Podcast Ep. 42: How Mike's Hacker Experience Helped Build His Brand

https://soundcloud.com/brandballers-podcast/episode-42-mikes-hacker-experience

Show Notes:

In this week's episode of the Brand Ballers Podcast, we’re going continuing our series about how companies have built their brands in unexpected ways. And in this episode, we’re going to hear from Mike about his own experience building his brand in an unexpected way...

The importance of Mike’s brand building experience

  1. What were you doing at the time?
    1. Was trying to get to know a local teacher.  She had a similar situation as me in that we were both Americans living in The Netherlands and were sort of marketing people that love coding.
    2. Was inspired by her efforts of teaching code and also trying to teach kids about coding.
  2. What did you do? And what was the result?
    1. So I eventually get in touch with teacher over Twitter. And we talk a bit. I was interested in seeing if we could collaborate in ways.
    2. At that time, October, there was Codeweek EU.  Throughout the EU, there’s a week-long initiative to teach kids about coding...sort of an introduction to coding. And so I was invited to be a speaker.
  3. How this affected your brand and business? What did you learn?
    1. So my audience was a tough group of 12 years olds. To capture their attention, I decided to create a presentation on hacking the school’s website. I wasn’t really hacking the website, but I was showing how we can replace images of a website using a developer tool built within the browser.
    2. Few things happened: Kids called me the hacker and asked about me for a couple weeks.
    3. It allowed me to meet the head of communications at the school and the following month, we were talking about building a new website for them. Fast forward a year later, I’ve built a couple websites and also making videos for them.
    4. Made a SlideShare presentation that was selected as Presentation of the day. It immediately got something like 10,000 views that day. Linked to presentation http://www.slideshare.net/catchmikey/explaining-code-to-12-yr-old-kids

Actionable steps to take away from podcast

  1. Follow your interests and connect with people you find interesting.
    1. You might learn a lot and for me, this actually led to a job opportunity and a chance to teach kids...how cool is that?
  2. Selling doesn’t always come in the form of pitching your services. By teaching and presenting, I was able to demonstrate to the school that I’m kinda cool. The communication director said to me...heck the kids like you, we’d love you to build our website. If I didn’t teach, I’d never have this opportunity.
  3. Marketing your work - Being a web designer, people share with me what they’re working on or their expertise. I’d say 8 out of 10 times, I’m impressed by what people are capable of doing...especially when you see the passion coming out. And I think if these people were able to share more of their passion by creating useful things over the web, presentations, .etc….it could be very helpful. Don’t forget to talk about what you do.

Thanks for listening! If you’d like us to touch upon a particular topic on an upcoming podcast, send us a message.

Have a great day!