Interview time here on LayerWP, I had the privilege of sending over some questions to Bridget Willard, guess what? She answered them, so without further ado, it’s over to Bridget with a little Q&A.
What was early life like for you?
I grew up poor and learned to make the best out of any situation. Pollyanna was my favorite movie because of the Glad Game she played.
We don’t always choose our situation but we can choose our response.Bridget
How did you get started with WordPress?
I heard about WordPress.com on MacBreak Weekly with Leo Laporte in 2007. I started a blog straight away. I heard about Twitter on the same episode.
Tell me more about your business
I manage social media for WordPress-based businesses. Many plugin developers and agencies don’t have internal resources for marketing; outsourcing to a vendor is a smart way to remain agile.
What’s it like running your own business?
Technically, I’m a freelancer. I love the freedom to work as much as I need to and to take downtime as well. Though it is stressful, it’s not as stressful as being an employee.
We’re no longer in the days where employee loyalty is rewarded.
What’s a typical day for you?
I generally work from 9am until 5pm every day but Friday. I like to work half days on Fridays and spend a couple hours on marketing my own business — including creating video content and writing and publishing articles.
I like to work half days on Saturdays, too. It sounds odd, but I’m single. Weekends are for families and lovers.
What does an ideal client sound like to you?
My ideal client is a WordPress product or agency. I’m so enmeshed in this space, it’s easy for me to help others. Though, I don’t take competing products.
Why social media management?
I started using Twitter in 2007 and loved it. Of course, I’d been on MySpace (to sell my CD) and also Facebook. It amazed me how I could meet like-minded people and build my own think tank.
When the economy tanked in 2008/09, I was the office manager for a commercial general contractor. I figured there was nothing to lose, so why not try to market us?
Needless to say it was a great success; though my boss at the time didn’t see its value. It allowed me to create a whole new career.
Find out more about this on Bridget’s blog, Ten Things I’ve Learned Building the Riggins Brand Online.
At 42 years old, I accepted a position at an advertising agency as a Marketing Manager and was promoted to Director of Marketing after just over a year and a half.
I see speaking at events is your bag, how do you cope? That’s a lot of stress right??
I have always enjoyed teaching. That is actually what I went to school to do. Speaking stresses me out a tiny bit but only because of the slides. There are so many unknowns when it comes to AV equipment.
I don’t mind crowds when I’m on the stage; at a party, I’m usually hiding in the bathroom — tweetingBridget
Stand out achievement, is there any one particular project that made you think, yeh I nailed that one!
Building the Make WordPress Marketing Team is one of my greatest achievements. I lead that team for two years. I’m proud that systems my team implemented are still in place — as are many of my recruits.
Are there any WordPress products you recommend? Themes/Plugins and why?
Does anyone in particular stand out in the WordPress product world, someone who’s doing things the right way?
Vito Peleg. 100% Smart. Teachable. Brought in real-world experience while WordPress was at 30% market share (2019). People should follow him.
Also, he’s not a jerk or a snob. He’s completely approachable.
How do you relax?
I like making pancakes on Saturdays. This has helped me differentiate the weekends. At night, I watch some TV, play cards with my friends, or read nonfiction.
I used to like going to karaoke nights but since the COVID-19 lockdown, I’m kind of over spending all of my money at the pub. I’ve been decorating my apartment instead.
What’s on the horizon for you? Any exciting projects you can share with me?
I released a book called “Dysfunctional Love Songs: Affirmations for the Hopeless Romantic” in April as a test for my second book, “Keys to Being Social.”
It’s with the editor now, so look out for it on Amazon or in my Tweets.
Tell me 5 things people might not know about you!
I have an album on Apple Music.
I played second string nose guard on the all boys flag football team in 8th grade.
I used to want to be a lawyer.
I was a hair model in high school.
I am terrified of fire.
Thank you Bridget!
Who should I interview next? Leave a comment with your recommendation if you will.
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