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Thought Leadership Hits The Mark With SEO

seoIn today’s business climate, an effective website is critical to your business’ success. Your website can make or break you. It isn’t just about being pretty anymore. Your site must work hard for you. Your website is your brand; it must provide intelligent content, be easy to manipulate and yield high ranking internet search results.
This emphasis on internet search results spawned a new marking tool a few years ago called Search Engine Optimization (SEO). SEO is the process of affecting the visibility of a website on the internet. The idea, of course, is that the more frequently a site appears in the search results list, the more visitors it will receive from the search engine’s users. As a marketing strategy, SEO evaluates how search engines work, what people search for, and keywords.
Since the advent of SEO, there has been an onslaught of web design firms advertising their ability to create effective SEO tactics for your website. There are different ways to do this, but many practices are ineffective. Google and other search engines are on to these tactics that try to “game” the system and continue to change their programming to avoid it. The only sure-fire way to increase your search ranking is to create authentic, relevant content.
At Integritive, we focus on our iOS, or integrated Online Strategy. We work with business leaders to pluck out the most marketable aspects of their business and apply them with intelligence and style. We look at competition, site structure, search engine compatibility, copy, exposure, and use it all to enhance your results. We create organic content for viewers to discover, that is compelling, and that people talk about and share. The most effective SEO measures the engagement on your site; it’s about the metrics of engagement. When we design a web site, we spend time producing real, valuable, relevant content that your clients need.
If you’re not providing value to your audience, then you’re likely just adding noise to the online world. We understand that providing value to your clients secures your position in the market. By providing intelligent, strategic thought leadership to the C-suite, we provide a value beyond measure. We make sure that the websites we create go well beyond a pretty piece of real estate on the internet. An Integritive website has the corner on the market.

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Simon Sinek: How Great Leaders Inspire Action

In this Ted Talk, Simon Sinek explains why some companies or business ventures are successful and others are not. Sinek explains the Golden Circle concept of Why, How, What. His talk exemplifies what we believe at Integritive; that people respond to why you do something, not what you do. As business leaders, it is critical that we understand and are able to communicate why we do what we do. This purpose, this why, must dictate how you do business as well as how you hire your employees. “If you hire people just because they can do a job, they’ll work for your money. But if you hire people who believe what you believe, they’ll work for you with blood and sweat and tears,” says Sinek. Until we are able to do this, we will never reach our true potential.

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Sustainability = Profitability

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These days, it seems that talk of sustainable business practices is everywhere. There are websites and magazines dedicated to helping businesses institute green practices. Here in Asheville, we’ve been talking about sustainability and best green business practices for a while. But what does sustainability really mean, and more importantly for some, can it be profitable?

Sustainable businesses or green businesses have minimal negative impact on the global or local environment, community, or economy. These businesses use the triple bottom line approach focusing on people, planet and profit. Sustainability is at the heart of all their business decisions. They use sustainable development and distribution processes to meet consumer need, protect the environment, and stimulate business growth.

While sustainable business talk may be prevalent, it is exciting to now see real evidence that these practices, in addition to supporting our environment, are also profitable. Starbucks joins the ranks of many businesses that have shifted business tactics to focus on sustainability. Their recently released annual sustainability report shows successful initiatives ranging from ethically sourced coffee beans, reduced water consumption, recycling and green building. In fact, Starbucks new LEED green building initiative helped decrease its energy consumption by 7.5% since 2008, with a targeted goal of 25 percent by 2015.

Timberland focuses on making outdoors products in factories that neither pollute the water or air, while maintaining a democratic workplace. The company focuses on creating thoughtful products that are built to last, and at the end of their lives, are able to be disassembled and upcycled. They are changing the outdoor fashion industry with their belief that less is more; that by generating fewer but better products, they can grow economically while operating in the environment sustainably. This idea of designing products to maximize desirability and minimize their environmental footprint is gaining traction. Patagonia’s Common Threads Program extends the life of their garments by asking customers to reduce, repair, reuse, recycle and re-imagine their products with their technical support and ebay store.

These companies are lowering costs, increasing profits, and reducing environmental impact. Recently, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology issued its third annual Sustainability and Innovation Global Executive Study. The study looked at survey responses from thousands of businesses leaders worldwide. The results were encouraging, showing “nearly 50 percent of companies have changed their business models as a result of sustainability opportunities.” Not only are these companies leaving a smaller global footprint, they are increasing revenue.
Sustainable business practices can take many shapes and forms. It is important for business leaders to study all aspects of their business, from nuts to bolts, to determine where there are opportunities for better, sustainable practices. By thinking creatively, you will be able to institute changes, whether small or large, to your business that can create more environmentally responsible strategies while increasing business revenue

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TED Talks: Nigel Marsh: How to make work-life balance work

Nigel Marsh shares his ideas on how to enjoy a balanced life.  It’s not about money, the lavish trips, nice cars or casual Fridays.  It’s about how to balance your work/personal life to make those small moments in your life special.  You need to be engaged in your family.  You will be more productivity in the workplace with a happy personal life.  It’s up to you to design your life for your balance. Integritive prides itself on being an environment that allows our staff to feel empowered to find the balance in their lives.  This must be why we enjoyed Nigel’s talk so much.

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Ted Talk Renny Gleeson: 404, the story of a page not found

“Little things, done right, actually matter.” says Gleeson in this Ted Talk about 404 error pages.

Mistakes are inevitable.  We all make them. But when we embrace the opportunity in them – that’s when genius is revealed. How we deal with mistakes defines who we are, what our company is. So many great innovations were really just mistakes.  For example, imagine if Alexander Fleming hadn’t forgotten to clean up his petri dishes; we wouldn’t have penicillin.  And without Spencer Silver’s epic fail to create a superstrong adhesive for 3M Laboratories, Post-It Notes wouldn’t have been invented. Successful businesses look for moments in which to capitalize on opportunity.  It’s important to keep in mind that mistakes are opportunity too.  The way we handle them, learn from them and create from them can actually build business, not destroy it.  Gleeson points out that, “Well-designed moments build brands.” So the next time, you hit the 404 page in your work, remember to stay nimble, be creative and look for the opportunity hidden within it.