Episode 226: The Speakers at the Atarim Summit


Show Highlights

Rob Cairns sits down with Disha Pegu and talks about the speakers at the Atarim Summit.

Show Highlights:

  1. Topics of some of the speakers.
  2. How you can learn at the Summit.
  3. How to sign up for the Summit.

Show Notes

Hey everybody, Rob Cancer today I’m here with Disha Pegu from the Atarim Web Agency Summit.

How are you today Disha?

I’m doing great Rob.

Thanks for having me here.

How are you doing?

I’m doing good and it’s such a pleasure to have you.

You’ve done a lot of hard work with the summit, so just for listeners.

You’re the community manager for the summit, and they’re also the one that all those speakers have to talk to sooner or later and help promote the summit.

Uhm, how did you get into?

Community manager role and working with Adam.

Well, that’s a long story, but I’m going to keep.

It very short.

So I have yeah, I have always.

Been working in marketing.

Uh, in different roles, digital marketing and.

And while I was, I’m doing digital marketing.

I have always been with the community.

You know, like you know, my, my job has always been like in the front end rather than in the back end.

So even like if it’s if we take like social support or talking directly.

To UM, the people that are reaching out to the company.

I was always that.

Person you know?

So it’s not like, uh, customer support, but like along the lines of social support.

So I was already doing this for an agency before I was I joined the letter and then it was like a pretty pretty like a normal process where I was looking for another opportunity and I reached and I got and I saw this opportunity right here in my applied and I got it.

That’s really good, and you’ve done a lot of work for the summit.

UM, tell us a little bit.

The summit comes up at the end of the month.

Uhm, what’s the format of the summit this year?

So from the people who has attended the summit last years.

Uhm, will know that these the summit is like where the speakers are mostly presenting it and up towards the end of their session.

It’s a Q&A round, right? So that’s their this. This year is going to be the same.

It’s a mix of presentations and question and answer rounds, and it’s.

A live summit.

It’s going to be a live 1.

And yeah, that’s there and you are also speaking well.

I I yeah I am.

I’m actually doing a talk about.

Tom, how did you use podcasting to build your digital agency?

And it’s it’s interesting when you mention it.

I’m I’m not doing a traditional talk.

Yeah, that’s what you know.

I’m actually.

Like your format, quite like it’s very exciting so.

Yeah, I’m actually doing more of what we would call a fireside chat or something like that to get to get the point across. So it should be fun to be honest with you and it starts on the 26th.

Yeah, yes.

Of April and it goes to the 29th of April.

Right?

And where can people find out about the summit?

We have.

I mean if you go to the if you go to any of the other social platform, it’s right there.

You know and.

There are so many like known faces from around the WordPress community.

If you follow their socials, you will definitely going to find them as either a speaker or a media partner.

I mean, we have them all.

Yeah we yeah have the both in in and.

In my case I’m actually both faced into me and the media partners so so it’s been it’s an exciting time.

So what I thought we do today is highlight some of the speakers and I think it’s really important to realize.

Is that there’s a whole pile of people that have gotten involved to make this summit happen, and not just from an organizational point of view.

From the speaker point of view, and so I thought we talked about some of the talks.

Kind of on a high level and we’ll start with Bethany and I’m gonna have a tough time with this.

And Shaban lying and she’s going to talk about support and providing excellent support on the wordpress.org.

Forms and.

I personally so love this idea of a talk because I a lot of people know I come from a customer support background in it actually.

So that’s and I think one of the things that people don’t do really well, is providing good support for customers and viewers.

And all kinds of.

What do you think about that?

Come for me customer support in any forms has to come like from within you.

You know, like if you sit on your desk in the morning and you just say that OK today I’m going to support customer in a very robotic way.

You’re never going to do it right.

You know the replies.

The answers are going to be very bland and.

And you have to like, we all agree that even if it’s just like words and texts like digital digital messages, we do get a feeling we do.

We do understand what is the feeling that the person has from the.

Other side of the the.

Platform where we’re getting the reply.

Yeah, so true and it’s so and it’s so important.

Not true.

I mean, because we were kind of talking before we went to record that.

When you don’t.

Get answers in customer support.

What do people then do?

They go to places like Twitter and Facebook and you know and.

Then they’re.

So by the time they get there, they’re.

Not that happy, actually.

Yes, and when the customers are reaching out to Twitter and LinkedIn, that means it’s not like like fun.

You know they are in a panic and they’re just looking for people like is there someone to help me?

Knock, knock?

So so yes, our customer support is a skill, which is if I have to put in.

It’s it it has two ends like OK, customer support roles are very available for any kind of given company, but a good customer support person which is is very rare I guess I think.

Yeah, and and and what brands have to realize and a potential you know word press Todor gets more plugging companies theme companies that kind of stuff.

If people are reaching out to you and asking you for help.

They actually really care about the product they.

People who don’t care about companies in support, they just move on.

Right, yes, they don’t even care if if you have the right. If you get the answer or not, because they’ll just switch to something else which has better people to reach out to and Bethany’s. I mean I, I have seen her.

For session submission and she was like.

You know she was.

She has written how much it’s.

It’s tricky to provide a support on a free product on a public forum, you know, so it’s like a huge responsibility.

I mean, if you get frustrated, I swear your messaging would reflect that and it has been.

I have seen this and it also happened to me.

I’m not going to.

Lie like when I have an email.

Which is, uh, and and I’m like, it’s like kind of end of the day and I’m tired and I’m writing the email.

My email reflects my tiredness.

I don’t know how it is, but it it really does.

Yeah, it it does.

So, so the second speaker we have that we’re going to talk about is Winston Hughes, and she’s the Co organizer to WP, the WordPress NYC medium, and she’s going to talk about a topic I find really interesting and that’s how the forest.

Admidst friction.

What do you think of that topic?

How the how to flourish amid friction? Yeah, I mean when I see this when I see the title of this session, it brings me it takes me back to like 2-2 years back when there was this huge chaos. So with the pandemic and we were all trying to flourish among hard time, I don’t know how.

How this title reflects that time?

But that’s where I.

See, you know, like.

Yeah, I mean the the unique people will do unique things to combat unique times, you know.

It’s true, and I think you know some of the some of the best brands in the world have actually built their brand in downtimes.

For friction times I mean you take a a brand like Amazon.

Many people don’t.

No, they actually built their brand and buying up property and real estate in the economic downtime of the 80s in the 90s.

So they’ve they’ve built their brand that way, and many other companies have done the same thing.

They use friction or tough times in the world to to do well, and that’s that’s really important.

Yeah, right, and when Stiness session is all about how a community can be, community can be created with people who do not share the same values.

And when the end result is great because you have diversity.

So yeah.

It’s it’s so important.

I mean, it’s a it’s a great value, like a piece of.

Idea to take it everywhere.

No in your life.

Yep, and and that kind of leads us into our third speaker talking a little bit about diversity’s Michelle Frichette stock. She’s the director of community engagement at Stellar WP.

And most people in the WordPress space no Michelle or of Michelle.

Uhm, I consider Michelle good friend.

She’s not far from here.

She’s from Rochester, NY, which is yeah probably 6 or 7 hours from Toronto and her talk is on diversity in our.

Community is everybody’s responsibility.

Right? Yes, that’s

I think.

So interesting, I’m really looking forward to her so.

Yeah, and and I think we need to be really careful here.

Diversity is more than saying and I don’t.

I don’t want to come across this sounding racist or anything like that, but it’s more than saying let’s grab a non traditional white person and let them do a talk that’s not in my opinion.

Being diverse.

Being diverse to me is saying let’s grab.

Get some people involved and openly invite them to be involved and accept their views and being involved in making those views part of the final product.

Yes, uhm.

To add on this, I’m like when I am given the responsibility like I was.

We also had this agenda right to make our summit as much diverse as possible.

So I get this.

I asked Mike I.

I asked myself this question.

Like Disha, what do you mean by diversity in your head?

What if my diversity is not 20?

Or city because I don’t.

The the the group of people and communities that I know.

What if they are like just so like one person of what is true, the whole range of diversity you know.

So yeah, there is a task like where to open up this conversation so that most people can see us.

In a divorce.

I I would.

Agree and and it’s not as I said, it’s not just about seeing, it’s about openly welcoming and that to me is such a key that we need to openly get people you know involved and welcomed in and.

Speech setting.

And things like that.

And I think that’s really important, more important, and I know Michelle.

And I have talked about this topic.

In similar, I had Michelle at one time on my podcast on this podcast and we talked a little bit in there about diversity, and I know Michelle is a big proponent of it, and she’s such a great speaker, so that should be almost one of those must watch.

Talks UM.

Exactly right.

And then let’s move on to somebody I know really well as well.

Kim Doyle and she’s gonna.

She’s the founder of Fit to Hustle and Co founder de Content creators planner.

And she’s going to talk about three steps to writing, promoting and profiting with email.

And I love this because Kim has wanted a leaders in the email marketing space and.

You know, I’ve had many discussions with Kim over the years about his email marketing dead, and I can tell you from my list which is over.

8000 people

Email marketing is far from dead.

I don’t think it’s said either because email is the one kind of communication that leads directly into your inbox.

Uh, and which at least me.

I mean, if something is landing on my inbox, I take it.

I take it like seriously, you know like I’d open it and see.

What is it about?

You know, and and I think it’s so powerful and and what content is in your email is so powerful and I have subscript subscribe to newsletters and to where I like.

I look forward to their emails.

I mean I I.

Would literally know that this is the day.

This is the time and I look forward to.

Those emails.

Yeah it.

And of course, there is so much competition.

Also in email marketing.

It’s funny too.

Everybody thought with the pandemic newsletters would die.

And as somebody in that space, I would say the opposite has happened, because what did we all?

What are people doing?

They order something from Amazon, they order something from a store they order something from food.

They’re all jumping into their inbox to find out when it’s going to be delivered, how when.

Where so you know?

So I think people are actually reading email more lately than less and and that’s an interesting you know discussion.

I mean.

I looked at my own email open rates and my own rates.

I’m not saying email open rate is the only metric, but they haven’t heard it all in the pandemic.

Absolutely at all, so I think, and knowing Tim, she’s gonna bring pure gold to this.

Discussion so.

You know, if you’re interested in email marketing I, I would certainly get in there and listen to this.

Listen to this.

Yes, yes right with her like she’s very experienced.

She’s one of the.

Uh, one of the person that I was recommended to follow.

To be good at what I’m doing.

So yes, I.

Definitely think this session is going to be so like so amazing email email.

I mean we all we all want to start, I mean at least me.

At least I want at some point to have my own newsletters.

And there is so much of research.

To be done before you start what you know.

Because I I want to perhaps that right balance as strike the balance between informative and.

Something that is interesting, you know, like I don’t want to be like fully.

Only bullet points with something or something very essay type.

I want to be like a perfect match and that’s so much work to be done before even getting into that idea.

It’s true, anybody who thinks writing an Email newsletter is a.

Put it slapping and put it together.

It just doesn’t work.

Well that way so.

Yeah, yes.

I think having done one for a number of years they can tell you for sure that doesn’t work, so.

And then our next speaker is another person who’s pretty familiar to the word press, space and skill run.

He’s a vice president of term again so, and his topic is 1.

So interesting.

It’s so interesting called how to say no declines.

No, yeah.

Yeah, that is so.

Interesting, I mean it’s, it’s like a it’s not even like how to say no to clients.

It’s like how to say no in life, you know?

Take away, take it away from this session.

Yeah, there, there’s a really.

Good book out there called the art of saying no and I think it’s one of the must reads a couple people in my circles will tell you.

Don’t you?

Over the years I’ve actually said no declines to the point.

I haven’t even renewed contracts at times because it’s been that bad and let me tell you.

Uhm, in the WordPress business, a lot of people go through what we call scope creep.

So they write a contract and then the client wants something that’s not in the contract and I always say you know you sign.

Let’s address what’s in the contract 1st, and then we’ll look at everything else later.

And just so you know.

If you want that other stuff done, uhm, there’s an extra cost, and clients have a tendency to ignore the wrong contracts that they sign sometimes to be.

Honest with you so.

I think dumb.

I think that’s a good idea.

Learning how to say no, and it’s not just about saying no, it’s saying no gross gracefully.

And giving a client an alternative.

Yes, exactly.

I think how to say no.

It should not.

Should not give out a message like how to say no and ruin the relationship.

It it’s nothing like that like it should be like how to say no in a way that both parties are happy.

There is an alternative.

No one is at loss.

You are not.

With loss and the client is also not at loss, but still there is like uh, no.

In place you know.

And then there’s the, UM, the times.

You just got a all out saying no.

Yeah, exactly I I think it’s.

It’s we, I mean it.

It’s it’s so easy to just come, preach, you know like learn how to say no, but I think when you’re dealing with clients or paying for your bills, it’s so difficult to say no to their demand.

And I, I think.

It it’s more difficult when you’re just starting off.

I mean, when you’re once established it, it’s easier you you are into the business.

You also have learned the skill to say no, but when you’re just starting off, maybe you’re a solo intrapreneur, or you’re just like in the starting level.

I, I trust me, Rob, it’s so difficult to say no, and I have been.

In that position my.

Yeah, it’s hard.

And then the and then the last speaker I kind of highlighted somebody I know really well.

Adrian, Toby and he’s the founder of Groundhog.

I’ve had Adrian on my podcast and for those who don’t know, his father Paul was one of my mentors at one time in the digital marketing space.

Oh wow.

Now shout out to Adrian Paul and he’s going to talk about five simple CRM strategies he can use to create instant results for clients.

And I think, uhm, one of the problems many small businesses don’t know don’t do is they don’t do things like follow up.

In person.

They don’t do things like reaching out and a CRM.

Customer relationship manager.

Can really help them do that?

Do you have any thoughts on that?

Uh, I liked.

What you said about the follow up like we don’t put much emphasis on follow up.

Also in my life as a marketing professional.

All my results have been there only after I.

Did the follow up?

If you don’t, I’ll send the emails it’s like.

Plan nothing, then I sent a reply then.

I said do a.

Follow up.

It’s only then when I get a reply so I I am totally like 4 follow-ups and yes and I mean as like Vito has been saying many times in our you know when in our meetings you know like in our marketing meetings it’s not like customers don’t want to do your clients and customers don’t want to do your.

Task or don’t wanna it or it’s not like they’re ignoring your request, but they just have a lot of other things to do, so you have to remind them.

So that’s I think that’s how our relationship is built, you know?

I would I would agree.

People get busy and.

I’ve had clients or buy from my agency.

Or they’ve I’ve been talking to them sometimes.

For a year.

If you can believe that So what people need to realize is a lot of clients don’t buy right away, so you have to keep the follow up and you have to keep doing and and Adrian is really good at the CRM side of things so I think he will come.

Kind of provide a lot, so I think if you’re a small business, having problems with CRM, Adrian is a must.

Listen to talk.

He’s he’s a good speaker and he’s been around a while and for such.

Man, he’s done amazing things and.

That’s really good, so.

He’s he’s really good.

I I have.

I have seen few of his talks and it’s it’s he’s really fun.

In his talks.

Yeah, I keep telling him he’s got to send me one of those little stuff.

Groundhogs said he’s got in the background.

I want one step.

And and he’s actually not that far, far from me.

He used to live in.

He’s also in Canada, right?

Yeah, he still lives in Toronto.

He now lives in Niagara Falls ON, which is about a.

It’s about an hour and a.

Half down the roads, yeah, he’s he’s pretty close.

To me, so yeah.

And his dad agency used to have an office in Midtown Toronto and I can remember going in when Adrian was building Groundhog and him showing me little snippets along the way.

So he’s quite a.

He he’ll be a really good speaker on this one. So yeah. So if somebody says the addition I have a problem. The summit runs to 26 to the 29th.

And I can’t consume all four days of the summit, but I want to hear most of their speakers.

Is there a an option where they can get all the speakers?

Recordings, or is there no option to that?

Yeah, we do have an option.

UM, we have something called the All Access Pass which, uh, people can purchase if they want to get the access for everything.

The all of the sessions from all of the speakers.

So yes, we do have that option.

And then any excess pack. If I remember right, is $99 US is that, is that correct?

My my office on that one.

Uhm, for for the last year it was $197.00. For this year I’m I’m not sure I have to cross check with my colleagues on the technical front on the technical and pricing front.

I I can’t remember offhand what it is either ’cause unknown, but.

Yeah, but yes.

We do have that option.

You do have the option.

Yeah, and the speakers they run from the 26th to the 29th of April all the times are Eastern times, so that’s interesting because I’m in Eastern Time zone so so that means dish is gonna get no sleep because in the European time zone that means.

The three Co host one is Vito pay leg, UM one is Andrew.

As Andrew and the third, I forget who the third cohort.

She says, Stephanie.

It’s Tiffany here, and two of the three Co hosts are in the UK.

I think all three are in the UK, so that’s gonna be a bit of a time zone issue, but they’ll manage.

What I would say is come visit the summit if you want to.

Help your web agency grow.

It’s a great way to to get some talks in and hear some varied opinions in network to meet.

Some people right?

Yeah, I mean there the list of speakers this year is so amazing.

I’m literally and it’s my first summit.

So apart from organizing it, I’m also looking forward to be a listener.

So yeah, equally excited for both.

And the best way to see the summit is go to https://atarim.io/summit/

If anybody wants to reach out to you with any questions.

How’s the best way?

Come with me, I have my Facebook.

After him, so just reach me there.

I’m really active on DMS and everything, and if not you can come if someone is very active on Twitter will send a DM on Twitter and then some.

The replies are from me.

The Twitter replies are all for me, so yeah, that’s how they can reach.

And I also invite people to join the community.

I think that’s the best way.

Yeah so.

The actor, in case he had to enter in Facebook community.

Yeah, touring Facebook community come on out, enjoy this summit and Disha thanks a lot and have a great day.

Thank you so.

Much Rob you too have a great day.

 


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