Category Archives: Serfwerks News

Serfwerks to Join Griffin Hill’s Webinar to Win Series

Serfwerks will be joining Griffin Hill’s Webinar to Win series on Thursday, April 20 at 11 a.m. MDT to present the “Top Three Marketing Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them.”

The webinar reviews the three most common and detrimental pitfalls small- to medium-sized businesses face when engaging in marketing related activities, including tools before strategy, lack of accountability and unbounded creativity. In this webinar, Nate Gibby, Serfwerks’ principal and co-founder, and Griffin Hill CEO Dr. Scott Baird explore the three pitfalls while providing solutions to avoid them.

To participate in the webinar, complete the form below or visit GriffinHill.com. The recording of the webinar will be made available online if you’re unable to attend live.

Register for Webinar






Presenter: Nate Gibby, MPA

Nate Gibby has spent the past 20 years providing marketing consulting services to hundreds of companies of all sizes and industries. Prior to founding Serfwerks, he was the director of marketing for Costa Vida Fresh Mexican Grill and two Salt Lake-based marketing service agencies. With an undergraduate degree in public relations and a graduate degree in public administration, Nate’s unique educational background complements his marketing experience by adding skills in research, qualitative and quantitative analysis, and organizational behavior/ psychology to his repertoire.

Nate also has extensive copy writing experience having written for many of his previous clients. He has worked as a free-lance writer for Utah Spirit Magazine and an associate editor of AdNews Magazine. He also taught marketing courses for professionals in the University of Utah’s department of Academic Outreach and Continuing Eduction and has been a guest lecturer at the University of Utah, Brigham Young University, Westminster College and the Utah Technology Council.

Presenter: Dr. Scott Baird

Griffin Hill founder and CEO Dr. Scott Baird brings over 30 years of business performance research and consulting experience. Dr. Baird’s innovative breakthroughs in human and organizational performance constitute a new technology that elevates organizational performance. Griffin Hill clients experience significant increases in human productivity and revenues. Dr. Baird completed his undergraduate work at Washington State University graduating Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Science. Following his studies at Washington State, Dr. Baird completed his Masters of Business Administration (MBA) degree at City University and his Ph.D. in Instructional Psychology and Technology at Brigham Young University.

Community service is an important part of life for Dr. Baird. He has served in a variety of roles and organizations including his local school district, United Way and Boy Scouts of America. Most important to Dr. Baird is his family. He and his wife, Bonnie, are the parents of six wonderful children.

What you need to know about WordPress and the MuhmadEmad Hack

According to Wordfence.com, within the past 24 hours of the publish date of this article (February 10, 2017), there has been a 26% spike in defacement attacks against web sites driven by WordPress (see article). Reportedly, the attacks have successfully hacked the Utah Office of Tourism Industry, Ireland’s National Treasury Management Agency, Glenn Beck, Vanderbilt University and others. Furthermore, Wordfence reported a 50% spike in break-in attempts between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Here are a few tidbits of information to help you protect your site against such malicious attacks.

What is Defacement?

Web site defacement is an attack on a web site that changes the appearance of the site. They can either change an item on a page, an entire page itself, or even replace the site with another.

How do hackers access a site?

Hackers access the site through a number of methods, including:

  • Finding a vulnerability in WordPress, which is what the MuhmadEdmad attack did
  • SQL Injections
  • Using software to attempt to identify your username and password for either a WordPress system or FTP username

What Harm Can a Hacker Do?

Frequently hackers break in and do things simply to prove their skill as hackers. Sometimes they can use your site to distribute viruses and malware. However, defacement impact your business as would-be customers will not have access to the content and/or functionality on your site.

How do I protect My Site Against An Attack

There are several easy things you can do to prevent an attack to your site, and no, you don’t have to be a developer to implement them.

  1. Update WordPress & Plugins
    Apparently, the MuhmadEmad hacker exploited a vulnerability in WordPress that has been fixed in WordPress’ 4.7.2 release.Also be sure to keep your plugins updated. Be sure to back up both your files and database prior to updating WordPress. You can easily accomplish this through a free plugin.
  2. Install a Security Plugin
    A security plugin such as Wordfence or Brute Force Login can help prevent intrusions into your site. The plugin will automatically block IP addresses that attempt to hack into your site. They can also block countries or people who attempt to use invalid usernames to get into your site. Some will even go so far as to look for malware that may have been placed on your site. 80-90% of the functionality you need will be available in free versions of these security plugins.
  3. Use Secure Passwords
    Not only should you make sure that you create secure passwords, but you should change them periodically. Secure passwords should be used on the FTP account for your hosting server, the user accounts for your WordPress web site, and your email accounts. Services such as Last Pass can maintain your passwords for you if you don’t want to have to try to remember all of the passwords for all of the web sites you visit or services you use.

Is it a Good Idea to Use WordPress?

WordPress is one of the most commonly used content management systems on the internet. It provides so many benefits to both developers and web site owners, that it is a great platform to use for your site. However, its sheer volume of installations make it a target for dishonest and unscrupulous individuals and groups. Provided that you take the necessary security precautions as listed above, your site will be protected and secure.

What Do I Do If My Site Has Been Hacked?

If your site has been hacked, there are a few things you can do to get it back.

  1. Immediately change your passwords
    Change all of your passwords to any account that has access to your site. That includes the admin users to your web site, your FTP account on the hosting server, and your control panel access on the hosting server.
  2. Restore the site from a backup.
    You should be regularly backing up your web site. If it has been hacked, you can restore a back up of your web site from prior to the hack.
  3. Run a malware scan
    There are many free plugins that can run a scan of your web site to look for any malware and/or obfuscated code. Some of them will even identify files that hackers place and coyly attempt to make look like system files.

If none of those options work, it may be time to call for more help. Give us a call at 801.649.4057 and we’ll point you in the right direction.

Marketing Tools v. Strategy Webinar w/ Griffin Hill Sept. 16

Serfwerks is pleased to announce that it will be co-hosting the Marketing Tools v. Strategy webinar on with Griffin Hill on Friday, September 16 at 10 a.m. MDT. You can register for the webinar

The webinar reviews one problem small- to medium-sized businesses face when engaging in marketing activities. Almost ubiquitously, organizations that don’t have highly sophisticated marketing departments skip the strategic development side of their marketing and go straight the development of tools.

In this webinar, Nate Gibby, Serfwerks’ principal and co-founder, will break down some of the problems that are created when jumping straight to collateral development. He also provides several solutions as to how to avoid it, including a case study of one brand that implemented those strategies to achieve great success in a very crowded marketplace.

Webinar co-host and Griffin Hill COO Cameron Baird will also share several sales strategies to help organizations make significant improvements in their sales processes.

To participate in the webinar, you may register at GoToWebinar. The recording of the webinar will be made available online if you’re unable to attend live.

Both sections of the webinar feature a sample of the content both companies will be presenting at SMARTcon, a sales, marketing and technology convention to be held in Provo, Utah on September 29th, 2016.

Serfwerks to Present at SmartCon 2016

Serfwerks’ principal Nate Gibby will be presenting at SMARTcon 2016 (#smartcon) on September 29, 2016 at the Utah Valley Convention Center in Provo Utah from 2-3 p.m.

Mr. Gibby’s presentation, titled Marketing De-mystified will focus on achieving significantly improved marketing results while avoiding the common pitfalls that so many companies fall into when developing out their marketing strategy. Where so many companies don’t know how to measure their marketing performance, or have a marketing strategy that consists solely of how to implement various marketing tools (not really a strategy), Gibby will present the “Measure. Create. Affect.” methodology to help you know how your marketing is performing quantitatively while developing salient strategies to make measurable improvements to marketing performance. By taking a case studies approach to strategic marketing development, attendees will learn lessons from local and national companies and learn the proper method to quantitatively evaluate marketing performance while developing a concise and salient marketing strategy.

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SMARTcon stands for, Sales, MARketing, & Technology. SMARTcon presentations provide information to companies become more effective marketers while developing leads and creating loyal customers. Attendees will receive actionable information to increase brand awareness and gain market share. The convention also features networking opportunities, executive coaching and the SMARTAWARDS. In addition to Mr. Gibby, speakers for the 2016 iteration include Stephen M.R. Covey of Covey Leadership Center, Darin Adams of Infusionsoft, Bruce Rowe of Sebo Marketing and several others.

More information about SMARTcon can be found at http://smartcon.griffinhill.com.
For tickets, please visit http://smartcon.griffinhill.com/buy-tickets/. Those a part of the Serfwerks network can use promo code “Griffin Hill Friends & Family” for a discounted admission price.

Marketing Status of Boise-Area Dental Practices

It’s no surprise that dentists are not immune to many of the problems faced by all small business, particularly when confronting the marketing of their practice. A recent study conducted by Serfwerks Marketing Academy of more than 50 dentists located in the Boise, Idaho metro area, unveiled that, like most small businesses, the proprietor (in this case the dentist) is most frequently the individual within the practice responsible for both making marketing decisions (see Figure 1)and implementing any of the business’s marketing efforts (see Figure 2). Continue reading

Serfwerks Principal Nate Gibby Invited to Judge GrowAmerica Competition

Serfwerks’ principal and co-founder, Nate Gibby, has been invited to participate as a judge in the GrowAmerica Springboard entrepreneurial competition to begin March 13, 2012 and conclude May 21,2012.

The GrowAmerica Springboard competition gives Utah-based entrepreneurs, start ups and other small businesses the opportunity to compete for cash and service prizes to help the grow their business. Companies are split into three categories, including idea, start up and growth. Three rounds of judging will determine the winners from each of the three categories.

Gibby will judge both the second and third rounds to help select those companies who will advance through the competition. The judging duties for the second round include the review and scoring of business plans submitted. The judging of the second round consists of rating three-minute oral presentations and a four-minute Q&A session.

“Utah is full of great entrepreneurial companies and being a part of the competition will be a great experience,” said Gibby. “I look learning more about the business concepts these entrepreneurs bring to the table.”

Marketing De-Mystified Workshop w/ SLCC

De-Mystifying Marketing

By many, marketing seems like a mystic art form full of ambiguous and unvalidated metrics; creative gurus; and flavor-of-the-month tactics. Marketing should be no different than any other business function and held to the same levels of accountability and profitability. To think of marketing any other way is a less effective and negligent business practice.

Sophisticated marketers are able to de-mystify marketing by using research, statistical analysis, effective strategy, efficient tactical mixes, and continuous refinement in an effort to create marketing campaigns that provide measureble and attributable positive return on marketing investment. De-Mystifying Marketing will help you become a sophisticated, analytical, innovative, and effective marketer.

Join us for the De-Mystifying Marketing Workshop
Date: April 7th
Time: 9am to 1pm
Location: Salt Lake Community College Miller Campus (9750 So. 300 West, Suite 330) in Sandy, UT.

Your business may qualify for a discounted rate to this event and other Custom Fit events. Custom Fit is a state operated provider of training services for small businesses. Full priced admission is $126 per person. For more information regarding Custom Fit qualification and/or to sign-up for this event contact:

Custom Fit Salt Lake County

Shannon Strickland

801.957.5293 or SPEDRegistration@slcc.edu

Register here.