Build-in-Public – Episode 1

John is diving into a new venture by building products and businesses in public. Inspired by the success stories of others on social media and YouTube, he aims to document his journey through brief daily videos. This approach not only brings transparency to his work but also helps him build connections with his audience.

Despite being an introvert with a customer-facing job, John is ready to challenge himself by being more open and accountable. Drawing from over two decades of experience in various business models and tech roles, he plans to share insights, successes, and failures to help others learn from his journey. His 30-day challenge will serve as an experiment to see what can be achieved with consistent effort and engagement.

Key Takeaways

  • John is starting a 30-day public building challenge.
  • He brings two decades of diverse business and tech experience.
  • His goal is to document, learn, and share the process openly.

Building in Public Overview

Building in public involves openly sharing the process of creating a product or business. This practice is not only a marketing tool but also a way to engage with an audience. It provides a transparent look into the daily activities, decisions, and challenges faced by the creator.

John, for instance, takes inspiration from successful practitioners like Jackie CHS. He aims to post daily updates over the next 30 days, detailing his progress on various projects. This routine helps him stay accountable and encourages social interaction, despite his introverted nature.

Key Aspects

  • Daily Updates: John commits to brief videos each morning, sharing his accomplishments from the prior day and plans for the current day.
  • Personal Development: This experiment is also a method for John to push his social boundaries and step out of his comfort zone.
  • Audience Engagement: By sharing his journey, John hopes to build relationships and offer insights from his extensive experience.


  1. Accountability: Regular updates ensure John remains focused and motivated.
  2. Transparency: Followers gain genuine insight into John’s process, including successes and failures.
  3. Learning Opportunity: Viewers can learn from both John’s achievements and his mistakes.


  • Exposure to Critics: Publicly sharing his projects can attract negative attention, such as SEO tattletales reporting his methods to search engines.
  • Copycats: There is a risk of others imitating his ideas and strategies, potentially diminishing his unique value.

Despite these challenges, John remains committed to sharing valuable experiences and building a community around his work.

30-Day Challenge Announcement

John is embarking on a new venture of building in public, inspired by the successful experiences shared by others on platforms like Twitter and YouTube. He plans to create five-minute videos every day for the next 30 days, sharing his progress and plans, as he prepares to leave for Turks and Caicos.

His goal is to document his journey in creating a product or business from scratch and to build connections with his audience.

  • Daily Updates: Short videos summarizing the previous day’s achievements and plans for the current day.
  • Schedule: Videos will be posted early in the morning, due to his day job commitments.
  • Personal Growth: Pushing past his introverted nature, he’s using this challenge to become more socially engaged and accountable.

Topics Covered:

  1. Past experiences in business, including successes and failures.
  2. Methods and business models he’s tried, from SEO and affiliate marketing to AI content sites.
  3. Tools and strategies for building websites and online businesses.
  4. Possible sharing of some of his current website URLs, with an awareness of potential risks involved.

John’s intention is to offer insights based on two decades of experience while remaining transparent about the ups and downs he has encountered. He invites viewers to ask questions and engage with his journey, hoping to foster learning and collaboration.

Personal Development Goals

John aims to expand his comfort zone through daily video posts, intending to boost his social ease and accountability. By documenting his progress publicly, he hopes to enhance his social interactions and manage social anxiety.

This 30-day challenge emphasizes consistent content creation, with a focus on sharing both successes and setbacks in his journey. John’s approach exemplifies dedication to personal growth, leveraging public engagement for motivation and self-improvement.

Improve Social SkillsDaily video updates to enhance social confidence.
Increase AccountabilityPublic documentation to maintain focus on his projects.
Share KnowledgeOffer insights from his experience in website and business building.

Besides, he intends to explore various business models, tools, and strategies for building a successful online presence, aiming to provide valuable insights to others.

Career Highlights

Web Development and Search Engine Optimization Expertise

He embarked on his web development journey around the year 2000 during his high school years. Over the decades, he has worked with various business models including search engine optimization (SEO), display ads, and lead generation. His portfolio includes numerous websites monetized through display ads and affiliate marketing commissions. He has experimented with programmatic SEO and mass-generated AI content sites, as well as niche sites and apps. His projects have ranged from organic SEO and social media traffic to paid advertising.

Marketing and Advertising Affiliations

He has extensive experience in affiliate marketing and advertising. Through his portfolio of websites, he earns commissions for products purchased via his links. Additionally, he is well-versed in different types of advertising: paid search traffic, organic social media, paid social media ads, email marketing, and various display ad models such as pay-per-view ads. This diverse experience has allowed him to explore and implement numerous advertising strategies effectively.

Artificial Intelligence and Cognitive Computing

His work in AI began early with IBM Watson, an advanced AI project before the term “AI” was commonly used; it was initially marketed as cognitive computing. He later worked with MoveWorks, an AI startup specializing in chatbots designed to help businesses solve IT and HR issues. These chatbots provided automated solutions for user queries, blending AI technology with practical applications for workplace efficiency.

Content Strategy

Daily Updates Format

The plan includes posting short videos each day, limited to about five minutes. These videos will focus on progress from the previous day and plans for the current day. The aim is to sustain this routine for 30 days, posting primarily in the mornings to align with a busy daytime schedule.

Accountability and Authenticity

By sharing daily updates, there’s an element of accountability which helps in maintaining focus on ongoing projects. The speaker emphasizes his genuine approach, highlighting his ordinary background and experiences, rather than posing as an expert or guru.

Background and Past Experiences

His journey began around 2000, building websites with numerous successes and setbacks. The speaker has experience in multiple business models, ranging from SEO to affiliate marketing, and even building apps. This breadth of experience is intended to offer valuable insights.

Transparency Challenges

One challenge mentioned is the potential risk of sharing website URLs. This can lead to unwanted attention, including copycat competitors and punitive actions from search engines. Despite these risks, some sites may still be disclosed, considering their impact on overall success is limited.

Upcoming Focus Areas

Approaches for Business Models

Various business models have been explored over the years, including search engine optimization (SEO), display ads, and affiliate marketing. The speaker has also delved into lead generation, programmatic SEO sites, mass-generated AI content sites, and niche websites. App development and creating a premium WordPress plugin are additional methods mentioned. Several types of traffic have been utilized, such as organic SEO, paid search traffic, organic social media, and paid social media ads.

Suggested Tools and Educational Materials

A range of tools are preferred for building websites and other projects. These tools include various software for SEO and marketing, as well as development tools for creating apps and plugins. Reading materials like books that provide insights into these strategies are also recommended.

  1. Software tools: Specifics of preferred software for SEO and traffic management.
  2. Books: Influential reads with important insights and practical advice.
  3. Website building: Preferred platforms and plugins.

These tools and resources play a crucial role in facilitating the development and management of online business ventures.

Concepts in SEO and Marketing Tactics

The discussion includes SEO optimization, which involves adherence to best practices for ranking content on search engines like Google. Other points of focus include the challenges posed by white-hat SEOs who strictly follow Google’s guidelines and the risks of publicizing one’s website details, like attracting copycats or incurring penalties. Marketing strategies also cover various techniques for driving traffic through paid and organic channels.

  • SEO Practices: Emphasizing the balance between ethical guidelines and practical tactics.
  • Traffic Generation: Differentiating between organic and paid methods.
  • Risks: Potential pitfalls and mitigation strategies when exposing website details to the public.

These insights aim to enhance online visibility and user engagement while cautiously managing risks.


Viewer Engagement

One of the core strategies emphasized is the importance of engaging viewers through regular updates and progress reports. By sharing daily five-minute videos, the creator aims to establish a consistent presence, fostering a sense of anticipation and routine among the audience. This approach not only keeps followers updated but also encourages repeated viewership.

  • Daily Updates: Posting short, daily updates helps maintain viewer interest and ensures the content remains fresh and relevant.
  • Routine Establishment: Regular content at a consistent time creates a habit for both the creator and the audience.
  • Accountability: Knowing that viewers are expecting updates can motivate the creator to stay on track with their projects.

Engagement also comes from the interaction between the creator and the audience. Viewers are invited to leave comments and ask questions, which the creator then addresses in subsequent videos. This two-way communication:

  • Builds a community feel,
  • Makes the content more interactive,
  • Helps tailor future content to audience interests and inquiries.

Overall, by actively involving the audience in the journey, the creator not only educates but also builds lasting relationships with the viewers, potentially transforming them into loyal supporters or customers.

Final Thoughts

John embarked on a journey to share his daily progress on building a product or business in a public forum, inspired by successful content creators on Twitter and YouTube. His aim was to create short five-minute videos each day for a 30-day challenge leading up to his trip to Turks and Caicos. By doing so, he hoped to stay accountable and force himself out of his comfort zone.

Despite being introverted and socially anxious, John interacted with people extensively through his job in tech, where he faced customers regularly. His diverse experience included building websites since high school, achieving notable successes and setbacks along the way. John has tried numerous business models such as display ads, affiliate marketing, SEO, and more.

He expressed a willingness to share his failures to help others avoid similar pitfalls. Over the upcoming weeks, John planned to discuss various topics including tools, strategies, and methods useful in building online businesses. Although concerned about potential drawbacks like copycats and SEO tattletales, John considered sharing some of his websites.

John’s primary goal was to provide value through his experiences, hoping that viewers would find his content educational. He invited any questions in the comments and intended to address them in future videos.

Published by

John Ward

With nearly two decades of experience in building, growing, and monetizing websites, I share insights from my journey—highlighting what works and what doesn’t. Whether you're new or experienced, there's something here for everyone.