Meet the Business – Art Place by Gisele Grenier

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Welcome back to this new section of interviews to businesses using WordPress. This month’s guest is Gisele Grenier. Gisele is an artist with more than 14 years of experience creating art featuring all types of animals and wildlife. Despite having a Bill Alexander’s course certificate and a diploma in Fine Arts in Montreal, she says most of her skills have been acquired through hands-on learning with brilliant artists such as John Howard Sanden or Gary and Kathwren Jenkings. Let’s welcome Gisele Grenier from Art Place!

Thanks for joining us to share your experience, Gisele. It’s a pleasure to have you here! For those who might not know you, tell us a little bit about yourself.

I’m a Canadian artist living in Hamilton, Ontario with my partner Joe and rescued pets, Mia and Chaos. My specialty is painting wildlife, landscapes and portraits of people and pets. For fun stuff, I like to do mixed media art experiments.

I find that I’m more fulfilled when I help a creative who’s struggling with something, whether it’s learning a technique or finding a few minutes of time to be creative.

Gisele, regarding Art Place, what are the biggest challenges that you face with your customers?

The biggest challenge is having my customers, who are my students, to stay focused, start with the basics and grow their art skills. They want to try everything.

As you know, at Nelio we specialize in WordPress and we often write about it on our blog. Your business uses WordPress on your site. Could you tell us why you chose WordPress among the different CMSs available in the market?

I used Joomla when it was a couple of years out and found it so boxy and bloated. I found that WordPress is scalable and really there are very few things that I want that can’t be done in WordPress.

Many of our readers are plugin developers like us. One of the problems we all have is reaching our target audience, as the plugin marketplace is huge. What process do you follow to find the plugins you’re looking for? Any recommendations on how to help developers reach potential customers?

I’ll look in the repository and search for what I’m looking for. I’ll check ratings, number of installs and reviews… reviews for me are huge. Then I’ll do a Google search for other reviews and when a plugin has at least 80% positives over negatives, I’ll try that plugin. I give preference if the plugin has a fully functional trial for a minimum of 30 days, to give me a real chance to use it. I’ll test support at the same time to see how fast and courteous they are. Basically, the company has to work to earn my trust, because in the end, it’s my reputation on the line if things fail, because my customers won’t have access to features of my website.

Speaking of how to reach your target audience… You’d probably agree with us that, first and foremost, you must offer a product or service that deals with a pain your customers have. So, let’s help our readers here: what problem(s) do you have right now with WordPress? Is there anything you’d like someone to improve (or even create from scratch)?

Oh boy yes. I would love a way to better organize pages. Possibly a feature to collapse them by category. The media library could use some serious organizing in the back end too… that’s probably the biggest one. My husband is a designer and when I asked him this question, it was a big “media manager” answer.

Thanks Gisele, I’m sure our readers will appreciate that! In Nelio we aim to help our customers succeed with their marketing goals. To do so, we offer two services: Nelio A/B Testing and Nelio Content. You’re currently using Nelio A/B Testing and Nelio Content on your own website, but that’s only one part of the equation. How do our plugins help you? What other marketing actions do you take to increase the effectiveness of your campaigns?

I’m an artist looking after my blog site and a membership site for students, plus teach privately, so marketing is something I try to automate as much as possible and Nelio Content helps me schedule my content with a visual calendar, plus I can have a running idea bank so my blog is always putting out content on a regular basis. Also being able to schedule the social media posts is a huge time saver as well.

I use an email service provider to send out weekly updates and to run automated funnels, deliver lead magnets and to deliver email based courses as intro programs.

Finally, did we miss something you’d like to point out? Any final words of advice?

I’d like to give you a huge thank you for the unscheduled draft feature that was just setup. I had asked for that a while ago and it’s so nice that it’s in place. As for missing something… nothing comes to mind.

Thanks, Gisele, for answering our questions and your great contribution. And thank you all for following us and reading these interviews. Now, you know where to go to improve your creative skills. Stay tuned for the next interview!

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Ruth obtained her PhD in Software Engineering at UPC and did a Master of Information Systems at DePaul University (Chicago). She has professional experience in the business world and at the University. Ruth has been University Lecturer at UPC, Vice-Dean for Corporate Relations of the Barcelona School of Informatics, and Associate Lecturer at ESADE. She specializes in software engineering and information systems management. She is also certified in Inboud Marketing.

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