Category Archives: Design

Use WordPress for Your Website, Not Just Your Blog

wordpress-logoGreat post written on the value of using the free WordPress platform not just as a blog, but as a website. I’ve talked to many startups and small business owners that don’t have a website to just use WordPress for their site. So many advantages including the fact you can get something up in minutes! But, more importantly, there is so much functionality and control built into WordPress, along with it being very search-engine friendly, that it can’t be ignored. Here is an excerpt from the post “Why Settle for a Blog When You Can Have a Blogsite“:

Blogging tools have evolved significantly due to the tremendous popularity of blogging in general. Because of this evolution blog software has actually become one of the best ways for small businesses to easily build feature rich, simple to edit, search engine friendly web sites.

I would urge anyone without a web site or with a boring static brochure site to take a good hard look at free piece of software called WordPress. The current version of the software can be downloaded from (They have a hosted blog version at but you want the download from the .org site.)

You can use this software to create your entire website whether you have or want a blog or not. (But, of course you need a blog too.) One of the best functions of this set-up is that anyone in your organization with the proper login permission can update and edit the site including adding pages, text and images without any knowledge of HTML or web design software such as Dreamweaver.

On of the core elements of WordPress is something called a theme. This is essentially the design template that controls the look and feel of all of the pages throughout the site. There are lots of places you can get pre-designed templates for blogs, but recently designers have started creating themes for the type of web site implementation I’m talking about in this article. Using these themes your web site looks like, well, a web site, instead of a blog.

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Filed under Blogging, Design, marketing, Web 2.0

Off Topic: 2009 Audi A4… Stunning!

I think I’m in love. The newly re-designed 2009 Audi A4 is coming to North America in September. Can’t wait to see those beaded headlights face-to-face.


Filed under Design, innovation

Steve Jobs Tells All

Steve JobsFortune has published a series of excerpts from an exclusive interview with Apple founder, Steve Jobs who reveals among other things, the keys to the company’s success and the prospects of Apple without him. Any one who reads this blog knows I’m a huge fan of Apple. They are the complete package – great products, friendly service, and brilliant marketing.

On the iPhone: “We all had cellphones. We just hated them, they were so awful to use. The software was terrible. The hardware wasn’t very good. We talked to our friends, and they all hated their cellphones too. Everybody seemed to hate their phones. And we saw that these things really could become much more powerful and interesting to license. It’s a huge market. I mean a billion phones get shipped every year, and that’s almost an order of magnitude greater than the number of music players. It’s four times the number of PCs that ship every year.

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Filed under Apple, Branding, Business, Cell phone, Design, innovation, iPhone, ipod, marketing, Packaging, Public Relations, Selling, Technology

Getting IT with New Web Campaign

we get IT logoWe’ve officially announced our new “we get IT” campaign at PEER 1 through this press release today. My team and I designed this campaign as way of telling our customers’ business story, and how hosting has played a critical role in doing what they do. So far, we’ve launched three video stories: (no.1 free online dating site), Vonage (leading broadband telephone provider) and Blast Radius (interactive design agency for fortune 500’s). This blends with my strong belief in making the customer the star, and allows us to keep the campaign as fresh as the individuals we profile. People are doing some very unique and innovative things online, so there is no shortage of content and intrigue. We’ve adopted a casual interview style with the segments hosted by former MTV VJ Brian Adler, who helps by injecting some humor and taking some of the mystery out of technology so that anyone can understand it. The other part of this campaign was a trial piece we launched on social media sites called “Growing Pains” which tells the story of a guy named Todd who brings home a server to start his own online business. “This is going to grow into something beautiful,” he exclaims. He’s right. Well, sort of. Things do grow… but just a little out of control. A fun (yet experimental) piece that we launched on October 19th and has since received over 34,000 views and over 500 entries into our free managed hosting contest. The next segment is in the works.


Filed under advertising, Branding, Brian Adler, Business, Co-location, Dating, Design, Hosting, Humor, innovation, Internet, Managed Hosting, marketing, Markus Frind, Online marketing tactics, PEER 1,

Interview with iPod and iPhone Marketing Guru


John Fortt at Fortune interviews Apple’s marketing lead for two of its most popular products, the iPhone and iPod, Greg Joswiak. Greg is credited for pushing for the 14-inch iBook despite Steve Job’s misgivings. The product has since turned into one of Apple’s best sellers. I wonder if he had any say in the terrible design of the In-Ear iPod Headphones? Nevertheless, I’m a big fan of Apple products and their marketing.

For a long time you managed Apple’s Mac laptop business, which is also going gangbusters these days, and I know you were really involved in discussions about how those products were designed and positioned in the product family. How was that job different from managing the iPod and iPhone?

First of all I manage product marketing and product management — I don’t actually own the engineering. But we work very closely with them, as you know, on the features we create and what the product’s going to be about. I look in a lot of ways at some of the similarities.

The first similarity you’ve heard me talk about before: Apple is in a pretty unique position because we’re a world-class hardware designer and a world-class software designer. It’s rare enough to be on one of those lists, and we’re the only company I can think of that’s on both of those lists. So whenever we design a product, we try to take advantage of that capability that we have, to engineer the hardware and the software together so we can take full advantage of each.

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Filed under Apple, Branding, Design, iMac, innovation, iPhone, ipod, marketing, Marketing Research

Great Swag at

Ever need promotional items, giveaways, company shirts, or swag? I’m in the middle of a whole bunch of trade shows and events and have been ordering items like crazy. I’ve used a bunch of providers in the past but have never been happy enough to stick with one. Until now. I’ve been using and their service is awesome! Their site showcases a brilliant catalog of quality items ranging from pens and stress balls, to thumb drives and golf shirts. What I like about their items is that users rate and comment on the them, so you can get a better sense of the product’s quality. Also, you can upload a jpeg of your logo and place it on any item online, and it’ll instantly show you a proof so you can get a visual of what the final product will look like. These are all great features, but I’ve been even more impressed with their account reps, who are helpful at a moments notice, and are on top of the shipping process with email alerts that include tracking numbers, as well as post-sale follow up. My rep there is Regina. Feel free to contact her, she’s been great for me!

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Filed under Branding, Design, Internet, marketing, Motivational, Small Business Marketing

PEER 1 Launches New Brand Building Campaign

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We’re launching a new brand building campaign this week at PEER 1. The campaign is called “we get IT”, and features a broad range of customers doing cool and innovative things online, while leveraging PEER 1’s IT infrastructure. The first video in the series profiles Vancouver-based interactive marketing and design agency Blast Radius, who co-locates their servers in our Vancouver data center. The shoot took a full day and about three weeks in post-production. Next up is free dating site Plenty of Fish which is currently in post-production, followed by leading VoIP provider, Vonage who we just wrapped up shooting on Friday in Toronto.

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Filed under advertising, Blogging, Branding, Business, Co-location, Communications, data center, Design, Hosting, Internet, Managed Hosting, marketing, Online marketing tactics, PEER 1, Small Business Marketing, Vancouver