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BuddyPress Presentation at WordCamp Utah (and Las Vegas)

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  • @mercime


    @crashutah It would all depend on the audience – total WP/BP newbies or site owners no BP yet or BP site admins who need a little more help before launching. If I were to give a BuddyPress presentation on why BP rocks in an hour, i would make it interactive – with audience participation

    – Knowing audience level in WP/BP experience would help you give a better presentation – possibly getting list of attendees off the database from registration to your specific module is powerful information to have, if registration for Utah and/or Vegas were set up to allow that

    – Spend a few minutes with the overview of BP – – native components included – then include minimum server requirements like mod_rewrite, pref LAMP server, GD library, PHP5.2+, etc.

    ** include a live presentation of WP and BP installation in 6 minutes or less – get them involved and let them time you, and since you are an experienced developer, you could do it in less than 4 minutes

    – Note that even if installation can be easy and fast, it’s the customizations in terms of theming and added functions via plugins that make the site unique and stand out. The special customizations are what makes a difference between a “free” site with a $20,000++ WP/BP site.

    – Compare BP showcase sites with default WP/BP install and explain how some customizations can be done either via custom functions, free/paid plugins or by hiring coders/programmers.

    ** A live 5-minute lesson on how to create a bp-default child theme, upload to server and activate it
    ** If you prefer, create a custom function live, upload to live site that you created earlier, so audience can see the changes brought on by function or plugin
    ** If you’re strong in theming, you can also show live how to add some styling in style.css to effect minor/major changes to theme

    – Q and A session – 10 minutes or less :-)

    – Your contact information – some attendees might prefer to hire you rather than create the site themselves.

    Good luck and have a great time!

    I’d stay clear of any live demos, but that’s just my experience ;)

    Roger Coathup



    As @djpaul says live demos are the modern day equivalent of “don’t work with animals and children”. Great if you can make it work, but so many opportunities to go wrong.

    You are talking about why it rocks, not an installation tutorial, so I’d also steer clear of any talk about platforms and servers. As @mercime points out, showcasing is where it’s at if you want to talk rocking.

    I’d go with the following structure:

    1. Whet their appetite with a quick showcase of a few real world sites

    Use different types of sites – I see 3 main types in practice:- just niche social networks, pretty much the default BuddyPress with a little bespoke styling; complimentary ones where the niche social network is still obvious but there’s some additionality like a magazine (hmag, tasty kitchen, or our own Hello Eco Living or Fisherbook); and the ones where the social network is in the background supporting the main function (Travel Oregon, Volkswagen, GigaOM).

    You could also show by vertical – in education (CUNY), big companies (Daily Telegraph Blogs)

    Keep this short and sweet – leave them wanting more!

    2. Tell them what they get out of the box

    Do it with visuals of a group, activity stream, etc.

    3. Tell them what they can add to the box (plugins)

    Just a few strong examples – easy to appreciate ones: – e.g. EventPress (running your own event registration) and Media+ (photos, videos, who doesn’t want that!)

    4. Finally walk them through one of the most exciting sites in more detail

    Use screen dumps / graphics throughout (it doesn’t need a bullet anywhere – although a couple of big number slides is nice – a la Steve Jobs)

    Ask them questions throughout to engage attention – “Who’s ever built a site where it would be great if they could get visitors registering?” – then show them an example in BP. “Have you ever wanted a twitter like stream on your site?”. “Have you ever wanted a site where your visitors could post from the front end, and see responses in real time?”, etc., etc.

    This way, you’ve got them thinking already: oh yeah, I need that in my site, imagine what we could do if we added this, etc. You’ve painted the picture for them.

    And for a bit of humour – you could always risk a live activity stream playing in the background – where a buddy sends a few ‘helpful’ messages as you talk.

    Hope that helps!



    Well done @rogercoathup, that would be a cool presentation. I’m liking the buddy sending a few ‘helpful’ messages, lol.



    Thanks for all the great feedback. I think I will be avoiding a demo. This is in the developer track, so I’m going to have to try and balance features and functions with demoing cool sites. Should be fun!

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