Baby, It’s All About Influences, Tik-Tok & Market Visibility in 2023
Dive into the world of influences, TikTok, and market visibility with our groundbreaking show. Explore how these elements are impacting the baby industry in 2023 and driving consumer behavior. Uncover strategies for harnessing TikTok’s influence to enhance your brand’s reach and increase market visibility. Stay informed and empowered – click to watch our show now and take your business to new heights!
#1 – Adam, what does Cirrusinfluence basically do, and what is its main focus?
#2 – What do you think are the main benefits that your clients get by working with Cirrusinfluence?
#3 – There seem to be some bad feelings that seem to be growing in different parts of the WordPress general community. Would you agree with this statement, and if yes, why do you think this is happening?
#4 – WordPress professional marketplace seemed to be very focused on the North American market this seems to have changed over the last few years would you agree with this statement, and how does this affect Cirrusinfluence?
#5 – What are some of the business tools and services that you use to run your business daily that you could recommend to the audience?
#6 – If you return to a time machine at the beginning of your career, what essential advice would you give yourself?
This Week Show’s Sponsors
Sensei LMS: Sensei LMS
The Show Main Notes & Links
[00:00:08.880] – Jonathan Denwood
Welcome back, folks, to the WP-Tonic This Week in WordPress and SaaS. This is Episode 887. We’ve got a great guest. We’ve got Adam Week for Circus Influence. We’re going to be discussing all things influence and market visibility in 2003 and 2004. If you’re selling your services, your products, your plug-ins, this is going to be a great show. I’ve been looking forward to it. Adam, would you like to quickly give us a 2030 intro about yourself and the company?
[00:00:54.300] – Adam Weeks
Absolutely. Well, thank you for having me on. It’s an honor. I’ve been loving your podcast for a while now. I come from the world of education. My background is that I was a school teacher and principal. And then I always had WordPress as something in the background, side projects, that thing. But then the pandemic happened, and I decided not to be a school principal anymore. And what am I going to do? Jonathan World bugged me about helping him out with some post-status work. So I have done sponsorships with and met Bob. So do the woo, did some stuff for Bob. And during that experience, I still helped them both out. During that experience, I realized that a number of companies in WordPress, especially product companies, had this problem of exposure and distribution, and they may not want to put all their eggs in one basket, or they just need help with getting exposure and getting marketing. It’s one thing to do advertising where you just pay for it and create your own content. Those are good things to do. But how do you grow your influence and serious influence? The clouds that are way up high are the Siris clouds.
[00:02:19.970] – Adam Weeks
And influence, that’s what we want for all of our companies. I partnered with a good friend of mine, Nicola Rose. He had been at XWP for a while. The two of us said, Hey, let’s do this. We have a number of people that we think can use this. Let’s help them grow their influence, and I’m happy to talk more about that.
[00:02:41.560] – Jonathan Denwood
That’s great. I’ve got my great co-host, Kurt. Kurt, would you like to introduce yourself to the new listeners and viewers quickly?
[00:02:48.920] – Kurt von Ahnen
Sure thing, Jonathan. My name is Kurt Van Oren. I run an agency called Manyana No Mas, and we focus largely on membership and learning websites for folks.
[00:02:58.750] – Jonathan Denwood
That’s great. As I said, we’re going to be talking about how you market yourself in 2023 and ’24. It’s a changing landscape. Adam’s got some great insights. It should be a great interview. But before we go into the main meat and potatoes of the show, we got a couple of messages from our major sponsors. We’ll be back in a few moments, folks. Are you?
[00:03:21.700] – Adam Weeks
Looking for ways to make your content more engaging? Sensei LMS by Automatic is the original WordPress solution for creating and selling online courses. Sensei’s new interactive blocks can be added to any WordPress page or post. For example, interactive videos let you pause videos and display quizzes, lead generation forms, surveys, and more. For a 20% discount for The Tribe, Jess used the code WPtonic, all one word, when checking out and giving Sensei a try today.
[00:03:51.210] – Jonathan Denwood
We’re coming back, folks. I’d like to point out that we’ve got some great deals from the sponsors, plus a curated list of the best WordPress plug-ins and services that will save you a load of time trying to find the right plug-in for your client’s project. What more could you ask for? Probably a lot, but that’s all you’re going to get from that particular page. To find all the goodies. All you’ve got to do is go over to w-tonic. Com/deals. That’s easy, isn’t it? Wp-tonic. Com/deals, and you’ll find all the goodies there. Christmas is coming, so I’m generous. So don’t be ashamed. Off we go on our journey. I think you covered in some ways, question one, really, with your intro. Let’s go on to question two then.
[00:04:47.520] – Adam Weeks
[00:04:48.920] – Jonathan Denwood
Do you think these are the main benefits that your clients really get from the company? What do you think, observing your clientele? You’ve been running this now for a year, a couple of years. What are some of the patterns and the main pain points that you see often when you’re dealing with your new possible clients?
[00:05:16.420] – Adam Weeks
There are a number of different things that I really feel that we bring value. I like to think of it in this way. Can I tell you a quick story? Would that.
[00:05:26.630] – Jonathan Denwood
Be okay? Oh, I love stories.
[00:05:28.120] – Adam Weeks
A little quick story. All right, so there’s a guy, and he mows lawns, and he’s great at mowing lawns. He buys all the tractors, and all the lawn equipment.
[00:05:37.320] – Jonathan Denwood
You go up to the airport, you go up all your tractors.
[00:05:40.030] – Adam Weeks
You got to buy all your stuff. He gets his lawn mowing company up and running, and he gets his first client, and he does a great job, and he said, Hey, while I was mowing the lawn, I saw that you have some gutters. They’re clogged. Would you like me to take care of that? Go to the home? Sure. Yeah, I’d pay you to do that. Hey, while I was up on your roof cleaning, I saw that some of those shingles were a mess. Wouldn’t take me much. I could fix that. Oh, yeah. Hey, they’d pay for that too. Hey, while I was up there, I also noticed that your chimney, the mortar, is just cracking. It’s not great. I know how to do that. Oh, the homeowner says, I’d love for you to do that. I’d pay for you to do that. Well, what’s been happening this whole time? His lawn equipment which he spent a lot of money on, has been sitting there, not getting any use. The investment in that is not happening. To put all that together, how I connect these dots is that if you are building a product for WordPress, your best time is spent making sure it’s the best product, the investment that you have there, do that thing.
[00:06:54.460] – Adam Weeks
You can do your own marketing, your own PR. You can do all of that yourself. It’s not rocket science. But where is your time and energy best spent? I would think that it would be with working with a company like us, where we’re going to get you exposed, get your company out there to the different channels in WordPress.
[00:07:20.160] – Jonathan Denwood
Yes. Well, he says, I’m a really good person, a good expert on upselling. I had that on Tuesday, Kurt. I’d still see my car maintenance and they were upselling me consistently. I wasn’t too happy about it, Kurt, was I? I was whinging about it, was it?
[00:07:39.790] – Kurt von Ahnen
He seemed too happy at the car.
[00:07:41.410] – Jonathan Denwood
Dealership, Jonathan. Well, they got a polite no the first time. They got a polite no the second time. When he got to the third time, it was getting a bit rough. When he got to the fourth time, I was feeling a bit aggravated, to be truthful, Adam. Let’s get to the meat and potatoes of this, Adam, because I’m sure you hear this quite a bit. I’m only interested in affiliate marketing or Facebook adverts, this influence stuff. If I don’t get a direct sell from a placement, this is a waste of money. I’m not interested. Just affiliate marketing, that’s all I’m interested in. And Facebook, how do you respond to that?
[00:08:28.520] – Adam Weeks
Those things are very attractive because they’re easy to track. You put in this much dollar in a Facebook ad campaign, you see those number of clicks come in Google. My responses to that is yes, do that, and what are you going to do? It’s not an or, it’s an and. Depending on how quickly you want your company to grow. If you’re fine, just go and slow, which I would say that if you’re in business, you have a runway. You need to do a couple of two things, either extend the runway or add more fuel to your jet plane and go faster. The way to do that is by getting more eyeballs in front of people. On top of that, the other thing I will add is that a goal for a company is to build fans. You want people to love your stuff. You don’t build fans by doing affiliate marketing. You might get some sales, but you’re not going to be grow people who care about you and think, Oh, they are an influential person in this space.
[00:09:47.330] – Jonathan Denwood
Yes, we all need friends, don’t we, Adam?
[00:09:49.550] – Adam Weeks
We need… That’s another good thing is I think about word camps in this way.
[00:09:55.380] – Jonathan Denwood
I don’t. I’m not going anywhere. I know. I’ve given up. I’m marked as a target because of my English humor and my sarcasm, Adam.
[00:10:04.260] – Adam Weeks
Which I love.
[00:10:04.970] – Jonathan Denwood
To certain people that go to word camps do not appreciate my type of humor, Adam.
[00:10:10.330] – Adam Weeks
That is a tragedy. I’ll put other events in it as well. What I would say is that you’ve heard the old saying is that business gets done on the golf course. Essentially, we don’t have a golf course. The reason why that is is that people like to do business with their friends. It’s difficult to make friends over the internet. It can be done. But I would say that those friendships are grown when you’re in person. That is another aspect to this, is that being in the same place together where you can actually talk about what’s going on is also going to be a big part of a healthy strategy.
[00:11:06.110] – Jonathan Denwood
Yeah, I’ll give you that. Over to you, Kurt.
[00:11:10.470] – Kurt von Ahnen
As I listen to Adam.
[00:11:12.340] – Jonathan Denwood
[00:11:13.210] – Kurt von Ahnen
It reminds me of that famous quote by Bob Berg that says, All things being equal. I think it’s, All things being equal, people do business with people they like, know, and trust. That’s one of those business quotes that just constantly gets re-spun. To Adam’s point, I’ve only been to a couple of word camps, but the more I’m exposed on these podcasts and the Moniana No Mas podcast and the work I do with Lifter LMS, I’m walking through word camp and people going, Hey, Kurt. Hey, Kurt. I don’t even know who these people are.
[00:11:48.840] – Adam Weeks
I saw it happen.
[00:11:50.710] – Kurt von Ahnen
Yeah. At first, it’s a little creepy, but I’m looking at the growth I’m seeing this year and I’m going, Well, the work’s been worth it. You sow the seed and you wait for the harvest. But I think too many people are looking for that instant gratification, and it is a long game. Building brand and building reputation is ongoing work, and it’s a long game. Just to expand on that question from that perspective, Adam, how do you approach people with the immediate gratification versus the long game chat? Because that’s got to be part of the talk.
[00:12:25.460] – Adam Weeks
Yeah. There’s been a number of discussions on what are the benefits of going to a Wordcamp? Because it’s an incredible investment. It’s very expensive to show up to a Wordcamp, to sponsor a Wordcamp. It’s funny, we think of the overnight success. We see companies once they have overnight success, but they didn’t see the 10 years that went into becoming that overnight success. That’s why we are attracted by that, Hey, I put in a dollar for advertising and I got two dollars in sales back. That’s great. If you can do that, do that all day long. But that’s not typically how business works. It’s a long game. Cool.
[00:13:14.040] – Kurt von Ahnen
Well, I need to switch gears on us a little bit and move to the next question, and that is, and maybe your perspective is going to be different. So I’m hoping that you have some insight here. There’s a lot of, it seems like if we’re reading X and we’re looking at podcasts, it seems like there’s this growing discontent, different areas or sections in the WordPress community, and you have this unique perspective, dealing with different people. What are your thoughts on where this is what’s happening and where it might be leading?
[00:13:46.790] – Adam Weeks
Are we calling it X? Have we gave up on Twitter?
[00:13:49.820] – Kurt von Ahnen
I gave up on Twitter. I’m with X.
[00:13:51.470] – Adam Weeks
I’m with X.
[00:13:52.600] – Jonathan Denwood
I’m confused. I’m going to keep saying Twitter. I feel like it sounds like a bloody porn site.
[00:13:59.500] – Adam Weeks
[00:13:59.970] – Jonathan Denwood
You- It’s about right, though, really. It’s become a bit of a porn site.
[00:14:05.680] – Adam Weeks
If you can tweet at someone, can you X at someone?
[00:14:10.500] – Jonathan Denwood
It doesn’t sound right, does it? It doesn’t row over the tongue, really, does it?
[00:14:16.150] – Adam Weeks
Kurt, are you speaking specifically to the WordPress community?
[00:14:22.360] – Kurt von Ahnen
Yeah, I would say we covered on our podcast at the roundtable last week. We were talking about folks that are saying that the leader of WordPress isn’t following the WordPress code of ethics or code of behavior. There’s certain people that are really calling out for that. There’s other people that are saying, Well, this whole blocks thing has been a disaster. We need to go to classic press. And then there’s other folks that have other concerns. There’s a lot with alternative lifestyles, diversity, equity, inclusion. You could just break things into all kinds of social columns. And then it just seems like it’s getting, I don’t know if it’s a social media presence, but it seems like it’s been exacerbated lately. And we were wondering if you had a different perspective of it.
[00:15:10.280] – Adam Weeks
The first thing is that leadership is hard, especially servant leadership. That is, to me, the best model for leadership is that as a leader, my role is to make sure that my people have what they need when they need it. It’s difficult. Not to excuse bad behavior at all, but this isn’t an easy thing to do. For us to sit back and say, woulda, shoulda, coulda, that was a terrible thing. I don’t love being in that position because I’m not in the shoes of the person that I to be critical of. At the same time, we do not endorse bad behavior. I think my encouragement to leadership is, be better. That is an encouragement for everyone. Don’t screw up as best you can. But the screw-ups will happen. We are at, for this PR perspective, a large part of what we do is crisis response. When a bad thing happens, when you have to give bad information to your customer base, what do you do? I would say, when there is a tragedy, when there is a bad thing that happens, you have an opportunity to grow your influence. I didn’t see that happen in this.
[00:16:50.790] – Jonathan Denwood
[00:16:51.970] – Adam Weeks
[00:16:55.430] – Kurt von Ahnen
Yeah, that’s such a cautious answer. I actually really appreciate the way you maneuvered that. Leadership is hard.
[00:17:04.430] – Adam Weeks
[00:17:05.680] – Kurt von Ahnen
It is. But I also like what you said there, and that is, in leadership, you know you’re going to screw up. You know you’re going to make mistakes. Then it’s, how do you acknowledge the fault and move forward? It’s always that momentum, right? Momentum being one of the 21 irrefutable laws of leadership. You’re like, how do we keep the momentum going the right way and not have boomerang?
[00:17:28.290] – Adam Weeks
Yeah. How hard. There’s… Right. When you do a bad thing, you have a choice on what response you’re going to make. I’ll give you another quick story. I heard this. I really liked it. There was a group of two or three people. They went to a smoothie shop. This lady, she was enjoying her smoothie, and she was sipping on her smoothie. One of the blades from the blenders was in her cup.
[00:17:59.620] – Jonathan Denwood
[00:18:01.460] – Adam Weeks
Which is bad for a smoothie shop. She goes over and she tells the person at the front counter like, Hey, look what I just found in my smoothie cup. At that time, the person behind the counter had two choices. I call this… Are you getting balloons behind my…
[00:18:20.800] – Jonathan Denwood
Yeah, I’m very impressed. I can’t do that actually. There’s a few people that like me put me on a balloon and send me off.
[00:18:28.240] – Adam Weeks
What is going on? Sorry for those of you on audio, my.
[00:18:31.420] – Jonathan Denwood
Screen is- You need to go to the W. P. Tony YouTube channel and subscribe and you can see the balloons.
[00:18:37.810] – Adam Weeks
I don’t know how that happens. That was bizarre. This person has two choices: What are you going to do? Something bad has happened. A blade is in this smoothie cup. You have two options. One, it’s this token, I think of it. It’s the end-of-the-world token. You can play that token, or you can play that it’s not a big deal token. Unfortunately, for this smoothie shop, they picked it’s not a big deal. Like, Oh, I’m so sorry. Here’s a free smoothie on us. If you take the it’s not a big deal token, your customer is going to take the opposite token. You can pick one and they’re going to pick the other. In her case, it was the end of the world. She was pissed at how they did not take care of her in this smoothie situation. Whereas if the person had pick in the other token, it’s the end. I am so sorry. We’re going to stop all the smoothie machines. Stop them all right now, clean them out. We’re going to inspect every single one of them. This cannot happen. It is unacceptable at our place. What we want to do as an apology for here’s 10 free smoothies come back.
[00:19:53.860] – Adam Weeks
It’s the end of the world. Oh, that’s okay. Thank you so much. Because your customer is going to take the, It’s not a big deal. How this applies to Twitter and what’s happened with leadership is, if you say, It’s not a big deal and it’s dismissive, everybody will and did say, It’s the end of the world.
[00:20:16.310] – Kurt von Ahnen
I’m with you. Jonathan, I’m going to pass it back to you, sir.
[00:20:20.380] – Jonathan Denwood
Yes. I see where you’re coming from. I’m not totally sure, but I see where you’re coming from. I had a fault in my mind and it left me rapidly. It’s happening quite regularly as I get older, Adam. These thoughts come in my mind and they the-.
[00:20:40.320] – Kurt von Ahnen
Your person could probably keep you on track with a good agenda.
[00:20:44.150] – Jonathan Denwood
I know I was going to ask you, Adam. Obviously, when it comes to online influence, PR, and you advise companies and that, isn’t there always a contradiction at the core of it in some ways? Because I’ve been thinking about this for the past few months that obviously to be a influencer, and I don’t really like.
[00:21:09.640] – Adam Weeks
The terrible term.
[00:21:10.850] – Jonathan Denwood
He is in a way, and in a way he is, and you can let things annoy you or not, but everything’s about influence, isn’t it? But people want you to review products, talk about their products, be on people’s radar because you’ve got audience and the bigger the audience, sometimes it can be a small audience, but a very focused audience, or it can be a big audience, less focus. But the more sophisticated people understand a focused audience can be more worthwhile than a larger. But when you’re talking about a larger audience, they want the biggest audience possible. But normally, unless you’re in educational content, to get a large audience, it’s normally that you want to be edgy, you want to be on the edge, you want to be a bit cutting about your content because that’s what generates audience. But that’s the last thing that somebody that wants to sponsor you or put an advert, that’s the last thing they want because they don’t want to be tarnished with anything that’s a bit edgy. Am I on the right track or am I deluding myself? To me, there’s always a constant strain there.
[00:22:40.150] – Adam Weeks
I would say there’s a constant reason to be vigilant and understanding your audience. The term aligned incentives, I think, is important. You have the media outlet and they need to be entertaining. I would argue that beyond entertaining bring value to their audience. So being entertaining is often edgy, but it doesn’t… I’m getting the thumbs up thing. I don’t know what…
[00:23:12.320] – Jonathan Denwood
I’m very impressed with it.
[00:23:13.760] – Adam Weeks
I’m so excited right now. Yeah. So the media outlet needs to be true to their audience. And you have these people who want to generate influence, hopefully, they have something to also share with that audience. That’s what I would say, is that you have to be cognizant of what your audience wants and at the same time, be valuable to your sponsors.
[00:23:52.300] – Jonathan Denwood
Yeah, see where you come from, but I don’t really care fuck what our audience wants. I just do this podcast to meet people and I like to chat and it’s grown into something a bit bigger because I’ve just cameraed away for almost eight years. But I don’t know that the sponsorship I get just about covers the cost and covers a little bit, but I don’t make a living out of you. I just use it to promote myself and make my.
[00:24:18.840] – Adam Weeks
Own influence. But I’m going to push back a little bit that you don’t care about your audience. That can’t be true. You’re doing this today because- I.
[00:24:25.660] – Jonathan Denwood
Don’t even know who the audience is because half the start of the time. They don’t. But I know that’s true. I go to word camps and people come up to me and say, I’ve been listening to the show for years and they talk to you like they know you. I don’t know them to imagine. But it’s really hard in podcasting to get any feedback from people.
[00:24:47.390] – Adam Weeks
That’s true. The feedback is difficult. But at the end of the day, as a content creator, you do want your content to be consumed. We don’t want to just speak out into the void. We want people to pay attention. We want it to make a difference. I think that is where the aligned incentive comes from.
[00:25:12.960] – Jonathan Denwood
Great. I think you’ve got something to add to this, Kurt.
[00:25:19.630] – Kurt von Ahnen
I was just thinking, I only have 70 subscribers on my YouTube channel after five years.
[00:25:24.420] – Jonathan Denwood
It’s ticking me off. It’s really… Wait. It’s a difficult one, but I was being a bit conscious. I was bare-bating there a little bit. Sure. Obviously, I do respect the audience to some extent. What I meant in a more serious tone is that I don’t plan the content. I don’t plan it all out. I don’t know how the guest is going to respond. You seem up for it. We had Ollie last week on the show. He’s been on the show a couple of times. He was great. He’s a polished marketer talking about his startup. He was a great chat, wasn’t he, Kurt? He’s a great guy. You’re up for it. Some guests aren’t. I sometimes wonder why they even agreed to come on the show, but they never come back. They’re never thinking. They’re pointed asking them back, if you know what I mean. But I don’t plan it all out because I don’t know what I’m going to be dealing with if anything comes.
[00:26:27.720] – Adam Weeks
Well, I think it also goes to the audience likes naturally who you are. You are the content. You shouldn’t try to be something that you’re not, because then the people who come here, they will leave. Your authentic self, that is what they’re here for. They want a bit of that edginess. If a sponsor is so touchy that they’re going to leave, then they don’t make a good sponsor. You need a sponsor who also likes your authentic self.
[00:27:02.870] – Jonathan Denwood
Yeah, I think that what you see, what you hear is what you get out of word camp. I think most people, I think, Kurt would agree. I know it’s a ring to Kurt. I don’t know how you deal with it, but I’m very… The way I am on this podcast is the way I am in general, isn’t it, Kurt?
[00:27:21.120] – Kurt von Ahnen
That is a fact.
[00:27:22.550] – Jonathan Denwood
That’s a nightmare, isn’t it? I think it’s time for us to go on our mid-break. It’s been a great chat so far. We’ve got some other great questions. We will be back in a few moments, folks.
[00:27:35.870] – Adam Weeks
This podcast episode is brought to you by Lifter LMS, the leading learning management system solution for WordPress. If you or your client are creating any online course, training-based, membership website, or any type of e-learning project, Lifter LMS is the most secure, stable, well-supported solution on the market. Go to LifterLMS. Com and save 20 % at checkout with coupon code podcast 20. That’s podcast 2-0. Enjoy the rest of your show.
[00:28:14.120] – Jonathan Denwood
We’re coming back, folks. I just want to point out, if you want to support the show, why don’t you become a WP toe partner? We host learning management systems and buddy boss websites. That’s what we specialize. If you’ve got a project and you want to support the show, why don’t you host it on WP Tonic and show some support to the show? We’ve got some great deals to find out more information about it. All you have to do is go over to wp-tonic/partners, w-tonic. Com/partners, and sign up and host your clients’ website with us. We offer a ton of great reasons why you should do that. This goes straight back into it. I’m a bit choppy today. I think I’ve had about 15 cups of coffee this morning. I went for my walk because it was freezing. It was bloody freezing this. I went for my three-mile walk and it was freeze my tits off. Off we go. I thought another interesting thing, and I don’t know if you’ve been thinking about this, I think one of the biggest changes I’ve seen over the past three or four years in WordPress is when I entered in the WordPress space around 2012, 2013, and I think I started this podcast around 2015, 2016.
[00:30:00.110] – Jonathan Denwood
Was it all the people well-known in the WordPress space and the companies were all North American-based, Pippen Williamson, Chris Lemmer. There was a big group around Genesis Studio Press. There was a big group around that. What I’ve seen lately is it’s become much more internationalized. The biggest coding shops are in the sub-Indian subcontinent in Eastern Europe. It seems to become much more internationalized. How does that affect you? How you operate? Would you agree with what I’ve just said that it seems to become much more internationalized over the past four or five years?
[00:30:53.900] – Adam Weeks
Definitely. How it affects me? I have to sometimes take meetings at odd times of day. My calendar gets filled up with, Oh, I got to wake up earlier, depending on where our clients are. Another thing that’s interesting is you also need to pay more attention to global news. A number of our clients have been affected by what’s happening in Israel, and it feels a little disingenuous to just hop into, if you haven’t talked to them for a while, Hey, I need a thing, or are you doing whatever? Without also acknowledging their family may be going through a tremendous struggle or something. I am more cognizant of what’s happening around the world because we have clients who are in places that are dealing with news that I may not be aware of.
[00:31:47.470] – Jonathan Denwood
It’s one of the beauties to live in North America. You’ve got two enormous oceans on either side, haven’t you?
[00:31:53.390] – Adam Weeks
It does insulate us a bit.
[00:31:56.320] – Jonathan Denwood
Yeah. I spent my two on my mid-50s in Britain. It’s a very small country. So over to you, Kurt.
[00:32:07.470] – Kurt von Ahnen
Thanks, Jonathan. I don’t want to cloak things like I don’t know what happens, Adam, because you and I have already worked together and we’ve shared guests. And it’s been a really good rewarding interaction for me. You’ve put me with some really good matched up guests for the things that I do. But outside of referring people to podcasts and stuff, what are some tools that Serious Influence uses? Or how do you find your success day to day in the things that you do?
[00:32:35.730] – Adam Weeks
Absolutely. So Black Friday is a big one. We help make sure that our clients get on all of Black Friday lists because, again, you can spend your time doing that. It’s not magic or rocket science, but we’ve done the work to find all of the lists, and then we get their clients on those lists. We also help with… We keep a pulse on what is happening, where the conversations are happening. When our clients, their expertise matches that conversation, we try to encourage them to insert themselves. For instance, the Tavern is an excellent example where you can’t buy ads on the Tavern, you can’t sponsor them, but there is a comment section. That’s a really good way to be a part of that conversation is hopping into the comments there or what’s happening on Twitter or what’s happening.
[00:33:31.500] – Jonathan Denwood
In- You’re a very brave person if you get a comment on the Tavern. That’s spicy. A little bit of it is spicy, the Tavern comments. Get in there. I’ve had over the years, read either the Starkey’s comments or Piss off the Berber.
[00:33:47.170] – Adam Weeks
That’s how you grow the influence, though, is that you do need to… There’s another aspect of how we can be helpful. Many people in WordPress are not comfortable on a microphone being public. They may be more on the introverted side of this, which creates an opportunity for someone like me, I’m fine with that. I’m ready to go. Let’s go talk. Let’s have a conversation. Everybody here on this little window, I would say, also does not struggle with that, but many people do. What we do is we help you be more confident, know that you have something of value to share, to add to the conversation because you are an expert in this field. And we do some coaching along that as well.
[00:34:40.680] – Kurt von Ahnen
Awesome. Just to expand, I have this question in the back. And that is, when I did PR back in 2008, 2009, 2010, there was still a lot of old school PR, like PR. Com, PR Newswire, real PR. You just put out an article on behalf of a company, and your right. And some magazine picks it up. Is that still a thing? Or is that.
[00:35:05.150] – Adam Weeks
There are very few pure PR agencies anymore. That’s why it’s a and conversation. It’s not a you have to do only PR. If you’re only doing PR, your leads will dry up. It is a combination of paid placements. As an example, a number of media outlets are doing Black Friday roundup videos, and they do expect to get paid for some of those because those are paid placements. Again, we find them. We find what is going to be the best media outlet to align with their brand and what’s the best deal out there. Say, okay, we’ve got a budget of X, Y, and Z. Great. Then we bring those to you. Again, it’s still a pain in the butt to manage all of those things. We do the intake, we find out, we fall in love with our clients’ product, we learn everything about that so that we can speak on their behalf. That would be an example. So correct, PR is not the same. You do need a mix of traditional marketing. Put your own content out there, affiliate links, advertising, as well as PR. Then that crisis response is another part of it that’s interesting, too.
[00:36:32.880] – Kurt von Ahnen
Yeah. You just clicked something in my head. It was like, as you were talking, I’m like, Everything that you bring to the table probably has a unique format or a unique something to go with whatever that platform or that initiative is. There’s all that work on the back end to try and fit those Lego pieces together, because if the Lego doesn’t fit, it don’t fit.
[00:36:56.520] – Adam Weeks
It has to be genuine. That’s going to be that part of what is your brand and how do we help you grow your brand? Keeping that in mind at all times. Again, someone who is building a product that may not be their strength. That’s okay, it doesn’t need to be.
[00:37:20.320] – Kurt von Ahnen
Yeah. I found a lot of founders, when I talk to them, they’re so deep in their own mess. Sometimes it’s hard to pull back and see it like someone else from the outside would see it.
[00:37:32.140] – Adam Weeks
Right. That’s a really good point to.
[00:37:33.430] – Kurt von Ahnen
Have that third person.
[00:37:34.920] – Adam Weeks
It’s difficult to remember what it was like to not know something. Of course, this.
[00:37:42.060] – Jonathan Denwood
Is why you did this. I don’t know if that problem.
[00:37:46.000] – Adam Weeks
I forget it all the time. But we do. Even the lingo that we use, we use acronyms for things and people, I don’t know what you’re talking about, and we forget, Oh, some people might not know what I’m talking about. Yeah.
[00:38:01.850] – Kurt von Ahnen
Well, Jonathan, over to you.
[00:38:04.020] – Jonathan Denwood
Yeah, I’m going to put you on the spot here a little bit. But is there any recently any client work, any clients? Obviously, you don’t have to name them because obviously a lot of the time it’s confidential. But are there any clients you work with recently that you’ve done some work for them that comes to mind that you could share with the audience that you were quite proud of, that you got?
[00:38:35.810] – Adam Weeks
Yeah, I would say one of the ones that’s been interesting, and Kurt, you had a nil on your podcast. They have an interesting problem, opportunity, flash, something. Multicollab is an interesting product. It solves a problem that a lot of developers have where you can’t collaborate in the editor. That you do your work on Google Docs. Everybody puts their two sentences, suggestions, comments, editing, and then you’ve got to copy and paste that, put it into the editor. That’s a workflow for a lot of people. What Multicollab does is skips the Google Doc step and puts all of it right there in the editor. Now, the interesting part of this is that that’s on the roadmap. That’s on Guittenberg’s roadmap. What happens when the main parts of your product are going to be, we call it, Sherlock. I don’t know. Have you heard the term Sherlock before?
[00:39:43.420] – Jonathan Denwood
No, I have in the maybe Kerr.
[00:39:46.100] – Kurt von Ahnen
I’m up for education today.
[00:39:48.200] – Adam Weeks
Sherlock, if you’ve been Sherlock, it come from a Mac where.
[00:39:52.370] – Jonathan Denwood
There was- It sounds delicious.
[00:39:54.040] – Adam Weeks
Like Sherlock. No, to be like the Sherlock Holmes. There was a company that would… It was a plugin for Mac, where in the upper right, there’s the little spyglass, and you can search your Mac for everything. That was a product called Sherlock. Well, Apple saw that. It’s like, Wow, that’s really useful. Let’s steal that, and now we call that Spotlight. People were pissed because this company was Sherlock. Basically, Apple took away their entire product. That’s the question. Is Multicollab getting ready to be Sherlock? I would argue no. What we talk about is on iOS or Android, you used to have these flashlight apps. Do you remember flashlight apps? When the App Store first opened, no one has a flashlight app anymore because it also got that part of the iOS. That feature is now baked into the operating system. Well, what if you are someone, and so all those flashlight apps went away? What if you have a weather app? Well, iOS has a weather app. Or if you’re a Notes app, well, to make sure that you’re not Sherlock, you need to make sure that you offer additional functionality and that you are the pro-user.
[00:41:22.200] – Adam Weeks
Example here with Multi-Collab is, okay, this feature is coming to the roadmap. But for those who need something above and beyond, something more professional, because I’m a pro user, the weather being an example of, well, yes, Apple has a weather app or Android has a weather app, but I’m a snowboarder, and I want to know exactly what the weather is going to be up on this mountain. So I have a special app for that Pro Features, and that’s the positioning for Multicollab, is the messaging around that is, Yeah, that feature is coming, but for those who want additional features or who are pro users, well, they’re going to use Multicollab.
[00:42:07.850] – Jonathan Denwood
How did you help them? Was it to work out what the pro version should be then?
[00:42:13.100] – Adam Weeks
Right. We have given them some feedback, but it is also on that messaging to help them be consistent with that messaging. When a nil goes on podcast, when people on his support team are talking to the public, they have a consistent message when they are asked that question because we put stuff up out there like, Well, why do I need multi-collab? It’s just coming to the roadmap. Well, one, it’s not there yet. Two, this is going to be more feature-packed and we’ll have additional things that people can do beyond what’s just baked into Gutenberg.
[00:42:49.730] – Jonathan Denwood
Quick, have you got a question before we go into our final question, Kerr.
[00:42:55.380] – Kurt von Ahnen
I’m good, Jonathan.
[00:42:56.540] – Jonathan Denwood
I’m going to add another question before we go into our last question. Do you think the digital, going to use that term again, influence, whatever you want to call it. I don’t think we’ve got any better term for the present moment. I don’t know if you’ve got any suggestion, but I don’t really think there is. But I think it’s fair to keep using it. I just think it’s got some connotations that have been placed on it. It’s a bit like membership and teaching. There’s a certain… I’m having to put it in words, a certain way of online marketing that’s diminished membership websites, which is very unfair to everybody else. But how do you see the landscape of influence? Do you think it’s changing? Do you see any patterns that you’ve observed that might continue or mature in the next 12 months, 18 months? Anything on you you’ve been thinking about?
[00:44:10.100] – Adam Weeks
In its current form, it is still a very new way to market. We’ve always had, in some way, influencers, people who were would make a difference as why when you’d have a race or something, Hey, we want you to put that hat on after the race, or whatever it is. There’s been influencers for a very long time, but not in this lifestyle influencer area. Not in as many. We have a lot more people who consider themselves influencers than we’ve ever had. People would be remiss to dismiss the power of an influencer. When we discuss PR and you think of, Oh, wow, a good PR company. We’re trying to get our stuff into the New York Times or on Vanity Fair or something like that. Well, if you have an influencer with a really big following, which one is more valuable? Is the Vanity Fair or someone with 5 million Instagram followers? WordPress doesn’t have those same type of numbers. That’s why, Kurt, when you say, Hey, I’ve only got 70 people subscribing to my YouTube channel. If you have 70 people in a room with you that are all engaged and the right audience, 70 is a lot and valuable.
[00:45:41.760] – Adam Weeks
That’s what I would say our influencers, the numbers, the metrics are different for influencers and WordPress because we’re not going to see those huge numbers, but we don’t need to. WordPress, as a project, the number of people that really care about this thing, it’s at most, maybe, I don’t know, what do you think? 10,000 people? Many of them not English speaking. I think that the metrics are different. For us to expect that what is viral in one industry does not look viral at all in another. You can have, if you get a post and it’s on LinkedIn or X or whatever, and it’s a WordPress-type thing, if you get 10 people to comment on it, that’s a pretty big deal. Especially if there are 10 different people and they’re engaging in the conversation. In other places, 10 is nothing.
[00:46:39.610] – Kurt von Ahnen
[00:46:42.430] – Jonathan Denwood
I have a good institution. I was thinking, for example, Paul from WP Talk, I always think he’s kept his reputation, and I respect what he’s done with his YouTube channel. Matt Madias. He can be a bit spicy and a bit of a handful, but I think he’s got credibility, and he’s tried to do things the right way. I haven’t agreed with every word that’s come out of his mouth, and he probably would say the same about me, but I think he’s got credibility. There are other people, which I won’t name because I don’t think it’s appropriate. I really haven’t got the energy to get involved in a Twitter storm and all that crap that I don’t think could get any credibility. I’ve got any advice about if you’re in this area, because I’m in it because I like chatting with people and I’m also in it to promote my business, basically. Gaud, how do you keep your credibility? I know it’s a strange question, but I think you know where I’m coming from.
[00:47:53.850] – Adam Weeks
It goes to being authentic and not trying to be something that you’re not. Don’t try to be controversial if there’s nothing to be controversial about. But just being authentic, I think it’s also important that we’re willing to engage with people again. For instance, and here’s the question, maybe there are certain people that you have had bad interactions with in the past.
[00:48:29.800] – Jonathan Denwood
I would never have.
[00:48:31.470] – Adam Weeks
Enough of them. Is your opinion of them forever? Do they get a second chance? Would you be willing to try it again? There is a burn me once, but do we always have a bad opinion?
[00:48:45.980] – Jonathan Denwood
I think it’s more to do with hypocrisy. There are some people who are totally different in private than what they are in their public persona. It’s quite shocking when you come across them. I mean, it’s really fundamentally different. You wonder, and it’s always a shock when you come across those, how they can maintain it. Because I just couldn’t do it. I just haven’t got the mental capacity to be different than what I am on the show. But it’s always shocking when you come across those individuals. Does that make any sense, Aidan?
[00:49:27.960] – Adam Weeks
It does. I guess I just push back on it. Hopefully, we are all growing and becoming better at what we do. People have screwed up in the past. Don’t let them hurt you again is, I think, a good boundary to have. But I think in this industry where the community is so small, it’s not great to write off people forever.
[00:49:56.480] – Jonathan Denwood
Obviously, you work with Jonathan World. Jonathan’s a fantastic individual, a top-quality person, and has always been extremely fair with me. He’s a quality guy. He’s a friend of the show. When you mention that you work with Jonathan, that’s great news because he’s just a great guy, isn’t he? He’s got a lot more patience than I’ve got. This is the final question, my favorite. Obviously, I’m from the UK. I’ve been living in America for 15 years now. I’m a joint citizen. But I was a viewer of Doctor Who, The Time Binders. If you could transport yourself through a time machine back to the early days of your career, maybe your teaching career, whatever, and you could give yourself one tip, one insight, could have a little chat with yourself. What would you tell yourself?
[00:50:57.750] – Adam Weeks
No one’s going to do it for you. You don’t need permission from anyone to do the thing that you’re interested in. I think it’s curious, but don’t wait for someone to say, Yeah, you can do that. I felt like I was often waiting like, Well, I don’t want to… I need… No, be courageous and go and follow those rabbit holes. Follow your curiosity. I don’t think I did that enough. I was waiting for someone to give me permission to be successful.
[00:51:35.510] – Jonathan Denwood
Great advice. So, Adam, what’s the best way for people to find out more about you? You’re a great company. Hopefully, you will come back in the new year for another chat. I’ve really enjoyed it. You’ve shown your skill by dealing with me so differently.
[00:51:49.620] – Adam Weeks
It was fun.
[00:51:51.290] – Jonathan Denwood
We had a bit of a smile, you dealt with me very easily, and I was very impressed. It’s so easy to deal with me, actually.
[00:51:58.980] – Adam Weeks
I used to be a school principal, so-.
[00:52:01.610] – Jonathan Denwood
I’m a dirty child at the moment. -angry punk. There’s no real harm in me, I’m just an idiot. Not at all. People actually think I’m an intellectual, actually. I’ve had people… I think it’s just the word is ridiculous, isn’t it? I think there are two planks. So there we go. What’s the best way for people to?
[00:52:23.570] – Adam Weeks
Find you? Oh, man, find me on the old Twitter, X, whatever you call it. LinkedIn is where I spend a lot of good time. I think it’s the Social Network for Business. Poststatus Slack. I’m also on the WP Minutes Slack. But yes, seriousinfluence. Com, you can find us there. We’d love to connect if there are any companies who are saying, Hey, I could use some more influence, we’d love to help them out.
[00:52:53.140] – Jonathan Denwood
That’s great. Kurt, what’s the best way to find out more about you and what you’re up to?
[00:52:58.210] – Kurt von Ahnen
Anything online that is Manyana No Mass generally ties to me. I’m on LinkedIn almost every day like Adam, and I’m the only Kurt Van Oten there. If you find Kurt Van Oten, you got them. Connect, and we will. We’ll have a conversation.
[00:53:12.490] – Jonathan Denwood
What’s the podcast about Kurt? What’s the best way for people to find out more about your podcast?
[00:53:19.090] – Kurt von Ahnen
The podcast is distributed on 12 different channels. The most popular is on Spotify. If you go to Spotify and search for MananaNoMas, chances are you’ll see my bicycle there or a picture of my mug in AI. We focus on leadership, entrepreneurship, a little bit of wellness, and fitness that goes with business. We really just try to keep it conversational. We just freeform it for 40 to 45 minutes and let people spotlight themselves and their skills.
[00:53:48.810] – Jonathan Denwood
Yeah. I’d say show you some love for Kurt. Go over and subscribe to these podcasts. It sounds great. We will be back next week. We’ve got some great guests coming up. We’re coming to the end of the year. It’s been an interesting year. We’ve got some great guests coming up. We’re going to finish strong, I feel. I’ve really enjoyed chatting with Adam. It’s been really great. We will be back next week. See you soon, folks. Bye. Hey, thanks for listening. We really do appreciate it. Why not visit the Mastermind Facebook group? Also, to keep up with the latest news, click w-tonic.com/newsletter. We’ll see you next time.
WP-Tonic & The Membership Machine Facebook Group
Why don’t you sign up and be part of the Membership Machine Show & WP-Tonic Facebook group, where you can get all the best advice and support connected to building your membership or community website on WordPress?