My parents were divorced when I was 13 and my Mom worked her butt off for my sister and me to provide the best life for us that she could. Having us go to and graduate college was very important to her.
I vividly remember the time back in 2014, when I was at my job, sitting on the floor pulling various colored zippers out of a locked drawer under the display case to restock the hooks. It was then when I vowed to myself that I wouldn’t wake up every day feeling miserable because I have to go to work.
I started working when I was 14 as a stock boy in a fabric store (not the coolest job for a teenage boy). I dreaded getting up any morning where I knew I had to work. I heard my Mom always complaining about her job too.
The Journey Began
After college in 1999, I landed my first development job at Cablevision (now Optimum/Altice). It was the easiest job interview because I had already been working there for about 35 hours per week so it was all but a formality to move into a full-time role.
I was developing and working on sites for Radio City, Madison Square Garden, and other brands that I had grown up knowing and thought that it was pretty cool that I got to do that.
Then as my career progressed and took me into positions with consulting agencies and small boutique design firms, I saw what I loved and didn’t love about the industry. The 14-year-old Jason was always nagging me about what I vowed to myself so many years ago and I was absorbing all that I could learn about being a web developer.
Then in 2002-3, as the .com bubble burst, I found myself without a job and thought that this was my time to give running my own business a chance. I had been freelancing on the side already and so I thought that it made perfect sense to grab this opportunity.
18 months later I was sitting back at a desk that wasn’t owned by me. Not because I didn’t have the development chops, but because I had no business skills. I never had to “close a deal” or “sell” or “market the business” or write up a contract or any of those things while I was working for someone else.
So 18 months after all the existing word of mouth and clients dried up, I had no choice but to go back. Only this time I was going back with the intention of learning all the things that I didn’t know, so that when I go out on my own again I’m better equipped.
August 10, 2010, was the last day I sat at a desk that was owned by someone else.
It was in 2012 when I decided to go all-in on WordPress, after having been developing sites and applications for clients using Ruby on Rails, custom PHP, Java, WordPress, Magento, and the list goes on. The simple reason for choosing WordPress was because that was what the clients needed.
After listening to their wants and struggles, the type of eCommerce clients that I served needed a solution that was simple, easy to use themselves from a content perspective, and most importantly, they weren’t techies that were going to be spending all day, every day in the backend.
My stack became WooCommerce on WordPress as well as Subscriptions (a plugin that was founded by Prospress but now owned by WooCommerce).
It wasn’t too long after that I would get leads coming to me saying things like “I hear you’re the guy I need to talk with about WooCommerce” or “You’re the WooCommerce guy, right?”
The Need for NurtureKit
I always ran towards eCommerce even when I was just starting out (pre-Amazon days). I found it challenging and satisfying. Being able to solve the human behavior challenges has always been the draw from me.
From the times when getting someone to put their credit card into a form field on the web to creating individual, custom experiences through subscriber data and making sure the right product/service/program is shown at the “right” time.
Since 2015-ish I’ve been working with data not just from the user and the website, but also subscriber data from email providers. Email is such a vital part of any online business and houses may be the most powerful indications of human behavior available to you (if you dig into it).
NurtureKit was born out of the services that I’ve been providing to clients since then that create customers from visitors, create repeat customers and then rave fans through experiences that nurture someone from the moment that they visit a website.
There are plenty of businesses that are successful simply by broadcasting emails to everyone on the list. But these are HUGE brands that have HUGE lists and the numbers simply play out. If they piss a few people off by sending a customer an email that has what they bought a week ago on sale, sobeit.
If you are a small business, whether it’s selling a digital product, course, service, program, or physical goods, you have to stand out. You have to create an experience for a customer that mimics the “Mom and Pop Shop” feel.
The best experiences these days come from brands that aren’t very seasoned but know how important it is to understand who their customer is so they can attract them and immediately tie in what the person sees on their website, to email, and add a bit of personality in.
That’s what I do for my clients. NurtureKit is built and designed to work with small and medium-sized online businesses who want to create a better experience for their customers.
Amazing examples of this that NurtureKit has done:
- Onboarding campaigns in the “Choose Your Own Adventure” style for memberships and podcasts.
- Evergreen launch campaigns that trigger for highly engaged subscribers who then pitch a specific product because the customer is ready to be pitched.
- Campaigns that start from quizzes where the quiz takers responses create a seamless, individualized, and customer experience with content that only they would see.
I do this mostly built with custom plugins I’ve written to tie together WordPress sites with WooCommerce/Subscriptions with ConvertKit or Drip.
While 80% of the code I use has been written already, it’s the final 20% that is unique to the client that’s the fun part.
Myself with my Brilliant Team
NurtureKit is a company of one (to coin a term by Paul Jarvis). My desk is a sit-stand desk so that my back and energy levels throughout the day still like me 🙂
Jason Resnick Workplace
And yes, that’s my IG profile if anyone is interested in following me there. I shared this photo over there when someone asked me to take a photo of my workspace.
Advice for Business Owners
When I’m asked if I have any advice for people who are starting their own business it’s always the same thing.
Keep your “why” front and center, because when times get tough and you feel like to quit, it’s “why” that energizes you to push forward. For some like myself it’s family, others it’s traveling and being a nomad, and some others it’s growing a big business.
Whatever that is for you, keep inspiration in plain sight that reminds you of that.
WordPress & Beyond
As a result of the current economic climate and that everyone was forced to stay home, I’ve built a service that serves a market need that allows businesses to get unstuck from the tech.
These are one-day intensives where you could hire me for the day to work on your ConvertKit account and your website to get tasks done that you either don’t want to do or have been struggling with so that you can stay in your zone and do what you do best.
While it’s hard to see where the web will be in 5 years, I believe that as long as WordPress (or any company for that matter) serves its customers in a way that fits their needs, all will end right with the world.
My Love for the WordPress Community
I’ve spoken at WordCamp NYC and attended countless meetups over the years and building the relationships from those have been invaluable to my personal and business life.
Myself, as a veteran of the WordPress community space these days, I have to say that some of the young stars I see popping up are inspirational. I had Vito Peleg on my podcast who has an amazing story and I really appreciate him and how he runs a great business to serve the community.
Matt Mederios and Tom McFarlin are always great to mix it up with a few trolling tweets for some laughs. On a serious note though, they both have been virtual mentors of mine in business and friends at a personal level.
Tom Harrigan and I have shared a few drinks here on Long Island as we both are in a very similar situation in our lives with our new houses and young kids.
I met Curtis McHale through a blog post many years ago where he wrote on the topic of “Saying No” and since then we’ve been friends and he’s helped me be able to structure and prioritize my days so that I have what’s most important to me front and center.
Over the past 10 years, there have been so many amazing people who have touched my life both personally and professionally. Folks like Drew Poland, Lee Jackson, Kim Doyal, Paul Jarvis, Brian Casel, Brent Shepard, Bronson Quick, and so many others in and around the WordPress community that I’m eternally grateful to have met.
How I Keep Myself Updated
My news and how I keep up is always on Twitter. Then from there I’ll go listen to a few podcasts.
I Have a Life Other Than the Work
My life is chaotic, fun, kid-friendly, and when I’m allowed to leave the house, adventurous. When I’m not on the screen, I’m usually on the floor mixing it up with my sons TJ (3) and Lucas (1). When the quiet time hits, then it’s time for my wife and me to enjoy our time together.
We either solve crimes with our Hunt-A-Killer subscription, watch a movie, get to a baseball game, or have a date night.
Our holidays are filled with family and friends. Even when we had a small 2 bedroom apt in Queens, we’d squeeze 20 people into the small kitchen and living room (sorry everyone). We wouldn’t have it any other way though.
The best adventures though come from traveling. My wife and I have gone on some awesome trips to the Caribbean, Mexico, Belize, California, Honduras, and other places. Since TJ was born, we’ve not traveled far from home just yet, and especially with Lucas being born this past year we haven’t gone anywhere, so I’m excited now that they are getting older, we can pick that up again.
I Reward Myself by
I do have a tough time taking time for myself, but when I do, I suppose it’s just getting to spend some quiet time on the deck in the backyard, drinking a nice beer, and enjoying the sun. (I’ll have to schedule that in again because I think I did it once in 3 years)
Connect With Me
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