Wednesday, July 13, 2016

The Beautiful Okanagan Valley

We at Beelineweb, are lucky to call Lake Country, British Columbia, home! For all of our clients in other parts of the world, Lake Country is part of the beautiful Okanagan Valley, which is southern central British Columbia.  The Okanagan experiences all four seasons with a snowy winter, a fresh, tulip-filled spring, a hot, dry summer and a crisp fall with lots of deciduous trees.
Kalamalka Lake - Photo Cred: Calgary Herald

The Okanagan is well known for the lifestyle it allows people to live.  We have numerous ski hills that allow people to snowboard and ski in the winter months, and lots of snowy mountains for people to snowshoe and sled.  People from all over travel to the Okanagan for the champagne powder at our world-class ski hills. Hiking in the Okanagan is extremely popular in the spring, with tons of mountains, waterfalls and lakes to explore.  Watersports are prevalent in the summer months, with individuals kayaking, canoeing, boating, wakeboarding, water skiing and wake surfing. The Okanagan is also well known for our pristine golf courses, as well as home to some of the nicest resorts, including Sparkling Hill, a Swarovski crystal-infused hotel overlooking Okanagan Lake.

Downtown Kelowna in Autumn
One of the main reasons people visit the Okanagan is that it is very well known for all the delicious wine the area produces, with hundreds of vineyards, many with panoramic lake views.  Besides growing grapes in the Okanagan, we also have hundreds of farms and orchards.  Some of the favourite fruits and veggies that we grow in the Okanagan include, but are not limited to, cherries, apricots, peaches, blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, watermelon,  nectarines, raspberries, tomatoes, apples, leafy greens, herbs, cucumbers, all squash, etc.

Just in Lake Country alone, we have 7 wineries and 2 more on the way! As the name would suggest, Lake Country is home to numerous lakes, including Kalamalka Lake which is well known for its Caribbean turquoise waters in the summer months, and of course, Okanagan Lake.

The short video below, "Some people say this place doesn't exist", was created by Tourism Kelowna and highlights some of the great aspects of the Okanagan Valley. 

Check out the photos below of the place we call home! 

View of Lake Country, BC. from Spion Kop Mountain

Okanagan Lake - Taken from Lake Country

Christie Falls in the beautiful Okanagan Valley

Predator Ridge Golf Resort - Photo Cred: Predator Ridge

Grey Monk Winery in Lake Country - Photo Cred: Predator Ridge

Big White Ski Resort - Photo Cred: Big White

Okanagan Center dock life with our office puppies in Lake Country

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Call to Action Conference 2016

Last week a couple of us at Beelineweb had the pleasure of attending Unbounce’s Annual Call to Action Conference in Vancouver, B.C.

The conference hosted 1000+ digital marketers in two jam-packed days! The sessions covered topics such as content marketing, analytics, email marketing, conversion optimization, copywriting, PPC, psychology behind marketing, etc.  Top marketers from around the world came to share current marketing trends, case studies and their knowledge. 

Some highlights included:

Rank Fishkin, “The Wizard of Moz”, from MOZ presented on The Measure of a Marketer’s Worth, which highlighted finding the right marketing processes and measuring the right metrics to track the work and not just progress. 

Oli Gardner, The Co-Founder of Unbounce, presented on The Conversion Equation, which looked into all of the factors on a landing page that help the conversion.  He gave examples of distraction, expectation, readability, visual ID, immediacy, specificity and hyperbole in an entertaining presentation, which highlighted what to do and what not to do. 

Some other speakers we had the pleasure of listening to were Amy Harrison, who’s the Founder of Harrisonamy Copywriting, Annie Cushing, who’s the Founder of Annielytics, Anum Hussain, who’s the Senior Growth Marketer of HubSpot, Cara Harshman, who’s the Content Marketing Manager from Optimizely, among many others!

Not only was it a great conference, with a ton of actionable information, but we completely lucked out and had pure sunshine in Vancouver! Here are a few more photos from the trip!  

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Keeping Healthy at Beelineweb!

Here at Beelineweb, we not only strive for a positive work environment, but we strive for healthy, happy individuals that make up our team! Some of the health initiatives that we offer our team include optional 30-minute fitness breaks daily, personal training sessions, adjustable, stand-up desks (if desired), personal days (instead of sick days), and organic fruit and teas.

Several years ago, before we were in our new office (pre-2009), we read studies that stated 30 minutes of exercise during the workday increased productivity. So we offered everyone the option to use 30 minutes of their workday for fitness activities. Our fitness initiative went so well that we built a full gym in our new office consisting of multiple cardio machines, free weights, bosu balls, exercise balls, a squat rack, and more so that individuals can use them throughout their workday. While the fitness initiative is optional, we are proud to say we have 100% participation!

Since we realized that not everyone necessarily knows HOW to work out, a few years ago we started offering an optional hour of one-on-one personal training time every week. Almost our whole team has decided to train with our AWESOME personal trainer, Sarah Fraser, from Crave Fitness. Each week, Sarah spends an hour of one-on-one time, with each participating team member, to help them meet their fitness goals.

To keep moving forward with our health initiatives, this spring, we started researching the idea that “sitting was the new smoking.” The research detailed how bad it was for individuals to sit ALL day, no matter how healthy the rest of their lives were. So we decided to implement an adjustable, stand-up desk as a test for individuals to try. And for fun, we also looked at how many additional calories were burned on a daily basis from switching to standing instead of sitting at work, and the numbers were huge! (Click here to play with the calorie-burn calculator!) So many people loved working at a stand-up desk, from both a health and energy standpoint, we ordered VeriDesks for everyone who was interested so they could stand all day, or part of a day, if they wanted!

Additionally, with our focus on pro-active health, we decided to implement personal days (instead of sick days) with the idea that while it is inevitable that some people will get sick from time to time, not everyone does. So now, team members have 6 days a year that they can use for sick days, or they can use them as guilt-free days off to do something healthy – like snowboarding, training, etc.

Lastly, we order Urban Harvest, an organic fruit (and veggie) delivery weekly so that everyone has the option to eat healthy, organic fruit throughout the day. We also keep a ton of loose-leaf tea at the office for anyone to help him or herself to. Our favourite is a Canadian company committed to pure, organic ingredients, Lemon Lily

While all of these things are optional, we are impressed at how many people use the fitness breaks, our personal trainer, standing desks, personal days, and munch on the organic fruit, which all contributes to our healthy team that makes up!