Have you noticed a presence – an indescribable energy – when reading our Twitter feed lately? Maybe you’ve noticed a little more sass than usual. Perhaps you’ve thought, “Gee, I didn’t think Nexcess was this cool.”
That breath of fresh air (that may smell faintly like Whataburger) isn’t because someone stole the keys to the truck … well, not entirely. We’ve given our favorite (and only) Field Marketing Manager, Christine Clauder, access to the company Twitter.
Christine was actually a Nexcess customer first. Maybe you’ve seen our case study the experience that led her to us. TLDR, one of our highly intelligent and wonderful staff members (that absolutely isn’t writing this) caught wind of what was happening to her and suggested migrating over before her site went down again. It was a match made in hosting heaven.
A few months later, a position opened up that was a perfect fit for the hilarious, dynamic personality that Christine embodies.
We sat down with Stine (pronounced STEEN, tyvm) to ask her all about how she became the Face of Nexcess, what her plans are, and what her typical coffee order is.
Here’s everything you want to know about Christine Clauder.
Nexcess: You’re no stranger to social media. Where have we seen you before?
Christine: I’ve been a staple of the internet for almost as long as WordPress. I currently co-host a podcast for Fark.com, I’ve gone viral on TikTok for pranking a former boss. My Hank (the dog) experience got me on national television and a bunch of well known online media. I’m also a familiar face to people that participate in GISH. Most recently, if you’re in the WordPress community, you may have seen me at a few WordCamps in 2022.
Nexcess: All of this is breaking news to me. I’m very impressed.
Christine: As you should be.
Nexcess: Tell me about why we’re seeing changes here at Nexcess.
Christine: Well, we’ve rebranded. We’ve got a great new look. That has to continue throughout our content and our personality as a brand. We wanted a mix of the corporate face which Devin Frachalla – our Social Media Specialist – does exceedingly well, as well as the sassy, energetic, and ridiculous side, which is where I come in. We’re here for our customers, and you’ll know that if you’re already a customer. But we’re also people — fun people with big personalities. Our customers don’t get to see us on Slack, doing group activities over Zoom or Google. They only get to see the service side of the company. The WordPress community IS fun, and since we’re part of the influence going into that community, our brand is going to better reflect that now. We want to be the table you want to sit at, and you won’t need an invitation for it. We want to make sure people know we’re experts — but we’re also approachable.
Nexcess: I know you’ve run WordPress sites for some time, so you’ve been steeped in the industry – but what really prepared you for being the “Face of Nexcess?”
Christine: Oh, where do I start? My childhood with a brutally honest Japanese mother is a testament to my success and ability to withstand the often harsh nature of social media. If I survived her critiques, eggs on Twitter are literally nothing to be concerned about. Hmmm. Being married for 20 years? That could do it. I’ve developed a thick skin, which is important when you’re customer-facing. But the fun part? I mean, I have shown up to work in a dinosaur costume just for “Casual Friday.” I am currently wearing a different Halloween costume every day in October. I BRING THE FUN.
Nexcess: People that say they’re the fun one are usually not–
Christine: I AM VERY FUN.
Nexcess: Okay, okay. So, on a scale of 1-10, how narcissistic do you think you are?
Christine: TWENTY. Someone has to advocate for me. No one else is going to.
Nexcess: You know, that’s a good point. I feel the same way. It’s one of the many reasons I–
Christine: This is me time, Samantha. Try to focus.
Nexcess: Jeez, alright. Ok, so, I follow you on various social media. You have a real knack for posting spicy content. What are your favorite types of posts?
Christine: I think it’s really important to take advantage of what’s going on right now. Keeping on trend and making sure content is relevant is what makes a great post. I love memes, they’re a great way to both capture attention with visuals and messaging. It’s also important to be authentic. That’s why posts detailing some of the very bizarre things that happen to me get a lot of attention.
Nexcess: Agreed. I think you really nailed it, there.
Christine: I see what you did there, and I don’t like it.
Nexcess: Tell me more about content. What works, and what should get tossed in the dumpster and set ablaze?
Christine: Well, you have to be almost a social media anthropologist in a way. Researching what’s going on, what people respond to. I don’t like clickbait, I don’t think anyone really does, even if people respond to it. There’s a right way and a wrong way to go about it, but–
Nexcess: …it’s really about finding a balance.
[Editor’s note: I would like to add that Christine has rolled her eyes because she’s already seen that meme]
Christine: Anyway, buzzwords can be a bit much and overused. Like, I hate “circle back.” I think if you’re trying to work in a bunch of buzzwords just for clicks, ehhhhhhh.
Nexcess: Absolutely. Your audience can tell and it gets stale, and it can do more harm than good sometimes. Social media strategy has to be effective. How do you feel social media assists brands?
Christine: Brand awareness, for sure. It’s a great place to distribute news about companies – whether to existing or new customers, but it’s the chance to show the audiences your personality. Our websites are for selling products, providing educational material, and sure – sites reflect brand personality, but your landing page isn’t updated every day. Social media gives us, all brands – not just Nexcess – the opportunity to be in the moment, real, and interacting with our customers in a more personal way.
Nexcess: That’s beautiful. I love it. Let’s talk about you again. This blog is supposed to be introducing you.
Christine: Great, that’s my favorite subject.
Nexcess: What one thing on Earth do you love the most?
Nexcess: Christine, you have a CHILD.
Christine: My child is not a thing!
Nexcess: Ugh, you know what I meant. Fine, I’m really going to put “food” as your answer though.
Christine: Well, it’s accurate.
Nexcess: What’s the craziest thing that ever happened to you? Besides aspirating a nail.
Christine: Ooh, there’s so much to choose from. So, okay. I grew up in Japan in the 70s – maybe don’t put the date.
Christine: Okay, put the date, because if you don’t maybe people will think you meant the 1920s. So, there I am in Japan, just an adorable little tot. Japan didn’t have standard toilets like we do stateside. It’s a hole in the floor. Traditionally, you get a big bucket of water, and after you’re done you wash the area. So, my little cousin, who was only just a bit older than me, was trying to help and poured out the bucket of water. And– well, as you could imagine, I slipped. Right into the hole.
Nexcess: How big was that hole?!
Christine: Excuse you! Rude. I WAS A CHILD, remember? ANYWAY, I’ve been incredibly resourceful even as a child falling into a floor potty, and I caught myself. I was like Sylvester Stallone in Cliffhanger.
Nexcess: Again, wildly impressed. I hope you never have to do that again. So, what advice would you give––
Christine: Well, to my husband, shut up. To my daughter? Keep it up, you’re AMAZING. To friends? Don’t believe me, 90% of what I say is BS. But I guess you probably meant for people in social media and other community managers. To them I say, be yourself. Be real, be loud, and take chances. Do things now, ask for forgiveness after.
Nexcess: Wise words. Thanks for taking the time to chat with us today, Christine. One last question. How do you feel about your job?
Christine: I freaking love my job.