Meeting the Staff – Sverre

Posted Thursday, 16 October 2008 by Sverre Sjøthun in Interviews
Next up in our staff introduction is our eminent marketing guru Sverre Sjøthun - the guy that's planning new site revisions, make sure the sales are up and comes up with fun things like the Photoshop and photography contests. Read on as he reveals his geeky side!
Even a single chef can make a big mess<br /> - on my buddy's floor...
Even a single chef can make a big mess
- on my buddy's floor...
Being a marketing guy, it's certainly something new to write about myself in a none-salesy way – after all, I'm not trying to pitch a new client or land a new job, but I'll give it a shot anyway.

Let's start out with the fact that I was born in 1975 in Stavanger, Norway. As a young kid, I was obsessed with everything that could be taken apart, built or modified – and to my parents despair, it was easier and more fun to take apart than put together again.

A classic example would be the RC car my dad bought for me in Tokyo when I was 5 years old – after only 1 day in the little kid’s hands, the steering was not working, and on top of that, it was mounted in another toy car. With a rubber band as a transmission belt.

Luckily for both me and my parents, I got better at putting things back together again  as the years went by. At the age of ten, my brother and I got a Commodore 64, and it was then pretty clear that computers were going to be a big part of my life.

After having finished my degree as a computer engineer as well as military service, which is compulsory in Norway, I got my first full time job in 1998. Working as a computer engineer when you're a computer junkie, being at work is just great. It's not that many that has the privilege of actually getting paid to do what they like the most and is their hobby.

At about the same time, I started my own website. DWPG.Com was initially conceived in 1999 as an enthusiast's site consisting of a one-page Word document formatted as html - and it looked absolutely dreadful!

Nevertheless, I soon discovered that I received quite a bit of traffic, mostly from the HardwareCentral forums, where I used to work as a Freelance Community Leader on behalf of internet.com.

One day I was approached by a US company about something they called Search Engine Optimization – they claimed they could help me getting tons of traffic from the search engines.

Even though I had about half a million readers a month, most of the revenue went back into running the site, so even if I got intrigued, I simply could not afford to buy their services. So I started studying on my own.

As the years went by, my interest shifted from reviewing computer hardware, overclocking, super cooling (I was running my CPU at -40C at one point) and case modding, to the marketing side of things – strategies, design & usability, search engine marketing.

So in 2004, I found myself in Vancouver, Canada working for one of the, at that time, largest online gambling corporations on the planet – BodogLife.com. My task was to make sure they were raking in the Top 10 for every conceivable poker related term.

Although I loved my time in Vancouver, I went back to Norway in 2006, and this is when I got introduced to Crestock for the first time as a consultant.

As the Internet Marketing Director here at Crestock, I have a wide variety of responsibilities. From the top level, it includes defining the overall marketing strategy, down to the various tactics to achieve our goals. Lately, I’ve been putting a lot of time and effort into improving the usability of the site.

I am a strong believer in making things easy. I hate running around in a store looking for something without finding it – That’s how it is on the internet too some times.

Like usability specialist Steve Krug said; “Don’t make me think.”

To make your web site stand out in the crowd, you need to offer your visitors something special. You need to give them a unique user experience that makes them go “Yeah, baby! This is what I was looking for” (and it doesn’t need to involve a lot of bare skin).

Last year, we released a completely new design for the site, and just a few days ago, we released a new purchase funnel with a strong focus on usability, which hopefully makes things way easier for you when you’re buying images.

We have received some feedback already, so if you have any thoughts on these changes, please do not hesitate to leave a comment below – I’m all about constructive criticism!

Perhaps, if you’re interested, I could write a post or two about internet marketing, usability or SEO?

Aside from my obvious interest in the “interweb”, I have has a wide variety if interests, ranging from hiking, biking and reading books to cooking, fast boats and high-end stereo equipment.

Every now and then, me and my fiancée go to my family’s log hut, just to relax or do some maintenance work, and as the hut is located by the sea, my new toy is a 15' Fletcher speedboat with 90hp outboard engine - and the roar from the Evinrude V4 instantly put a big grin on my face :D
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Comments:

yes
By sydneytherese on Tuesday, 18 November 2008 9:35 PM
I would love it if you would write an article or two on internet marketing, usability, and SEO!
Hello Sverre
By Gunnar Andreassen on Tuesday, 25 November 2008 10:38 AM
I will be seeing you on the ITforum seminar shortly. :-)
By ssjothun on Friday, 28 November 2008 5:38 PM
Hah - cool Gunnar. I'm actually going to spend this weekend preparing the speech and slides. My only problem right now is how to talk about SEO while keeping it down below the 2 hours...

Sverre

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