Welcome to the 2016 Valet 🎉!
This past year, I spent some time listening to folks on client calls, emails, and in WordCamps. They'd share their unique needs and challenges with me. As the conversation unfolded, I would share what WP Valet could do to help. Frequently, when I brought up our full range of services it was met with a blank stare. "Aren't you guys the migration and maintenance company?" My answer was generally something like, "Well, yeah, but also..."
The truth is, WP Valet was founded on the idea of ongoing professional services. It was never meant to be specific to migrations or maintenance. The real passion was to make sure website owners had all the strategy, insights, and support they needed to operate in the month-to-month requirements of running a business.
I saw an episode of Mad Men where the lead character, Donald Draper, (a character who is amazing to watch on TV but whom no one should idolize in real life) made a very interesting point. It stuck with me even after the show ended.
"If you don't like what's being said, change the conversation."
Importantly, what's been said by our customers can only be described as super-awesome. We're not changing that conversation. Amongst our peer group, however, we definitely wanted to share a more complete picture of our capabilities and open up the possibilities for what can be expected from a monthly services company.
So how did "Migrations and Maintenance" come to be?
Way back in the dark ages of 2012, we were a young company eager to provide support and help businesses have a better experience with their WordPresses. We loved what was happening in the managed WordPress hosting space and built on top of that. One of the first obstacles we encountered was that hosting vendors were finely-tuned for core, 'vanilla' WordPress which meant that atypical installs or use cases had difficulty being on-boarded to their platforms. We reached out to a couple of companies and asked if we could do some migrations for them. We wanted to better understand their setup and expectations. This resonated well with a few of those companies, and we ended up doing thousands of migrations, growing the team to four people who exclusively handled migrations on a day-to-day basis.
We learned a heck of a lot during this time. Checklists are mission-critical and following them is one of the greatest keys to repeating a complicated process successfully. As we grew, our customers began asking for more varied services, and we continued to solve problems and meet their needs. This is, after all, what we're here to do.
What's changed since then?
We've substantially upped our game in web development, design, and strategy. Did you know we had an entire creative team in-house? We do—and have for years. This site went from concept to design to full-blown website in about four weeks time—and in the middle of the holiday season and regular client work too 🙂
Besides creative, we also continue to shift our focus to what drives the most value for our customers. We'll share a LOT more about the unique approach Valet offers in 2016. The challenge of being in day-to-day operations is that you can lose sight of the overall business goals. Our services help our clients set and achieve those goals by creating measurable benchmarks.
What hasn't changed at all?
Our core business offering—still based on the ongoing day-to-day professional services that make site owners happy. It works great and our customers love it! While our pricing has been tweaked slightly over the years and we've expanded the services we provide, the core of our work is the same good 'ole sticking it out in the trenches with our customers—every day, week, and month of the year. None of that is going away. Ever.
We're still providing the same monthly options and (coming soon) making concrete metrics of your site's health much more visible.
New look. New name. Same fantastic service.
We dropped 'thewp' from our URL and are now operating as "valet" (or "valet[dot]io" if you want to get fancy). This just makes it easier to remember and easier to say. Win! We also took the opportunity to create a new logo that we're incredibly proud of. Over the next few weeks, we'll share more on our design process and why we think this is something incredibly unique.
What do you think? Do you like the new site? What sticks out to you? This is version 1.0 of this design. There'll be a ton of site copy and theme changes this year, and we're excited about making this announcement so stay tuned to the site! Tweet to us @thewpvalet (still working out social media channels) or hit me up directly @masonjames.