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Derek Jones Keynote - ExpressionEngine Conference

The ExpressionEngine Conference in Portland kicked off this morning with Derek Jones of EllisLab giving the keynote.

Derek opened by talking about who EllisLab is, including some interesting statistics (like one member of the team can eat 2 .5 lbs of pancakes), the makeup of the company, and how appreciative they are that they can do what they love every day.

Using quotes from Mark Cuban and Scott Adams, Derek jumped into talking about passion and how EllisLab does what is important to them. ExpressionEngine is important to them and over the last year they’ve refocused exclusively on ExpressionEngine and put all of their efforts behind it.

Derek touched on competition, noting that early on in their existence, EllisLab brushed off the idea that other tools–like Drupal or WordPress–are their competitors. “Of course they are competition” he said, describing how clients are asking companies to use tools like Drupal and WordPress instead of EE. So many people are now running up against competitive bids for projects that use other tools. There is no doubt there is competition there.

Derek highlighted private support including stats on the success of support. 26% of customers retain support subscription after free trial (you get a free, 90 day support trial with each license purchaseeach new customer of EE gets a free 90-day trial), and EllisLab has a 96% annual retention rate for people who sign up for support (of course they only have one year or so of data, but it’s a good sign).

Charging for support was important because growing the company without bringing support under control (in terms of cost), meant that the financial burden of unlimited, free support would crush their ability to improve the software.

Speaking of improving the software: everyone in the compay is focused on building and improving ghe product . He says it shows in the results with 260+ bug fixes and numerous other improvements. EllisLab also claimed 14,000+ ExpressionEngine core downloads since they made Core available again (great news for growing the community!)

Going into the future, EllisLab will continue to hone the ExpressionEngine product, simplify and improve what they’re building.

Were you also at Derek’s talk? Add your thoughts and reactions in the comments.

Posted on Oct 14, 2013 by Ryan Irelan

Filed Under: Conferences