Blog

Chase Crawford

Recently, I attended my 2nd year of the 3 year auctioneering programed called Certified Auctioneer's Institue in Bloomington, Indiana. It is a program put on by the National Auctioneers Association for the best of the best in the auction industry. It covers many areas crucial to the rapidly changing and growing auction industry such as salesmanship, marketing, business strategy and structure, as well as internet sales and media technology.

In the business world, no matter what profession your business may be, it is crucial to always stay ahead of the curve. Also, it is just as important to develop a circle of collegues who are most comfortable operating on the razor's edge. Before I began my 3 year training jouney with CAI, the only measuring stick I had was the small handful of competitors in my own market. Now, after broadening my horizons and networking with the best of the best in the industry, I have raised myself and my business to an entirely new plateau. Instead of only being able to see how things are done in my own back yard, I have a clear view of the entire field of auctioneering, nationwide.

We at Old Empire apply this thinking to all of our customers... Read More

Robert Adams

I went into a local Pizza shop not so long ago, and the owner quickly welcomed us. He continued his greeting by asking us where we heard about the restaurant, and more specifically was looking to understand what radio station we had heard the advertisement on. I asked him if he had a website, and he did not. There are many types of advertisements available. Most cost a pretty hefty amount to keep running. Depending on your audience, some of those forms of advertising will work better than others. As much as I like digital communications, I'm never a one-size-fits-all approach kind of guy. Anybody who does anything the same every time only knows how to do what they are doing one way as far as I'm concerned. Different audiences get information in different places, and it's not always on a computer screen.

While I can't guarantee that digital marketing and promotions are the best in every situation, they do have their advantages. Most of their advantages revolve around their ability to track the number of people who are seeing and clicking on their pages and ads. This isn't just for webpages. This also applies to social media, and just about any good digital marketing tools... Read More

Robert Adams

URL shorteners are showing up everywhere these days! That is because people need them, and for a variety of different reasons. While there are many good reasons to use URL shorteners, sometimes using them is somewhat unnecessary. Not only can it be unnecessary, but can even be somewhat counter-productive in certain circumstances.

Before we get started in the crash course, lets outline why we have rediculously long URLs in the first place. I don't mean to point any fingers Google, but did I mention Google? One of the primary culprit's is the nature of how many search engines work. The URL helps ensure that search engines find your article and show it to anyone searching for those key terms. There's a whole lot to this Search Engine Optimization stuff, and it's an entirely different subject. Just be aware that it is important to having your content found. Sometimes it is because the sites are part of a large system that limits the URL options to unnecessarily long URLs that no one will ever be able to type. URL shorteners to the rescue!

One of the primary reasons URL shorteners are necessary is for sites - mainly Twitter - that count the characters you use. When... Read More

Robert Adams

In a world where we believe innovation happens all around us, sometimes we have a difficult time pinpointing a great deal of innovations. Often we look around and wonder what innovations are left to be made. Of course we claim that Old Empire Media Solutions is an innovative company, but what innovations are we responsible for, and what evidence do we have that we are truly innovative? It's actually a fine question, and one that I'm always anxious to answer. Innovating is part of the product that we produce. It's what sets us apart from many other solution. It's something we just love to do.

Human Centered Design Approach

When we approach a project, we don't look to create the same product for every client. We don't have a template gallery for you to choose from. What a site looks like is very very important to us. We want it to be something you can be proud of! But before we begin that journey, we want it to make your life better. I've dealt with many sites that created more hardship than they did provide solutions. Websites are the core of your online presence in most scenarios. The questions we usually ask when we begin our... Read More

Jarred Gant

It is pretty easy to get swept up with marketing strategies that only include web, email, social media or other forms of digital transmission and overlook good ole’ fashioned printed material. We live in a convenience driven society that loves having information at its digital fingertips, but it has become a double edged sword. Sometimes we can oversaturate with “e-marketing” to the point of our advertising being ignored.Obviously digital marketing catches the most traffic for the least amount of effort, but don’t forget about such printed materials as business cards, brochures, flyers and signage. These traditional forms of marketing are traditional for a reason….they work. A sharply designed logo tied in to a web presence, social media outlet and printed material is a winning combination.

Like most of you, I receive a barrage of emails every day from people wanting to sell me some sort of new gadget or software that promises to increase my potential.  It's easy for me to just hit that delete button or take it a step further and block a sender that floods my inbox. If I’m talking to someone face to face about the services we offer and give them a business card or a... Read More

Chase Crawford

A big part of the job we do at Old Empire is helping our clients send messages to their audience. In today's world we are constantly bombarded with all kinds of messages. Television and Radio advertisements, traffic signs and signals, billboards, magazines at the check out line, everywhere we look there is a message telling us to buy this or don't turn here. There is a lot of pushing and shoving between message senders and message receivers.

Facebook and Twitter, while giving message makers a new platform for having their messages heard, have also given message receivers a new kind of training as far as receiving messages. In the old days, Uncle Jesse might send one letter a month to us, and that way we'd be fully updated on what he was up to and what his plans were until the next month's letter. Social media has changed all of that! With the migration from the home computer to the smart phone or other handheld mobile devices, message receivers not only want more updates, we demand them. Uncle Jesse's once a month correspondence via snail mail no longer cuts the butter!

While many message producers might see this as a new pain in the rear to produce daily, or in... Read More

Robert Adams

I remember going in front of a Board of Education several years ago and trying to explain what an open source content management system is and why it is really cool. There were more than a few skeptics in the group. A few embraced the idea, but really didn't understand it. After all, when someone offers you something for free, there's usually a catch. That is often the case even with Open Source software, but the catch is part of the beauty of open source. For example, let's say that I'm a developer and I need an exceptional photo editing program. Not like MS Paint, but closer to Photoshop. I could develop my own piece of software that does what I need, because after all, I'm a highly skilled developer. There's still a problem. Developing that software would take endless hours of coding and fixing bugs, and in the end, Photoshop just keeps getting more and more awesome. At this point in my hypothetical scenario, developing my program is eating up hours and hours of time I don't actually have to waste. Maybe it would be wise to just buy Photoshop. Right? In a similar scenario, what if I'm a developer who needs a photo editing program, and I also have fifteen other... Read More

Jarred Gant

Just the word "Drone" strikes fear in to the hearts of conspiracy theorists, anti-government fanatics, paranoid privacy advocates and really anyone that follows mainstream media. Fortunately we have a cute and cuddly acronym to make them less scary. UAS or Unmanned Aerial System is the proper term for these marvels of modern technology. In the recent years there has been an explosion of hobbyists and professionals that have been purchasing and using UAS’s in practical and creative ways. From the farmer that wants to check on hard to reach areas of crop ground to the weekend videographer that wants to add a different perspective to film project to the neighbor kid that wants to see if he can do a sweet barrel roll over your parked Lexus.

It was projected that UASs in varying shapes and sizes would be one the most popular holiday gifts with over 1,000,000 sales projected by the FAA. This raises a question….what do we do with 1 million new “drones” in skies? The Federal Aviation Administration has been scrambling for the last few years to come up with a way to regulate, monitor and police UAV usage in the US. There are understandable security concerns with heightened... Read More

Robert Adams

There are gobs of reasons you might need a new website. Most of them revolve around communication or sales, but it doesn't matter whether your a start-up from your garage or a government organization, it's no secret that a fresh website is a must have. It's a little scary for anyone darkening that door for the first time, though. There are loads of terminology you might not understand. There are lots of pieces that have to work together, and depending on your goals and demands, websites vary greatly. The trouble is, unless you're a web developer or at least exceptionally savvy with your tech skills, it's hard to differintiate between solutions and know that you're getting your money's worth. So what do I need, and what is it worth? I'm going to offer you a list of solutions you might or might not have heard about, and give you some pros and cons for each.

Wix, Squarespace, Weebly, and other "free" website builders

I'm not putting free in quotes because I'm selling web pages, and I don't like the free competition. I've seen alot of great pages built with these platforms. Usually they have some great tools for making a quick and simple website for a business at a... Read More

Chase Crawford

Being in the service industry prior to Old Empire as an auctioneer, I’ve got to meet a lot of different people, many of which are in business for themselves in various trades. Something I’ve discovered is that we might all be in a different business; many times we have the same needs.
After having my head filled with aggressive and progressive business ideas from the pros during my 2 week stint in auction school, forward one year to me pulling my hair out trying to build the company’s very first website, (HTML I learned had changed a lot in my 6 years out of high school web design class), I knew that my web skills wouldn’t allow me to build a site professional enough to match how professional I considered my business.
Let’s go to the website store and buy the prettiest site on the shelf… I quickly saw that there wasn’t a business in my bustling home town of 214 residents. All jokes aside, I had a very difficult time finding a person, let alone a company within a 2 hour drive, to build the professional website I envisioned. Long story short, I ended up meeting a stranger off Craigslist from the other side of the state. I was a business professional who felt I had no... Read More

Robert Adams

How often do we ask ourselves "How can we do it better". When Old Empire was just a pup, we all sat down and put our heads together and started building strategies for our first website ever. Immediately, Chase, the guy who doesn't do site construction begins pitching this elaborate ideas. "What if we have nothing but pictures" he begins with his arms stretched out. "They can constantly fly down from the screen," he proceeds as he continues racing through how this intense user experience could potentially work. I'm sure my eyebrows were raised and centered across my forehead, chuckling inside at how naive he was to imagine such an elaborate yet impossible plan. I waited until he was finished. I then proceeded to shoot about 15 holes in his plan.

As people and users of technology, we become accustomed to working well within our safe boundaries. The way we have done it all of these years just becomes the way it is done. While I work with students at School of the Osage High School, I like to ask them how we can make our school's website better. Inevitably, even their fresh young minds are eager to just fill in content with stuff. When I stop them from proceeding in... Read More

Robert Adams

Web developers are just like everybody else. They believe there is the right way to do things -- their way. I'm not so different. I have preferences myself when it comes to building a rock solid web presence. Managing content is something that all developers have different opinions on and take different approaches. When clients walk in the door and start asking questions, I tend to play the CMS card. Not because I like to intimidate or confuse people, but because it is an important factor in how a website is set up. As a school teacher, one of the questions I tend to ask my students is "What do you think a content management system is?" At this, everyone is typically uncomfortable giving the obvious and correct answer -- a system to manage content. It sounds complicated, but it is actually a pretty simple concept. Plain and simple if you are a small business looking at having a website developed you are going to get one of the following: Open Source CMS Proprietary CMS No CMS All CMS options are going to tend to offer you ways to manage what is on your pages, menus, blog posting, and user management features. The CMS is great for giving users with little or no web development... Read More

Robert Adams

Building an online presence is a challenging feat. Organizations and businesses approach these challenges in many ways, but with all of the acronyms and words thrown about, it's hard to be sure you're getting it right. The first step in understanding how to set goals with an online presence is to understand what it is that you want available online. Online content can be produced in a variety of different ways, and each of these has their place in the modern internet. It's easy to look at a great website and think how much more legit your business would be with a sweet slider to highlight your news content. You may look at a great social media page and feel like you need to really step up your game to compete on social media. Understanding what type of content, who your audience is, and how they want to receive content is crucial to the success of any online campaign.

Social Media has created a new mold for content consumers in the last several years. The audience is no longer that interested in going to find their news content and feeds. They are much more inclined to subscribe to a social media feed and have all of the most recent information delivered to their... Read More