Last week, ManageWP hosted Michael Torbert for an AMA. Though he is most known for his work on All in One SEO Pack, Torbert has been involved in many WordPress projects. He began working for a SaaS company before finding an interest in creating commercial plugins. Torbert has helped organize WordCamp Raleigh since 2010. He was even able to pull his wife into the world, where she is an editor for Tibetan and Chinese.
People stopped by to ask questions about SEO, the community, and Star Trek.
Here are five takeaways.
The Community Has A Small Town Feel.
Though WordPress is a global CMS, the tight-knit community makes everyone feel more accessible. Whether it is a plugin developer or someone from core — you can mostly get ahold of anyone using email or Slack. That’s unusual in a lot of businesses.
“If you use Photoshop on a Mac, good luck contacting Tim Cook, the developers of OS X, or the developers of Photoshop for OS X,” Torbert said.
Support Is Important For Any Business.
One of the biggest problems Torbert has faced with All in One SEO, is keeping up with support requests. When you have millions of free users, making sure each one is heard, isn’t an easy task. Torbert had to get a second phone line with someone to manage the calls.
“We’re constantly improving our methods and getting more efficient though, and hopefully will learn how to better encourage people seeking support to becoming paying customers,” Torbert said.
There May Be An SEO Conference In Our Future.
Torbert was very interested in the idea of an entire conference devoted to SEO and WordPress.
“Most WordCamps and some Meetups will have an SEO topic, but to have an entire conference dedicated to SEO for WordPress would be great,” Torbert said.
The question even gained traction and Torbert found himself a co-organizer in Web Savvy Marketing founder, Rebecca Gill.
Being A Marine Taught Torbert Important Skills.
Though his knowledge of M240G, .50 Cal, and MK19 machine guns doesn’t help in creating a WordPress plugin, other skills Torbert gained as a US Marine did. Great work ethic comes in handy in starting any business.
After getting out of the Marine Corps, Torbert attended school to become a network operations center engineer. This eventually led him to WordPress.
Picard Is The Best Captain.
Torbert entered the hotly debated question, “Who is the best Star Trek captain?” Though he says there is a toss up between Picard and Sisko, he leans toward Picard. His thoughts on Kirk are very controversial.
“This may upset a lot of people, but the best thing Kirk has going for him is that he came first,” Torbert said. “Don’t forget Archer. I actually liked him.”
Check back every other Wednesday for another AMA with a WordPress influencer!