🥇 communication comes first

During the process of marketing the curly bois shirts, I released the following tweet which got a lot of engagement. Most feedback was positive, but a few creators and community members offered their feedback.

Folks like Wes Bos, Jason Lengstorf, Ahmad Awais, and Morgan Richardson all reached out with feedback, comments, and/or concerns. The messages covered a variety of topics.

  • Asking creator permission
  • Who should get free shirts
  • Color theme modifications
  • Royalty requests

After getting these messages, I took a step back and spoke with all of the creators individually about the use of their theme, royalty expectations, permissions, and communication in general. All of the conversations proved to be a great learning experience for me, no matter the outcome.

I mentioned in my previous post that this was my first time launching any kind of paid product marketed towards my Twitter audience. The main thing I learned was:

COMMUNICATE to your collaborators and customers early and often!

Instead of initially reaching out to the creators, I relied on the themes' MIT licenses to grant me permission. Now legally that would be fine, but interpersonally it wasn't the best way to go about it. Simply speaking with the creators first would have set better expectations for what I was trying to do, cleared up any permissions concerns, and allowed for design edits to be made earlier in the process.

At the end of the day, like Jason says, "the real 10x developers are the friends we make along the way". Networking and establishing professional relationships are ultimately what's most important. The web development community is generally a positive one, and although I saw some examples to the contrary, I am going to keep improving my communication and collaboration skills as I continue to work in public.