a new camera, but hear us out, some of the best cameras we have seen are in your pockets right now! That’s right, your phones. By creating captivating videos, you give your brand more shareable content that works to get your name out into the public. With 52% of consumers saying that watching product videos makes them more confident in online purchases, why wouldn’t you want to use the strategy?

 

  1. Influencer marketing—Sometimes word of mouth is the strongest marketing tactic you can use. People feel others are more trustworthy other than the brands themselves. So even if you can get clients to vouch for your products and services, you are likely to do better in future sales.

 

  1. Social Messaging Apps—Here’s one that might seem like new and scary territory but hear us out. With 1.3 billion monthly users actively using Facebook Messenger, wouldn’t you want to market your company’s services where your potential customers are spending their time? It also gives you a way to personalize you marketing message just a little bit further.

 

  1. Visual Search—With this new way of searching, users can get more specific results that brings users to your products. Pinterest has even started using this new searching method for users to take a picture of something they like and then they can learn where they can buy their own, something that can be used for most businesses!

 

  1. Voice Searching—Did you know that 50% of all searches will be voice searches by the year 2020? Better get used to the changing technology because it’s coming quick. For example, Domino’s allows customers to make their orders through Alexa. Just think about how you can start using voice searches to help customers find your products or services more easily.

 

  1. Social Media Stories—There is no doubt about it, social media is continually growing and will only get bigger. Now with the platforms adding “stories” your business can show insider videos of what it is like in your office or show off your products. It allows people to feel closer to your brand and continue building those important relationships you’re always looking to build.

 

  1. Artificial Intelligence—From analyzing consumer behavior, search patterns, and other data, it is easy to see why AI is going to be an important tool for businesses. You can understand how consumers find your products, and that is really important information to have to make finding your products simpler. AI can help optimize your customer service and give you an edge against competitors.

We know some of these strategies seem like a lot to do, but they will only help your business grow and be more relatable.

As always, if you ever have any questions feel free to reach out to any of our digital marketing specialists. Happy New Year!

Common Interview Questions and Answers

When job searching, one of the least favorite parts is the interview process. It can be nerve wrecking. We decided to dedicate this week’s blog post on some very common interview questions and tips on how to answer them to help ease your worries. Remember, it’s all about confidence and being prepared. Let’s dive in.

  1. “Tell me about yourself”- This is one of those questions that we hated being asked on the first day of school and we still hate it now. How are we supposed to answer this question? Do we give them an extensive life story? No. this question is just used as an ice breaker and tells the interviewer how the rest of the interview will go. You can use this question to describe past roles and strengths you’ve gained.
  2. “Why are you interested in this position” – This question gives the employers a feel for if you want that specific position with that specific company or if you’re just looking for a paycheck. This is a good place to explain how your strengths match specific job duties or requirements to show you’ve done your research on the company beforehand.
  3. “Tell me about a time you experienced conflict with a co-worker and how you dealt with it” – This is not the time to tell the HR professional about the time your boss overheard you gossiping about another co-worker. This question is used to understand how you handle professional conflict since it is bound to happen in the work-place. Your answer needs to focus on the solution and what you’ve learned from the experience.

Want to learn more about commonly asked questions and get ideas on how to effectively answer them to impress HR professionals? Read this blog post from HubSpot, click here!

We know no one truly liked job searching. But interviewing is a skill that will help you go a long way. Be sure to always be practicing your skills.

5 Office Outing Ideas

Fall is one of those seasons that everyone is excited about for the first week or so, but then find themselves already being sick of the cooler weather quickly. You might be noticing that in your office, people are losing a lot of motivation, they seem stressed, or they just look like they need a break. Looks like it is time to plan an office outing. Office events are a great time for those working in your company to get together, bond, release some stress, and hopefully become more motivated. Now, we get it. Planning these events can be stressful because not everyone agrees on what is fun. We came up with a list of 5 things your office can do to take that extra stress away from you! 5 ideas aren’t enough? We have an article from HubSpot with 22 more ideas for you and your office!

 

  1. Cook off– well, who doesn’t like food? This is a great way to make those in your office who don’t often work together be on a team. You get to know different people a little better and make something (hopefully) delicious! You can get creative and give an ingredient that they MUST use, like marshmallows or maple syrup, or you can make them create something within a food group (like make a type of ice cream! This idea is sure to keep everyone full of laughter and food!
  2. Karaoke night– Can’t imagine your office neighbor singing “it’s raining men”? Well maybe you don’t need to imagine, you can just watch! Karaoke bring people out of their shells and it’s a great way for people to get to know others in the office in new ways. You can give bonus points for best acts, funniest performances, best or worst singers and more.
  3. Escape Rooms– Have you heard about the new sensation yet? These rooms are used for office outings all the time, and there’s a big reason why-people love them! Spend some time trapped in a room with your coworkers (yikes!), solving puzzles, trying to get out. You can see new sides of people and test your creative thinking.
  4. Volunteer– Here’s an idea everyone can get behind-giving back. It is a great bonding experience for anything to give back and it’ll give the office time to come together and do something greater than themselves. You can create some great memories and create some good. Whether it’s working at a soup kitchen in the morning, or painting a fence for a neighbor, volunteering is a great way for offices to destress and bond.
  5. Office trivia– Think you know your office inside and out? Test your knowledge against your coworkers. This is a great game for laughs and could even just be a way to break up the day. You could put up a question on a white board every day and see who gets the most questions right.

Planning events can be stressful but hopefully this helps take that stress away! Keep your employees motivated and excited about working for you. A little but of fun and play goes a long way. For more ideas, check out this HupSpot article with more ideas by clicking here.

Did 2018 Go as Planned?

With everyone welcoming October next month (wow, time flies!), we felt it would be a good time to reflect on the new tech that has come out, and what people expected technology to do in the beginning of 2018. We did some research and found a Forbes post about the top seven tech trends we were sure to see in 2018. Let’s look at each trend and see if it was a true forecast.

  1. AI Permeation

It was assumed that AI would start to be included in everyday lives. Whether it be through apps, ways of ordering food in drive through, or through search engines. We agreed that AI has continued to grow throughout the year, but maybe not as much as expected. It isn’t something people often think about- and, we might have just moved closer to automation with people always on standby rather than AI.  What do you think?

  1. Digital Centralization

“Alexa, define that for me.” It’s true. People are relying more and more on smart technology and are looking for a way to centralize it all. Could you imagine if we could control our phones, watches, TVs, refrigerators, and all other devices with just one? Google and Amazon are trying to get there with Alexa and Siri, but we didn’t get as close as we may have expected.

  1. 5G Preparation

Well, this one is kind of clear to see we haven’t met the mark yet. It was thought of that we would be moving to a new 5G network in 2018, but so far it looks like we haven’t.

  1. Data Overload

Data is always being collected because we are always on our phones and consuming more data. It was estimated that there would be security issues and data overloads. Just ask Facebook and twitter, this happened a lot in 2018.

  1. Seamless Conversations

As we’ve seen, speaking to our devices has become a bigger thing. Alexa and Siri seem to know what we are trying to mean and can give us what we want on command. It was thought that communicating with technology would have minimum hiccups by the end of 2018…what do you think?

  1. White Collar Automation

Has your job been taken over by a robot or AI? Hopefully not. But It was believed that soon many jobs would have large AI components to it. Personally though, we haven’t really seen a big change over the last year.

  1. UI Overhauls

As we are still looking at screens and really interacting with them, there hasn’t been a crazy breakthrough of screen less technology. There’s still more time in the year though, so we’ll see.

Technology is unexpected and new changes are coming every day. We just wanted to take a quick look at what was expected to come out of this year and so far, what has truly come through to the public. What were technology trends you thought we would see for this year?

Motivational Monday – 5 Tips on Staying Motivated

It’s the time of year when students go back to school, life settles down, and you get into a more consistent schedule. You might even be able to feel a change in the weather. Fall can be exciting, but it is also a time people lose a lot of motivation. Since it’s Monday, we decided to dedicate this week’s blog post to talking about our best tips to staying motivated.

 

  1. Set a goal and visualize it to the smallest detail

See yourself planning it out, working on tasks, and finishing the goal. Even the most elite athletes claim they imagine and can even feel the sweat dripping off their nose when they finish their race. This just pushes them harder to finish their goal. Visualizing the goal makes you realize that it’s possible and that itself can motivate you.

 

  1. Write out a list of reasons you want to accomplish the goal

These are the reasons that ground you and prove to yourself why the goal is important. It will give you something to always look back on and remind yourself why you’re working towards the goal in the first place. By writing down the goals with paper instead of just typing them, you make a deeper mental connection allowing yourself to feel more motivated on finishing the goal.

 

  1. Break the goal up into smaller, manageable pieces

A main factor in people losing motivation is that they feel their goal is too big and that they will never be able to reach the end. By breaking up the goal into manageable pieces, you allow yourself to see how far you’ve come and celebrate the small steps you’ve taken to completing the goal. Before you know it, you will have reached your goal without it ever feeling like it was too big of a project.

 

  1. Get the help you need

Only because it is your goal, doesn’t mean others can’t help in the process. Bringing in a buddy might even increase your motivation because you will have someone to keep you accountable. Sometimes a fresh set of eyes will help you see things in a new way and that can push the process forward.

 

  1. Prepare a plan for how you will conquer your loss of motivation

Now you may think this is defeatist thinking, but it is the opposite. It is almost inevitable that you will hit a wall and maybe even face some setbacks. But preparing for these setbacks allows you to have a plan of action and not lose motivation.

 

It’s important to remember everyone loses motivation and you are not alone. Hopefully these quick tips can help you keep motivation as we move into the new seasons.

Beware Phishing Scams and How to Keep your Passwords Safe

We have been seeing quite an increase in attempts to obtain sensitive information through email, also known as phishing.  These emails disguise themselves in ways that makes them look trustworthy in hopes that you’ll click on their link and enter in your information which they then use for malicious purposes.  One of the more prevalent ones of late is an email that claims to have your password and actually lists a password which you have likely used in the past or possibly even presently (if you don’t change your passwords often).  If you’re looking for more information, here is article/tech tip from the NY Times in regards to this particular type of phishing attempt and how they may have come to know a previously used password.

Good password practice is to use passwords that are a minimum of 8 characters – alphanumeric and symbols.  For more sensitive information, it is a good idea to change the passwords every 3-6 months or use two-factor authentication.  A two-factor authentication example is a code that is sent to your phone despite logging in properly with your password.  Most financial institutions are already implementing this methodology.  Make sure your passwords have nothing to do with your personal information (such as your birthday, the street you live on, where you work, etc). Although you may not mind if someone knows that personal information about you, it makes knowing your password easier for hackers. It is recommended that you use random numbers, letters, and symbols in password. Check this web site for a strong password.

If you have any questions/concerns regarding this, feel free to contact us and we would be glad to assist you. We at iPoint would love to help you navigate through possible phishing scams and assist with other tips to keep all your sensitive information safe.

Let Me Introduce You to AirPoint

You know about iPoint, but have you heard of our sister company AirPoint? AirPoint holds all our drones services because we knew there was so much to offer, we just had to branch off our business. From thermal imaging to aerial photographer, we can cover all your drone needs to launch your business into new heights. We know this can be a lot to take in, so we wrote up this blog so you can wrap your hands around all our services and how they can help you!

 

Commercial Services: These services include aerial photography, aerial videography, and even live streaming events. This is your one stop shop when it comes to taking photos of your entire business landscape or getting a new perspective of your land. If your business is hosting a 5k run/walk event, or something else, we can also live stream the vent so more people can learn and really understand what the event is about! We’ve helped residential areas with their photography, as well as other businesses like Fort Fun to show off all they have to offer.

 

Data & Imaging Services:

3D and GPS Mapping: It’s that simple. We map out the flight and launch the drone. As the drone flies via GPS, it captures aerial imagery. Imagery is processed to create collaborative 3D & GPS Mapping. When collection’s that simple, you can focus your energy on analyzing the data rather than figuring out how to gather it. You save time while collecting millions of data points in one short flight. AirPoint uses the top drone GPS mapping software program in the industry to provide high-resolution aerial 3D & GPS Mapping Services that are invaluable to facility managers, engineers, contractors, farmers and developers who need to make informed and targeted decisions regarding site analysis, infrastructure, volume calculations, agricultural yields, surveys, situational changes and more.

Volumetric Surveying: Whether you’re checking to see if you have enough material to cover a particular area, or providing a financial report of your inventory, accurate, efficient and safer volumetric measurement makes all the difference. Significantly less expensive than traditional measurement and survey methods, aerial drone surveying gives you results in hours instead of days, rendering highly accurate 3D models from 25 – 400 feet aloft. Businesses large and small in industries across the board are boosting productivity, automating reporting and saving time with professional drone services. Modern unmanned aircraft are superior when comparing the time and expense of traditional ground-based volumetrics.

Thermal Inspections: Preventive maintenance can help save millions of dollars for companies before equipment or structures fail. Our thermal camera provides inspections in a variety of industries. This FLIR camera can be mounted on either of our drones. And the air-to-ground thermography results are amazing. In contrast, FLIR cameras see every nut and bolt in areas impossible to reach before – every leak (even those invisible to the naked eye) with no downtime, quicker turnaround and no risk to employees. You’ll not only save time, you’ll save money. You can perform multiple drone inspections at multiple sites per day that are easy to interpret and apply.

 

We love our drones here at iPoint. If you ever have any questions about our services or how it can help your business, feel free to contact us and we will be happy to help!

6 Things to Do in Fort Collins for the Fourth of July

Whether you’re looking for more traditional parade-and-fireworks kind of fun or watching a great white shark terrorize a town on the big screen is your ideal way to celebrate Independence Day, you’ve got options for the Fourth of July Activities in Fort Collins.

1- Fourth of July Parade

10 a.m. The city of Fort Collins’ Fourth of July festivities will start with the traditional parade at 10 a.m. Featuring the theme “150 Years of Fort Collins,” the parade will travel east on Mountain Avenue, beginning at Jackson Avenue and ending at Howes Street.

2- Fourth of July Celebration at City Park

Beginning at 4:15 p.m., City Park, 413 S. Bryan Ave. Enjoy live music from the Colorado Swing Band, Manabi Salsa Band and the Fort Collins Symphony. The fireworks display will start about 9:35 p.m. In case of inclement weather, fireworks may be delayed until no later than 10 p.m. If the weather has not cleared by then, the display will be July 5 at dusk.

3- Fire-Kracker 5K

7:30 a.m., City Park, 413 S. Bryan Ave. Returning for its 15th year, the Fire-Kracker 5K will feature both a citizens’ 5K run/walk and a competitive 5K. The citizens’ race starts at 7:30 a.m. at City Park, and all ages and abilities are welcome. The competitive/elite 5K will follow and features a four-lap course around Sheldon Lake. Race registration is $25 for adults; $20 for kids 17 and younger; $10 for veterans and active military members.

4- Old Timer’s Baseball Game

9:30 a.m., City Park ballfields, 1599 City Park Drive. Enjoy a blast from the past watching these men relive their great memories and enjoying the sport they love. At 1 p.m., the Fort Collins Foxes will take on the Loveland Blue Jays. Admission for the Old Timer’s game is free. Admission to the Fort Collins Foxes game is $6 for adults, $4 for children and seniors, and free for children 3 and younger and active military with ID.

5- Old-fashioned Fourth of July

10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Avery House Historic District, 328 W. Mountain Ave. Enjoy historic activities, games, food and fun.

6- Summertime Jazz Concert

4 to 8 p.m., Global Village Museum of Arts and Cultures, 200 W. Mountain Ave. Enjoy live Dixieland jazz by Le Jazz Band before heading over to the fireworks. Admission is free.

5 Local Summer Activities You Just Can’t Miss

The beautiful, warm weather always makes us want to go outside and soak in the sun. However, a lot of people struggle with what to do. We came up with a list of five local summer activities you jump start your summer actives!

#1: New West Fest

Bohemian Nights at NewWestFest is a free, three-day music festival held each August in historic downtown Fort Collins. The 2018 festival will take place August 10-12, 2018. The annual festival is co-produced by Downtown Fort Collins Business Association and Bohemian Nights. This free community music festival features 80+ Colorado bands, including headliner performances at the main stage on Friday, Saturday and Sunday; six stages of entertainment; more than 250 specialty art and food booths and even a family-centered kids’ music adventure and kids’ world area. Make sure to mark this event on your calendar!

#2: Old Town Square Movie Nights

Looking for something to do with the kids on a beautiful summer night? The Outdoor Movie Nights are free, family-friendly event will have free popcorn and feature a new movie on Tuesday evenings on a blow-up screen on the Old Town Square Stage, starting at dusk, between 8:15pm and 8:30pm! The dates are: July 10th, July 17th, July 24th, July 31st, and August 7th. The movies shown are The Princess Bride, How to Train your Dragon, Ghostbusters, Inside Out, The Sandlot, and Field of Dreams.

#3: Fort Collins Peach Festival

The Rotary Clubs of Fort Collins are excited to present the eighth annual Fort Collins Peach Festival on August 18th, 2018! After a wonderful time at Hughes Stadium the first six years we again look forward a FUN 2018 Peach Festival at our NEW location ~ Civic Center Park and Washington Park in Fort Collins. The Festival goes from 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM and the 5K race starts at 8:00 AM. This event will offer: Peaches from Palisade, 5K run/walk, Peach Pies, children entertainment, and MORE!

#4: Food Truck Rally

Did you know that every Tuesday night at City Park there is a food truck rally with free live music? It’s true! Starting at 5:30 PM and going until dusk, you can be sure to find us enjoying some food from the food trucks and listening to live music! This event happens every single Tuesday until September 25, to be sure to go at least once!

#5: Taste of Fort Collins

From June 8-10, there’s a big event happening in Fort Collins—Taste of Fort Collins! The Taste of Fort Collins is a community celebration with family-friendly activities that are perfect for Northern Coloradans’ active lifestyle. This three-day festival offers attendees food from local and national restaurants, entertainment from regionally and internationally acclaimed musicians, and an eclectic display of fine artisans work as well as the region’s best crafters. Tickets are needed to don’t delay any longer.

How to Keep Your Business Computers Healthy

Every winter, we do everything we can to avoid catching a virus. We buy the extra-super-mega-strength hand-soap. We wipe down every available surface with disinfectant wipes. We steer clear of anyone sniffling.

Then flu season passes, spring arrives, and we all breathe a sigh of relief. Why? Because we avoided catching one of America’s most common viruses. We avoided countless sick days, canceled plans, lost time, and wasted money.

We avoided a giant headache.

Question: Are you doing everything you can to protect your business from catching a virus?

What is a virus?

A computer virus is a malicious code or program designed to alter the function of a computer. Much like the flu, a computer virus can spread quickly from one computer to another. This can cause significant damage to data and software.

Want to avoid a huge software headache? Here are three simple ways to avoid catching a computer virus:

#1: Use strong passwords.

Passwords are the first line of defense for your network security. It can seem helpful to create easy-to-memorize passwords out of short, simple phrases. However, it’s critical that you use a complex combination of letters and numbers to boost security.

#2: Keep software up-to-date.

Software companies regularly release updates that fix bugs. These updates prevent hacking and malware. Stay up-to-date: set your computers to automatically install trusted updates.

#3: Never click on links from unknown email addresses.

According to Microsoft, almost 45% of virus infections are spread from email links. If you don’t recognize the sender of an email, don’t click links or open attachments.

Want to keep your network secure? We can help.

We can protect your servers, networks, and work stations. iPoint Technology provides 24/7 iNetwork Monitoring. We’ll guard your business against viruses, security breaches, data loss, and more. Call us at 970-266-0703 to learn more about our affordable network monitoring services.