Expert Speaks: In Conversation with Saud Razzak, WordPress Community Manager at Cloudways

Last updated - February 18, 2020

Today, on ‘Expert Speaks‘, we have Saud Razzak, WordPress Community Manager at Cloudways. Saud has been an active presence in the WordPress community for over five years now.

Let’s hear from Saud more about his work and life…

Can you tell us something about your background and how exactly did you get involved with WordPress?

Hi and thanks for having me. I started out with creating HTML based websites. It was 2011 and at that time, I didn’t know about WordPress. In 2013, I heard about WordPress from my friend and then I started exploring it.

Once I had sufficient experience with popular plugins such as Contact Form 7, Jetpack, Social plugins, etc, I discovered WooCommerce and found it to be the best plugin for creating online stores.

Working with WordPress all these years has convinced me that its future is bright. I have been part of the wonderful WordPress community for about three years and I believe we all need to find new ways of contributing to the community.

What do you exactly do as a WordPress Community Manager for Cloudways?

As a WordPress Community Manager at Cloudways, my goal is to educate my audience about WordPress and WooCommerce and build a community around the Cloudways Platform.

I think the community has a huge role in making WordPress a success. Whenever I run into a problem, the community is there with a solution. I have attended WordPress meetups in which I educated individuals by sharing our experience and expertise of deploying and using WordPress in a distributed cloud based environment.

I also create WordPress and WooCommerce tutorials for the community and interview community icons and influencers such as:

  • John Eckman
  • Zac Gordon
  • Petya Raykovska
  • Adam Silver
  • Ben Gillbanks
  • Ilona Filipi
  • Ivana Cirkovic
  • Tom Willmot
  • Emanuel Blagonic
  • Brad Touesnard
  • Pascal Birchler
  • Joe Casabona
  • Bridget Willard
  • John Turner
  • Josh Pollock

As a WordPress Community Manager, you must have a number of responsibilities. Which aspect of your job do you enjoy the most?

A typical day involves educating my readers by sharing my expertise through articles on WordPress and WooCommerce, helping WordPress beginners get their bearings and in general set up connections with the influencers.

I really enjoy interviewing WordPress influencers. It is all about asking the right questions and then presenting the information in an easy-to-understand manner that appeals to all types of WordPress users.

Apart from work what are your other interests?

Whenever I get time, I prefer playing cricket, football or indoor games. I have a simple taste in music and movies 😀

What keeps you motivated? Do you follow anyone in particular in the WordPress Community?

Part of my job is to follow WordPress industry. In particular, I am a great fan of Chris Lema, Matt Mullenweg, Syed Balkhi, Tom McFarlin, Bill Erickson, and Mike Little. I think these and others like them have delivered a lot of value to the community. Whenever I start creating a blog or tutorial, I always go through popular blogs to see how they have treated the topic.

In your years of involvement with WordPress, what according to you is the best thing to happen to WordPress?

In my opinion, the best thing about WordPress is the idea of WordCamps. This initiative means that the community is always active and growing. They are also a great way for experts to deliver their knowledge directly to the community through their talks and presentations.

In Cloudways’ current stage of development, what are the top challenges to deal with?

For Cloudways, the greatest challenge these days is to cater to the wide and often conflicting user requirements. Since our hosting stack is optimized for all PHP applications, we often receive user queries that are either part of our feature rollout pipeline or planned for near future. Convincing such customers that Cloudways is the best fit for their project, despite the missing feature is a daily challenge for the team.

Would you suggest any resources to learn WordPress?

Cloudways blog is a very good resource for learning WordPress. We have written a lot of quality WordPress articles aimed at people of all skill sets. I also recommend following:

What according to you are the must-have tools for a blogger, especially in the WordPress domain?

A good WordPress toolkit should include Google Analytics, Pingdom Tools, Chartbeat, Google Ad Manager, ahrefs, Google Webmaster Tools, and SEO Tools like Yoast, All In One SEO, etc.

Any word of advice to the aspiring bloggers?

“Be Patient” and “Never Give Up”.

When you set up a blog, you have all the time to learn all the amazing tools that will rocket your blog to success. When you start blogging you must set your goal and follow the example of successful bloggers.


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