How Do You Get Great Product or Service Market Fit in The WordPress & SaaS Space?

If you are a freelancer, WordPress digital agency, or a bootstrap SaaS founder market fit is all important. We got some great tips and insight on how you can work on getting a great market fit. Also in the second half of the show, we go into what are some of the best social media platforms to market yourself or your company in 2023.

How to achieve a perfect service or product-market fit for your company

#1 – Determine your target customers.
#2 – Identify their undeserved needs.
#3 – Define your unique value proposition.
#4 – Build your product features.
#5 – Provide a seamless user experience.

This Week Show’s Sponsors


Sensei LMS: Sensei LMS

LifterLMS: LifterLMS

LaunchFlows: LaunchFlows

Episode Transcript

[00:00:00.000] – Introduction

Welcome to the WP-Tonic This Week in WordPress and SaaS podcast, where Jonathan Denwood interviews the leading experts in WordPress, eLearning, and online marketing to help WordPress professionals launch their own SaaS

Jonathan Denwood

Welcome back, folks, to the WP-Tonic. This week in WordPress and SaaS. It’s Episode 752. You’ve just got me and my co-host, Kirk. We’re going to have an internal discussion this week. We did have a guest, but unfortunately, she couldn’t attend today. Hopefully, she might come on at a later stage. What we’re going to discuss in this show is Market Fit. Market Fit, if you’re a freelancer trying to build a niche business. Market Fit, if you’ve got a SaaS product, a WordPress product. It’s an important discussion. It’s something I’ve had to really concentrate on myself. I think you’re going to get value from the conversation. Kirk’s got a lot of experience in management. I’ve got experience as a freelancer, as an agency, and trying to produce a service in the WordPress space. So, Kurt, would you like to quickly introduce yourself to the listeners and viewers?

[00:01:26.540] – Kurt von Ahnen

Love to. Jonathan, great to be back with you again. My name is Kurt von Ahnen. I own an agency called Mañana no Mas, which means tomorrow no more. And our whole thing is being on time and under budget and helping out on podcasts. It’s good to be with you, Ann.

[00:01:41.240] – Jonathan Denwood

Yeah, it’s great. As I say, it’s an important subject. But before we go into the meat and potatoes of the show, I’ve got a couple of great messages from our major sponsors. We will be back in a few moments, folks. Are you 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 % off discount for the tribe, just use the code WP-Tonic, all one word, when checking out and give Sensee a try today. Hi there, folks. It’s Jonathan Denwood here, and I want to tell you about one of our great sponsors, and that’s Zolo. Com. If you got a WordPress website or membership website, and you’re looking to link it with a great financial management package, Zolo can provide this solution. So all your bookkeeping needs are done through Zolo. If you need new inbox email functionality and you don’t want to pay the high charges that Google will charge you, Zolo offers a great email inbox platform.


[00:03:09.160] – Jonathan Denwood

They’ve got over 50 apps and services that all integrate fantastically with WordPress at great value levels, and they almost always offer a fully functioning free product as well. So it’s just amazing value. Also, if you’re a WordPress developer or agency owner, Zolo is looking for great partnerships in the WordPress space. To get all this information, all you have to do, folks, is just go over to Zolo. Com and they have the products that you’re looking for. Thank you so much, Zolo, for supporting WP-Tonic and the Machine Membership Shows. It’s much appreciated. We’re coming back, folks. I just want to point out that we’re looking for partners. If you’re a designer, if you’re a small agency and you’ve got a possibility of a major project, but you’re a bit concerned about taking it on, especially if it’s a community learning management membership type of website or Woocombers. Why don’t you become a partner with WP-Tonic? Host the website for your client on WP-Tonic, and we can also help you build out the project so you can take on that major project without any worries. If that sounds interesting, go over to WP-Tonic partners, and WP-Tonic partners, and learn some more.


[00:04:51.560] – Jonathan Denwood

Market fit. A lot of freelancers don’t think about it, Kirk. I’m just going to give a broad outline why I thought this was a good subject. And it might be… And that’s understandable if they’re just looking to build clients from their physical location, from their city, from their town. And there’s many digital freelancers, small digital agencies. That’s where they start. When it comes online, when you’re looking online, I think if you can find a niche, find a sector that makes you slightly different, you’re going to have a much better experience in building a book of clientele. What’s your response with what I’ve just outlined and what have you got to add to the initial discussion, Kurt?


[00:06:08.000] – Speaker 2

I think we’ve really dove into what could possibly be a really large subject and there’s so many different perspectives on how to tackle it. You’re correct in that. Yeah, you’re going to go for low hanging fruit. It’s probably going to be referrals person to person. It’s going to be people within your circles. It might serve a locality. But yeah, once you go out online and you say, Hey, I’m here, I’m hanging my tile on the internet and I’m open for business, everything has to fall into place. Pricing, product offered, time to service, all of that has to match a requirement. And so there’s a lot to consider.


[00:06:49.680] – Jonathan Denwood

Yeah. So I think you’ve got to have an understanding about… And it’s a it applies to service business, it provides to plug in, it provides to a SaaS product. I think you’ve got to identify a market need. And this has been well stated. Is it a problem or is it aspiration? The aspiration is a vitamin, the problem you’re fixing a pain problem, a pain. So you need a painkiller and you’re providing the thing that could kill the pain. All the podcasts and all the resources online I’ve read say you can do well being a vitamin, but it’s best really to be a pain killer to solve a problem, either in the service business or in a plug in or SaaS product. So it applies to the three buckets of people that tend to listen to this podcast. So you got to identify, it’s best to identify a pain. And that’s what I think we’re talking about. If you’re just putting up through various Facebook groups or Slack groups or whatever, that you’re a WordPress developer, I don’t think, especially if you’re starting from the ground up, that’s going to be a hard path. Or do you sense that I’m being a little bit semiistic, they’re still, if you’re reasonably good at development, there’s still a ton of work out there.


[00:09:09.040] – Speaker 2

It’s such a mixed bag right now. We can look at all the layoffs happening at the corporate level. We can look at all kinds of things that are causing people to chase an entrepreneurial path and maybe pick up freelancing. So I think there’s more people coming to that chat.


[00:09:32.620] – Jonathan Denwood

God, he’s frozen. Was that me.


[00:09:35.760] – Speaker 2

Or was that you?


[00:09:37.220] – Jonathan Denwood

I don’t know. Yeah, we’re back. Sorry about that, folks.


[00:09:41.280] – Speaker 2

So what I was saying there was, to your point f you are, I can be everything to everybody. I’m a developer and I’m available. You don’t become attractive to anybody. I mean, you just become a of a mallet. But if you can niche down and go, I focus on, in my instance, I learned the hard way. I had to niche a little bit and say, look, I focus on membership and learning sites, and I try to keep that focus. And every now and then, an e-commerce customer comes to me and says, oh, well, can you also do this? Absolutely, I can do that. But I’ve focused my niche on learning and membership so that I become attractive as a specialist in that vertical. And I think that that’s important. I think you have to pick a vertical, a category because the space is so big and you have to be able to attract yourself to somebody that’s looking for something specific?


[00:10:34.100] – Jonathan Denwood

Yeah, I just think in the WordPress plugging space, a lot of it has been driven by agencies, small medium sized agencies that have had a client and they’ve had to build out a custom plugin solution and it’s worked out. And then they’ve adapted the plugin, the custom plugging and then offered it to the general the outside world. And it’s either done modular well, hasn’t done well. So there hasn’t been a lot of pre identification is the actual market out there. The costs have been developed by the custom plug in development, and then they’ve launched it. And that still works to some extent. I think it’s a little bit less because we got a market now in the WordPress space of 60,000 plugins plus. And the same thing applies to the SaaS world. I think there’s still opportunities out there, but you just need to do some pre identification around your product, around your plugin. And also if you’re a freelancer, what your niche is going to be? What’s your thoughts about that?


[00:12:03.600] – Speaker 2

I couldn’t agree with you more on the plug in talk, Jonathan, other than you hit on the point, well, there’s 60,000 plug ins out there, but then you hear people making custom plug in solutions, and then they just put it out to the market. And chances are there’s something else out there that does what they created. They just didn’t do enough homework up front to realize they could have taken something existing and used it. And so we end up with a lot of duplication and we end up with a lot of plug ins that don’t have a high adoption rate. And so those are the types of things that as a freelancer, I look at. When was the last time it was updated? When’s the last time? How many people have used it? How many downloads? What are the reviews on it? Y ou got to come at that market hard because there’s a lot of competition in that space. And so if there’s a lot of duplication in what you created, how are you going to make it stand apart? How are you going to make it special? And that’s part of that niching down idea, right?


[00:13:01.120] – Speaker 2

How it’s presented.


[00:13:02.720] – Jonathan Denwood

I also think looking at the ad on market is looking… That’s one of the attractions of wood combers or one of the attractions of some of the major plugins out there. Learndash, Lyft, and LMS because I’m in the learning management system membership. Add ons for Buddy Boss, the add on market for adding some additional functionality to a popular base plugin is a pretty good idea. Because to get started, because it might not be a big earner, but it’s a good way, it’s manageable, and the market is already been pre identified because LearnDash or L ifta NMS or whatever the major plugging that you’re adding ad on, sub plugging functionality to. I think that’s quite a good idea. What do you reckon about that?


[00:14:17.550] – Speaker 2

Yeah, except for, and there’s a caveat to every rule, when I go looking for a Woocommerce add on, it’s almost like looking for a WordPress plugin. There’s just so many to choose from and so many avenues. Woocommerce has turned into this animal to me that when I go to create a specific use for it and find the specific add on I’m looking for, and I don’t want to pay $99 a year forever and ever to do commerce for it. It’s looking for those add on third party solutions. It’s almost like looking for a plugin in WordPress. It’s just a huge marketplace there now. It’s like that flea market you talk about. And so when you enter that market, you got to be real specific about what’s the pain point that you’re solving and what’s your value to market?


[00:15:07.020] – Jonathan Denwood

Yeah. I think also when it comes to freelance, I think actually getting yourself out there actually talking about your niche area. Let’s take an example, let’s say if it is membership learning management systems, actually having a website, actually publishing blog post content, actually publishing videos, actually publishing things on LinkedIn, joining some of the popular Facebook groups and commenting and engaging. I think this is how you build your visibility in a particular niche. What’s your thoughts around there?


[00:15:52.960] – Speaker 2

Couldn’t agree more. In fact, and I’ve said this publicly many, many times, I’ve been working in WordPress since 2004, and I was never really part of the community until very recently, Jonathan. It’s only like embracing being your co host on the podcast, working with WP Tonic, Lifter LMS, and getting involved with these other companies at that contractor level that’s given me exposure. When I went to WordCamp US, it opened up a whole new world for me. I met a ton of people in the plug in space. I met other vendors, and then I started attending WordPress meetups. WordPress meetups. I’ve gotten half a dozen referrals in the last four months just from attending WordPress meetups and being able to just offer… You’re not selling in a WordPress meetup, but you’re contributing. Someone has an issue, you say, Well, did you try this? Did you try that? Have you thought about this? Do you want to jump on a quick Zoom and let’s cover it? Next thing you know, you’ve got another job for your agency or a referral. It’s a great way to go.


[00:16:58.260] – Jonathan Denwood

I think getting yourself out there. But like I say, I think also you’re seeing that in the subgroups, the elevator, or if you’re part of the cadence community, there’s sub communities in WordPress. Now, one of the strongest is the Divi community, which I’ve never been very active in. But I’ve known people that have built six figure businesses, plugging businesses, feeding businesses in the Divi as a sub provider of product in the Divi community because it’s over, it must be slightly under a million active or people that bought divvy, which doesn’t compare to Elementor, but it’s still a very large community. And there’s a number of these sub communities, isn’t it, which is quite unusual in the WordPress space, really, isn’t it?


[00:18:08.210] – Speaker 2

The really cool thing about those sub communities, though, Jonathan, is as you shop around and you input yourself into each one, just give it a sample, you’ll realize each one has its own culture, its own identity for you. And there’s ones that you’ll fit into and there’s ones that you feel like it’s a forced fit. But if you focus on the ones that you naturally fit into, you’re going to find that growth. Gowp does a happy hour on Fridays. I signed into that and there’s 12 to 18 new friends in there. But I’ve been to some others where I signed in and I went, well, this one wasn’t for me. I’ll take this one off the list and I’ll look for another group to join in. And as I participate in those groups, the networking and the ideas and the creativity that flows afterwards is worth the time, the investment to be.


[00:19:00.870] – Jonathan Denwood

There. i think if it comes to freelancers getting yourself out there, finding… It’s normally when you’re aimed at normally, you’re guided down a certain path because it’s getting those initial clients over locally. If it’s a small business community, it’s been going to all your normal business type city or region events and just getting yourself having conversations with people. That’s how You might also get to the stage where you can do some freelance work for some digital agencies. There’s a number of ways of getting… Normally, it’s a side hustle, unless you’re a student. If you’re looking after children or seniors or whatever, and you’re trying to build a side hustle as well, there’s a number of that’s one of the attractions of the WordPress space. You can build up a book of business and freelance at the same time where it might be a side gig. It might not be your main form of income. When it comes to plug ins, that’s normally more experienced developers or smaller agencies to medium agencies. When it comes to SaaS, I’ve known SaaSs that have been built by just one developer or just a couple. Unless they’re… I think our podcast is really aimed at the bootstrap SaaS.


[00:21:01.580] – Jonathan Denwood

And there’s a lot of overlap between the bootstrap and building a product in the WordPress space because it’s self enhanced, basically. So to get back where I started because there’s been a little bit of a ramble, but I think it’s been a useful one is identifying a pain rather than a vitamin, a painkiller is a good start. But what applies to the freelancer applies to a SaaS or plug in. You’ve got to find what I call your online tribe, your online audience. You’ve got to get the message out. I think one of the factors is SEO, is producing blog content and content. If you’ve got a SaaS, you’ve got to be able to have somebody in the organization that understands the basis of content marketing, SEO, and also social media and video marketing. What’s your thoughts about that before we go for a break?


[00:22:31.420] – Speaker 2

All of it put together in one giant, huge package, the way you just described it, is an absolute nightmare for a bootstrap single operator like, for instance, me working out of my little workshop. But the point is, once you get that online tribe, once you start, if you are a fisherman tossing lures in the water and starting to bring fish your way, that’s where that product market fit conversation can actually happen because then you’ll have a book of business, a little bit, a smaller book of business, where you can start to analyze your proof of concepts and say, out of my portfolio, what worked, what almost worked, and then what was an utter disaster? Because it’s okay to have failure as long as you learn from it. And then that’s where that product market fit conversation can extend from.


[00:23:20.620] – Jonathan Denwood

Yeah. And I think before we go for a break, this is the difficult thing because not only do you have to do if you’re a freelancer, if you’re a plug in, a theme producer, a small agency, or a bootstrap SaaS company, not only do you have to do something, a service, a plug in, or a SaaS product. You’ve got to be out there marketing. You’ve got to be out there doing the work, managing the work, plus marketing yourself, your agency, or your bootstrap SaaS is difficult. This is why it’s not easy. This is why not everybody is successful in their online businesses or business in general. This is why most businesses fail between three and five years. It’s tricky and you can end up doing a lot of hours, a lot of work and not making less than minimum wage, basically. I’m not saying it’s easy, but what I’m going to do in the second half with Kirk’s help is I’m going to hopefully give you some outline about how you might be able to balance this and market yourself in the WordPress community, or if you’re bootstrapped SaaS, market your SaaS business. We are going for a break.


[00:25:09.220] – Jonathan Denwood

We will be back in a few moments, folks.


[00:25:13.460] – Speaker 2

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[00:26:21.060] – Jonathan Denwood

Of your show. We’re coming back. I just want to point out that if… I do another podcast called the membership machine show. We got a great WordPress community… Not WordPress, sorry, Facebook community. Got a great Facebook group called the membership machine show group. Got a great mixture of people trying to build a membership website and WordPress developers. If you’re a WordPress developer, why don’t you join us on there and be part of the discussion? So go over to Facebook and join us there. This is the tricky bit. Not only do you have to do the work, not only do you have to manage clients. The reason why I’m telling you is because you probably are listening to this, folks, and you’re saying, No, I don’t, Jonathan. I’ve got my referrals, I do good work. I’m working for WordPress plugin shops, theme shops. Plus I’ve got my independent clientele, people are referring clientele to me. I don’t need this. I think that is the wrong, understandable. And if you really are working 60 hours a day a week and you really just don’t have any time to produce material, understandable. But I think what you got to understand, to some extent it’s overblown because I’ve worked with a lot of offshore developers, domestic developers, all sorts in my WordPress career, and I’ve heard it all and I’ve seen it all.


[00:28:23.300] – Jonathan Denwood

And working with offshore people has its own skills. It’s a bit more difficult. But what I’m saying is, if you don’t find the time to market yourself, I think it is going to bite you on the backside in the end. Unless you’re the top tier of developer in the WordPress or JavaScript or SaaS space. And then that’s more working for a large employer, medium employer. There’s loads of developers that do not want to be freelance, do not even want to do it as a side hustle. They don’t have enough time for their family anyway, their full time job. But I’m talking specifically at people that freelancers want or doing this as a side hustle or their bootstrap. I think not spending time marketing yourself, it’s going to hurt you in the end. What do you reckon, Kurt? I believe whether.


[00:29:30.190] – Speaker 2

You’re a freelancer or you’re an agency, you need to, in the back of your mind, be planning for expansion and growth before expansion and growth ends up on your desk or on your keyboard. If you are a freelancer and you are literally pumping it out 60 hours a week, and you said that, and people might have snickered or snorted, but it happens. There’s people that get a lot of work and then they got all this stuff and they can’t keep up. And they go, Well, I don’t need any more referrals. I’m dying. I’m swamped here. If they would have gotten ahead of that curve when they were producing 30, 35 hours a week and started to build a process and procedure manual for the things that they specialize in, they would be able to bring in contractors or offshore help and then transition themselves into a project manager over a keyboard warrior. And at that point, they increase their margins because they’re able.


[00:30:29.440] – Jonathan Denwood

To get their tricky, though, isn’t it? Because there’s a lot of developers that really don’t want to do that.


[00:30:36.020] – Speaker 2

It is tricky, but that’s… Well, the talk was product market fit, right? And so if you want to limit your market and then limit your responsibilities, you’re going to have some type of a ceiling that you’re going to run into trading time for money or skills for money. But if you want to extend past that ceiling, you’re going to have to find a way to increase those margins and productivity in other ways. I’m not.


[00:31:04.100] – Jonathan Denwood

Going to ask you for any detailed information, but you work with Chris, who’s a friend of mine, with Lyft at LMS. Chris is the CEO of Lyft, folks. He’s a personal friend of mine. His role, obviously, is to run the company on a day to day basis, but also he spends most of his time on the marketing and side of promoting the benefits of LFT and LMS. So your observation, what are some of the key areas that on the top of mind that you’ve observed, that Chris has shown you around how he looks at marketing LFT and LMS to the general WordPress community and the wider people that are looking to build a learning business in 2020 23?


[00:32:01.950] – Speaker 2

Yeah. Without the bulging too much information about LFT or LMS, Chris is a wonderful leader to work under, and he’s pretty transparent. So there’s a lot of things to really look at there. Their growth over the last two, three years has been pretty good, Jonathan. It was someone doing some part time customer service on support tickets, someone else doing part time on maybe running those office hours that they do every Thursday afternoon for the people in their Infinity group. And then it was Chris on the marketing side and sales and running the business. And Thomas was developer. And we’d look at that and you go, okay. And then they had someone in Italy that was helping. And now when you look, they’ve got two more partners. The paid memberships pro blog post went out public last month. So everyone should know that there’s two more investors and workers on the developing side and the design side. The newest release of Lifter just had some really cool design elements changed in it. So if you’re on the.


[00:33:06.490] – Jonathan Denwood

7.1. I think that’s all great, Kurt. But what’s your observation? Where does Chris really concentrate? I’m not asking for specifics. No, that’s.


[00:33:17.050] – Speaker 2

What I was going.


[00:33:18.480] – Jonathan Denwood

To get to. I’m asking about what does he focus when it comes to the online marketing? Which buckets does he focus the most on? Yeah.


[00:33:30.660] – Speaker 2

T hat’s where I wanted to get to was he expanded the team enough that everyone’s able to focus on their sweet spot, and he lets them roll with it. He doesn’t micromanage it, which frees him up for lots of podcasts, lots of cameo appearances on our weekly calls, lots of planning, lots of social planning, sales planning for different promotions. He is more in the planning stage than in the catching up and execution stages of things now, which is what I was alluding to earlier. If you’re the freelancer pumping out 60 hours a week, struggling to keep up, you don’t have the ability to plan ahead and to be more calm in your execution. You’re more frantic in your execution because you’re trying to keep up. Chris, the way that he’s orchestrated things at Lifter recently, is more in a position to plan ahead, execute according to the plan, but with less of a frantic feel or nature to it. I think people sense that. I think people from the outside coming in, they go, This seems to be well established. This is consistent. I think that really lends to a good customer experience?


[00:34:48.580] – Jonathan Denwood

I think we get from that is having the bandwidth to plan out some marketing, to plan out how you’re going to position your SaaS, your plug in, you as a freelancer, because you just get buried in the weeds for understandable reasons. Because a lot of people are listening to this, Gur, and think, what are we waffling on about? Because I need time looking for clients all the time. And I think we all are, to some degree. Now, what’s been your experience about utilizing LinkedIn? What’s your observations of the order? Every platform has from Facebook groups, to Pinkress, to Instagram, to YouTube. Every platform, marketing or communication platform has its peculiarities, has its own digital culture, as I call it. First of all, would you agree that every of these type of communication, social media platforms have their semi different culture? What’s the culture of LinkedIn?


[00:36:05.520] – Speaker 2

I’m actually wondering if you’re trolling me.


[00:36:07.960] – Jonathan Denwood



[00:36:08.610] – Speaker 2

I just released a course last week on an introduction to growth through LinkedIn. Linkedin to me, and I’ve been an early adopter of most social media channels. I try as many as I can, and I try to see which ones have the best return, the best energy. For me personally, LinkedIn has become a home. But I’m going to say 60 %, 65 %, maybe more of the people on LinkedIn trying to find business use it incorrectly. They use it in a spammy, gross way that repels a lot of people, almost like getting those long, cold emails that you just delete every day in your inbox and your email. There’s a way to communicate on LinkedIn and a way to grow your network and your tribe in a conversational, less transactional way that becomes transactional over time. It’s an investment. So for instance, and I’ll just be blunt, three years ago, my LinkedIn was at 1200 connections. Now I’m at over 8,000 connections. And in the last three years, I’ve had 2,400 meetings through my LinkedIn account, meaning I’ve scheduled people for a 15 to 30 minute ice breaker conversation just to figure out who are you?


[00:37:28.480] – Speaker 2

What’s your business? Do I have something I can offer you, do you have something you can offer me, or is there someone else on my list that I need to connect you to? And when you have that ice breaker conversation and you’re generous with other connections and putting people together for other types of business, you become the go to referral for them in return. Linkedin is a really great tool for marketing.


[00:37:52.340] – Jonathan Denwood

That’s interesting. You’ve approached them and said… But a lot of people, you’re just inundated with spammy LinkedIn messages. How did you have to really work on that initial message that you sent people so they would agree to have a quick chat with you on Zoom or whatever platform you’re utilizing?


[00:38:21.680] – Speaker 2

Yeah. We could really be spammy here and say, go to Kurt von Annen. Com and take the free course. Or I’ll just give you a little bit of a secret now. Do not connect with people on LinkedIn and then send them five paragraphs about how wonderful you are because that’s going to get deleted. You’re going to get blocked and you don’t want that reputation on that platform. I treat the LinkedIn messenger like a text message. If you think about how text messages are received and answered and the return rate on text messaging, if you adopt that modality to the messenger feature in LinkedIn, you’ll find you get a lot higher reciprocation. Usually it’s just, Hey, I found you by searching out WordPress agencies. I found you by searching out published authors. I found you by whatever. I thought we could connect. Boom, that’s it. No links, no nothing, no weird stuff. If they connect, you get a notification from LinkedIn that you’ve connected and you say, Hey, great. Do you want to have an ice breaker call? Yes or no? And that’s it. No sales.


[00:39:29.710] – Jonathan Denwood

Pitch. eep it sweet, keep it on focus, and keep it.


[00:39:33.280] – Speaker 2

It works. You get the call and then you get to discuss everything you would have put in that pitch that just got deleted the other way.


[00:39:41.010] – Jonathan Denwood

Yeah, I think that’s really… I think it applies to some ways with Facebook groups and others. So onto another one. What’s your experience with Twitter? Because in some ways I hate Twitter and it’s got me into a lot of difficulties. I’m very PVE. I’ve got very sarcastic English humor and sometimes it doesn’t come across very well on Twitter. So I’ve got mixed feelings. But what’s been your experience with Twitter and utilizing it because there’s many people in the WordPress community, and because of the changes that happened recently, over the recent months with Twitter, a lot of people have left. Others have reduced their exposures. Others are fine with it. But what’s your general about excluding the politics because I really don’t want to get involved in that at all. But as a similar platform to LinkedIn, what’s been your experience with Twitter?


[00:40:48.500] – Speaker 2

I almost turned Twitter off before it was purchased. I had multiple accounts and I had allowed the algorithm to portray me a certain way and send me information that I didn’t really want. It was negative. And I was just going to say, Forget it, I’m just going to turn it off. And then when the purchase happened, I thought, You know what? I’m going to retry this. I’m going to double down and see if I can’t change my feed. And that’s what I’ve learned through Twitter. Twitter is an amplifier of whatever you allow yourself to stare at. And so if you go down some rabbit trail and you start looking stuff up in your Twitter account, Twitter is going to force feed you that junk for a long time. But if you go at it from a positive perspective, for example, the WordPress community, Jonathan, the communication and the connection that I’ve gotten from the WordPress community on my WPE learning account has been phenomenal. I’ve gotten referrals. I got a speaking gig through it. Someone that’s pretty high up in the WordPress community said, Hey, this organization is looking for a speaker, you should apply.


[00:41:52.920] – Speaker 2

I wouldn’t have known about it if I didn’t get that message. So the Twitter thing is unique, but it’s one of those ones you got to be careful with because there’s so much activity in there and there’s so many different category verticals. If you go down a weird path, that’s what it’s going to show you. But if you focus and you use it as a business tool, it can be very powerful.


[00:42:17.430] – Jonathan Denwood

Yeah, I think you’re totally right there. I think also I think twin utilizing this is very useful. Utilizing this to different groups of individuals that you’re following. I think also promoting other people’s content, not utilizing it totally to broadcast what you’re, but helping to broadcast other people’s content. People notice that you’re helpful, that you’re assisting them and commenting. I think also spending, probably we’ll get back into it. I’ve taken a little bit of break from it. And also I’ll probably relook at LinkedIn myself because I do publish quite a bit of stuff on LinkedIn, but I haven’t done much outreach, and it’s probably something I need to look at as well. And so definitely go to Kurt’s. So where can they get this course from, Kurt?


[00:43:17.720] – Speaker 2

The free course for the LinkedIn growth is at Kurt von Annen. Com. So if you just go to Kurt von Annen. Com, there it is.


[00:43:25.800] – Jonathan Denwood

I might sign up myself because obviously I need help with it. So what about Facebook? What’s your experience about different Facebook groups? Because there is a lot of sub divvy, all these page builders, there’s all these different groups. I think with Facebook, the group activity is one of the few that you can get benefit because the rest of it is really paid to play, really. But I think the group still has some oxygen. What’s your own thoughts there?


[00:44:05.940] – Speaker 2

It’s one of the ones that I still consistently tell myself I’m going to bail out of. Even though, to your point, the groups is where a lot of that energy is or where there are certain companies that just run their plug in support through Facebook groups. So it’s like if you’re going to work in the WordPress world, it’s like you almost have to have it if you’re going to get the support for the tools that you use. And I’m just going to be transparent here. I mean, when Manana Nomas launched in 2008 as a digital marketing company, I was running social media accounts for multiple companies. And at one point, ran like 80 Facebook pages. Just had all kinds of stuff going on. And I was in deep. I was in really deep and multiple times had to scale back my followers because I was at their limit. You can only have 5,000 on a personal and all these different rules. And over time, it has just become this ubiquitous wash of nonsense to me that it doesn’t get the job done, at least from my perspective. And I say that from my perspective because I see other people doing extremely well still in that environment.


[00:45:13.500] – Jonathan Denwood

And in analyse why you have that feeling, why it’s panned out. If you looked back at it and think, because it seems to suggest that some… Because that’s my own feelings, really. But I think, but like you say, there’s whole people that are built up in the membership. I’m not going to name names. There’s a particular Facebook membership group, and the founders threw me off because they don’t like me very much. And B, they thought I did some things that peeved them off, but it’s very easy to pee them off. They’re notorious for… But it’s their Facebook group. But they banged me for life. But they banged a lot of people for life. But I think it’s over 17,000 people. So eah, because my impression is the professional developer WordPress SaaS people that are providing service for end users on Twitter and LinkedIn. Consumers are on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. That’s my sense of it. The consumers on YouTube, I’m going to ramp up my activity on YouTube a lot this year. Probably got my own Facebook group. It’s only a very small one, but I’m trying to push it. But I also look at LinkedIn and Twitter on the professional side.


[00:47:00.760] – Jonathan Denwood

So that’s how I break up. The way I’ve looked at it, Kurt, is YouTube, Facebook, end users, LinkedIn, more professional end users and the professional market and Twitter, the in crowd. That’s how I rationalize. Do you think I’m on the right track there?


[00:47:28.260] – Speaker 2

I think over time, and I’m not going to get too political. I’ll just let you fill in the blanks with me. Over time, I think more and more people are going to get tired of big tech and the established social media platforms. I think that decentralized social media is going to be more of a thing. T hat’s the products that you and I sell, Jonathan. That’s the Buddy Boss platform, the social learning on on Lyft or LMS. Those self run social pages, I think, are going to grow over time and be preferred. When you say, why are some people making it on Facebook? I look at the people that are. So we talked earlier about product market fit. I’m part of a group that’s 15,000 strong for bicycleists that ride for kids cancer every year. And I’m in this group and there’s 15,000 people in there. And I look at my own groups and I go, how in the world do I not have 15,000 people? But it’s like, bicycleing is one of those things, man. It’s in your heart and it’s a passion and people do it. The other ones that I see that are big are established plug in organizations that run their communities that way because they have a customer base that they can plug into that.


[00:48:38.700] – Speaker 2

But if you don’t have an existing tribe or you don’t have some fame like Tony Robbins to plug into that thing and you got to grow it. It’s like being that no name person adding a plug into the WordPress repository. It’s in a sea of options and it’s really hard to lure people into that unless you bring them from something else.


[00:49:00.760] – Jonathan Denwood

Yeah, I think I’ll wrap it up. We’re going on a bit of a journey, but actually, I’ve enjoyed this discussion, actually. I think we’re covered because it’s a spider web. It’s really hard to find direction for if you’re a freelancer, if you’re running a small plug in, whatever. The landscape of promoting your services, your freelance, your products, your plugins, your bootstrap SaaS, how you market it, how you get your message that you can help certain people. It’s become very multifaceted. It probably always has been, but it just seems to have got even more faceted. I haven’t even touched. I do nothing with it. I don’t even have it. It’s TikTok. I love TikTok. I don’t even touch that. Just for plus, produce content, and we haven’t touched podcasting, have we? So just doing the amount of work I do, plus the other things, there’s a lot of balls in the air, isn’t there? And just to wrap up, how do you consciously, in your own mind, make the decision that I’ve given this enough time? I know n’t there any particular pointers the way you feel, I’ve given that platform, that group, that whatever enough time, and it’s just not panning out for me?


[00:50:56.680] – Jonathan Denwood

Or is it just a pure gut driven decision?


[00:51:01.030] – Speaker 2

No. This is a big piece of advice. This is huge. I’ve learned this from other people. I didn’t invent this. Analytics is a requirement. It’s not a nice idea. It’s a requirement because your gut, your feelings are going to tell you something. You’re going to have some heart felt conversation on Facebook and think that it’s working. And then be like, oh, that was wonderful. I love Facebook, and you’re going to keep diving in. Meanwhile, you might be getting 25 people a day searching you out on LinkedIn that you’re not paying attention to because you’re not looking at the analytics. Using the technique that I’ve used for the last three years, I’m averaging 100 people, something like 100 people a day are coming to my LinkedIn profile right now. So I know that that net, that gil net in my stream is working because I’m looking at those analytics. My YouTube, to your point, I’ve had a YouTube channel for years, and I’ve got a whopping 60 subscribers. And I get people that even comment that go, Man, your content is really good. How come there’s only 60 people in here? And I didn’t focus enough on its growth.


[00:52:11.850] – Speaker 2

I didn’t look at those analytics as I was beginning to grow that channel. And to your point, that’s something I need to look at, diving in and trying to improve. But you have to be, for me, looking at the analytics, I am still upwardly gaining very well on LinkedIn. So I’m going to keep that energy on what I know is working right now. And when that begins to taper off or plateau, then I’ll ramp things up on another channel.


[00:52:37.400] – Jonathan Denwood

Yeah, but I think the other thing is you can’t cover all of them. What you got to do is find one or two of these channels that we’ve discussed and focus on them, get them up to a decent level, and then maybe you can add another channel. But the idea that you can be over all these platforms is you just need to find one or two of these platforms that really gel with you that you’re starting to get some traction and then double down on them. As I say, you can’t do everything. That’s been my experience. So I think we’re going to wrap it up. So Kurt, how can people find out more about you and what you’re up to? Well, surprise, surprise.


[00:53:21.390] – Speaker 2

You can find me on LinkedIn. I’m the only Kurt von Annen on LinkedIn, so I’m easy to find. If you’re watching the video, you can see how to spell my name. We’ll connect. And once we connect, you’ll get an invitation for me to join an icebreaker call and see what we can do for each other.


[00:53:37.260] – Jonathan Denwood

And if you want to support the show, give us a review on iTunes. That really helps the podcast. And go to the WP-Tonic YouTube channel and subscribe to that. We got some fantastic content. I do another podcast called the membership Machine Show. It’s focused on business, but around people wanting to build income through eLearning, and it’s got a focus on WordPress as well. We’ll see you next week when we got some great guests in March. Plus at the end of the month, we do our Round table show. Join us on that. We’ll see you soon, folks. Bye. Hey, thanks for listening. We really do appreciate it. Why not visit the Mastermind Facebook group? And also to keep up with the latest news, click wp. Tonic. Com newsletter. We’ll see you next time.


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