Meet the Guest

Melissa Mendez

Melissa Mendez

Web developer and growth marketer at Eurecah

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[00:00:00] Music

[00:00:08] Jonathan: Welcome to the Webflowers' podcast.

[00:00:11] Jonathan: This week, I'm talking with Melissa Mendez, who is web developer and growth marketer at

[00:00:20] Jonathan: Melissa recently started the Webflow Party, inviting folks who have no idea how to use Webflow or those who want to share their knowledge with others. Before we get into that, a word of thanks,

[00:00:30] Jonathan: octopus, do that's octopus dot d o is a fast and clean site mapper tool. Create your website map, add notes, specified page content, and use color schemes to improve your site map design or content planning.

[00:00:46] Jonathan: That's octopus dot d o

[00:00:49] Jonathan: hey Melissa. Welcome to Webflowers.

[00:00:56] Melissa: Hey, so happy to be here. Thank you for having

[00:00:59] Jonathan: Absolute pleasure. What's your favorite flower?

[00:01:01] Melissa: My favorite flower is the hydrangea

[00:01:06] Jonathan: Why is that then?

[00:01:07] Melissa: So I have this slight obsession with everything that has to do with like Marie Antoinette

[00:01:15] Jonathan: Oh,

[00:01:15] Melissa: and. I think it's just the aesthetics that I just love. And I feel like they represent that time. They're just very pompous and feminine and delicate and beautiful.

[00:01:34] Jonathan: Okay. I don't think I've ever met anybody who has, who has a crush on the Marie Antoinette until now.

[00:01:40] Melissa: Well,

[00:01:41] Jonathan: Do you, do you eat lots of cake? I mean, the only thing I know about her is this alleged saying, you know, that her advisors told her that, there's no, there's no bread for the people. And she said, well, let them eat cake.

[00:01:55] Jonathan: That's fantastic. Okay. So well that makes me think very much that, you know, the Webflow party is, is going to be a kind of next level thing. And I'll be honest with you. I haven't been to a flow party because you always have them on Saturdays. And this year I'm being really strict with myself and I'm just.

[00:02:17] Jonathan: Doing any work, even pretend work or, or even parties that are to do with web flow on the weekends. And it's really working well out, working out well for me. So I'm really sorry. I haven't been.

[00:02:28] Melissa: what. Like I tried before this whole madness started. I had the same goal and somehow now I am like in so many things and working on the well, not working, but doing the Webflow parties on the weekends. And it's just so much work, but I love it. So, but I totally understand where you're coming from and should enjoy your weekends.

[00:02:53] Melissa: They are important no problem

[00:02:56] Jonathan: They really are. But before we get into the party proper, just sort of give us an idea of about, about you about Eurecah and about sort of how you discovered Webflow and, and why, why you use Webflow and all of that.

[00:03:10] Melissa: Yeah. So I come from Columbia an immigrant and I came here to study. And I studied advertising after I finished advertising. Well, okay. So my dad has, or had my, my family had an advertising agency and that really, you know, ingrained in me this, this sign background, I guess, like I just saw my dad.

[00:03:40] Melissa: He was just so creative and it was a really good agency in the city where we lived in Cartagena . And I remember just walking around and the agency and seeing how the creatives would like, stamp, the letters, you know, back in the day, ads used to be made like

[00:03:59] Jonathan: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

[00:04:00] Melissa: And I would go there and sit with them and draw and color.

[00:04:04] Melissa: So just from, from the start, I was just always so immersed in this world. And I always had a fascination for posters. Like typography posters like for me, that was just the best thing ever. So when I finished school, I just decided to go for advertising, just like my parents and my brothers. So we're just like a full blown publicist family. And this entrepreneurship lifestyle also affected me a lot because I just saw my, my parents and my brothers just all the time, creating companies and being successful at them. So for me, it just came natural to what I'm going to say later. So I went to school for advertising and in Fort Lauderdale in the art Institute.

[00:04:49] Melissa: And then from there, I started my own. And did this was a marketplace, an e-commerce marketplace. This was 2014. So remember that at that time, there's no. Everything was just very young on the internet

[00:05:06] Jonathan: Yeah.

[00:05:06] Melissa: and I'm 35 years old. So when that happened, I just took it on. I created the whole product. I fell in love with it, just solving this great problem that this independent sellers were having because the market was bringing in independent sellers that had really, really cool products and I wanted to connect them with buyers from across the world.

[00:05:28] Melissa: And they can just do their transaction on Eurecah.

[00:05:31] Jonathan: Okay.

[00:05:32] Melissa: That's where the,

[00:05:33] Jonathan: But in 2014, this is before any no code tools were out there. So how were you building it? Are you a coder?

[00:05:41] Melissa: No. So I hired, I hired a team of developers. I hired a company to do everything basically, and I would just pay them and they would just give me my product. Well, that was a huge problem because. They didn't even understand what a marketplace was like. It was just very bad. The initial product was very bad and I spent so much money.

[00:06:08] Melissa: Like I lost so much money with this because you know how code is like that the sign will, it's never going to be the same as the, as the the actual finished product. And. Little by little. I just started like, you know, wiping my account down, wiping my account down. And, and it was just like never ending, you know, the bugs that were never ending.

[00:06:33] Melissa: And one day I just decided to hire a group of developers from across that in Indonesia. And I just build like my own little team and we. Re formatted, like we basically refactored the whole platform, but that was like a really important turning point for me in terms of technology, because that's where I really got immersed into the world of startups and technology and learning about product, about everything business and everything.

[00:07:06] Melissa: And while I was learning, I was just, you know, Completely wiping my accounts even more, my bank accounts even more. And that was working 24 7 until one day. I said, you know what, that's it I'm done. I'm not doing this again. I want to really focus on myself, on my husband, my family and friends. And so I closed the company. And that's when I joined Datagram , which is an artificial intelligence startup, which is a no code company. So that's when my boss told me, Hey, have you heard about Webflow? And I was like, no, I've never heard about Webflow . So I go online, I opened the thing. Mind you, I already have experience with technology.

[00:07:53] Melissa: I. Already had build websites on Squarespace Wix Shopify. And when I see Webflow, I'm like, oh my God, like, this is exactly what I needed because I have all of these ideas in my head, but I can't execute them because I don't have the money to pay a team of developers. And I don't have the patience either. So I learned it in a month and we built the Datagram website.

[00:08:22] Jonathan: Right.

[00:08:22] Melissa: And that's how everything started with Webflow for me.

[00:08:26] Jonathan: What's datagram in and of itself in terms of an app or what does it do and how do they build that part of the, of the business?

[00:08:35] Melissa: Well, no. So Datagram is using web flow for their marketing

[00:08:39] Melissa: website, but the platform is done in, like in, in another framework

[00:08:45] Jonathan: okay, so it's traditional coding,

[00:08:48] Melissa: yeah. Yeah, exactly. But to answer your question. I feel like Webflow , if you are really creative and you are willing to go around loops

[00:08:59] Melissa: , you can actually make great things happen.

[00:09:02] Melissa: You just have to be very resourceful. And I feel like that really applies to everything when you're building a start up. You just have to be resourceful, creative, put pieces together, because if you really think about it, like if you grab a web flow website, you connect it to Memberstack, you use Airtable, you use Zapier, you have Stripe, you can actually create a peer to peer marketplace, but it's just not seamless, but it's possible.

[00:09:29] Jonathan: , what sort of what sort of clients do you usually, are you, you sort of looking for, do you have a particular niche or how do you find your clients?

[00:09:38] Melissa: I don't have. well, thankfully they find me now, but I really love I really love clients that have a strong sense of design. Like I will never work with a client that wants like a click funnel website. It's not something I do. But I work with every type of industry from real estate to SaaS, to dog trainers.

[00:10:04] Melissa: Like everything. .

[00:10:05] Jonathan: And they now come to you, but before that, how did you get started with, with finding your own clients with Webflow?

[00:10:11] Jonathan: What was it that you were doing before? They just started coming to you?

[00:10:15] Melissa: yeah. So when I finished the website for Datagram, a friend of mine talked to me about Upwork and. She was like, oh, I have a friend that's making so much money there. Why don't you open it now that you know Webflow ? And I'm like, you know what, maybe I should. So I went open it my first job was with ACLU.

[00:10:36] Melissa: , which is insane. Cause they're a huge nonprofit here in the, in the U S yeah. When I work on that project, I was like, wow. I really think that there's some potential here. So they left me raving reviews. So I think that that, that was super important to have that on my profile.

[00:10:54] Jonathan: Yeah.

[00:10:55] Melissa: Then little by little, every month, I would go from 500 to that in the next month, eighth, 800, a thousand, two thousand three thousand four thousand.

[00:11:06] Melissa: And then one month was 11,000 and I was like, okay, wait a second. I can't ignore this. I need processes in place. And back going back to what I told you that I had also promised myself that I wasn't going to work on the weekends. That was starting to become a problem. So I needed to organize myself because of the experience that I had in my past startup.

[00:11:30] Melissa: I needed to have processes in place and people to help me people that were better than if I really wanted to grow this. So that's how, how basically Eureka started. So basically Upwork a year and a half of work. The w the, the curve just going up until the the moment that I just had to say, okay, let's organize this

[00:11:53] Jonathan: right. Nice. It's it's funny. Cause people always come in on the. Global Webflow Facebook page and saying, you know, should I get onto Upwork? Should I get on to Fiverr? And everybody's just say, no, you don't need that. That's the sort of scam and all the rest of it, but, but clearly it's not.

[00:12:11] Jonathan: And I, and I've used Upwork for not for Webflow things, but for other things. And there's some great people on there who just, you know, they've got a job and they just want a few hours of extra work every week or something, they know what they're doing and they just crack on with it. So, yeah. No, that's great.

[00:12:26] Jonathan: That's great.

[00:12:27] Melissa: Actually, my, my biggest client is someone that found me on Upwork. And after, after that, he just told me like, come with me, like be my, my, my person he's also an agency. So it's like agency, agency, you know what I mean? Like we're just connected. And it just happened from there.

[00:12:46] Jonathan: Yeah, that's great. That's great. Okay. We're going to take a break now. And when we come back, we're going to talk about the Webflow party. Cause there ain't no party like a Webflow party. Okay. But we'll be back after this

[00:13:01] Jonathan: Octopus do that's octopus dot Dio is a lightning fast visual site map builder.

[00:13:10] Jonathan: Build your website structure in real time. Using the content brick method and rapidly share it to collaborate with your team or clients. Start prototyping websites instantly.

[00:13:20] Jonathan: Welcome back to Webflowers . This week I'm talking with Melissa Mendez, who is a web developer and growth marketer at the Eureka. So. Tell me please. What's the Webflow party all about what am I missing by not being there?

[00:13:39] Melissa: So the web flow party is a party, I guess like a zoom call that I call Webflow party where we, where I teach people who want to learn web flow, how to Webflow why is it a party? Because. It's chill. It's relaxed. People can ask questions. We have special appearances, and it's just a fun little space that I wanted to create for people that wanted some guidance that don't feel comfortable enough to just take the Webflow university courses. But that they need, maybe that like extra little push of like guidance of having to ask questions and have some support from just a small community that we're building. And yeah, that's basically what it is.

[00:14:28] Jonathan: So I, I completely understand why some people would find the Webflow university difficult. And I think, there's a couple of reasons. One is it's so fast. To me, that's a good thing because it there's none of the fluff, it's just real stuff.

[00:14:45] Jonathan: I say there's none of the fluff. There's a lot of jokes in there and they are brilliant and the production values are superb. But I think especially if you're not a native English speaker, Some of it must, must just, you must get lost. And that, that kind of makes me go, oh yeah, it's a bit strange, but, but Webflow university.

[00:15:03] Jonathan: We're not going to knock it. And then there's a lot of people doing courses out there. You know, the traditional watch this video watching me build this thing, watch me do this thing. And what I like about the concept of the Webflow party is that you're there. Talking directly to people actually just working with them.

[00:15:22] Jonathan: So that's, that's a really interesting way of doing things and I mean, do you, do you sort of, do you do a build, do you just, somebody asks a specific question. How, how does it work?

[00:15:34] Melissa: So we basically take as a build and I started explaining like the first classes we were just talking about very basic things. Like, what is a div block, , how do you structure? So for example, the, on the first class I wanted to introduce. Just the full structure of how a website is built.

[00:15:54] Melissa: And a lot of the people that are coming to the classes are people that have no idea about what flow, like have never built a site. So it was very important to me to create this visual representation in their heads, so they can just feel like they could follow along and understand this complicated process in their head.

[00:16:14] Melissa: So one of the examples was. Building a website. It's like building house where you have your outer walls and then you start having inner walls and then you have your furniture wrapped around.

[00:16:28] Jonathan: Yeah.

[00:16:28] Melissa: Just some type of like in casings, you have everything wrapped around, very organized and just like your house, your house, you have the walls that have a name and those are the classes.

[00:16:41] Melissa: And you have to make sure that everything is it's organized and clean and neat because if you sell your house, they need to have a blueprint of what you're going to get to understand what happened there. . So I tried to go into this sort of more like theoretical terms, explain that. And then we also go into build and I started explaining everything that they, that they want to learn.

[00:17:09] Melissa: Like I really keep it open. So if they want to learn about grids, we go into grids. If they want to learn about animation, we go into animation, but we're always following them build.

[00:17:19] Jonathan: Yeah, that's brilliant. And how many people are coming along? Are they the same people? Are they regular? Are they, are they building their skills? How's the community going

[00:17:27] Melissa: So we've had 130 people registered, but every Saturday I already have like a set class of like 28 people. And those are like my students that are always there. So I already know them. We talk about them. We talk with them. Every week, almost every day, they're asking questions. So yeah.

[00:17:48] Melissa: It's like a 28 people little class that I have now.

[00:17:54] Jonathan: That's fantastic. I mean, and how did they find out about it? Was it, was it just through Twitter or

[00:18:00] Melissa: yeah. Yeah. So, so everything has started because this girl, I don't know if you heard this story. So this girl from Romania DM'ed me on Instagram after the Webflow no code generation trailer came out and she was like, oh I'm learning web flow. And I really want to get some guidance. Do you think that you would be kind enough she was so nice?

[00:18:26] Melissa: And I will say, yeah, sure. You know, and let's talk about it. So we talked about it and she basically told me that like, I'm learning Webflow university, but I need some guidance. I'm not sure if I'm doing it. Right. So I got into, in a few calls with her and a couple of calls and that's when I said, you know what?

[00:18:44] Melissa: I think maybe more people need this Like, maybe I can just help people, you know, and that's just how it started. And I just posted it on Twitter and everybody just started saying, Hey, I want to come. I want to come. And I'm like,

[00:18:59] Jonathan: That's fantastic. That's really nice. And know you're getting some, some guests and I mean, I mean, I'm blown away by the quality of some of the guests who have turned up. I cannot believe. Joseph Berry comes along to teach animation. Vincent has been there as well.

[00:19:18] Jonathan: I think I, who else have you had.

[00:19:21] Melissa: Jen Losa there the party too. Yeah, and I have other surprises that are going to be so awesome because I really want to create like a lot of value. Like just bring people that are willing to help that, to share their knowledge. And they can just ask questions directly to them and, you know, that's there.

[00:19:44] Melissa: So having fun like this, Joseph had so much fun just sharing everything

[00:19:48] Jonathan: Joseph always has fun.

[00:19:49] Melissa: I'm just so grateful.

[00:19:50] Jonathan: Joseph. Joseph just is fun. I mean, that's, that's what he is. That's just brilliant and such a lovely way. And I mean, and the thing with, with, with Webflow is, is that you, you could learn it in a linear fashion if you just went through the whole of the university, but you'd need all of that.

[00:20:09] Jonathan: At the same time. Now, this is the problem with, with Webflow that you need to understand how the navigator works, how the classes work, how grid and Flexbox work, how well, just how all of the different bits and pieces work to build something. You know, whether that's a hero section, a testimonial slider or whatever.

[00:20:33] Jonathan: All of the information and you need it all now, and that's impossible to get in a linear fashion and it's, and it's complicated to get just by doing it yourself because you don't know what you don't know. And I can see the, the, the, the way of learning for a bunch of people asking silly questions, because there's no such thing as a silly question.

[00:20:55] Jonathan: This. Everybody just go in. Oh yeah. But oh, but I didn't get that bit. Can you just show me that again? Or just do this again? Just explain this in a different way. I think that's just, it's such brilliant such a cool idea.

[00:21:06] Melissa: Yeah, I think that's that's. I think that's where I think it's so valuable to see how other people have built. And that's why as soon as this whole special appearance people showing up once in a while started because those people actually reached out to.

[00:21:24] Jonathan: Really

[00:21:25] Melissa: And they, when they heard about the Webflow party, they said, Hey, we want to help.

[00:21:29] Melissa: Like, how can we help? And that's when the idea came. And I had been talking to Joseph and that's why I offered him to come. But the main thing that I, I said to the, to the party, people were. Focus on how he does his process, because that's where you are going to get the most value. Because when you start seeing people solving problems on Webflow is when you start understanding like, oh, that's why the position behaved that way.

[00:21:57] Melissa: Or that's why that div just went all the way away there, you know? So, so more than just teaching you how to do it, it's more like how to problem solve stuff. And that's how you start realizing what's happening.

[00:22:11] Jonathan: It is, and it is all about problem solving. And I I'm I'm for me. You know, I've been using Webflow for about three years now and I didn't really, it wasn't until client first from FinSweet came along as, and I've looked at other Systems for naming classes and things and, and and I've never, I've never really got it.

[00:22:30] Jonathan: I've understood the concept, but it's never made me go, oh wow. This is life-changing. But for me, client first did that. It just, it was life-changing this way of, of understanding how to, how to write classes.

[00:22:44] Jonathan: And you know, it's designed to be used with Webflow and it is that in a sense we're sort of showing. How and just, you know, there's a whole other way of doing something and getting into the mind of, well, I mean, I was going to say Joe Krug , but, but everybody over there at FinSweet and you can get into their mind a little bit and understand how they solve problems.

[00:23:07] Jonathan: And that's what it's about. You know, for me animation is, is one thing that I'm just really bad at. I just haven't got it into my head. I bought Joseph Barry's course . I haven't had a chance to watch it yet because I'm too busy doing everything else.

[00:23:21] Melissa: Joseph hears

[00:23:22] Jonathan: Well, you know,

[00:23:23] Melissa: oh man, this girl, I think I'm like pimping him out honestly, all everybody has scores, but honestly, like I was actually so. I have this thing going on tomorrow and, and somebody just texted me or DME on Twitter and they were like, Hey, we need a website for the Webflow party.

[00:23:44] Melissa: And I was like, oh my God, I don't have time for this. But you know, of course it's a challenge. I'm going to take it. And I started just building it. And then I'm like, oh, you know what? I'm going to apply everything that I learned from Joseph on the web flow party that I had also seen on the, on his course. And when I started building it, I'm like, damn, like, I can't believe in a week. I've my whole understanding of animations has changed.

[00:24:11] Jonathan: just, that's awesome. Isn't

[00:24:13] Melissa: Like I finished that. Yeah. Insane. Finished it in like four hours and all the animations were in there were clean. There were beautiful. And I was like, damn, Joseph, you really did that.

[00:24:25] Jonathan: Yeah, that's brilliant. That's just brilliant. That's lovely. Right. So where you heard it here, go and get Joseph Berry's course it's on Awwwards isn't it. Wait, wait, we should get, we should get some kickback from this. I just want some time to sit down and watch the thing. I, I honestly, it's just,

[00:24:43] Melissa: you really should.

[00:24:44] Jonathan: must. I really.

[00:24:45] Melissa: I did it over the weekend one day and it was just awesome.

[00:24:48] Jonathan: Yeah. Yeah, no, that's a good that's. Maybe that's what I need to do one weekend is instead of say

[00:24:54] Melissa: Yeah,

[00:24:55] Jonathan: completely no to

[00:24:55] Melissa: bed and like do it there.

[00:24:57] Jonathan: yeah. Instead of watching a whole series on Netflix, just watch Joseph , and, and absorb animation.

[00:25:05] Melissa: And one of the things that I, that I told him was that he, he starts getting really excited as the course starts going on and that's just contagious. So like, you get excited too. So it becomes fun, you know?

[00:25:18] Jonathan: Yeah, that's good. That's good. Right? We are out of time. I'm afraid. I can't believe it. Melissa, it's been absolute pleasure talking to you. It's just, you know, listening to your story of how you got into Webflow was just lovely, and then yeah. big up Joseph Berry, but more importantly, big up you for doing the, the web flow party.

[00:25:38] Jonathan: I think it's such a good idea. I genuinely, I think. Just getting a group of people and just playing with something and talking about it is it's about changing the way that you see Webflow . And you know, how you understand the concepts within it. That's just lovely. So if you've got a question for Melissa or in general for the Webflowers' podcast, go to and hit the appropriate button and we will see you next time.

[00:26:06] Jonathan: Thanks very much. Bye now.

[00:26:08] Music

[00:26:20] Melissa: Let me know whenever you want to come. I know. Yeah. It's worth it. You'll love it. You'll love my people. They're so nice. And they'll ask you questions. It's so cute.

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