Matt Mullenweg talked to Tim Ferriss on Tim’s podcast for over two hours. It’s got a lot of good information, and I listened to it all for you. Why should you care? Well, Tim Ferriss is a WordPress advocate, member of Automattic’s board, and friend of Matt’s — so this podcast was able to be more personable than other interviews with Matt you may have heard in the past.
However, two+ hours is a lot of hours for a podcast. I think you can get away listening to the first 45 minutes, and I also have a couple of nuggets I took notes on that I think are good takeaways — some of which I’ve never heard before.
- Automattic spent $1 million on marketing last year. During a conversation where Tim asked Matt about other platforms, Matt noted Squarespace’s $40 million ad budget last year, and slipped in that Automattic spent $1 million in 2014. He also noted that it was mostly on events. Though they also sponsored Childish Gambino’s tour.
- Matt said that Automattic was offered north of $200 million for an acquisition in 2008, which they turned down but did turn into justification for a significant funding round.
- When discussing Automattic’s massive $160 million round last year, Matt said some of that money is being used to build 11 datacenters around the world, which should make WordPress.com and other Automattic properties faster and more reliable in more places.
- Matt’s advice to his 20 year old self (he co-founded WordPress at 19) would be to slow down. He said that some of his early mistakes were mistakes centered upon ambition.
- A fun tip: he’s recently enjoyed the Chrome App Momentum, which I installed upon his recommendation. Last night and today is all I’ve used it and I think I’m already dependent. It’s just a pretty picture and removes some distractions (recent sites). It rocks.
Beyond these topics, they discussed Matt’s routines, tools, Dvorak typing, books, music, hiring process, thoughts on remote work, chicken nuggets, and other things you’ve likely heard if you’ve listened to a bunch of his interviews. That doesn’t make it less interesting — as I still enjoy any opportunity to hear the founder of WordPress talk — but you’ve probably got the gist of what those segments look like.
The show notes are pretty thorough, if you want to see more links and listen to the episode.