May 2013 - Posts
Now you know all my recording secrets...
Allo! Errol here again with my second blog post to let you know how you can Do More with Method CRM! I am excited because I get to blog on a monthly basis, and if you can tell from my videos, if there’s anything I like to do, it’s talk. Thing is, it’s almost strange for me to write a blog post knowing that I have my microphone just behind me and I could just give you a vlog instead.
However, then it would be quite difficult for my editors to edit me, and trust me, I need to be edited. I tend to wander in my thoughts.
This month, I’m going to focus on the videos that are currently posted in the Help Center under the Setup section. Do you remember getting Coach Steps emailed to you when you first signed up for Method? All of those Coach Steps are found there under Setup:
And now each of those Coach Steps has a tutorial video attached with it. So if you have skipped your Coach Steps, or didn’t get them at all, here is your chance to set up your Method site!
If you would rather see all of the videos in a handy YouTube Playist, we are here for you.
In the future, we have many more tutorials lined up for you. My counterpart, Alex Krueger, who is the Technical Writer in charge of all things documentation, has been quite busy getting the written portion of the topics I video all organized.
In fact, he also edits all of the captioning that happens in the video just to make sure we get the correct spelling of “Ta-Dah!”
Once we are done, we do plan on releasing a new set of videos and documentation in a few weeks, so stay tuned!
If you have any questions, or suggestions for a video topic, by all means, please leave a comment below. You can even tweet me if you wish, @Method_Errol. I’m lonely on that account so a “Hi” would be nice.
Thanks for reading and I hope you have a great day!
Web design sits at the intersection of art, technology and sales. And that’s a tough cross-roads because art is subjective, technology can be empowering while intimidating, and sales is the lifeblood of every business. Needless to say, good web-design plays a key role in a company’s brand identity and ability to drive more leads.
You met Rodolfo, VP of Product at Method, a few months back when he first joined the team. He’s an ideas guy who’s passionate about design (and Dumplings, if you ever want to grab lunch with him.)
One thing that differentiates Rodolfo from other designers is his approach:
“My job is to align the technology, business goals and the user’s needs into one cohesive product,” Rodolfo says. “I'm the guy who asks the "why" of everything, which sometimes can be a pain in the butt, but it pays off big time in getting results.”
So whether you’re planning a redesign or starting from scratch here are Rodolfo’s:
3 Things to Improve Your Web Design
1. Business owners should be clear on goals. But keep them simple. If you want someone to give you something, facilitate the process. Don’t put barriers in between. So if your website’s main goal is lead generation and collecting email addresses, don’t make a customer click through three dropdowns, just ask - the fewer hoops a users has to jump through, the higher your conversion rate. And don’t put too much information on the homepage. Sometimes a person visiting your site just wants to have a glance. If you keep it simple and capture their attention, they’ll stick around for more.
2. Ask for several ideas and make sure they’re fairly different from each other. They don’t have to be full mockups as long as you can visualize what the finished product will look like. Maybe it’s just different colour palettes or maybe it’s completely different layouts. Then test these within your environment. Remove yourself from the test group and show it to your wife/husband, kids, friends, co-workers, peers and see what they have to say. Moreover, ask trusted customers for their feedback. A free survey tool like makes this fast and easy.
3. Listen to your designer’s recommendations. Yes, you have strong opinions and you’re an expert in your business. When it comes to online, your web designer is an expert too. They’ll benefit from your customer knowledge and will use that info when designing. Then they come up with a few concepts that might be simpler than you imagined and have a lot less copy. That’s OK. Creating an awesome user experience is their job. Let them do it. This quote from Albert Einstein applies to so many things, including Web Design: “Make everything as simple as possible. But not simpler.”
What’s been your experience working on your site design? Are you a DIY type of person or do you rely on someone with professional expertise? What tips would you add?
Please share your thoughts. And as the 3 Things series grows we’ll be adding guest bloggers and looking for your stories on what’s worked and what hasn’t, and how you adapted or improved on an idea we shared.
And one more question for Rodolfo - When is Method’s new, redesigned site launching? :-)
Till next time.
The Support Team - Adam, Jason, and Ashur (that’s me) - are here to help you with your questions about using Method CRM. Call us, email us, tweet us - we love to hear your feedback and find ways to help.
When customers bring up tricky topics we like to create Solutions and publish them on our Help Center (I like to refer to them as articles). That way all Method CRM users have access to these Solutions 24/7/365 in our easy-to-search Help Center. And starting now, we’ll b e blogging to highlight and share our latest Solutions to your questions.
The topic I would like to bring up today is:
Linking Method Users with QuickBooks (QB) Employees
You may be asking yourself "Why would I want to do that?", well let me tell you why. Linking someone’s Method User to their respective QB Employee will allow your organization to assign certain records to them, such as Leads or Customers.
For example, Bob's Auto Parts has a sales team of three (3) people, and Bob wants to divvy up his Method Leads evenly amongst his sales team. All he would need to do is edit the Lead and assign them a Sales Rep (QB Employee). Now, when Bob's sales team navigates to Leads and Contacts List, and uses the My Active Lead Contacts filter view, they'll only see the Leads which have been assigned to them. Cutting out the clutter is great, right?
Follow these simple steps to link a Method User to a QB Employee:
- Customize tab.
Navigate to the
- Click the Users tab link.
- Scroll down to the bottom of the page to locate the user, then click Edit... next to his/her user name.
- On Step 1 of 10, locate tLink to Employee/Vendor/OtherName (SalesRep) option and select the QB Employee from the dropdown list. *Note: If you want to link the user to a QuickBooks Sales Rep then look for names that are followed by initials in brackets, e.g. Joe Smith (JS1). Only Sales Rep records contain initials.
- Click Finish, and once the screen has refreshed, advise the user to sign out of Method then back in, in order to utilize the user setting change.
Hope this has been a helpful tidbit of information - there's plenty more where that came from!
Let us know if there are any topics you need more clarification on, and we'll be happy to write up some more juicy articles for our
He lp Ce nt er knowledge base. This blog was br ought to you by Ashur and the rest of the Support team. Signing off for now. Have an awesome day and stay tuned for lots more blog posts designed to help you do more with less
How to get in touch with Support
ill next time!
And if it’s really compe lling, other people will tell it for you . That’s the es sence of s olid publi c relations.
So h ow do SMB s get s t arted i n PR?
As a former agency owner, I wa nt to say, hire me :) However, you can do a lot to lay a strong foundation yourself, especially in the first few years. These days, I’m the resident PR/Content Strategy specialist at Method so I thought I’d let you peek under the PR hood.
Here are three things you can do to get started on PR for your business:
1. Craft your story. Some people call it a news hook or elevator pitch. It should be a short yet captivating overview of who you are, what you do and why you do it best (no more than 100 to 150 words). Drill down to the essence of your business and add in dramatic details (i.e. little guy battles big established player). Just be sure to avoid jargon. Write it down and then read it aloud to hear what it sounds like. Tell it to your trusted colleagues, friends and family. Ask them if they have any suggestions for improvement. Then listen to the feedback, revise and practice some more. You’ll know you’ve got it right when people’s eyes light up as you tell it.
E very business needs a great story, the kind th at engages customers and partners, bu ilds long-standing relationships and gene rates re ferr al s.
Build relationships before the ‘ask’. As with customers, your relationships with media, bloggers and other influencers don’t happen overnight. It takes time to develop credibility and trust. So as you’re creating your story, start paying attention to who’s writing about your industry in your local paper, magazines, online publications and blogs. Introduce yourself, comment on their posts and share them with your network. After a while they’ll start noticing you and maybe even ask you to tell your story before you pitch them.
Understand that not all news is created equal. Don’t expect to be covered on the front page of the Wall Street Journal or even your local paper. Your new product or expansion may be the biggest thing to happen to your business but, as they say, may not amount to a hill of bean to local media if you haven’t positioned it properly. You need to know how you fit in the news cycle – most likely you’ll be a soft or feature story, which doesn’t have the same priority as breaking news.
Like comedy, the secret of PR is timing and storytelling. Make sure you’ve got both when you go out with your pitch.
Have you tried doing some PR for your business? Any other tips to add?
Please share your thoughts. And as the
3 Things series grows we’ll be adding guest bloggers and looking for your stories on what’s worked and what hasn’t, and how you adapted or improved on an idea we shared.
A lot of customers told us they’d love it if we offered additional info on how to get the most out of Method CRM, including more Video Tutorials! So we listened and I’m here!
My name is Errol. Maybe you’ve heard my voice already if you’ve called in to Method or caught a few of our newest videos in the Help Center. If not, then welcome to my post!
I was brought on to Method to create easy-to-understand video tutorials. And I totally love my job. First, not only do I get to learn and talk all day, but I get to be 'me'! (That may be frightening for some of you and my coworkers, till you get to know me, that is.)
I'm the one in black that didn’t get his own pizza.
I hope you’ll watch the videos (or 'screencasts'). We’ll be producing them on a on a regular basis and want to hear from you and know what you think! Why? Because the videos are for you and designed to be helpful and show you how easy it is to customize our platform for your needs.
And if you haven't seen one yet, here's a short example that will be going in our documentation (Yes! We are going to have documentation too!)
Click the picture and the magic of the internet will take you to our Help Center!.
There are many more videos in the Help Center and we will keep adding new ones as they’re produced. For now, the first seven articles under "Setup" each has a video! I even added some handy-dandy links at the top of each article so you won't miss the video.
See that link? I put it in because I care.
So by all means, check them out and please send us your suggestions. And if you have any ideas for a video or questions you want answered, please let us know. You can comment on the blog! Comment on the video! Tweet us @methodcrm!
We really want to hear from you so we can create the kind of content you’re looking for. And if we don’t hear back... Well, let’s just say I’ll have to start doing videos chronicling my lunch hours. No one wants that.
Take care and have a great day!