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War Room in action

Here's a peek at our War Room - where we brainstorm and experience a higher plane of consciousness.

Glerin's war room in action

Our brainstorming sessions require not only intense thought, but also a relaxed atmosphere that's conducive to the flow of creative thinking.  Devoid of furniture to avoid clutter and because we think better on our feet, we drag in bean bag chairs, stools, and a futon when we do want to sit. The dry erase walls are great for capturing extemporaneous thoughts, and provide a way for ideas to marinate as we pass through the room later (on our way to the kitchen, of course).

Lake bungalow's metamorphosis into design office

We're in the process of renovating our bungalow on Banister Lake in Halifax into fun, modern office space.  Stay tuned as we post updates throughout the project. and when all is finished we hope you'll join us for the ribbon cutting!  At Glerin, every day is a day on the lake...

Glerin's design office on the lake in Halifax, VA

Make sure your other departments back up your social media presence!

I struggled with whether to do this post or not.  Those who know me well know that I'm not a troublemaker or rabble-rouser; I cringe at stirring up trouble, especially for others in their jobs. As a business owner, I know how hard it is to get everything right and make the pieces all fit together. Having said that, I had an experience recently that I really do feel has a good lesson in it and have decided to share it in the spirit of learning and improving, not in attacking or flaming.

Usually companies do a better job in their traditional sales and support services than through social media, simply because people are still getting used to it.  This is a case in reverse.  It is not meant to be an indictment of the company I had the experience with, just an example of how one area can be on top of things but another drop the ball, negating gains made by the one doing a good job. [UPDATE: please read to the end for response from Justyn Howard, CEO of Sprout Social.]

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Social media is a two-way street

obnoxious social media

I know our clients get tired of hearing this, but I can't say it enough: social media is about networking and building relationships, not about broadcasting your own message incessantly.  Nobody cares about you and your product.  They care about how you can help them - whether it's solving a problem or just having fun.

A friend of mine is a good example: he followed a link in an email to read a story by an awesome artist whose work he admired, then reached out in the blog comments section saying he enjoyed the story. Then he tweeted the story to his followers. Guess what?  The blogger followed him back after that, and ended up asking him to participate in a project he was doing. You just never know who you might meet through social media, just like you never know who you might meet at a party.

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What is SOPA/PIPA and why should you care?

You've probably heard about the controversy surrounding SOPA and PIPA, but if you're like most people you have no idea what it is, what it means, and why you should care.  SOPA stands for the Stop Online Piracy Act and PIPA stands for the Protect IP Act.  Like most things, they started out with good intentions but have dangerous implications for the future of the internet.

The goal of SOPA and PIPA is to give the government and copyright holders the ability to block access to "rogue websites dedicated to infringing or counterfeit goods," especially those outside of the US.  SOPA is supposed to protect against copyright infringement and would allow copyright owners and/or the US Dept. of Justice to seek court orders against anyone who facilitates or enables those who are infringing on copyrights. The key words are facilitates and enables - notice it doesn't say actually infringing.

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