Part Two of my report on WordCamp Birmingham 2015.
You can read Part One here .
As noted by Claire Brotherton in her round up of Day 2, Sunday morning seemed sparsely attended, the announcement that the previous night’s social was a record bar taking for a UK Wordcamp presumably no coincidence.
Despite a brisk and enjoyable late-night walk home, I confess I was one of those lunching out the morning, so I missed Petra Foster on how to Be a Brand, Not a Commodity (although I’d caught this presentation at the previous month’s WP Brum meetup) and Pauline Roche and Ted Ryan on WordPress for Small and Not For Profit Enterprises.
I also missed Paul Cherry on Customers and the Web, who has put the slides from his talk online.
And the morning concluded with Ben Furfie on Why it’s time to stop using Photoshop for web design. But, you can read useful summaries of all these talks in Claire Brotherton’s post.
Meanwhile there were two workshop sessions running all morning. Here’s the slides for Rachel McCollin’s session on Manage Your WordPress Website Now and For the Future [direct link to slides], which seems well received, garnering some ‘social proof’ with this tweet:
— NetSquared London (@net2london) February 15, 2015
Meanwhile Jonny A’s theme building workshop continued. Judging by the slides, it seems like a comprehensive and useful look at the process of creating a WP theme: [slideshare id=44635729&doc=wordcampbhamthemeworkshop-150213045119-conversion-gate01]
The afternoon got off to a cracking start with Nivi Morales on WordPress in Local Government.
This was one talk I was keen to catch as I built and administer a site in this very sector, for a Barnt Green Parish Council.
Nivi works for Warwickshire Council who have used WordPress for some time but recently have been migrating more of their web presence, including microsites, to the platform. I particularly liked the emphasis Nivi placed on analytics and user testing informing a design review, which seems to me the obvious way to achieve user-focused improvements. Most sites can easily afford analytics of some kind, even if they don’t budget for user testing, so data’s always available for analysis, but of course data alone is useless wthout a sensitive and imaginative reading of it. I also liked Nivi’s story about using the talents available internally on their team, gaining bespoke icons to use across the sites.
I first saw the expression Content is King back in the 90s, and it’s a curious phrase, which could also be expressed as ‘stuff matters’. In the second afternoon session Rachel McCollin was back with a presentation on this subject, which from the slides took an interestingly practical approach.
Crowdfunding WordPress plugins – The case of QPress was the subject of Jonathan Bishop‘s talk:
Finally in the Explore room, Jessica Rose talked about Easy, Lazy SEO. This was a useful introduction to the subject, and the 2014 Manchester version of this presentation is available on wordpress.tv and embedded below:
Meanwhile we had two afternoon workshops on offer.
Karl Craig West on How to market and sell more WordPress websites
and WP Brum meet-up stalwarts Nathan Roberts and Kirsty Burgoine on Custom fields.
And barring the wrap-up and Sunday night’s social, that was WordCamp Brum 2015.