spotlight

JOE HOWARD

wp buffs banner .jpeg

joe howard owner of wpbuffs.com

Joe Howard

Wp Buffs

I was able to get to know Joe more and see the passion for his job. He runs Wp Buffs, so he has a lot of know how and offers some great advice. Get to know him and his business a little more. 

Can you tell me a little about yourself?

Howdy, Joe here! I was born and raised in Washington, DC and now live there with my lovely wife, Sterling. I spend most of my time walking Marvin through Rock Creek park, reading sci fi. Oh, and I also run WP BuffsWPMRR and the WPMRR WordPress podcast 🙂

Tell ma about Wp Buffs and how long you’ve worked there?

We manage websites with 24/7 care plans for small business and entrepreneurs.

We also run a white-label WordPress support program so agencies and freelancers can partner with us to push their clients into 24/7 support.

I started WP Buffs in 2015 so about 4 years ago now. So I’ve been working here since day one!

How did you get where you are today, like what made you choose this career path?

I jumped around a few jobs before starting my business. After studying mathematics and education in school, I was a high school math teacher for a couple years in DC schools. Then worked at a couple digital marketing startups and did some UX consulting work as well. During all my time doing digital work, I was getting into the WordPress community and building sites on the side as a freelancer.

None of those really vibed that well with me except the WordPress stuff. And I loved building WordPress sites, but couldn’t find out how to scale it. So I switched my business model from building websites to managing them for a monthly subscription. We went the unlimited support for a single monthly fee route because I love the idea of giving people as much as they want while only having to worry about one single payment every month.

And thus, WP Buffs was born!

I do sometimes feel like an accidental entrepreneur. I didn’t get into this because I started a killer lemonade stand when I was a kid. I just never really like any of the other jobs I’d worked so I decided to try to create my own.

What do you love most about your job?

Honestly, the people. I really enjoyed running the day-to-day operations of the business so when the team started growing and I started to move farther away from operations and closer to managing people and big-picture work, I was a little nervous I would stop liking what I do.

But it turns out, it’s just the opposite. I love optimizing people and trying to help them become their most productive (and happiest) selves. And that means helping our leadership team by giving them the support and resources they need to succeed. Boom!

Can you explain what WPMRR is and what it provides?

For sure! So we started our white-label WordPress support program at WP Buffs because we found there were a ton of agencies and freelancers out there who we could help to push into 24/7 maintenance. We save them time, manage sites for them around the clock, help them build better relationships with their clients and allow them to increase their monthly recurring revenue.

But it turns out not everybody wanted to join; some people wanted to learn to do it themselves instead of partnering with us.

And that’s cool! So cool that we decided to open-source WP Buffs and package it into the WPMRR video course so anybody can learn to sell care plans. It allows really easy access to people to jump into maintaining WP sites, which we’re hoping in the long-run will mature the industry and take us all to the next level.

If someone was interested in what you do, what advice would you give to help them along the way?

We partnered with our friends over at Liquid Web to do a webinar that pretty much tackles this exact question. If people have an hour to dedicate to learning how to build recurring revenue with WordPress, give the webinar a watch! You don’t even need to give up your email address 🙂 Building a Self-Sustaining Business by Leading with Recurring Revenue

Or you can tune into the WPMRR WordPress podcast (that’s fully focused on this topic). We’ve had guests from places like HubSpotGoDaddystartups.com, and more. Catch you in there!

Can you tell me about a highlight or a great accomplishment in your career?

I think it’s pretty cool that the team that’s come together around WP Buffs has grown something that supports 10+ people. It still amazes me that people are buying houses, we’re paying for healthcare and dental, etc.

I always thought I had to sell my soul to some big company to get a job with this kind of support and I couldn’t be happier to be running a company that supports its employees and tries hard to create a workplace where everybody can thrive. Plus, even though we’re a 100% distributed team, we get to meet up in cool places like Berlin. Teamwork makes the dream work!

Any last advice or knowledge that you would like to pass on?

Building a business is just a series of challenges you have to overcome. This journey is always hard. But the best way to make it through (in my opinion) is to surround yourself with smart, driven, friendly people. No matter how talented you are and no matter how many hours you work, you’ll never make it alone.

Find the other people building businesses in your industry and maintain your network of business friends and resources so when you run into trouble, they can help you figure out how to move forward. Onward and upward!

I am grateful for Joe and his time in answering these questions. He runs a great business with a great team next to him. Check out their website for more information and check out Joe’s podcasts! 

For another great article on a young man that works a lot with partnerships check out the spotlight with Raleigh.

 

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