Fresh and rested after PressNomics, today I’m reflecting on the WordPress business event that’s made such a name for itself. After finally making it myself, on its third iteration, I can tell you that I now know what all the fuss is about. Here are just a few of my takeaways.
My primary takeaway is this: PressNomics enabled the most in-depth and actionable business discussions and relationship building I've experienced yet in the WordPress world. And that's on top of some of the highest quality presentations I've ever seen at a WordPress conference.
In three days and four nights, I was overwhelmed by high-quality conversations and interactions with some of the smartest folks in the WordPress business world. Let's discuss some themes:
There are a lot of companies we're not hearing about
And that's completely my fault. To date I've definitely not had a complete grasp of the companies that are building their businesses on WordPress.
I tend to focus on a small number that has done a good job of getting out there, but I have so much more that I can do. At PressNomics, I discovered dozens of people and companies that are passionate about WordPress and growing their business but are relatively under the radar.
Hopefully, I'll do a better job now of bringing these stories to a broader audience. PressNomics helped me find new stories in the first place though, and for that alone, it was worth a great deal to me.
We're all learning all the time
Not even the biggest names and folks in our industry know what they're doing. Everybody is learning.
At PressNomics, I talked to business owners, freelancers, and executives from large companies that just want to learn to be better business owners and provide better products and services for their clients.
This spanned the entire scale. From big companies like GoDaddy, SiteGround, or Envato to smaller companies like Westwerk, Sidekick, or Event Espresso: everyone was there to learn and engage with one another.
And of course, many self-employed service and product providers like myself were sucking in as much knowledge as possible from those that are one, two or ten steps ahead.
For those that couldn't make it: I'm sorry, because you truly missed out.
I promised myself I'd force myself to sleep, since pre-PressNomics I had little sleep for days in preparation for launching the Membership Club. Well, on this one note, I failed. I didn't sleep more than five hours per night, because I just couldn't pull myself away from these conversations.
But no worries, there are ways to see some of what you missed:
- Curtis McHale's Flickr archive (thanks to Curtis for my post's cover photo)
- Peter Chester's awesome shots, especially this epic one of organizer Joshua Strebel smoking a stogie.
- From the organizer's view: the Strebel's photos of PressNomics.
- GoDaddy evangelist Mendel Kurland's photos, including their insane office full of slides and go-carts
- The social stream
And this fist bump between Josh and Matt was great:
— Betsy Cohen (@betsela) January 24, 2015
As good as those photos are, there are much more in-depth takeaways that will take me longer than this post to unwrap. Don't be surprised when you see “while at PressNomics” in my posts over the next couple of months. There will be a lot of that. I could write 30 posts just from this event, easy.
For example, I'm going to have a post that covers some of the Q/A with Matt Mullenweg, and some very interesting comments during that discussion. Other nuggets will be limited to Notes, which subscribers will of course get their hands on.
The opening video is also pretty funny, and you can catch it here:
A good cause
One thing I was happy to see is that PressNomics again gave conference earnings to charity. This year, they donated $10,000 to CureSearch, the highest amount of any PressNomics yet. In three years, they've donated $21,000 to charities fighting childhood cancer.
I ripped off PressNomics
I gained so much value from this event. Today, I'm overflowing with ideas and takeaways. I've got some notes on dozens of things to follow-up on. I don't think I'm alone.
I easily gained thousands of dollars worth of insight, advice, and even direct sales (from folks asking me about Post Status memberships).
I just looked, and I spent $1,246 on PressNomics for room, flight, meals, the golf social event, and related expenses — in addition to a $350 ticket cost (that I was comped as a media partner). $1,596 was a bargain. I probably made that much in value from multiple standalone conversations.
It's hard to give you all of my takeaways from PressNomics, as there were so many. I can tell you this; if and when they do this again, you should go. It was a great event, and I can't wait to share more with you guys some of the insights I gained while in Phoenix for PressNomics 3.
Big thanks to Sally and Josh Strebel, as well as the entire Pagely team, for an excellent event.