Marketing a WordPress Product Live: Session 11


In this podcast episode, Michelle Frechette and Corey Maass delve into their experiences with design and technical challenges. They discuss the intricacies of using Beaver Builder for creating a 404 page, with Corey expressing frustration over camera issues and a desire to enhance brand representation. Michelle brings up an accessibility oversight in a newsletter and the necessity of attention to detail, exemplified by Google’s logo updates. The conversation highlights the significance of accessibility and meticulous design in creating content that resonates with and is accessible to all users.

Top Takeaways:

  • Transparency in Business: Corey discusses how transparency has become more prevalent in the startup world, particularly with the rise of platforms like WordPress. He reflects on the value of transparency, even if he doesn’t always agree with or fully understand its implications, suggesting that it fosters relatability and authenticity in business interactions.
  • Continuous Improvement: Throughout the conversation, Corey and Michelle emphasize the importance of continuous improvement and learning. They discuss how podcasts, businesses, and individuals evolve over time, highlighting the value of feedback, reflection, and adaptation in achieving growth and success.
  • Collaboration and Support: Corey and Michelle express gratitude for the support they receive from their audience, as well as from other podcast hosts within the community. They highlight the collaborative nature of the WordPress community and the willingness to help each other succeed in their respective projects.

Mentioned In The Show:

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Corey Maass (00:00:00) – We are nothing if we are not professional.

Michelle Frechette (00:00:04) – Is a perfect first thing to have come up on the on the broadcast.

Corey Maass (00:00:08) – Along with my bald spot as I turn on my my ring light because. Oh, and then my camera froze.

Michelle Frechette (00:00:14) – It did.

Corey Maass (00:00:16) – Yay! That’s what happens. This camera is driving me crazy. Like something happens. And now it does this like the beginning of every calll.

Michelle Frechette (00:00:27) – They never, ever freeze. Like when you are in, like the perfect pose. They always freeze when you’re going to look the dorkiest. Right.

Corey Maass (00:00:34) – Exactly. Yeah.

Michelle Frechette (00:00:36) – I mean, at least I can still hear you.

Corey Maass (00:00:38) – Yes, that’s true. And you can just imagine me, my lips moving.

Michelle Frechette (00:00:43) – I just see a tiny dog eye over your actually behind your shoulder, I should say, below your shoulder. I don’t know, not over your shoulder because they’re too short. But yeah, hopefully we’ll get you back here at a second. Otherwise, I’m just like, you know, talking to. Just.

Michelle Frechette (00:01:03) – Just the unmovable person, I guess.

Corey Maass (00:01:05) – Yeah, well, I’m trying to. How do I put an avatar up and. But. Oh, good. Touch up my I want to I’m checking the box. Touch up my appearance as if that’s, you know.

Michelle Frechette (00:01:17) – That’s going to make a difference.

Corey Maass (00:01:19) – Virtual background. It won’t let me because there’s no. Anyway, But. Hi. How are you?

Michelle Frechette (00:01:24) – I’m good. You’re not even on the screen right now. It’s just a talking circle.

Corey Maass (00:01:27) – Well, I, I took it took it off because it’s just, you know, frozen.

Michelle Frechette (00:01:31) – Still frozen.

Corey Maass (00:01:32) – Exactly.

Michelle Frechette (00:01:32) – Still frozen. I wonder if sharing your screen is possible or not. Given.

Corey Maass (00:01:38) – Now it says your browser has lost connection to your camera. Yeah, it’s just my camera’s bugging out. This is like a fancy camera. I got myself for Christmas and it worked well until it didn’t, and so I. I need to contact them.

Michelle Frechette (00:01:52) – Yeah. Sounds kind of odd, No other cameras? Switch over to.

Corey Maass (00:01:58) – It won’t let me or it’ll like it freaks out.

Michelle Frechette (00:02:02) – That’s weird.

Corey Maass (00:02:03) – Or stays freaked out. Yeah. Like when I try to, you know, if I’m. If I am trying to be professional and I try to switch to just the FaceTime camera, like on the laptop. And, So. But then you’re also looking at my nose. So that’s less than ideal.

Michelle Frechette (00:02:19) – There is that. So I guess I’ll just talk to the the pulsating 

Corey Maass: The white circle. 

Michelle Frechette: Yeah. So funny. Well.

Corey Maass: Don’t walk into the light Michelle. 

Michelle Frechette: I’ll try not to, I’ll try not to is too. I also have two big key lights over. Me too. It’s funny. As soon as I’m off the air, it’s like the first thing I do is shut those lights off. And I’ve been working without them all day, but it’ll suddenly feel like I’ve been plunged into darkness because I don’t have these big spotlights on me. Oh, I see you see.

Corey Maass (00:02:49) – We’ll see how long it lasts.

Michelle Frechette (00:02:51) – We shall see.

Corey Maass (00:02:53) – I just have to look perfect all the time so that when it freezes.

Michelle Frechette (00:02:58) – Yes, it’s always like.

Corey Maass (00:03:00) – Yes.

Michelle Frechette (00:03:02) – Exactly. Oh my goodness. You posted something the other day, and tagged me and OMGIMG in it. That was a little flyer or something that came with stickers with the stickers. Was that what it was? 

Corey Maass: Yeah. 

Michelle Frechette: And you talked about how one of the things that we talk about is how to delight people. And I referenced a few weeks ago. It might have been last week, I don’t know, all time is irrelevant at this point, but I referenced a Ted Talk by a guy named Renee Gleason, who talks about how your 404 page can actually delight people. And we had mentioned that. So. You’re to delight people with an Easter egg 404 page doesn’t have to be elaborate. It just has to be a little bit clever. And so you gave me the link of how to build ours in Beaver Builder, and I had never done that before, so I was rather impressed with myself that it really wasn’t that difficult, but I didn’t struggle with it is what I’m trying to say was like, I figured it out.

Michelle Frechette (00:04:07) – Basically I just had to do it and then, yeah, you know, whatever. 

Corey Maass (00:04:13) – Well you got a button to do an animation. I’ve never done that in Beaver Builder before.

Michelle Frechette (00:04:16) – Right? That was kind of cool. Anyway, I wanted to share it. So this is our 404 page found. And just the little tongue in cheek, tongue in cheek humor. I was like, there’s nothing to see here. Which is ironic for a website about images, but hey, we’d rather focus on helping you be found and looking good. So try the navigation above or hit the Back to home page below wherever you land, we’re here to help. So is it like, the most clever? No. But does it really speak to who we are as our brand? Kinda. I thought so.

Corey Maass: Yeah. 

Michelle Frechette: So, yeah. And I just wanted to share that.

Corey Maass (00:04:54) – That’s the. And I in the. Nature of in the the way that you and I usually collaborate. Like you went in and and put in this great copy and your first Beaver Builder experience.

Corey Maass (00:05:08) – This is their default page with the huge header. And so I will probably go in and and make the because the, you know, the 404 is less important, but they make it gargantuan. And so probably.

Michelle Frechette (00:05:23) – It is rather enormous.

Corey Maass (00:05:25) – But I will change it to. Yeah something there. Right. And then I’ll I’ll change it to 404. There’s nothing to see here which is ironic, you know, and like jeuje it.

Michelle Frechette (00:05:38) – Yeah. Exactly. Which is kind of fun. Anyway, so I just wanted to show that I thought that was cool. And like, we have, I have used Beaver, Beaver Builder in the past, but not the theming. I think that’s what it was called. Right? Theming.

Corey Maass (00:05:50) – Right. Themer. Yeah.

Michelle Frechette (00:05:52) – Themer. Themer. Okay. Yeah. I mean, I knew it was something like that, but, so that was my first time using that.

Corey Maass (00:06:00) – Another one. Oh, it kind of went away, but.

Michelle Frechette (00:06:06) – Oh. What is it? Oh.

Michelle Frechette (00:06:10) – My cat’s tail just came into my face. Yeah. Okay.

Corey Maass (00:06:13) – Yeah. It’s not really there anymore. but the. Yeah, I was just trying to show another one of, like, I’ve, I’ve really enjoyed. There we go. Settings, present. I’m going to present, share screen. If it lets me WordCampUS as you share.

Michelle Frechette (00:06:35) – To find the top secret WordCamp US 2023 launch page of OMGIMG. Gotta say it like you’re a superhero movie or something. 

Corey Maass (00:06:46) – Exactly. So yeah, ignore ignore the top part because obviously that’s that’s what’s showing now. The rest of it. I hid after WordCamp US, but I love like I’ve been, we’ve been making more and more of these kinds of pages and I love the having fun with the text. And years ago there was a launch of a Chrome extension, Gmail extension that basically made your inbox a to do list. I should find a link because I want to give the guy credit. Sent out the guy who started it, sent out these newsletters, and they look, you know, it’s it’s long been said that the most effective newsletters are look like plain text.

Corey Maass (00:07:38) – Like, obviously there’s time and place. Niche emails or whatever, you know, or if you’re trying to do lots of articles or something like then a traditional HTML email makes more sense. But most emails, transactional emails do better, convert better if they just look like plain text, because we’re prone to just skim them and get on with it. But I loved he was the first one that I saw who his emails looked like plain text, but he would go through and he would bold and italics. and so it, it read like a comic strip or something like it, it because it had emphasis and you were you wound up, you couldn’t help but read it like you were just reading where you’re like, oh, this part’s, you know, big and bold and this part’s, you know, grayed out. And so it creativity with type typography, but in a very limited way, intentionally like rich text would be the way you describe it traditionally in web terms. And so trying to do more pages that look like that.

Corey Maass (00:08:43) – You know just.

Michelle Frechette:  I like that. 

Corey Maass: And lots of short paragraphs and, and variation in font size. Like I try not to go crazy with it but I try to do that. You know whenever there’s like even on our home page we have a, you know, paragraphs that have happy text.

Michelle Frechette (00:08:59) – Whats going on. Oh there we go. Sorry you weren’t on the screen for the longest time, I apologize.

Corey Maass (00:09:05) – Swoosh. I just assumed I hit a button.

Michelle Frechette (00:09:07) – No, it was me. It was the cat actually believing it or not my cat. th

Corey Maass (00:09:11) – Now that my camera is actually working you don’t want me on the screen anymore, I understand.

Michelle Frechette (00:09:16) – No, the. I don’t know if you saw me pull the cat off of the table a second ago, she actually was stepping on the laptop, and I didn’t realize that she had pressed a button that changed things on the screen. 

Corey Maass: Funny. 

Michelle Frechette: She’s a menace. She’s a menace.Yyeah. No, I love that. I love working with words. I think words are amazing. Images are amazing when you can use the two together to tell a story is when it’s perfect.

Michelle Frechette (00:09:42) – I have a I have a little bit of a story. So I actually tweeted about this a few about an hour ago. I write the newsletter for, and we use Newsletter Glue. So you it’s like building a web page, a post, and then when you hit publish, it can actually go out through your mail aggregator. So in our case MailChimp and then goes into everybody’s mailboxes. Well, first I noticed that I have failed to update the, the slug on it and it’s still saying December, so I will fix that next month because I can’t fix it now that it’s gone out. Right. However, I will say that last month I sent it out and I had just been following the format that we’d had in there for a long time, and I and it’s like, you know, we have a section that’s like, read these. If you want to diversify your news feed, here are some articles to read the title of the article and then like click here and then the title is something.

Michelle Frechette (00:10:39) – Register here. And then the title is something you know read more or whatever. And I didn’t realize when I was putting it together that I was doing it quickly. Last month, I failed to do some alt text on, 1 or 2 of the images. And links like that for accessibility are not helpful. Right? And as a result, I got an email from a blind woman who said, I can’t believe that here you are talking about underrepresentation and you are not creating an accessible newsletter. And I like swallowed. I was like, oh my gosh, I can’t believe it either, right? And so I replied back to her, and I think people are used to calling other people out on accessibility and getting pushback because she because basically, like she was very helpful. But it was also like, do with us what you will kind of like there was this kind of like, I’m going to tell you, but I don’t expect you to actually do anything overtones to it. Right. And I responded right away and I said, oh my gosh, this is never our intention.

Michelle Frechette (00:11:42) – I will do better. And I and I expect that you will see a difference in the next newsletter. But if you continue to find issues, although it is not your job to educate me, I would love to hear about them so that I can fix things going forward. So I sent out the April newsletter today and I find tooth combed that thing like I made sure like instead of saying read like the title of the article was the link to the to the outside, diversify things, right? And like every single image had alt text that made sense. If I close my eyes, I could hear what it was all about kind of thing. And so I replied to her again. I said, the newsletter went out again today. If you have an opportunity to read it, I would value your feedback. And she replied and said, so much better, thank you. And I was like, yes, I did it. I paid attention, right? So, no matter how good we are, because I talk about accessibility all the time, here with us and in other places.

Michelle Frechette (00:12:38) – And I am by no means an accessibility expert. I am just somebody who wants to do better and learning how to do better, and then sharing those how to do better with other people. And so to be able to say it publicly today on Twitter last month, I really screwed up. But this month I got the thumbs up on it. And I think sharing those kinds of things and showing, you know, our feet of clay or whatever says I’m not perfect, but I want to do better and I want to I want to remind you all to do better to so that you don’t fall into the same traps that I have. And so, yeah, so I thought I would just mention that because we do talk about accessibility a lot and newsletters you just talked about newsletters. So I just kind of wanted to bring that story to the forefront and and just share that no matter if it’s about images or not about images, accessibility is important.

Corey Maass (00:13:28) – Yep. And so and baby steps moving forward and iteration like, I think part of why I fell in love with the internet in 1996 or whatever was because once I started realizing that things, things could change.

Corey Maass (00:13:46) – Like, it’s not a painting, it’s not not that you can’t change a painting, but you know what I mean? Like, 

Michelle Frechette: It’s not static. 

Corey Maass: Exactly. And, and that’s honestly, I try to explain that to people like, people look, are looking for post jobs, post gigs and say, you know, pixel perfect. And I’m like, I can’t apply to that. Like, I don’t I don’t work that way. Like we can wiggle towards pixel perfect. These days, arguably there’s no such thing, but that’s a philosophical way of looking at it. just because of, like you said, accessibility and the number of browsers out there and the number of devices and screen sizes and all that stuff. But, But I personally relish that. Like within these I, I work well in in sets of rules and and or find creativity within sets of rules. And my camera freezes again.

Michelle Frechette (00:14:44) – Yeah. Oh no.

Corey Maass (00:14:48) – I look so serious.

Michelle Frechette (00:14:50) – So serious. There was. I’m trying to remember, I can’t I was looking for the article real quick.

Michelle Frechette (00:14:57) – Google has changed its logo a few times over the years. Right. From different fonts, whatever. But there was a point in time where they literally changed one letter by just a couple of pixels, because when, when it got redesigned it was just a little bit off and to the to most people would never have even noticed the difference. But there was quite like a hubbub in the community, the tech community, whatever you want to call it. At the time that Google had changed this tiny little bit about their logo and people were irritated because why did it have to be perfect? It doesn’t really matter, you know, kind of thing. But yeah, it was really weird. I’m trying to find the article about it.

Corey Maass (00:15:40) – Yeah, that sounds really familiar. I also yeah, and then they changed it again to be simpler. Like it went. 

Michelle Frechette: Yes.

Corey Maass: From Serif to Sans Serif, to be because and it was some amazing stat that like by being able to lower the file size and convert to an SVG or whatever, they because their Google they were they actually saved, you know, terabytes and terabytes of download just of their logo, which is.

Michelle Frechette (00:16:06) – Which is crazy.

Corey Maass (00:16:08) – Amazing to to think of. Yeah.

Michelle Frechette (00:16:09) – All right I found it. So I’m going to since you’re not even on the screen right now, I’m going to share mine. 

Corey Maass: Yeah. 

Michelle Frechette: So let’s see.

Corey Maass (00:16:15) – Just remove me altogether. I’ve unplugged my camera. I’m trying to find everyone.

Michelle Frechette (00:16:18) – All right. Hopefully you can see my screen. I don’t know if you can. Can you see my screen? I hope. Okay, so this was in 2014. Excuse me. And this was on Huffington Post  – “While you were kicking back with a burger and a day off of work, Google was making some serious” print. And, what do you call it? Italics changes to its logo. “See the difference? If you’re a typography or designer, you probably can. The rest of us, however, need an explanation. The change made was a tiny shift in kerning, or the space between two letters of the G and the L, moving the G one pixel to the right and the L one pixel down and to the right.”

Michelle Frechette (00:16:57) – “The subtle difference supposedly makes the overall logo more pleasant on the eyes and easier to read.” And people on Reddit spotted it like like if you there’s a little animation that shows you the the before and after and it’s like, oh yeah, I see it now. But what I have noticed it like just in passing, I wouldn’t have. I don’t even think I notice when they change the font, quite honestly, because it’s like, as I says, almost naked guy on the right hand side of the screen here. But John Cena actually. But, yeah, completely derailed me, flustered me. But but but yeah, it’s it’s just it’s amazing how much we can notice about even just the little things like that. Right? Like, it’s just it’s insane to me. And so but it goes to show you that people do notice these things and get back to our primary reason for being here. Images matter and what you and how you choose to tell a story with images matter. There you are. I see you again.

Corey Maass (00:17:58) – All right. 

Michelle Frechette: Drag, drop, done. I like it!

Corey Maass (00:17:59) – I was trying to find. I was trying to find my old webcam because I’m kind of fed up with this. This one. But. It’s in a box somewhere, you know.

Michelle Frechette (00:18:07) – We’ll find it by next week. 

Corey Maass: Yeah, exactly. 

Michelle Frechette: Exactly.

Corey Maass (00:18:11) – I was using.

Michelle Frechette (00:18:11) – It, but. Yeah.

Corey Maass (00:18:13) – Yeah. Yeah, it’s it’s, interesting to to see and and the people who notice and the people who don’t notice. I mean, the web is famous for its fanatics, and it’s pedantic. Can can. Can you describe a person as a pedantic? You mean, you know, but it but it matters, right? Like it matters strongly to some people and not at all to other people. But that’s okay.

Michelle Frechette (00:18:39) – Yeah, exactly.

Corey Maass (00:18:41) – But further proof of the like ability of the internet, right. Like, and I that’s how I build products, which some people are okay with and some people expect perfection out of the box. But, you know, it’s to me, I’d rather get something out there and in front of people and have them using it, using it, and then, that way I can, you know, sometimes make breaking changes, which I try to limit once it’s in front of, you know, some number of people, but.

Michelle Frechette (00:19:09) – Yeah.

Corey Maass (00:19:11) – I like I like that nature of the internet. I like that we can. We can try things. There’s arguably it’s become quite homogenized, which is no fun, but we can at least get creative in our own sandboxes. So.

Michelle Frechette (00:19:23) – Yeah. Absolutely. Yeah. And I, I just love the fact that we can use imagery to help tell stories and that even for somebody who has, who is blind or has low vision, the description of those images plays into that storytelling as well. Right. So, I, I, I think I’ve mentioned before, I’m one of the moderators on the WordPress Photo Direct, Photo Directory. And last Thursday, I think it was Thursday. I was, the table lead for the Yoast Contributor Day. So don’t feel bad for me, but I did get up at 3 a.m. because it kicked off at 3:30 a.m. my time, and I wanted to be there and be, you know, able to help people. But we moderated over 2, I think, close to 250 photos in one day just through that event.

Michelle Frechette (00:20:16) – And as I look at the photos that get moderated in, I think that gets submitted. It always breaks my heart a little to have to decline a photo, but some photos just aren’t good photos, you know, some are blurry. If your horizon is really janky, I’m going to decline that photo because the ocean doesn’t go high right, low left. It’s pretty even, you know, those kinds of things. and I and I want it to be the best that it can be. And, and there are photos that are technically fine and we do approve them in. But as I look at them, I think to myself, why would anybody ever want to use that photo on their website or in a project when it’s like a birthday cake that says, Happy Birthday Michelle right? Or whatever, you know, kind of thing, and you never know, maybe somebody will be like, oh my gosh, it’s the perfect card because I have somebody named Michelle and she has a birthday coming up. But I think that those uses are probably further and and fewer, than other things.

Michelle Frechette (00:21:19) – However, you just never know. It’s all about using the right images for the right story to tell. And every week for Post Status, I put out the, you know, my column, which is kind of like the Community Round Up and I choose an image from. And for me it has to be, landscape because of the way I fit it into the newsletter. But, I choose one image from the photo directory, and I put that in the newsletter every week, or the I’m sorry, the column, not the newsletter, the column. And so and I pull over the description from that and I put that in there. And I try to pick a photo that speaks to me. Right. Not just something that’s pretty, but something that makes me feel something is evocative of some kind of an emotion. Whether I look at it and I’m like, that is a thing of beauty or that is so interesting, or the colors are so rich, or it depicts, a culture that I’m not part of.

Michelle Frechette (00:22:18) – And I just kind of it gives me a, you know, a glimpse into a window, into that kind of a cultural event. you know, whether it’s Ramadan or Eid or, or one of those kinds of things that I’m not as well versed in, and I can see those little things. And so I think even if it doesn’t tell the story of your website, it can still be something that tells a story in general. And I think that imagery has such incredible power to do that. And that’s why, you know, when you said, hey, do you want to work with us on OMGIMG, I was like, heck yeah! Because first of all, I’m a photographer and I love, you know, I love images anyway. But the idea of being of helping other people use images to tell the stories that they are putting out on the web. It’s just such a great opportunity and such a great thing. So I’m fine with that. But yeah.

Corey Maass (00:23:16) – Which made me click through to to the newsletter that just came out today.

Corey Maass (00:23:21) – And today’s images is, Growing in scale fans.

Michelle Frechette (00:23:28) – Yes, I chose that. I, I randomly picked a I don’t try I try not to go through the last 3 or 4 pages. I randomly just put a page number in there, and that picture came up and it just was evocative to me. I thought, that is such a cool photo. I love that it shows the progression. It isn’t in a it’s not in a store, right? It’s not like I walked into Walmart and put three fans next to each other. It’s like in somebody’s home and it shows like human needs and Necessities too. And it just was really cool. Yeah, no pun intended. It was a cool picture. Get it? It’s fans. Sorry. I’ll take my dad jokes someplace else.

Corey Maass (00:24:06) – Never! They belong here.

Michelle Frechette (00:24:08) – Okay.

Corey Maass (00:24:10) – I used to do a lot more design and, like, fine art, albeit graphic like. Way back in the day, I was a painter. Draw a person who drew, that kind of stuff.

Corey Maass (00:24:27) – And then loved getting on the internet and then would spend hours and hours and hours and hours on in Photoshop. Just messing around with filters. Just, I loved the randomness of it. And then I went through a phase of, what’s the old, the t shirt company that people would do contests. They would submit their designs, and then. And then people. Would you try to get people to vote, like upvote your design, and if you’d upvote it, then it would. They’d make the shirt. 

Michelle Frechette: Okay. 

Corey Maass: Well known 20 years ago. I can’t think of it. Yeah. but it like, in that era of it was like. And to me, it was, you know, for better or worse, you can still see this in a lot of my design, like the, the there was a, a high point of graphic design, digital design in like early 2000, the mid aughts or whatever we were calling them. Just interesting, amazing, beautiful things. And I tried and failed to to adopt that style in many things.

Corey Maass (00:25:39) – And and because I failed, I, I still a lot of what I designed still ends up looking like that unfortunately. But the, a lot of what I would do is I would start with, like, if I took a photo, I would vectorize it, which wasn’t really a thing then, like it is now, like we have the SVG we didn’t back then and but make sort of what I thought were compelling designs and then put them on t shirts or whatever. But at one point I was looking for. On. Yeah, I was looking for sort of what you were describing like or another way of of what doing what you were describing, like putting in random numbers. I would put in random words into like Google image search and just kind of see what comes up. And at one point I typed in, I don’t know. Oh, well, one of the really interesting things to do 20 years ago was to translate it into like, Spanish or something. So like, I wanted, I needed images, of machines for whatever I was working on.

Corey Maass (00:26:46) – And so I put in makina and I, I wound up immediately, or I was greeted with an image that somebody had drawn. And it was so it, you know, Google had indexed their personal website, found a drawing that they’d done and had for sale. And I was just like, it’s smacked me in the face. And I contacted the artist and I bought it. And then years later, I got to meet the artist when I moved back to Brooklyn and, and that’s where she lived. And it was like, oh, this was so cool, you know? But it’s that randomness brought that to me. And, and I, I kind of missed that, that random, randomness of, of the universe handing you weird things, you know?

Michelle Frechette (00:27:34) – Yeah. For sure. Google Image Search I learned I have not checked the veracity of this, so I can’t verify for sure. But I learned recently that Jennifer, Lopez’s. Was it 2014? Oscar dress. What it was like cut all the way down to her navel and wide open at the top.

Michelle Frechette (00:28:00) – And all of that was the impetus for Google Image Search, because people were trying to find that dress online, and we’re hitting Google so hard to find that that they actually created Google Image Search to be able to find images, not just stories that referenced images. So like I said, I don’t know, it seems like that would be plausible, but I haven’t verified the truth behind that story. But I liked it and I learned it yesterday. And you said image search and it made me think of it. 

Corey Maass: Nice.

Michelle Frechette: So I thought I’d share that nice random thought. Yeah, exactly, exactly. And it’s just like that’s what plugin development is though, right? Is you see a need and you find a way to fill it. And that’s exactly what Google did with image search. Yeah. Which is super interesting.

Corey Maass (00:28:47) – Except at any point they’ve got 500 developers sitting around twiddling their thumbs. So they can point and say build a thing.

Michelle Frechette (00:28:53) – Yeah it’s a little different. That’s right. It’s just just just a little different than, you know, a 1 or 2 person show.

Corey Maass (00:29:03) – So changing topics slightly. 

Michelle Frechette: Yes. 

Corey Maass: One of the developments this week is, here here’s an argument for checking Twitter obsessively. Is a nice person. I’m going to give them a name check because so far, so good. What could possibly go wrong? Faizan. F-a-i-z-a-n who’s on Twitter as Faizan King. F-a-i-z-a-n King does design for startups and I think I’m sure it’s as a marketing, you know, growth exercise posted that he will do he or his firm will do design for startups for free. You know whatnot. I not ongoing not everybody but had done, you know, kind of the first person to contact me, we’ll get a design. And so I for once, I’m not the 76th person. Yeah. He, he said, Like, I will design a, you know, a logo, a banner or a landing page for you. And I’m like, we our homepage needs help. You know, I’ve been, as we’ve talked about, like we’re happy with some of the copy, but the design could still use some.

Corey Maass (00:30:31) – So it was like, great, me, me, me. And you know, I it’s one of those things like a lot of the time I think most of us experience this, you know, you’re the 76th person to pile on and usually on Twitter there’s actually I think usually if it’s more than 20, I just won’t bother, you know, because it feels silly. 

Michelle Frechette (00:30:52) – Excessive.

Corey Maass (00:30:53) – Yeah. But I, I was the first and contacted him and filled out a questionnaire today, which was an interesting, or yesterday, which was an interesting exercise specifically because he’s he asked some great questions in the intake form. You know who. What is what? Who are your customers? You know the personas. Who is your. What is your niche? What are what is your, you know, unique value prop, like, you know, these things that, we’re supposed to have the answers to. And so I think, like, Cory and I did some thinking around that and, and I think as I’ve.

Corey Maass (00:31:36) – Now I was talking to somebody else, but, one of the things that I realized that in the last couple of days. Well, and you saw this or you experienced this too, like AFK for a day or two away from keyboard and you come back and your inbox is full and your messages are full, and all the things that you didn’t finish on Friday are still there. And so it’s way too easy to grab the first thing and start working, which is not the way to prioritize and get through everything and yada yada. 

Michelle Frechette: True. yeah. 

Corey Maass: And so spending half a day. So I went away for the weekend, spending half a day trying to recover essentially like build, build a to do list. And now, okay, I see what I should work on first and all that. I think Cory and I were definitely guilty at points in, during our year of conversations of. Somebody says something and then we just run with the exercise, rather than adding that to the list of exercises and then saying, oh, well, let’s do this one, because it’s the most timely and valuable.

Michelle Frechette: Yeah. 

Corey Maass (00:32:44) – And so at some point, I built I filled out a questionnaire on HubSpot and, and completed a couple of personas and then printed them out and then promptly lost the PDFs, because that’s what you do.

Michelle Frechette (00:32:57) – Of course.

Corey Maass (00:32:58) – But I feel like at some point, you and I would benefit from doing this exercise not to. 

Michelle Frechette: Yeah.

Corey Maass: Not just doing it because I brought it up. I’m going to exercise self-control in this instance. But at some point, like spend this hour going, okay, what? You know, who do we.

Michelle Frechette (00:33:15) – I like that a lot.

Corey Maass (00:33:16) – Right.

Michelle Frechette (00:33:17) – Yeah. Create those avatars.

Corey Maass (00:33:18) – Going through the exercise. Yeah.

Michelle Frechette (00:33:22) – We have one comment. Can I share that. It’s, it’s of course pushing it back out Adam Weeks is watching. He says, “Yep. Wikipedia says that it was Jennifer. Jennifer Lopez dress that started Google image search.” I know who knew. I saw it on TikTok and they shouldn’t ban TikTok. I learned things on there. Anyway, for the story.

Corey Maass:  I’m going to make you a T-shirt. I saw it on. I learned it on TikTok.

Michelle Frechette (00:33:45) – Yeah, exactly.

Corey Maass (00:33:47) – That’s not the first time you’ve said that. I don’t know if you realize that or not.

Michelle Frechette (00:33:51) – And I say it all the time.

Corey Maass (00:33:52) – In any way, like we are all learning from all of our media. 

Michelle Frechette (00:33:57) – It’s interesting that people think that TikTok, I mean, people who don’t use TikTok think it’s this like people dancing and saying stupid things. And yeah, there are some funny videos that make me laugh, right? Like little kids doing things and animals doing really weird things. But I have learned so much because first of all, you teach the algorithm what you like, right? And I have learned so much because it’s to me it’s just this, these 1 to 10 minute little videos about things. And so whether it ever is useful or not, I brought it up in conversation today. So kind of thing. But whether it’s ever, you know, fully useful or not. But I’ve learned a lot of really cool things.

Michelle Frechette (00:34:35) – I learned something about Cadence the other day I didn’t know it could do, and I work there because of the Cadence TikTok. And now and I shared it with somebody else and look what it can do. And so I now have another tool in my tool belt working with Cadence. And so yeah, so I do say it a lot because I, I learn a lot from it.

Corey Maass (00:34:54) – That’s awesome.

Michelle Frechette (00:34:55) – It’s crazy but it’s fun.

Corey Maass (00:34:56) – Yeah I never could I could I couldn’t figure out how to train the algorithm. And so I was seeing all people dancing and I was like, this is boring. And I’ve uninstalled it at least half a dozen times and then reinstalled it because it’s like, for me, I was on Twitter for ten years before I figured out how to use it. And the funny thing is I read all the articles and I was even on panels talking about like, you know, ways to optimize outreach and stuff like that, but, but I could never figure out how to work it into my day essentially.

Corey Maass (00:35:37) – And or where and how to get value for myself. And I it seems like I thankfully jumped on a couple of years ago. I don’t know whether it was COVID related or not. That would make sense if we all more people went on social media because of COVID. But anyway, finding WordPress or, Built In Public or Indie Hacker like these hashtags, these little sort of micro communities which are very sort of fuzzy at the edges, but, you know, groups of people to follow and, and check out and, and who can consistently add good content or are worth engaging with and stuff like that. And then also training myself to engage with them. TikTok I’ve not I mean it’s very different from other social media. And so I’ve tried to post as a musician but it’s creating video is way harder. I mean what we, we just talked about like we both are very comfortable with words. Clearly we are both very engaged in word based communities and we type and type and type or I even started dictating into this fancy microphone because it’s faster than typing a lot of the time.

Corey Maass (00:36:54) – But creating video, I’m not the content that I’m trying to create is not hit record on a phone and start talking. I’m trying to show and I’m not trying to do anything fancy, but that’s not what I’m trying to show. And so it’s I have a real hard time creating. Okay, fine. but I also haven’t figured out how to train, like, swiping the right speed so that the algorithm understands that I want or don’t want, you know, or or finding the people to follow or what have you. You know.

Michelle Frechette (00:37:28) – I can I can teach you that another day.

Corey Maass (00:37:30) – That would be great. Honestly.

Michelle Frechette (00:37:33) – I could. It’s it’s a lot easier than you’re thinking it is, but. 

Corey Maass (00:37:38) – Probably, but it’s also my understanding that there is it’s different kind of content. Right. And so like Cadence is creating videos and so presumably people are engaging in consuming that. But I don’t I think that that’s it’s my understanding that that’s the exception. There are not a lot of WordPressers or product people on there.

Corey Maass (00:38:06) – And I’m like great. You know, Wild West. Like, let’s let’s be one of the first. Why not? But then how do you get them to find you? And then like anything, it’s it’s how much time can you spend on any one channel and know that there’s engagement and, and that kind of thing.

Michelle Frechette (00:38:24) – So but the thing to remember is that every social channel doesn’t mean you have to create. You can consume. Right. So for TikTok, yeah, I’m not going to give you my TikTok. I’m not going to publicly give you my TikTok channel because I, I have got a bunch of just stupid stuff on my account. Stupid little games that you can play on there. Like, look how good I got it on the first try. Or, you know, little stories, the stories I’ve told and a lot of singing I will tell you, I have. There’s no rhyme or reason to the content I’ve put out there.

Corey Maass (00:38:56) – You sing without rhyme or reason?

Michelle Frechette (00:38:57) – Sometimes it’s really weird.

Corey Maass (00:39:00) – Bu-dumb-ch, there was a dad joke for you.

Michelle Frechette (00:39:02) – That was a dad joke for for sure. But I consume more than anything. And one of the things that I think is incredible about just consuming information through TikTok is that you are learning about what people who are similar to you are looking for.

Speaker 4 (00:39:22) – Right.

Michelle Frechette (00:39:22) – So like Adherium has a channel I see their stuff. Gravity Forums has a channel, I see their stuff. I’m trying to remember some of the other ones. has a channel, Cadence has a channel. So there are other WordPress companies and agencies that do have TikTok channels. Are they as popular as, you know, Bella Porche, who just like, bops her head around the music and has 5 million or 20 million? I don’t even know how many millions followers. No, of course not. Because it’s a different genre and it’s a different audience 100%. But do I see what people who are like me are creating and are seeking? Yes, I do, and does that help me be able to create content, whether it’s on TikTok or someplace else? Yes it does.

Michelle Frechette (00:40:10) – And so all of that to say that the only reason I spend and waste so much time on TikTok is market research.

Corey Maass (00:40:18) – Sssuuuuurrrreeeee.

Michelle Frechette (00:40:20) – That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

Corey Maass (00:40:22) – But I hear you. I do hear you like. It’s fascinating. Yeah, it’s fascinating to see what if you can do the exercise to to go. Why, why, why am I sucked into that? Or, you know, why do I find that compelling? Or, you know, could I do that better? Or if my if my community, my comfort zone is Twitter, how could I translate some of this stuff that I’m finding so engaging over there or what have you.

Michelle Frechette (00:40:53) – What’s really interesting is when we are creating websites for others. So when we’re working as a, you know, an agency work or we are freelancing as an agency of one, however you want to call it, we constantly tell our customers that they are not their target audience. Right? So like I had, as an example, I built I was building a website for a chiropractor and his bread and butter, like his, his schedule was filled with geriatric patients like slip and falls, you know, twisted hips, knee replacements, that kind of stuff.

Michelle Frechette (00:41:26) – And he was a wealthy man because of the geriatric clientele. And and I’m talking like 40 and up really, but mostly even 60 and up. Right. But he really, really wanted athletes. He really wanted his practice to be around about athletes. And I said to him one day I said, do you know how much time and energy and money you’re going to have to put into changing your and how many people you’re going to drive away by doing that? Right. But also then there’s other people who would say, I like this, and I like this and I like this. And I say to them, you are not your target audience. You understand HVAC built a website for an HVAC guy. You understand what HVAC is, and you are trying to sell to people who understand what HVAC is. I want you to sell it to somebody who says, my furnace just broken. I don’t know who to call about that. Right. And so they’re not their own, you know, they’re not selling.

Michelle Frechette (00:42:27) – They’re not their own target audience. That is not the the same for people selling plug-ins because we are our target audience. Maybe we know more about our product that other people do, but we’re all in the WordPress ecosystem now, that’s not to say that a niche. You know, plug in like GiveWP who is really working with people who are fundraising, who are building their own websites, who are bootstrapping and who have agencies building it. Right. They are not necessarily their target audience. However, they understand it because they are people who use WordPress and they understand how a plugin has to work within WordPress. And so we have a little bit it’s a little bit different for us with OMGIMG, because we are selling to people who do understand and are a little bit like us because we build websites, we write blog posts, all of those things apply to us as well. So it’s a little bit different, right? Although we do have also those end users who are building their first blog and that kind of stuff.

Michelle Frechette (00:43:27) – So it’s a little bit of a like I always say, our audiences are divided. We really do have a dichotomy of people who really get it, and people who are just starting and have no idea how to progress. And so you have to find that right balance and strike that right balance and how you market to those people and how you advertise to those people.

Corey Maass(00:43:44) – Yeah, yeah. And and a lot of it ends up being education, which I enjoy the, the activity of the opportunity of, but you also, you know, we’re, we’re still at the beginning of the bell curve. And so it’s it’s tough to know what resonates or it’s tough to know what, what questions people are asking. We’ve talked about this a lot. Over the last year and a half of doing these, these calls of, you know, how are people going to find our solution? You know.

Michelle Frechette (00:44:17) – Yeah.

Corey Maass (00:44:19) – Full stop. And thats tough.

Michelle Frechette (00:44:22) – Yeah. We’re not we’re not going to put out an ad in Inc or Forbes or something like that.

Michelle Frechette (00:44:28) – It’s very different how how we especially when you’re bootstrapping. Right. Especially when you are not the big, huge, companies that we have in WordPress. And so it makes a difference. And, and we have to be really targeted and really careful about how we spend our time and resources, for sure. Absolutely. One of those things, though, and we talked about, is having you apply to speak at different events. And you put in an application today somewhere. So. You know, that kind of stuff begins. And I will mention that the, the call for speakers for WordCamp US is closing, next week. So if you have designs of doing something for WordCamp US, we should look at. 

Corey Maass: I thought is was … the 15th or 20th. 

Michelle Frechette: Did they extend it? I think it’s the 29th. Let me look it up.

Corey Maass (00:45:19) – No, that’s when that went out. I have their email because I’ve.

Michelle Frechette (00:45:24) – Yeah, I’m looking at their website here April 29th. The call for speakers closes.

Corey Maass (00:45:31) – So they did extend it because their original email was 22nd.

Michelle Frechette (00:45:35) – Okay. Yep. So it’s the 29th. 

Corey Maass: So I would have missed it. 

Michelle Frechette: Yes. Me also because I’m hoping to put in a talk. Which is why I didn’t organize this year. So I actually be able to be considered for a talk. But yeah. So we should talk about that. Maybe throw some ideas together and Slack over the next day or two about things that you could think about presenting on a stage that, that that big with that kind of an audience.

Corey Maass (00:46:00) – Yep. Yeah. I, Cory and I, I talked about a couple of weeks ago, like, we, we started brain dumping. and so I got out the smaller one, basically a revised version of the image talk that I did for WordCamp Rochester. Got that out, but I don’t think that’s WordCamp US.

Michelle Frechette (00:46:24) – I don’t either. So I want to think about it some more, too.

Corey Maass (00:46:27) – Yeah. But I do think the Build In Public one with Cory would be really interesting. And so.

Speaker 4 (00:46:32) – Yeah, I do to.

Corey Maass (00:46:33) – So I’m trying to consolidate our brain dump enough to write four sentences, you know, as a as a pitch, essentially.

Michelle Frechetter(00:46:41) – And let me proof it, let me read.

Corey Maass (00:46:43) – Absolutely. Yeah. Of course. I, you can’t not or I would, it would not be submitted without you.

Speaker 4 (00:46:51) – I like I.

Michelle Frechette (00:46:52) – I like, I like giving my opinion.

Corey Maass (00:46:54) – Like. Well and we and we welcome it. and I and I’m, I have I actually have it in the back of my mind to have include you in it, too, because it’s like if the three of us were on stage, I think that that would be really interesting because it’s. You know, the history that we’ve gone through, I think would be really interesting. And then I think because there’s. Part of what we you know, it can’t just be our story. Like, yes, there’s stuff to learn from our story or whatever, but I’m drawing from even when he and I were brain dumping, I wound up drawing from or realizing how long I’ve been in the Start-up world and how much.

Corey Maass (00:47:39) – Transparency there was with a lot of in the Start-up world that there wasn’t before that. Right. And and pre, pre-WordPress really for me there were a lot of. People trying to do things differently in starting essentially small businesses online. And the transparency was interesting. I didn’t always agree with it or I didn’t always see the value in it. Still half and half. But doing stuff like this, right for me, like, you know, for the putting all your salaries online. Okay. Like, I don’t I don’t know that I don’t get anything out of that, but they do and other people do. And okay, cool. Somebody at some point somebody will explain it to me and I’ll go, oh, that’s now it makes sense, you know. but, you know, shaking things up and there were more transparency and more, more visibility behind, like, who runs the company? And I remember, PLDT, the guy behind who started Balsamiq like his. Well, in the Start-up story, actually was a lot more, you know, how how companies were started, you usually would never hear about it, you know, like how Adobe started.

Corey Maass (00:48:56) – I don’t know how, you know, other software companies, you know, and and a lot of times small companies wanted to appear bigger. And I think that that changed at the beginning of. At least for me, the like one of the compelling things was getting on Joel Sapolsky had a forum, Joel On Software and and hearing people talk about their stories or share other people’s stories and and again, Peldi from balsamic, telling his story publicly, sharing it with a lot of people and, and also on the website saying like, you know, I am one person or we are three people. Like, we will not reply on weekends because we have wives and children, and stuff like that, that. Made it interesting and made it relatable, you know, and and stuff like that. And so, I it and again, in starting the brain dump, it’s not just Cory and I a year ago and you and I, you know, four months ago. But our own reasons for wanting to come into this and willingness to do this, you know, it’s yeah, it was Cory’s idea and I’ve talked about that.

Corey Maass (00:50:07) – Like we said, we’d work together. He said, we’re going to do it all in public. I said, okay, you know, but I mean, how nice that. We asked you to get involved and you were like, of course we’re going to continue to do these calls. I’m going to take over for Cory, you know?

Michelle Frechette(00:50:22) – Right, right.

Corey Maass (00:50:24) – That’s not everybody. Right? Like, I wouldn’t even say that’s most people would be interested or willing to do that. Even if you’re as gregarious and outgoing as you are. Right? Like so I you know, I think it’d be interesting. And I think the more of us on stage.

Michelle  (00:50:40) – Yeah. I agree. 

Corey Maass (00:50:41) – Might be more interesting. So, you know, that’s.

Michelle Frechette (00:50:43) – Count me in. If you want to do it. I’m in. Cut me in. I’ll be there either way. So.

Corey Maass (00:50:47) – Well, exactly like we’re we’re all going to be there. I in, in various degrees myself. The the smallest by far. We are a little bit known in the WordPress world, and have our own stories and, and some of it is documented and and so I think that that would be also interesting.

Corey Maass (00:51:11) – I mean, obviously also self-serving, like people might be more interested to come because we are who we are. But, but three kind of known entities on stage, I, I’d, I would go see that.

Michelle Frechette (00:51:22) – Like, I go see us.

Corey Maass (00:51:23) – I want to say the last talk I ever actually dipped into was Pippin Williamson, which was 100 years ago at this point. But it, you know, like, I didn’t need to hear a talk about SEO or something, a topic that I can Google. Like that’s not how I learn. but hearing a person I could relate to building products like I do and running businesses like I do, I, I, I wanted to walk into that room as much to hear what questions people asked, you know.

Michelle Frechette (00:51:52) – Sure. Yeah, that makes sense.

Corey Maass (00:51:54) – And so Cory said too like, this might be I haven’t looked at the application yet, but it might be something that we pitch as a talk, but also I think might I might put in a sentence that says this might also work great as a workshop if we kind of presented for a while and then said, okay, you’ve got three people with varying experiences in varying positions. You know. Hopefully we have proven that we can we can think well on our.

feet. Pick our brains. 

Michelle Frechette (00:52:25) – Yeah. For sure I like that. That’s really awesome. Yeah, if you want me in there, count me in. I’ll do whatever y’all need for sure.

Corey Maass: I love it. 

Michelle Frechette: Interestingly, it’s you pointed out I’m going to take us down a little bit aside for a second. I know that you that like you, I that I was like, yeah, count me in. Let’s do it. I’ll do that. Tuesdays? Yeah, let’s let’s find a time and we’ll just like, you know, whatever. Be part of this project. I think when you are a public person like we are, I get and I’ve talked about this before in other forums. I get DMed a lot. Right. And sometimes they’re just I’ve written about how it’s just scammers or how it’s men trying to hit on, women online, etc., but oftentimes take that part out of it.

Michelle Frechette (00:53:11) – I get hit on, hit not hit on, but hit up and hit up in socials because people want something from me. And today somebody, you know, like if you, if you fall, if you want to connect with me on LinkedIn, I’m probably going to say yes, unless clearly there’s you’re a scammer or something like that. So I connected with somebody today. I was like, yeah, sure, whatever. And that person immediately messaged me and thanked me for connecting because they see the work I do and it’s valued, blah, blah, blah. And, you know, totally buttered me up and then hope that they could learn from the things that I share and would I take them on and be their mentor. And immediately I responded and said, I don’t have time to take on new clients because number one, I don’t have time to mentor people for free. And number two, if I did, I’d be coaching for money, which I’ve done in the past, but I don’t have time for that right now either.

Michelle Frechette (00:54:09) – And I was just like, I have to have to draw some boundaries someplace, right? And so I do very, I mean, it may have seemed to you like I was just like immediately, yes. But like, Cory gave me the heads up. So I had time to think about it before you messaged me. And then also I am, even if I say yes quickly, I am. They’re very thoughtful about where I spend my time and my energy and my resources, because there’s only one of me and there’s only so much time in a day. But yeah, so, so and that’s just I don’t know why I decided to share that story right now because it was very fresh, literally happened half an hour before we started today’s broadcast. But yeah, just kind of in general to think about people and their time and their energy. And when we ask for people to do things, be thoughtful about what we’re asking about people. And, you know, you and I have talked in a offline a little bit about like, if this takes off, what does the reward for Michelle look like for being involved in all of this? Whereas a lot of people just want me to retweet them, endorse them without any even having looked at their product before, like, ‘Hey, can you tweet this about how great our product is?” I’m like, who are you? And what is your product like? No, you know, like, I, I, I don’t want to lose followers because I’m just suddenly like saying everybody’s awesome and by everybody’s stuff, you know.

Michelle Frechette (00:55:33) – But yeah. So so I am thoughtful about those kinds of things.

Corey Maass (00:55:37) – Yeah. Well you have to.

Michelle Frechette (00:55:38) – And I do look for opportunities. Yeah.

Corey Maass (00:55:42) – It kills me that you get endless solicitation….

Speaker 4 (00:55:47) – It comes with the territory. 

Corey Maass (00:55:48) – … Romantic etc. which is. Oh well yes. And that sucks.

Michelle Frechette (00:55:53) – Yeah.

Corey Maass (00:55:53) – I want to I want to punch most of them in the nose.

Michelle Frechette (00:55:56) – I appreciate that.

Corey Maass (00:55:59) – You know. But it’s also, talking. So, like you said, putting that part aside, like in the tech space, I get, I get an endless stream of vote for me on Product Hunt. 

Michelle Frechette: I get those emails.

Corey Maass: Which makes me never want to be on Product Hunt, like, because then I have to be that guy that’s just endlessly asking people, and, and I think the returns are diminishing, but that’s a different that’s a, that’s a.

Michelle Frechette (00:56:26) – That’s another story. f

Corey Maass (00:56:28) -For the conjecture. And yeah, in a different conversation. But it’s the. And the truth is, is that I a lot of the time I think like like you said, if it, if it looks fine.

Corey Maass (00:56:42) – Sure. You know, like it’s a vote. It’s not. And I’m and I’m one of, I’m one of the, the people who voted which is different than you know, can you retweet this or can you, which.

Speaker 4 (00:56:56) – Write an endorsement.

Corey Maass (00:56:59) – Right. You know, which I think is part of the why I, I expect that the it’s diminishing returns, because if you’re asking random people who have not actually tried your product to click a button, then what’s the point? But it’s it’s also like that’s, broadly speaking, the friction you’re talking about or the effort you’re talking about or the engagement you’re talking about is one of those things that I always try to think about, like it was it’s a cardinal rule of the internet, right? Like, here’s a form. You know you want. If you want them to fill it out, you need as few fields as possible. But even today, I read about, sometimes you want to add friction. You want the, like, there’s, there was a study I just read about that.

Corey Maass (00:57:50) – You want. Oh, I know, so. And I’m actually thinking, because this is, this is more relevant because I’m thinking about adding this to our onboarding is, you fill out a few things into your license, you know, you might ask a couple of demographic questions that probably are just for the sake of data collection, you know, but and, but there’s they’re apps that do the, like, work configuring the app for you. But you know, the entering a row in a database is instantaneous these days. Like generally even on your phone, you know, like it’s it’s quick tech has. Become amazing.

Corey Maass (00:58:28) – So you there’s points where you actually want to add a progress bar that goes crepe, crepe, crepe. And you can do other, you can show other messages.

Michelle Frechette (00:58:37) – Yeah.

Corey Maass (00:58:38) – But but also it, it it’s apparently it leaves an impression on the person of like, oh they’re doing, they’re working hard for to get ready for me.

Michelle Frechette (00:58:48) – Right. 

Corey Maass: You know. 

MIchelle Frechette: Right. Whether it’s true or it’s. Just an animation, but it still gives that that effect.

Corey Maass (00:58:55) – Right. Right. And .. 

Michelle Frechette: Interesting.

Corey Maass: I, I love that, I love thinking about that. Like, sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t most of the time, like, it’s more work than it’s worth. Unless you’re a very mature product, then you can take the time to build in the, the nice little extras like that. but it’s but it’s a lot of fun to think about. And, and I think about that too. And like in marketing, it’s like or today writing the description of the talk that I’m giving. I have a buddy who is, another dev, but is also good with words. and very he’s, he’s a, he’s a top tier dev, so he’s extremely logical. So I love running copy by him because it’s often ends up being more of a logic puzzle, the way he’ll deconstruct the sentences. And then obviously he’s still human. So it’s like, read it out loud.

Corey Maass (00:59:49) – Do these words flow? Does it feel compelling? Whatever. You know. But, but a lot of the time, like we started with eight sentences and we got it down to four because it was like, what’s valuable? What makes sense, what should go before what and things like that. And because of and and if, if you think about it, it’s because of effort, the effort on the person reading it, it they have to be able to absorb it immediately.

Michelle Frechette (01:00:17) – Right no. That makes sense. Yeah. Very interesting stuff, isn’t it?

Corey Maass (01:00:21) – Yeah, yeah. And and. Sometimes successful and sometimes not. And.

Michelle Frechette (01:00:28) – There’s a Psychology to marketing, and I don’t think people think about the fact that there’s such a huge psychology to marketing. Two books that I’ve read, that I need to reread because it was so long ago. But one is, The Tipping Point by Malcolm McDowell? No Malcolm somebody and the other one is, Drunk Tank Pink, which really talks about. The psychology of the things that we use in marketing and how like you would have thought that that the the drunk tank at like at, jails and things like that would be like pink or like a blue or green because we think of those as calming colors.

Michelle Frechette (01:01:09) – It turns out, though, that like whether this is true or not, I don’t know. That’s what the story says, that pink is actually a color that calms people down when they’re in that kind of a and to me like, no, but like apparently I’m wrong, right? So yeah. So there’s a whole psychology behind things. Like my dad used to put the window in his office behind his chair so that, like, the sun was glowing behind him and like, coming through the window and would be more intimidating. And like, he literally did that on purpose to try to make himself feel more authoritative and have people sit in front of them and feel that he was more authoritative. I went and visited a guy once that I was like, invited to come and talk about perhaps building a website, and I went to his office and he literally had his desk up on a dais that was a good 6 or 7in higher and had he was in finance, but he had like 6 or 7 huge monitors, a big throne like chair.

Michelle Frechette (01:02:07) – And I was in this like had a folding chair. Exactly. Because it was a nice office, but, you know, like a waiting room chair when he’s in this like up higher and this big, like, ‘Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.’

Michelle Frechette (01:02:18) – Kind of like effect. Right. And I did it was everything I could do not to laugh because it was so obvious what he was trying to do with this. Do you really need a stage, sir? For your desk like that is absolute insanity. But for him, like, it made sense. Like if he was going to look like an authority in finance when people came to invest. Thousands upon hundreds of thousands of dollars. He needed to look impressive to them, right? It didn’t impress me. It impressed me in a very negative way because it just made me. I got in the car and I it was like I let out all the laughter that I was holding in during the meeting. But I understand the psychology behind those kinds of things.

Michelle Frechette (01:02:57) – And there is a psychology to how things are presented in marketing. And so yeah, so looking and and that goes back to the TikTok. It goes back to Twitter. It goes back to how people engage and how and how our audience for this product engages, which is going to be different for how an audience for a different product engages. And so those are the things we need to keep in mind, and those are the things we’re going to dig into every week and get a little bit deeper into, as we continue to look for these things, we’re over time. I want to let you I ask you if there’s any parting thoughts before we kind of break up for today and just for anybody who’s listening. This is not our only opportunity that that Corey and I talk to each other every week. We have a constant stream of DMs back and forth about what do you think of this? What do you think about this design? Can you help me with this? You know, all of these things.

Michelle Frechette (01:03:48) – But this is the part that we share with you publicly about what we’ve done in the last week and the things we’re looking forward to. And, a little bit of rambling here and there, because that’s just the nature of human beings as they get together and talk through these things. So do you have anything you’d like to say.

Corey Maass (01:04:00) – Especially at 5 p.m., right? Anything 5pm to 6pm like it’s I think it’s almost advantageous that our brains are sort of like blaa at this time of day, like. Because. Yeah, you know, and there was for a while I cared about us being focused. And it’s like we end up talking shop and I so it’s, you know, still relevant, but, but it’s, you know, if we end up talking about random things, I think the only other thing I wanted to, to shout out is, Ben Laird WP.

Michelle Frechette (01:04:36) – Yes. 

Corey Maass (01:04:40) – And you just put a message on the screen

Michelle Frechette (01:04:42) – Yeah, because Marcus just said he’s here.He thanks for doing this. He loves seeing the progress week to week I think is in direct response to our saying sometimes we just ramble.

Corey Maass: Right

Michelle Frechette (01:04:50) – But thank you Marcus.

Michelle Frechette (01:04:53) – Yes. Ben Laird WP.

Corey Maass (01:04:55) – Ben Laird WP invited me to be, I think, the first person on his new video podcast, last week and total sweetheart, a very English self-deprecating, which I don’t think is quite warranted. I thought it was a great conversation. But everybody should go check out his podcast, which you can, and hear me talk about the same stuff. But in a different context. I like to think, you know, or, different whatever’s top of mind that day kind of thing. And then also ramble about Englishtea and, and a couple of other random things, music that we talked about whatnot.

Michelle Frechette (01:05:35) – We’ll retweet that link out, by tomorrow. So people are listening or they want to go and look for that. We can, we’ll retweet that. Maybe we’ll pin it for a little bit so people can find it easily.

Michelle Frechette (01:05:48) – He did not have an intro and outro when I said to him, do you have your bumpers ready? He goes, he said, oh, I use an expletive, what are bumpers? And I was like, I could help you. So I created his I did it, I did the voiceover, I did as intros and outros and the, the imagery for that. So make him look a little more professional when he starts to put things out there. So he was pretty happy. So. Yeah. well, I’ll, I’ll make sure that that gets put up on our social links so people can take a look at that. That was a great interview. I listened to the whole thing. I didn’t even speed it up. Usually I listen to things at one and a half times, but I didn’t even speed it up. I just listened to it in the background as I worked along and it was a nice conversation. So we will share that.

Corey Maass (01:06:25) – Yeah, we need more of those. And I’m glad he’s doing it because he’s, he’s got a great perspective. He’s got a great personality, a great delivery that I think is a little different. More casual. More fun. Sounds like other people aren’t fun, but more carefree.

Michelle Frechette (01:06:43) – No I understand. 

Corey Maass (01:06:44) – And, and his premise that he pitched me originally was like, it’s just a conversation. Let’s talk about what we want to talk about. And I almost and I realized later that so way back in the day, there were days where there, in dance music, like, like it becomes all consuming or it can become all consuming. And so like, now I’m really dating myself, but there was a rave collective, back in the 90s, and they had a, an open space where they’d throw parties, but they Tuesdays or whatever were no techno Tuesdays. And so I almost want to see more. I’m tempted to do it myself, but I had more time. I don’t need another project, but like, we need a podcast that’s like WordPress and tech where we don’t talk about WordPress and tech.

Corey Maass (01:07:38) – And so it’s just people’s stories or what else goes on in their lives, because it’s like sometimes we can’t hear the same stories again, or we we need to stop thinking about marketing and tech for a minute and talk about like, oh, they have dogs. Or, you know, what are their hobbies or the nonprofits that they volunteer with or, you.

Michelle Frechette (01:08:00) – Kathy Zant and I have that, but it’s just the two of us. We don’t bring in guests. Right? So we have WP Motivate where we literally just shoot the breeze every week and share it out with everybody. But yeah, I see what you’re saying. And, and I think Ben is good at that. He is, definitely has a lot of those kinds of. He just wants to have a conversation and see where it goes. I do, I’m going to recommend to him to get a ring light or something like that, because he needs a little more illumination on his face.

Speaker 4 (01:08:21) – Oh for sure, I man

Michelle Frechette (01:08:23) – Needs to look a little less like witness protection, but.

Corey Maass (01:08:24) – I love that he jumped in. And in fact, in the 5, 5 or 10 minutes before. And I think he tweeted, like, you know, Corey was patient. And I think part of what he was referring to was I was like, okay, you sound terrible. You look terrible. Like, adjust this, adjust this. But, I mean, I’ve been a I’ve been a sound engineer and, and the lighting tech even professionally for, for decades. So it’s like, here are the quick things that we can do. He put on headphones and suddenly sounded way better just because a better microphone. And so but I but I inversely, I love that he just jumped in and didn’t worry about it. I don’t care what it sounds like, don’t care what it looks like. Let’s just do the first one. And that’s how most of my projects have started. Podcasts have started. It’s like, let’s just see if we have something here and we can improve over time.

Corey Maass (01:09:13) – And and you listen to if you listen to almost any number of podcasts that have been going for a long, long time, listen to the first one or watch the first video and then and then how they’ve improved over time, you know, and and everybody.

Michelle Frechette (01:09:28) – WP Coffee Talk for sure. My first episode, thank God Ali Nevins was so kind because it was not I was not the best podcaster when I was hosting my very first ever episode of a podcast. So Ben was on the WP Coffee Talk podcast a few years back, and I was one of the first people to, like, retweet him and that kind of stuff. And so he he comments that, you know, I helped to get him into WordPress. So after like, he’s like, you know, saying you were going to be on the show and I DM’ed him. I’m like, what’s a girl got to do to get an invite to your show? He was like, aw shit.

Corey Maass(01:10:05) – Ha, ha, ha!

Michelle Frechette (01:10:06) – Yeah. Marcus also says, there’s also the Seriously, Bud? podcast. 

Corey Maass: Yeah, yeah.

Michelle Frechette (01:10:12) – That’s recently come out. And I have been on it and so has Marcus. So we should get you on with Bud as well to talk about, because Bud doesn’t really talk about WordPress. He talks about you and your story and that kind of stuff, which is fun, which is kind of what you’re talking about.

Corey Maass (01:10:25) – So that’s awesome. I so I apologize for not knowing about that.

Corey Maass (01:10:29) – I’ve seen that’s okay because I’ve, I’ve seen that I just recently came across it and I haven’t had a chance to listen to them. So if that’s what it is, then it already exists and everybody should just go listen to that one and stop listening to me.

Michelle Frechette (01:10:42) – But but there’s room for more, right? There’s room for more of this. The way the Bud ask questions is might be different than the way that Ben asks questions, or whoever’s listening right now decides they want to have their first podcast. We’ll ask questions too. So different conversations. WP Coffee Talk is very prescribed.

Michelle Frechette (01:10:57) – I ask the same set of questions to every single person. The conversation is different, of course, but it is very prescribed. Ben from Laird,  Ben Laird WP not prescribed at all, just an open conversation. And there’s benefit to both of those things. And so finding yourself on either one or both is a wonderful thing. So there’s no right or wrong way to do it as long as people can hear you. Because if they can’t hear you, then that’s a really bad podcast. But as long as people think. It’s a good thing, it’s gonna say there is a wrong way. Yeah, let’s do it.

Corey Maass: You ruined my dad joke, danmit! 

Michelle Frechette (01:11:28) – I’ll let you have that next time.

Corey Maass (01:11:30) – That’s just dogs barking in the background.

Michelle Frechette (01:11:32) – Exactly. Well, we had we. Had people watching today and they identified themselves. So thank you Adam. Thank you, Marcus, for, for for being here with us. Really appreciate it. I’m sure there’s other people that have popped in and out. I’ve seen the numbers kind of go up and down a little bit, and I’m sure there’s people who watch us afterwards who aren’t available to watch us between 5pm and 6:13 pm.

Michelle Frechette (01:11:53) – So, whoever you are, if you do have questions, you can always put them on in the comments here. You can message us through Post Status. we would love to take your ideas if you want us to talk about them or answer questions that you have as we move forward with OMGIMG. So anyway, that’s all I got. You got anything else?

Corey Maass (01:12:16) – Nope. Another lovely conversation. Thank you.

Michelle Frechette (01:12:18) – It was fun always. We’ll see everybody next week.

This article, Marketing a WordPress Product Live: Session 11, was published at Post Status — the community for WordPress professionals.

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