“Replenishing Retainers”

Thought this was interesting. Happy holidays! ❄⛄❄



May Meeting Notes

After being sorta-kinda off last month, we did another round of Lean Coffee and bade farewell to the Braeburn. It served us well.

Mark mentioned ReferrerSpamBlocker.com for blocking analytics referral spam. It still requires some setup and maintenance but seems to be the best solution for this bedeviling problem.

Lean Coffee


Teri asked what other people are doing for staging:

  • Some hosts offer it, but usually only for more expensive plans. People like Flywheel, SiteGround, and WP Engine for that.
  • Some plugins like WP Migrate DB PRO, BackupBuddy, Infinite WordPress, Updraft, etc. are good for moving sites but the workflow and ease varies.
  • People use subdomains, local servers, and WP Stagecoach to host their staging sites.

How long do your sites last?

  • Answers varied between 2-5 years.
  • Expectations will vary by client. Reasonable expectations will vary by industry and site too.
  • Rise of responsive made some sites outdated pretty quickly. When will that happen again?
  • We can at least try to build so that redoing the site next time will be easier!
  • Staff turnover can speed up client desire to redo sites.
  • Most of these issues aren’t really on us (without getting paid!)

Privacy Policies

  • Some people have them. Some don’t.
  • Technically required for Google Analytics. Doubly so if you use the demographics reports.
    • Maybe link to the opt-out browser plugin?
  • Even if you just have a webform, it’s nice to tell people what you do with the data.
  • Once you write one, you have to stick with it. (Hence clauses about changing it at any time for any reason.)
    • One person’s privacy lawyer client explicitly doesn’t have one for this reason.
  • Details will vary by state and country.
  • Automattic open-sourced theirs: https://github.com/Automattic/legalmattic

Image Hosting

  • Photon by Jetpack is easiest but buggy.
  • CDN’s like Cloudflare work.
  • Photography sites have special needs (trying to protect full res)
  • Plugin to move media library to AWS: https://wordpress.org/plugins/amazon-s3-and-cloudfront/
  • One person really likes VideoPress for videos

Common Server Problems

  • Check permissions
  • Servers that make it hard to update are asking for trouble
  • If using IIS servers, don’t use IIS servers


  • Some still using Bulletproof Security or Login Security Solution
  • BruteProtect in Jetpack is pretty good. (No settings)

Next Time: Homework!

We’re all going to read (or reread) two articles and then talk about content strategy and content development (and annoying clients that do neither!)

To read:


Upcoming Meetup: “Creating a Client Pipeline That Pays”

Here’s a new meetup/presentation coming up from the Freelancer’s Union, which I mentioned at our last meeting.


True, successful freelancers convert leads into clients by getting to know their prospects’ biggest issues, and proving themselves to be expert problem-solvers. But the real secret to netting new clients?

Following up.

Studies show that 80% of prospective clients say “no” before they say “yes.” 90% of sales are lost when no second contact is made!

Join Spark on February 3 to create a client pipeline that pays.

  • Ensure interested leads are the real-deal (no tire-kickers!)
  • Tailor your marketing efforts to proven lead sources
  • Develop a client relationship management (CRM) system that doesn’t let you miss an opportunity to connect

Win new business and customer loyalty with this month’s Spark!

Upcoming Women in Design Meetup

Thought some people might be interested.

Working With Clients: Personalities & Communication

Monday, Feb 22, 2016, 7:00 PM

Location details are available to members only.

3 Indie Designers Attending

Running your own design business is an incredibly fulfilling endeavor, but it’s not without kinks. Many of the challenges derive from working with people. This is the first event this series where we’ll examine the various aspects of client management in the design industry.Primary topic: Personalities & CommunicationHere are a few questions we …

Check out this Meetup →

Tickets are $25. From the details:

Running your own design business is an incredibly fulfilling endeavor, but it’s not without kinks. Many of the challenges derive from working with people. This is the first event this series where we’ll examine the various aspects of client management in the design industry.

Primary topic: Personalities & Communication

Here are a few questions we may address:

• How do you establish communication expectations?
• What tools or processes can aid in vetting and filtering?
• How do you approach personality conflicts with grace and finesse?

The Format / Schedule

• 7:00-7:30 — Introductory activity

• 7:30-8:30 — Panel discussion

• 8:30-9:00 — Q&A + socialization

Light refreshments and snacks will be provided.

New site: NonprofitWP!

NonprofitWP  WordPress Guide for Nonprofits.png


I quietly launched that site I’ve been talking about earlier this week and thought I’d share it with the group now. I’m not publicly promoting it yet, but will start doing so soon, so feel free to pass it on if you feel it would be helpful to someone you’re working with.

I’ve gotten some really good feedback so far and will take any reactions you have (comments, email, whatever).

Have a great weekend!


2016 Rate Changes

I’m curious if people are thinking about rate increases for 2016. (Not that there’s a rule that you can only increase your rates in January!)

There’s a quick anonymous poll below. Leave a comment if you want.