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Episode 54: Brian Gardner of Copyblogger founder of StudioPress

Well, it’s finally happened. I interviewed Brian Gardner.

If you don’t know who Brian is, where the heck have you been? He’s the first WordPress entrepreneur to pioneer the premium theme business as we know it today. He started StudioPress over six years ago as a passion project and soon became the de facto site to purchase premium WordPress themes.

We’re not just talking selling themes in this interview. We’re talking about becoming an “accidental business owner” and team leader to a large distributed staff.

See, Brian didn’t set out with plans to scale, grow a a multi-million dollar business or partner with Copyblogger media. These pieces of the puzzle sort of fell together and we’re going to learn what that ride is like.

Interview with Brian Gardner of Copyblogger founder of StudioPress

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Can there be another StudioPress success story?

There’s no doubt about it, the theme market is a big scary place. With the likes of Woo and Brian’s CopyBlogger market cache, how can you compete?

Brian provides some great advice to those of us up to (crazy enough) for this challenge.

One key takeaway, that I feel gets overlooked often, is partnering with other shops. Either designing child themes for a framework like Genesis or getting a helping hand from another designer/developer type if you need it.

But what about the customer? Can we find a niche to exploit?

The answer is, yes.

Even CopyBlogger’s audience is fairly diverse, so pinning down a vertical is still a totally acceptable strategy.

Finding Inspiration

Spoken like a true founder, Brian says anything is possible with Genesis. That makes starting a new canvas to a design much more attractive.

Couple that with a desire to publishing his thoughts and getting bored of looking at the same old website, he’s constantly under the hood tinkering with his theme.

When asked if he looks to any other designers for inspiration, he confessed he tries to keep his blinders on. He doesn’t want to get labeled as too inspired or down right copy another design.

The power of a personal blog

Being transparent is healthy.

For those of you following Brian, you know he wears his heart on his sleeve and that’s a good thing. His passion for writing isn’t that of his partner Brian Clark either.

This is growing an audience for other reasons than just business.

If you’re not focused, you’re not efficient

It’s an outlet for any form of emotion, be it creative or personal.

It’s an audience for the gut check you might ask for from time to time. I love this concept and I think it’s over shadowed by the typical web marketing crowd blogging for dollars.

I really enjoyed talking to Brian in this episode and I hope you feel the same. Take a moment to subscribe to my e-mail newsletter and share this with a friend.

7 comments on “Episode 54: Brian Gardner of Copyblogger founder of StudioPress

  1. Matt great interview, I don’t personally know Brain but I have been in contact with him over the past two years VIA emails and I can tell you this just from interacting with him. He’s a great guy and has a good heart because he is always trying to help the members that use his products and always go that extra mile.

  2. Pingback: The Matt Report: WordPress Business Podcast Interviews

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