One of the better panels that I attended at SXSWi was called ‘Geek to Peak’, and centered around increasing and building my business as a consultant or freelancer. I found it really interesting, and ended up with a ton of notes. One thing that I’m currently working on is moving from saying ‘I am the Symbian-Guru’ to ‘I built Symbian-Guru, and I can do that for you.’ Don’t get me wrong, if there are any Symbian-Guru.com readers here. I’ll never sell the site, or shut it down. However, I think it’s better kept as a hobby than as a full-on business, for several reasons.
Either way, in 2 years, I’ve successfully built my own website, learned a lot about WordPress, both in how to set it up and use it, and in how to manipulate it to how I want it to work. I’ve taught myself how to edit CSS, PHP, and HTML, and have customized my own theme a few times. I have also installed, customized, and managed a vBulletin community, complete with integration into the WordPress community I had already built. I’ve learned plenty about SEO, advertising, and writing in general.
I’ve also now spent 2 years being a blogger, and a connected one, at that. I have seen a handful of companies that really did blogger relations ‘right’, and have seen more than a handful do it completely wrong.While I still enjoy blogging, I’m starting now to branch out a bit. Geek to Peak encouraged me as I’m moving to offering my services and knowledge to other companies. I know how to build a community, but more importantly, I know how to maintain it, and what it takes to really do well with it.