How do you stand out from the crowd?

So many people talk about customer service or their passion - that’s like going to buy a car and the sales sleaze saying “this one comes with tyres!”

Years ago there was a guy who was a Ruby on Rails Core Contributor (basically he was famous in my part of the tech world) and he used to come to our meet-ups.

One month he excitedly announced he was starting a new agency with this guy Zach - called Made in London. Except every time he said it, people replied “what? Like french maid?” He got angrier and angrier as the night went on.

The next morning I set up a site called Maid in London, photoshopped his face onto a saucy maid photo and then linked through to his real site. My friends and I had a laugh about this.

Weeks later Zach (who I didn’t know) asked on Twitter who had built this site - he had seen traffic from it going to the real site. I owned up and he thought it funny.

Months after that, Zach got a request for some work he couldn’t do. He remembered me, got in touch and I got a six month contract out of it.

All because I did some stupid stuff with a hangover to poke fun at someone I knew.

So you don’t have to be bland or corporate or slick to get noticed. Just don’t be an arsehole.

Rahoul Baruah

Rahoul Baruah

Rubyist since 1.8.6. Freelancer since 2007, dedicated to building incredible, low-cost, bespoke software for tiny businesses. Also CTO at Collabor8Online.
Leeds, England