Hi there! Merry Christmas, happy Hanukkah, seasons greetings, and a happy New Year. 2016 sure was a whirlwind. I can't believe how fast it's come to an end. I thought it might be a light month for news, but we ended up having a lot!
To close out the year, we discuss some future plans for Beaver Builder like our hunt to hire a developer and a new forum. There's an announcement about some new Beaver Builder courses. Also, we have a bunch of interviews and fun tidbits to share in the footnotes. Onwards….
Calling all Developers and Content Creators
We're Hiring a WordPress Developer
With the new year upon us, we've been strategizing and working out plans for the future. We're hoping to bring another WordPress developer on the team to work with us on Beaver Builder and some new projects. We're a small team, we're fun to work with, and this is an opportunity to have a meaningful influence on a pretty major piece of software.
If you, or anyone you know, might be interested, please have a look at our developer job posting.
Do you create Beaver Builder Content?
Being a member of our Facebook Group (you are, right?), you've surely noticed the proliferation of Beaver Builder content being created. From products, tutorial videos, articles, to full-fledged courses, it's amazing to see all of this fantastic content and the growth of our ecosystem.
I wanted to extend an offer for anyone to come on our blog as a guest poster. If you'd like an opportunity to share your knowledge with our readers, while also giving a plug to your website, blog, or course, please send us a message.
Shasta (v1.9) and the Future of Beaver Builder
As soon as we returned from WordCamp US we launched Shasta into the wild! You can read about all the new features on our Shasta blog post. For all the little changes and bug fixes, see our change logs page.
We're hard at work on Beaver Builder 2.0 and making some great progress. The highlight of 2.0 will be a major user interface update. We're all really excited to share what we have cooking. It's more than just a new coat of paint. We're rethinking and reengineering the experience to streamline your workflow and to better accommodate 3rd party tools and extensions.
Along with 2.0, we're hoping to release an extension of our own in 2017. We haven't ironed out the name yet, but as our new job listing implies, it's going to be a “theme builder.” Imagine being able to build a blog post template in Beaver Builder, then apply it to all of your posts. Or, being able to create headers and footers, i.e., entire websites with Beaver Builder. It's going to be BIG!
We're Starting a New Forum
Looking back on 2016, one of the more difficult decisions we had to make was the decision to close our support forum. It wasn't the most popular choice, but it has allowed us to completely overhaul and improve our support system. I am glad we closed out the forums, but there is still a lingering void.
To fill this void, we're hoping to start up a Beaver Builder Stack Exchange. If you're familiar with Stack Overflow, Stack Exchange follows the same question and answer format. It's great for technical questions and it will be indexed by Google.
We're hoping it will be a great complement to Facebook and we're planning to launch it as soon as everyone is back from their holiday breaks. Stack Exchange requires all new topics go through a beta period, so we'll need all of your help to ensure it has enough activity to become permanent.
Beaver Builder Online Courses
There are some new courses available on Beaver Builder. I took some time to dig into two of them recently. Both have great content, great instructors, and they're both tuned for slightly different audiences.
Up and Running with Beaver Builder
Joe Casabona, from WP in one Month, created a course called Up and Running with Beaver Builder. This course has a $27 price tag. The videos are short and concise but packed with solid information and guidance. Joe is a front end developer with Crowd Favorite and he's a natural teacher. I think this course would be great for anyone who is getting started with Beaver Builder and web design.
Getting Started with Beaver Builder
Next up, Grant Ambrose is working on a course called Getting Started with Beaver Builder. While both courses sound beginner-oriented, Grant's videos are longer and delve deeper into the subject matter. At $189, the price tag is a tad more expensive, but there is more content and a deeper dive in each video. Also, it appears that Grant has plans to continue adding more advanced topics to the course.
A Free Course from Chris Lema
Also, a pleasant surprise for us, Chris Lema announced that he is releasing a course about using Beaver Builder along with MemberPress to create membership websites! Woo-hoo. The best part about this course is that it's going to be free! You can join me and many others by signing up today on Chris' website.
We Lost a Family Member
This is going to be a bit sad. I debated whether or not to talk about it, but it's been on my mind the last few days and I wouldn't feel right not mentioning it.
Less than a month after we released our page builder plugin into the wild, we met Jason Pelker. He was a “marketing guy.” In his own words, he “found FastLine Page Builder nestled in comment #34 of a blog post on drag & drop plugins. Since that day, he's been obsessed with this tool becoming a household name in the WordPress community.”
Jason not-so-subtly told us our name sucked. And our marketing sucked. And our pricing structure was unsustainable. And that we had much to learn and fix if we wanted to make a dent in the saturated plugin market. He was one of our earliest coaches and mentors. He was the reason we changed our name to Beaver Builder.
Eventually, we had to split ways with Jason, but he was part of the family and sadly he's passed on. Jason was a digital nomad and avid traveler. Very recently, he suffered an accident while snowboarding in Switzerland. Jason wrote the article announcing our name change. It's a unique glimpse into the early days of our company and the vision that Jason had for where we were going. We're going to miss him.
Beaver Builder is Officially Trademarked
The heading says it all. We filed and successfully trademarked the term “Beaver Builder” and our logo.
Beware of Email Spam
We heard a report of someone sending spam emails from a domain similar to ours. Beware, it's not us! We don't send spam emails! 🙂
Sponsoring OfficeHours.FM Podcast
Edit: I'm doing my proofreading run and I realized I mentioned this last month. Don't care! Carrie gets another plug:
FE CSS Builder from Cobalt Apps
Our friends at Cobalt Apps have been working on a really slick new tool for making CSS changes on popular themes like the Genesis, Beaver Builder, GeneratePress, and Twenty Seventeen. If you're not big on writing code, check out the FE CSS page or some of the screencasts Eric has been creating.
WP Tonic Podcast
We did quite a few interviews and podcasts this month. First up, Justin and I joined John and Jonathan on the WP Tonic podcast. It was a really fun discussion. We love telling the story of how the three of us got together and how Beaver Builder was started. We dug into that topic and also talked some about the future of Beaver Builder and our experience at CaboPress.
WP Builds Podcast
Our friends, and prolific community members, David Waumsley and Nathan Wrigley, hosted us for a Holiday-themed podcast. We all wore our ugly Christmas sweaters and enjoyed some holiday libations. You can see how bad I am at on-the-spot trivia (Justin did pretty well), and we got to share some stories about the rest of the Beaver Builder team.
Web Designers Academy Interview
I had a really nice chat with Ian who, along with his wife, run the Web Designers Academy. They are somewhat recent Beaver Builder converts and he explained how it's changed their workflow and business for the better. Before we started recording, Ian asked if there were any off-limits questions. I said no, but then he dropped a major bomb at the end and asked for my opinion on the recent election here in the states. Uh-oh, lol 😮
Elegant Marketplace Interview
For folks familiar with Elegant Themes, the name Eileen Lonergan might sound familiar. Eileen runs a site called Elegant Marketplace and she's also an admin of the Divi Theme Users Facebook Group. She invited me to do an interview and demo of Beaver Builder. It was timely because I had just met Nick Roach from Elegant Themes and got to tell the story.
Well, I think that about does it. Thanks again to all of you for the awesome 2016. We wouldn't be here with you.
Do you have any work-related New Year's Resolutions? Let us know in the comments.