We’re continuing to interface with very interesting people and we love it when they share some of the neat stuff that they are doing. We recently bumped into Karen Jackie and the stuff she’s doing over at BlogDroid, an “intelligence engine” via managed WordPress hosting.
A neat spin from the outside looking in but I was curious enough to inquire more and it eventually made sense to do a WPOI (Word Person of Interest) interview.
So, without further ado…
1. Tell Us About Yourself, The More ‘Unknown’ Facts the Better!
Dana and I met at Timex (the watch company) and we developed one of the first e-commerce websites back in the 1990s. We always wanted to be web entrepreneurs and we started ContentRobot in 2006 to help companies launch business blogs.
We connected with Charles, who had mad programming skills for a few complex WordPress projects. The three of us meshed really well and decided that we should develop a WordPress hosting service that is speedy, secure, and smart.
2. How Long Have You Been Working with WordPress? When Was Your First Experience?
When Dana and I launched ContentRobot, we used both Drupal and WordPress. When we realized we could push WordPress in all kinds of directions (considering it a CMS before that was popular) with custom theming and programming.
We decided to focus on WordPress exclusively, and with the release of 2.0, we knew we made the right choice. Our first WordPress-powered website that we launched was http://blog.bazaarvoice.com/ (and it’s still going strong).
3. Why Did you Start BlogDroid? What Was the Chief Motivation?
We started developing BlogDroid conceptually a few years ago, but it took a while to launch. Our chief motivation was that there was a middle market between WordPress.com and self-hosted WordPress bloggers that wasn’t being served. Not only did they need reliable hosting, they also needed the ability to set up their sites right from the start.
As you can see by our guided set up (https://app.blogdroid.com/
4. How Have You Seen WordPress Hosted Solutions Change in the Past Few Years?
In the beginning, hosts claimed to be WordPress-friendly if they provided a one-click installer. Unfortunately, that meant that servers were slow, overcrowded, and those unlimited bandwidth and storage claims were merely a myth. Users also found out that they were on their own as these hosts were unable to support WordPress.
Nowadays, good WordPress hosts know that WordPress users require optimal installations, managed upgrades, and expert support.
5. What Can People Expect to See in 2013 for BlogDroid?
We especially are proud of our WordPress-centric control panel and the ability to quickly create development sites (to test themes, plugins, and new features offline and even push live with the click of a button). We plan to add additional convenience features to our control panel in the year ahead.
Also in 2013, we want to build strong partnerships with premium theme and plugin developers so that our clients have access to some great WordPress solutions.
6. What are One (or Two) Tips for Those That are Thinking about Starting a Hosted Solution?
It all starts with a passion for WordPress. It’s helpful to have solid experience with WordPress sites because we all know that users make some interesting theme and plugin choices that may need troubleshooting down the road. From a technical point of view, choose your server setup wisely and try not to overcrowd your environment.