AskPat 140 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: Hey, what's up everybody? Pat Flynn here, and welcome to Episode 140, or “one-hundred fouty” as some of you might say.
We have a great question today from Helen from New Zealand, but before we get to that I want to get to today's sponsor which is 99designs. Selection, speed, and creativity are just a few of the benefits of having several designers work on your next design project. You can start your next project at 99designs.com/pat, and get a $99 Power Pack of services free. It's a service I've used before for several different design things, and a lot of different people who have since heard 99designs on this show have used it to great success as well. Again, that's 99designs.com/pat. Now, let's get today's question from Helen.
Helen Jamieson: High Pat, my name's Helen Jamieson, and I'm calling from New Zealand. My question is, given I'm definitely no techie, would you recommend building my website myself through something like Bluehost, or should I get a developer to put it together for me? It's going to be pretty basic at first, a blog and a book to sell, and some Amazon affiliate links, but in terms of building it I do feel a bit overwhelmed of all the things I could do wrong. I'm worried that if I build it myself the time and energy I need to put into that could eat me alive. But tapping in to your stuff, I realize I could be overestimating how hard this is, and I wonder, would it be good for me to do it myself? Do you think there are difficult bits that could trip me up if I was doing it myself through something like Bluehost? In which case, could I farm out those tricky bits without it being a huge diversion trying to track down reliable, honest professionals that can deliver? Thank you, Pat, for the information you share and for who you are as you share it. You've given me the inspiration to follow through on this project, because I'd almost given up when I found you. You really have made such a tremendous difference to me. Please keep doing what you're doing, and thanks heaps.
Pat Flynn: Helen, thank you so much for your question, thank you so much for all the support, and most of all, thank you for not giving up. I'm so glad that you're not giving up because I think about a lot of people who I've talked to in the past who have given up, and specifically, for tech reasons, and it just kills me because it's like, they could've changed the world. They have amazing experiences and knowledge to share that other people could benefit from, but they're letting technology hold them back, and I really do believe that in most cases it's just an excuse because it's a little bit hard. Of course it's a little bit hard. It's not just the snap of a finger, and you've a website—there's a little bit of work that needs to be done. But now more than ever, it is easy to put a website up, and get your content online, start to build an audience, and start to change the world and actually change people's lives. This is so possible now more than ever.
I remember when I first started. This was back in 2007-2008. The technology starting a blog, it was fairly easy, but it was a struggle for me. It was a struggle. I had to figure it out on my own. I actually had to ask people, which was scary because I didn't want to seem dumb, and I wanted to learn how it was done. I was actually very thankful for learning it on my own. Even though I know I could've hired somebody, I was very thankful for doing it on my own because I was just very proud of a site that I got up on my own, even though it wasn't perfect, and you shouldn't try to make your site perfect, just get it up. You can always change the design later through downloading different themes whether it's free or paid. You can always change the design around your content later just as long as you get that content up, but all those little milestones, getting your blog up, getting your designs going, getting your first content up there, getting your first comment: All those things were incredibly fulfilling, and I was proud to have done it on my own.
But there's another reason why it's good to do it on your own and why I recommend that at first. Not just because it's easy, but because you'll learn how to do it and then you'll understand that language a little bit. You're not going to know everything; I don't know everything. I still roll my eyes or things just go past me when people start talking code and jargon. You don't need to know any of that stuff to get your site up, but what's cool is once you start to learn how this works, when you eventually get to the point where you're going to hire somebody, you can speak their language. You sort of know what's going on, and they won't be taking advantage of you.
I've known a lot of people in the past who have hired people right off the bat—which, I get why they do that, especially if they want to get something up right away—but then sometimes they're left hanging. That designer who had created the site in a language that nobody knows or just did it their own way, they leave and then the person who's left with the site doesn't know how to use it. It's good to do it on your own so you know how it works, and you can at least get it up and running and manage it yourself. I think it's really important, but also when you hire somebody down the road you'll be able to speak the same language and just be like, “Hey, yeah I have a WordPress site here. It runs on the blogging platform WordPress, and I'd like to be able to do this, this, and this.” It just makes it much easier, so I challenge you to get it done.
I have a very helpful video that will walk you through that particular process. If you go to AskPat.com/4minute, that's the number four and minute, that will redirect you to a YouTube video that's been viewed over 100,000 times that has helped people create and setup their first website. That will take you through Bluehost which is the hosting company that I recommend. There are a lot of amazing hosting companies out there; that's just the one I use for most of my sites. Smart Passive Income outgrew that once it had a lot of traffic, but that's the one I recommend starting out with. If you go through AskPat.com/bluehost, that's my affiliate link, you'll get a discount. You'll get $3.95 a month. $3.95 a month to host and get your first domain, but anyway, there are some things that are offered during that process that weren't offered in that video like advanced security features and all the other upgrades and stuff. You don't need any of that stuff. Just get your site, your domain, and your host up, and then your WordPress blog which is just a one-click install, and then boom. You'll be ready to put your pieces of content up there, and again, like I said, you don't have to be perfect. You can always change the design theme down the road, and as long as you get your content up there Google can start to find it, people can start to find it, and as long as it's great then your design could be terrible.
My design was terrible at the beginning because I just picked a free theme that had a white background and some nice-looking lettering and had that for a year and a half, and in that year and a half I had built up an audience and eventually sold an ebook. You can do the same thing. It doesn't have to be amazing, it just has to be up there. Again, that video to help you get started can be found at AskPat.com/4minute. My affiliate link for Bluehost—if you choose to go through Bluehost—is AskPat.com/bluehost.
So, Helen, first of all you're awesome, Don't give up. And secondly, that video should help you but should you or anybody else out there have any particular questions about that process, feel free to email me. I'm here for support. I have an assistant who checks the emails who will be there for support too, but the process should be pretty straightforward. Like I said, it's now easier more than ever to put up your own site. Thank you so much Helen for the question. I appreciate it. An AskPat teeshirt is going to be headed and flying you're way over to New Zealand, and I hope to see a picture of you wearing it at some point. That'd be awesome.
For any of you out there listening, if you have a question you'd like potentially featured here on the show, just head on over to AskPat.com. You can ask right there on that page. For everybody out there, just want to thank my sponsor for this particular episode, 99designs, because great sources are hard to come by when you're a business of one or even just a few. When you're starting out, especially when it comes to design you might have some trouble finding the right designers or trying to do it on your own, but luckily for both you and me there are a lot of online resources out there like 99designs that offer great connections with amazing designers that can help you on your next design project. It's cool because you just put in the description and you can have tons of designers designing their own version of what you're looking for and you can pick the best one and get it for a great price in about a week, so it's awesome. Check it out, you can get a $99 Power Pack of services for free at 99designs.com/pat.
Now, as always, I'm going to end with a quote. Today's quote is from Charlene Li & Josh Bernoff, and that quote is, “We're all learning here; the best listeners will end up the smartest.” Cheers. Thanks so much, and I'll see you in the next episode of AskPat.
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