Strange Brand

What happens when you combine a passion for marketing, branding, advertising, public relations, small business and entrepreneurial spirit into one site? You get Strange Brand of course.

Strange Brand is the brainchild of James Archer, owner of Forty Media Corporation (the company that handled the Forever Geek redesign). The blog is a great mix of business philosphy offering insight into what makes a company successful.

I first met James at SXSW where we discussed the possibility of having his sites join the network and we have been talking ever since then. He is a smart individual and we expect to see big things from him and his company as time goes on and we plan to help him along every step of the way.

Some entries worth the read:

This is site #1 of the 9rules Network (not including the sites that were already in) and we are excited about the first launch. May great content follow.

Launch Week 1

This week we will begin to announce the new blogs that are joining the network. You will be seeing a number of quality design-related and personal sites that we are very proud and honored to have with us. So stay updated with the 9rules blog by subscribing to our feeds as two sites will be announced today.

Cutting the Fat

There is one thing that we are focused on with regards to the 9rules Network and that one thing is great content. The 9rules Network used to contain only sites that we maintained, but now that we are beginning to introduce sites that we don’t maintain it only makes sense to follow the same standards for our own sites that we set for everyone else.

So even though we maintain these sites for a living some of them obviously do not belong in the network in their current state. Why? Because either the content is lacking or the site isn’t a content-based site. We want to be proud of what sites are in the network and want the readers and members of the network to be proud of the sites within the network. Therefore some of the sites in the original network have been removed. So say goodbye to The Car Blog (it will make a return shortly), Chef Vault (also making a return), Better Landscaping, and the Powertools Vault (don’t ask).

We work on one principle: provide great content. Everything else will follow.

Contacting the 9rules team

As we go forward, we’re hoping that many of you will give us direct feedback to help make our Network better. The main reason for this blog, is to provide you with that ability.

Paul, Mike, Matthew and I are all open to your suggestions – and would like to provide you with a way to contact us directly. We’ve now setup author specific pages so that you can keep up-to-date with each of us, and our projects, during the development of the 9rules network.

The team

You can use these pages to view the posts that we’ve authored, but more specifically to get in contact with us – should you need any information regarding our specific areas of expertise.

Q&A

When is the next round of submissions?

The next round of submissions probably won’t be for some time. The reason for this is because we want to make sure we help the current members as much as possible before adding anymore sites to the network. Over the next couple of weeks we will be announcing the new sites as they get integrated into the network.

We could allow for a perpetual submission process so that you could submit your site to the network at any time, but that defeats the purpose of what the network is about. We are looking to find quality content blogs and help them reach a larger audience. Accepting anything and everything does not allow us to stick to the gameplan.

Is there a homepage planned?

Well of course there is. We are looking to do some innovative things with the homepage involving RSS and voodoo. The homepage will be along when it’s done. Man, now I sound like one of those videogame publishers.

Who is on the 9rules team?

I will let them introduce themselves in their own entries, but I guess I can let you know a little bit about myself.

My name is Paul Scrivens and I am a 24 year old geek living in Tampa. I started blogging 2 years ago with Whitespace and haven’t looked back. From there I created many more sites (check the homepage for links) and have ended up here.

I got lucky and found a Masters degree in Management Information Systems from the University of South Florida (one of the top 20 largest universities in the nation). In my other life I am a partner of Business Logs where I get to work on blogs along with some really cool clients.

My personal blog will be launching soon so you can get a better feel for me there, but here you will get the business side of Scrivs (if I can find it).

Are you guys hippies?

Well excluding the vegetarian on the team, we aren’t really hippies. The reason the logo and the colors are the way they are can be seen in this entry by Mike Rundle. We are just really, really happy people.

Why WordPress?

In the words of the developer guru:

WordPress’ powerful theme architecture and plugin API gives us the ability to not only build a powerful blog, but to empower an entire Network – as you’ll soon see. WordPress is not just for blogs anymore. We’re utilizing some of the very latest features available in WordPress Strayhorn (1.5) to build the 9rules network – a platform which will drive blogging and Weblog networks to the next level.

Single? What’s your sign? Do you like redheads?

I think that is enough questions for right now. Welcome to the blog.