Don’t you make websites?

Posted by: Darren Odden
Category: Random Ramblings
Laptop white

Share if you would...

Approx. 3 minute read

You’d be correct if you came here thinking I am that guy that makes websites. I do. But that isn’t what my real value is.

I run and found design businesses.

Let me correct that. I found and built design businesses, and lead the charge for others. I also happen to know how to design and taught myself how to program. But I am a business owner.

Currently, my business is on a hiatus, and I am not running a web design agency.

I work for a website hosting and development agency named Launch Brigade. This company operates out of NextSpace in Santa Cruz, CA. They build and host WordPress websites on secure platforms using current day best practices.

I have brought with me my business acumen and technical background. I am a pretty good developer with 25 years of programming experience from C/C++ to PHP to JavaScript. I am somewhat language agnostic and have been called on to help Launch Brigade with Drupal, Magento, and straight PHP development.

So what is up here?

setting for video at the NEXTies

Fair question.

I have an analytic mind and have studied customer and user experience. Because of this, I tend to think first of the customer and their challenges (problems) and how to help them.

I have always leaned towards empathy.

I have some processes and tools that I have developed and honed throughout the years to help me get to the crux of the challenge my customer has. I had even pointed them to solutions that were better suited for them elsewhere – including when I worked in retail.

These also helped me in developing some of my marketing materials and some of my sales.

Wrapping up a potentially long story before it gets too long, I still have people that ask me to help them gain insight on their businesses.

I am putting together some of my tools so it might be useful for you. I am also sharing some of my experiences with different platforms I use for marketing, sales, customer management and nurturing.

…and this means?

I have always been of the mind that if I have something that can benefit others, I should share that knowledge. It is what has prompted me to host the web developers group, Drupal user group, and the design group — I felt it was important that members of these groups share their knowledge with each other and have a venue for this to happen.

I have a collection of worksheets that are useful in understanding the customer, identifying their problems, so a solution is determined.

There are are ways to do competitive analysis to know who else is working in the space you are doing business.

On the marketing side, there is more to the work than having a website, a social media account, or “creating content”.

I am testing the waters with this and am not sure where this will lead me. While I might still write the occasional article on development, the pieces will focus on business, marketing, and scaling.

Will there be a chance I start a podcast? Not certain.

I will say that it will be more likely you may find me speaking to local business groups and organizations.

I hope that this site is worthwhile and if anyone ever reads this, that it is helpful!

Share if you would...

Author: Darren Odden
A lifetime of design and development background and a passion for the user's experience. Combined with business and marketing skills, I harness all of these skills to collaborate and empower clients and their customers.