A Little (Okay, Maybe a Lot) About Me
In which I get to brag about myself and you, if you want, can read all about me
That's me. Joel. And yes, I'm a Baby Boomer. In fact, I was born in the earlier days of the Baby Boom. I could have retired a couple of years ago, taken my Social Security and called it a life. But, that isn't me. I need and want to work.
But being a Baby Boomer does have its advantages. For instance, I bought my first desktop computer before Mark Zuckerberg was even born. I had a Franklin Ace 1200, an Apple II workalike, but better. It had 128K of RAM and two 64K floppy disc drives, color and amber screen monitors and a 7x9 dot matrix printer. I upgraded the RAM to 256K. Quite the setup, huh?
I built my first website in 1996. It was just for fun and to prove to myself that I could do it. It was really kind of silly. I grabbed pictures of various Wonders of the World and imagined them being in my town. You know, the Great Pyramids and the White Cliffs. Like I said silly.
At the time, I was running a one-man communications consulting firm. I did political communications for the most part and a bit of corporate communications on the side. I wrote a lot of speeches, TV and radio commercial scripts, brochures, press releases. You name it, I did it.
It was during this time that I got more and more involved with the Intenet. Clients, understandably, wanted more online content. And I was in the business of providing that content.
So, why should you pay any attention to me? The easy answer is that you shouldn't...at least blindly. But, I'll try to give you a reason or two that you should.
As I noted before, I've been building websites for a long time, since 1996, back when a web host cost a lot more than $2.64 a month and you had to build your websites by hand. There was no WordPress or any other page building software.
Then my communications consulting business became more web intensive. I was creating e-newsletters and building online advocacy and fundraising campaigns. I was helping to put together websites.
All in all, it was lots of fun, but there was one nagging problem. I was making a six-figure income, but it was only for eight months out of 24. For the other 16 months, the income wasn't so good.
So, in 2009, deciding I'd learned enough about the Internet, I set myself up as a freelance web developer. My idea was to help small companies, companies that were too small to afford a traditional advertising agency to have a presence on the web.
And that's what I've been doing. But as I reached the magical, mystical "retirement age" I really wondered what it was all about. I wasn't ready to go sit on the beach or the front porch. I enjoyed keeping busy. And what I discovered was that a lot of other Baby Boomers felt the same way.
So, as it turns out, I've been writing and creating for all of my adult working life. For 22 years, I was a broadcaster. I wrote a lot of advertising copy and consulted on numerous advertising campaigns. I also worked several years as a broadcast journalist.
But, when I turned 40, having no desire to spend the rest of my life in front of a microphone, I decided it was time to do something different. My lifelong interest in politics seemed like a good option and, combining it with my broadcast background, I took a job doing communications with a gubernatorial campaign.
That was the start of my second career and I did communications consulting for the next 20 years. And that brought me to career number three as an Internet/online consultant, a Web Strategist. Since 2009 I've been helping small businesses claim their spot on the Web.
There you have it. That's how I got to the place of helping people decide if a career on the web will work for them, especially Baby Boomers, like me.