RIP Kim Parsell, aka #wpmom

Today the news is spreading in the WordPress community that we’ve lost Kim Parsell, affectionately known as #wpmom.

I didn’t know Kim well, but as happens we began following each other on Twitter a while back, sharing friendly banter and discussion about WordPress and other topics. Leading up to WCSF 2014 and this year’s community summit, she was one of the first people I noticed to be tweeting with the hashtags, and we met for the first time just a few months ago at those events.

Kim’s contributions to WordPress will be missed, as she was an important member of the documentation team. Sarah remembers how excited Kim was to have received mention in Matt’s State of the Word talk. Her contributions and kindness earned our trust, respect, and appreciation. What she brought to the project will exist for years after her passing.

WordPress is an army, and we mourn the loss of Kim Parsell from our ranks.

WordCamp Dayton 2014

photo by waterlass, used under Creative Commons licensing

More Writing in 2015

Desk AppI hate to use the term “New Year’s Resolution” because it brings a ton of baggage along with it, but one of my goals as we move into 2015 is to do more personal writing, which will significantly increase the number of things published here at aaronhockley.com.

A few weeks ago, after reviewing Instagrate, I started sharing photos here as they’re posted to Instagram.

Now, look for more writing as well. Will I post every day? Perhaps.

I just purchased Desk, which appears to be a fantastic little app from John Saddington. Seems like it might be a more streamlined way to publish than my current system. Again… time will tell how this plays out.

Now would be a fantastic time to subscribe if you’d like to keep up to date with new things from me in 2015.

Onward!

Speaking About the Rainmaker Platform in Portland

I was recently approached by an organizer of the Portland WordPress meetup and invited to speak about the launch of my new WordPress for photographers website called WP Photographers. He suggested I might speak about the site design and the choices made for hosting and plugins.

WP Photographers isn’t like most other sites. It’s not hosted on a standard web host and it’s not hosted at WordPress.com. I had some choices to make regarding hosting. I’ve happily used WP Engine in the past for a couple sites, and I had a good experience with SiteGround when I launched a recent project.

The Next Generation Online Marketing and Sales PlatformBut I’d been hearing a lot about the New Rainmaker platform being built by Copyblogger Media. It looked pretty attractive and after evaluating several considerations, I decided to plop down a fair chunk of money and sign up.

At the Portland WordPress meetup on the 29th, I’ll be giving a talk where I walk through why I chose Rainmaker, what I’ve found to work well, and where I’ve found it lacking thus far. It’s a great fit for some sites and a poor fit for others… we’ll look at how it fits into the WordPress ecosystem and how it compares against traditional shared or managed hosting options.

Disclaimer: I’m an affiliate for pretty much every platform and hosting company mentioned, so purchases through those links will get me a small commission. Each is strong in their own ways. I’m certainly not making hosting decisions based on small affiliate payments.

WP Photographers: WordPress + Photography

Earlier this week I launched WP Photographers, covering topics around WordPress for photographers.

This is kind of a “duh” thing as I’ve been deep into those two worlds for quite a while, yet it seems there’s not anyone really covering that space in depth. As I floated the idea in both communities over the last few months the reaction was generally enthusiastic… so I built it and here we are.

It’s a start. Much more to come.

If you’re a photographer who uses WordPress, it’s for you. If you’re a WordPresser who uses images and photos on your site, it’s for you.

WordPress for Photographers

Save 50% + Additional 20% on New Media Expo – One Day Only

New Media Expo (NMX) continues to be a premier event each year for those involved with internet business, whether it’s blogging, publishing, or podcasting.

Returning again to Las Vegas on January 4-6, 2014, today they’re offering a Black Friday Deal for 50% off conference tickets… and as a NMX speaker and affiliate, I have a code to take 20% off of that already-awesome deal.

Just hit this banner:

Join me at New Media Expo in January 2014!

That’ll take you to the NMX Website, where you’ll find the 50% Black Friday deal in effect. Use my personal discount code HOCKLEY20 at checkout to save 20% more, and I look forward to seeing you in Vegas in January!

Seattle Talk on November 14th: From Domain to Fame

WordPress has that famed five-minute install, right? Right. And with most modern web hosts, it’s much quicker than that by using their control panel.

But installing WordPress is but one step in the overall process of launching a new website. Regardless of whether your new online venture is for a hobby or a business, there’s a lot more ot launching a new site than just making WordPress run.

That’s the topic for a talk I’m giving in a couple weeks at the Seattle WordPress Meetup. Join me on November 14th at TechStars.

Seattle Skyline as seen from Gas Works Park

Before the launch, you’ll want to think about how the site is structured and the design. You’ll need to plan for the initial content (both static and dynamic) that should be ready to go while still under wraps. And there should be some preparatory work to ensure that when you launch, someone knows.

On launch day, several things need to happen, and if they’re done in the wrong order it’s not hard to make a potentially embarrassing mistake.

Immediately after the launch, you’ll want to be ready with additional content and promotional steps to bring folks to the site and convert them in some way… whether that’s to a subscriber of some sort, a buyer, someone who’s sharing your content, or whatever other action it is that you hope for your visitors.

We’re going to walk through this in Seattle. Be there… or don’t. :)