Here's our end of month review for April...
April been a good test for time planning and project balancing. With new websites coming in thick and fast and Easter being an important time for our E-commerce clients, it’s taken a great team effort to fit everything in.
Our development team have been working closely with one of our clients to create an online portal to aid the running of his personal fitness business, and also add an online recipe collection to add value to his product. Once the functionality had been agreed and developed, I was tasked with designing the user interface – with the focus on usability and attractive, clean design.
Another interesting project this month was for a solicitor, who wanted her website to be the opposite of every other solicitors website! The feeling was that competitors in the industry lacked character. It’s always good to think differently from your competitors, to set yourself apart, and we achieved this well with a bold and brave website design, which reflected our clients personality.
Visit live website: mercerlaw.co.uk
In April I began managing more accounts after the success of reaching targets in March.
What I’ve enjoyed this month at Twilo is working with the team and creating Easter themed advertisements and offers for majority of our clients.
Twilo’s work ethic shows especially when the team create a new website for a client, and the client loves the work so much they want Twilo to create a marketing strategy and manage their accounts. This is when you know everyone here at Twilo have a passion for what they do. The atmosphere is great and we are are always pushing ourselves to further improve as individuals and a team.
I’m looking forward to pushing the envelope with the accounts I’m currently managing. I’ve began analysing the data and making changes on a regular basis which has shown with a positive conversion rate for our client’s.
This month I have been looking at ecommerce systems and how to integrate payment systems with modern programming languages such as PHP.
This is mainly how to process the transactions at the end of the purchasing process, i.e. how to take the amount you have calculated for the value fo the cart and charge a customer via card, bank transfer, etc. There are lots of different payment systems available, Stripe, PaymentSense and PayPal being just 3 of many, and each one has its own way of taking payments. For Example:
PayPal uses its own built in JS API that will either redirect the customer to PayPal to pay for their goods or will open up an in-context window that allows a customer to pay for their goods, this is generally the easiest payment system to integrate as a lot of the code for its API has already been written and tested by PayPal.
Stripe uses a REST API to process payments, this means that all payments are done via sending a request with an amount to Stripe, Stripe will then charge the customer for you and transfer to amount into your Stripe account where it can be withdrawn to your bank account at a later date. This is the most common type of integration, systems such as this use the REST standard and are often fairly straightforward to use. Some systems will use a SOAP/REST API which works in a similar way but by sending XML instead of JSON or query variables.
Simon likes to make fires, here's what he's burnt this month...
This month we had a strange flame popping up in one of our fires, this is caused by the fire being hot enough to start to burn copper, which will turn the flames blue.
Joke of the Month
What do you call a computer that sings?
This month I have been busy with it being the Easter period I’ve been doing seasonal advertising.
I have been doing tasks such as adding Easter events to client’s websites and social media pages. I have also been promoting competitions through social media and email marketing which is something that I haven’t done much of, I have enjoyed designing the emails and looking at the looking at the reports to check how many people have opened it and clicked through to the website. I have also been promoting seasonal offers and new products that clients have released.
The team also spent half a day training where we had to look at Twilo’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, this made us all aware of what we need to be doing better and to see things in a different light. We also looked at what we need to stop, start, continue, do more of and less, with all our ideas we can now put them to action to improve Twilo. And finally, we looked at where we wanted to be in 1 year, 3 years and 5 years. This gave us time to really think about where we wanted to be within Twilo and how we want Twilo to succeed.
Bank Holiday season has started and with it came amazing weather, it’s amazing how the lighter mornings put a spring in our step!
During April I’ve spent a lot of time working ‘on’ the business, rather than ‘in’ it. It’s always hard to get that balance right but it must be done.
We started with our Q2 meeting and the team came up with some great ideas. The most notable suggestions related to the software we use and what we can develop to help us and our clients. We’re starting by working on a CRM and quoting system. As for our clients we are looking at developing a Digital Marketing Report system which will allow us to deliver comprehensive reports quickly and more regularly. We’ve made great progress with our DM accounts in recent months and it’s now time to look at improving our service offering with something truly bespoke to match our business values.
At the end of our Q2 meeting I asked the team what they think our advantages are and it’s clear we are all working together with the same focus;
- We “GET THE WORK DONE” and we “DO IT RIGHT”
- We take an interest in the client’s business
- We over-deliver allowing the client to focus on running their own business
- You’re dealing with the people doing the work, not a Salesperson
- We work to a high standard
- We are “GENUINE” and “HARD WORKING”
Talk is cheap so we know we have to back everything up, and that is what we work hard to do.
Twilo invited Malcolm Hall and his colleagues Nick & Nigel from ‘The Realistic Business Consortium‘ to deliver a team building exercise which we found very productive as it raised further ideas from the team. On the back of this we have an action plan to help solidify Twilo’s standing and further improve our service.
Twilo is now well into year 4 which is a great achievement and one I am proud of, both for myself and the team who are working hard and delivering fantastic Websites and Digital Marketing campaigns. It’s now time to put all of the last months findings into practice and move ahead with improving our service offering.
Photo of the Month
And to end, here's something cool we've seen this month...
On April 1st, Google announced that they are working on a new project called the Google Tulip. They claimed that tulips try and talk to humans to let us know what they need. The program would let users talk to their plants and understand what they’re saying, you can find the video on YouTube, it’s pretty ridiculous but also entertaining.