Musings and news-ings

Jarrett Smith

Posted by on Monday, August 22, 2016

Online Marketing

Leveraging User Surveys to Improve Your Website


User surveys are a simple, cost effective way to gather valuable feedback directly from your website’s visitors, and over the past couple of years, we’ve started integrating them into many of our website design and development projects.

In this post, I’ll explain how to set up a simple user survey and mine the results for helpful insights that you can use to improve your website. Continue Reading…

Alex Nikdel

Posted by on Thursday, August 4, 2016

Culture & Community

CNP Makes Florida Trend’s Best Companies List – Again

cnp employees working in open office space

How do I say this without bragging? CNP has been named one of the Best Companies to Work For in Florida for the second year in a row! OK, that’s definitely bragging, but we’re still very proud to make the list. Over the past year or so, we’ve been working hard to refine our vision and internal processes in an effort to ensure CNP is a place that delivers GREAT work to our clients, but also is a place where our employees love to work. With 100 companies on the list, we moved up to No. 10 from the 27th spot last year in the Small Biz category (Cue applause).

Companies that participate in the annual Best Companies list undergo an evaluation of their workplace policies, practices, philosophy, systems and demographics, and they’re featured in the August issue of Florida Trend magazine. From our open vacation policy to paying 100 percent of health care premiums, we want CNP to be among the best employers out there. We think this achievement, which was an all-out team effort, deserves some recognition – and maybe a little bit of bragging.

So, what have we been up to?

Best Companies to Work for in FloridaWell, we always advise our clients to push the envelope and look for new and innovative ways to reinvent themselves. The client, this time, was us.  We knew we had a collective of great people with even greater intentions, but we had never done the work to properly clarify WHO we are, WHY we do what we do and WHERE we are going in the future.

The first step was to refocus our long-term vision and define who we always will be, regardless of the type of work we are doing. This took the form of our five core values:

  1. A sense of ownership – In client and agency challenges and opportunities. In our work, attitude, relationships, decisions, mistakes and collective financial success. An overflowing trash can? Even that.
  2. Demand more from ourselves than our clients do – With the ultimate goal of taking them to a place they never would’ve gotten to on their own. We are proud to be self-motivated, impact-minded advocates for our clients’ success. We are not proud to be order takers.
  3. Humble competence – We speak confidently from our passion and the mastery of our craft. And yet we recognize our own limitations and respect other opinions. Ideas and recommendations are communicated with thoughtful candor and never thoughtless arrogance.
  4. Continuous improvement – Lifelong learners. Making it better – then making it even better. Being open to what’s possible, rather than what’s not possible. In the quality of our work and daily habits. In our professional and personal potential.
  5. One life to live – We understand that the see-saw of work/life balance can tip one way or another (sometimes at a moment’s notice). The CNPOV is: Work hard when necessary, check out when necessary and keep things in perspective.

We also took an honest look at our internal processes and found quite a few ways to tune up the engine. It might seem counterintuitive for a firm with a bunch of fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants creatives, but one of the keys to our recent success involves more structure and discipline. Two nasty words that, when implemented, paid off for everyone. I always tell the team that I want them to be creative with the actual work, not the process by which the work is executed. Our staff is more motivated, and we’ve reaching new clients, particularly in higher education and the tech industry.

You’ll see more roll out in the next several months – new brand identity, new website, new systems, client-friendly work processes and, ultimately, GREATER work.


Joe Cruz

Posted by on Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Software Development, Web Development

Leveraging the WordPress REST API


The WordPress REST API Plugin is a simple-to-use plugin that allows you to access your WordPress posts, pages and other data via a JSON-based REST API. REST APIs have grown in popularity in recent years because they are fast, platform-independent and easy to integrate.

WordPress is a powerful CMS with a ton of extensible features, so why use the WordPress REST API? I’ll let the authors of the plugin explain:

“WordPress is moving toward becoming a fully-fledged application framework, and we need new APIs. This project was born to create an easy-to-use, easy-to-understand and well-tested framework for creating these APIs, plus creating APIs for core … WP API exposes a simple yet easy interface to WP Query, the posts API, post meta API, users API, revisions API and many more. Chances are, if you can do it with WordPress, WP API will let you do it.”
Continue Reading…

Glenn Welser

Posted by on Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Web Development

Debugging WordPress on VVV with PhpStorm

So you’re using Varying Vagrant Vagrants and PhpStorm for local WordPress development. Maybe you’ve heard or read what a great boon PhpStorm is for debugging but you haven’t made it all the way through configuring the project. Maybe you haven’t had time to read the tutorials or you set up a new dev environment seldom enough the steps just aren’t sticking in your long-term memory. If you’re still using var_dump to track down issues, never fear. Let this brief, handy walkthrough guide you to debugging bliss.

Continue Reading…

Jarrett Smith

Posted by on Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Online Marketing

Hey Marketers! Get Ready for the Physical Web


See how emerging Physical Web technology works and explore some of its potential uses for fun and profit.

Imagine waiting for a bus and instantly pulling up the route, schedule and arrival time for the next bus, right on your phone. Or, how about finding a lost pup and accessing an interactive dog collar with the owner’s contact information. That’s the promise of Google’s open source Physical Web project, and if it takes off, it could transform millions of everyday items like bus stops and dog collars into “smart” objects full of information and interactions.

Continue Reading…

Alex Nikdel

Posted by on Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Advertising & Creative

CNP Catches a String of Wins at the 2016 ADDYs


Mardi Gras frivolity was in the air at the 2016 ADDY Awards, hosted by the Polk County chapter of the American Advertising Federation. An annual gathering to honor excellence in the art of advertising, the ADDYs offer local industry pros an occasion to cut loose and applaud outstanding creative work.

Photo 2016-02-26 11_23

In keeping with this year’s “Laissez les Bons Temps Rouler” theme, the Lakeland Center venue was transformed into a colorful French Quarter fantasyland. Authentic Cajun cuisine, a live brass band (and yes, even a giant snapping turtle), helped create a festive “on-the-bayou” atmosphere that put everyone in the mood to celebrate.

And celebrate we did! At the end of the evening, CNP took home an impressive number of wins — six Gold ADDYs, eight Silver ADDYs, two “Best in Category” awards and two out of three Judge’s Choice awards.

It’s always a privilege to be recognized for delivering great work, and we are so thankful for the clients who give us the opportunity to do just that. With the excitement of a big win under our belt, our entire team is fully energized and looking forward to creating lots more amazing work in the year to come.

Check out the highlights of our ADDYs haul below —

Continue Reading…

Josh Nederveld

Posted by on Monday, August 24, 2015

Web Development

Introducing the WordPress Admin Command Palette Plugin


When you're using the Admin Command Palette, it'll feel like you're navigating the WordPress admin at warp speed.

What it is

It’s a live search modal window in the WordPress admin! Using it to search admin content will return results for WordPress Admin Menu items, as well as links to the Edit Screen for user-generated content. We also included some keyboard shortcuts to make WordPress Admin Actions faster.

Continue Reading…

Seth Wilson

Posted by on Friday, August 14, 2015

Online Marketing

Treat Your SEO Keyword List Like a Pack of Wildebeest

Act as the lion, and maul your SEO targets.

Act as the lion, and maul your SEO targets.

One of the initial steps of any search engine marketing (SEO) campaign is to form a list of target keywords. Where webmasters and SEO’s often go wrong is prioritizing the highest traffic, most competitive keywords. They should learn from the lion. It always goes for the smallest and weakest first.

The lion doesn’t go and attack the biggest wildebeest in the pack. It knows that if it goes for the biggest, it could potentially yield the most meat. It also knows that such a task will, at best, just consume a lot of energy for no gain. At worst, it will get the lion trampled under the weight of a thousand panicked hooves. Continue Reading…

Alex Nikdel

Posted by on Monday, August 3, 2015

Culture & Community

CNP Named One of Florida’s Best Companies to Work For


One of only 100 companies to make the cut, CNP was ranked 27th in the Best Small Companies category.

Florida Trend released its annual list of Florida’s Best Companies to Work For in its August issue, and I’m very excited to announce that CNP made the cut!

I would like to think it’s our no-cap vacation policy (don’t abuse it), afternoon Frisbee breaks (I’d rather that than an afternoon cigarette break), cupcakes on your birthday (or a cheese platter), Bring Your CNPuppy to Work days (which is really any day), or our weekly Happy Hours (always be responsible) that make us one of Florida’s best places to work.

But, the biggest perk we offer our staff is the ability to come in every day and collaborate with one of the most intelligent, creative and fun-loving groups of people in the state. Everyone here is collectively passionate about pushing the boundaries on every project and continuing to innovate and dominate every project they work on.

The reaction from around the office:

Florida Trend’s evaluation includes a review of company policies, practices, and demographics, as well as results from an anonymous employee survey that asks questions about company culture, job satisfaction, work environment, and pay and benefits.

Jarrett Smith

Posted by on Friday, April 24, 2015

Online Marketing

Smart New Travel Site Delivers Big Results

Custom Getaways photo

There’s no greater thrill than delivering a beautiful product that just plain delivers the goods. Whether it’s in the form of leads captured, time saved, or customers' delight, the slickest marketing in the world means nothing unless it brings home the bacon, and our new site for this luxury sports travel company does just that.

As the longest running official Tour de France tour operator, Custom Getaways creates extraordinary international travel experiences for cycling fanatics. With a badly outdated website and sophisticated competitors moving into their niche, owners Chris and Geraldine Hardy knew it was time to make a serious investment in their online marketing. Continue Reading…

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