How We Do It
Chess & Coffee only builts digital strategies for clients with whom we have established a relationship of mutual trust. We expect our clients to believe in us, and to be committed to achieving their own business goals. They trust us to always place their business goals first and to give them our best advice and best service.
The game of chess is one of deep strategy, and coffee is the symbol of focus and energy. We bring all these elements to every engagement.
We always start by getting to know the client and their goals as deeply as possible. We never provide recycled or packaged solutions, everything is based on the needs of that particular client. Once we understand what our clients want, we begin researching who they are trying to reach. What does the particular audience that is most important to our client want? This is very different than trying to drive as much traffic as possible to a website, which is like filling a store with random people who have no interest in the products.
What decisions does our client hope their audience might make? Some of our clients are looking for customers, but others want to change the world, or maybe encourage people to be healthier. In any case, we examine how the target audience actually makes decisions, and where along that decision path might critical web content be placed.
Finally we develop a web content strategy with five main areas (based on best practices in the field). These include:
- Core strategy
- Content Types
- Creation Process
- Approval and governance
- Maintenance and removal of existing content
When fully implemented, our approach will take a business or non-profit to the next level, whether that be greatly improved reputation, far more customers, or effectively helping people make better choices.
He has long been involved in web development and has closely tracked the emerging trends and forces that have changed the landscape of online communication. During this time he constantly refined his approaches and concepts to reflect this new and emerging reality.
Since 2000, Dan has been leading web strategy and communications teams, often focusing on large Federal health, Education, and cross-agency websites and associated digital campaigns. He has successfully matched the promise of emerging technologies and environments to the often restrictive requirements faced by Federal clients. He has also worked with businesses and non-profits to promote branding, develop business, and promote causes.
Over the last fifteen years Dan has implemented or led teams to produce specific successes in several fields. As examples, he has:
- Used the then brand new field of search engine optimization to help a web design firm and its clients generate new business, survive, and grow during the difficult days of the first tech bubble collapse.
- Developed an SEO process for optimizing medical content on a large index of diseases and conditions for a major Federal agency. As a result, most of the articles appear in the top three listings on Google for popular and relevant search phrases. Search traffic to the website has continued to climb by as much as 50% each year overall.
- Created a social media outreach program that generated enough support for a national public health campaign therefore the campaign became the subject of an article in the Social Media Quarterly Journal.
- As the original process created for blogger outreach began showing declining results, developed a revised approach that successfully revived the program and once again produced strong, positive results.
- Led the development of a phone application that was introduced by Vivek Kundra as one of the top Government apps, and featured on the GSA phone app collection.
- Led the development of widget that was distributed as part of a public health campaign, and which received an award from NIH for presenting health information in plain language.
Along with experience and constant analysis of the digital marketing and communications environment, Dan brings an unusual breadth of experience which informs every project. His background includes:
- Serving in the United States Navy submarine service during a period of intense cold war operations
- Qualification and service as a nuclear reactor operator, including both military and civilian experience
- Lead (supervisory) instructor at a DoD facility certifying weapon electronic assembly techniques
- Graduate of Georgetown Law
- Published science fiction writer
- Taught martial arts, primarily Tae Kwon Do, and authored articles on the Yong Studios website.
Elizabeth is dedicated to investigating and improving the process of education in rural and urban areas in Colombia. She has trained as an English teacher, and has also worked with a U.S. company researching the current state and potential for transformation of the educational system here.
As she learns the deeper strategies around web content, she works for clients in scripting, producing, and acting in promotional video, as well as scripting, shooting and editing videos herself. She is an excellent writer in both Spanish and English, and provides targeted content that meets client needs in both languages.
Another strength Elizabeth provides is a focus on research. She has done investigations into Colombian education system for a U.S. firm, and continues to investigate how Colombians collect information and make decisions online for Chess & Coffee clients.