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An Interview with Aigars Silkalns for MonsterPost

Have you heard about Colorlib? Have you ever tried their themes or looked through their blog posts? I believe you have! TemplateMonster is proud to have partnered with one of the leading WordPress themes providers.

Aigars Silkalns, the founder of Colorlib, is one of our top-performing affiliates who is hugely passionate about what he is doing.

What's their story of success? How did Aigars Silkalns manage to grow his business THAT big? What's the contribution of affiliate programs in the growth and development of his digital project? We have reached Aigars for an interview.

Here is what he has shared.

TemplateMonster: How many people does your team count?

Aigars Silkalns: Our team is completely remote, and I have never met personally with my team. We are spread across four continents, and currently, we have a team of 15 people and dozen more regular contractors and contributors.

TemplateMonster: Everybody knows that you have cool and catchy content at Colorlib. Who takes responsibility for it? Where do you find authors and writers for your blog?

Aigars Silkalns: At the very beginning, I did design, development, support and content creation and slowly gave away most of the tasks. However, I still generate all content ideas, but I no longer write. My English has never been excellent, but with a good proofreader, even an untrained monkey can be a professional writer 🙂

TemplateMonster: When you just started, did you think that Colorlib would grow into the top web design blog in the industry?

Aigars Silkalns: My initial plan with Colorlib was to learn web design and WordPress theme development, document my journey and showcase my work. Once I saw how well my WordPress themes were received, I had to do something about it. It took a while to figure everything out but mixing good content with free themes and templates is what got Colorlib this far. Never could have imagined that it will grow so big.

TemplateMonster: Colorlib was founded in mid-2013. Thus, is it just five years you’re dealing with WordPress development?

Aigars Silkalns: It is already five years since I started working with WordPress, but it feels like I created my first WordPress theme last month. Time flies. Before that, I did work with WordPress as a website administrator, but I didn't have any knowledge about web design or development before I started Colorlib.

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TemplateMonster: What have you been doing before dipping into WordPress community?

Aigars Silkalns: I worked as HR researched/headhunter for several years. I started working there while in University where I studied Business Administration.

I continued to work part-time in HR until Colorlib turned three years old. At that point, I knew that I would never need to look for another job. I'm not saying that Colorlib will last forever (I hope it will), but I know that my experience and knowledge will help in any business that I might come up with along the way. I never have a shortage of new ideas.

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TemplateMonster: We know Colorlib is not your only project. Please, tell us about your Divilab and other ones you’re involved in.

Aigars Silkalns: Colorlib is the main project for the Divilab which is the parent company that I own. There are five more businesses under Divilab, but I'm not yet able to talk about them. All were started recently to diversify and to become less dependent on Colorlib. These ideas were neglected for years because I spent all my time working on Colorlib but this year I have made significant progress, and you can be sure you'll hear about some of these projects very soon.

TemplateMonster: How do you monetize your website?

Aigars Silkalns: Mainly affiliate income and advertisements in the form of AdSense ads and direct banner and other contextual ad sales.

TemplateMonster: What is your general opinion about affiliate programs? Which affiliate programs do you take part in?

Aigars Silkalns: My favorites are TemplateMonster, Envato (Market & Elements), Elegant Themes & Bluehost. I have signed up to dozens if not hundreds of affiliate programs, but I try to concentrate on as few as possible. That way you know what you recommend and are consistent with your recommendations instead of jumping to ones that offer the best deal for a specified period. I never use custom link trackings, banners or anything else offered by affiliate programs. I need a plain URL, and I take care of the rest.

TemplateMonster: Please, tell us a few words about your partnership with TemplateMonster. How long have you been working with the company?

Aigars Silkalns: I have been with TemplateMonster since 2014, and I'm delighted with our partnership. While TemplateMonster is a big company, I like that they still maintain personal approach with their partners.

TemplateMonster: TemplateMonster Affiliate program. Which affiliate tools do you use? In your personal opinion, what are the strongest points of the program?

Aigars Silkalns: I never use any of tools provided by affiliate programs. Simplicity is the key, and that applies to TemplateMonster. You don't need to generate any URLs manually. You need to know your affiliate ID, and you can create links that you need without accessing affiliate area. That's how all affiliate programs should be, and I love that TemplateMonster has nailed it.

TemplateMonster: Are there any changes to implement or things you’d recommend improving?

Aigars Silkalns: I'm not picky, and I will always find a way to work with the tools that I have. Never look for a perfect solution because it is an excuse not to do actual work on hand.

TemplateMonster: What would you recommend web design bloggers who are just starting their way in the affiliate marketing? Which affiliate programs and promotional tools would you advise?

Aigars Silkalns: Never think about monetization in the first place. Start a blog only if it is your passion and you have already annoyed everyone talking about this particular topic nonstop for years. You need to be entirely into what you will write about and not money because there is a huge chance that there won't be any for years if ever. You won't be able to motivate yourself if money is your primary goal with your blog. I didn't make a single cent in the first two years since I launch Colorlib. I started to monetize when I reached around 300,000 visitors a month.

TemplateMonster: What are your professional goals for 2018?

Aigars Silkalns: To get any of the newly launched sites to a level of Colorlib and to double traffic for the Colorlib itself. I'm already ahead of my 2nd plan, and that feels awesome!

TemplateMonster: If you could highlight top 3 web design trends for 2018, what would they be?

Aigars Silkalns: Drop shadows and depth, vibrant color schemes and illustrations are my favorite.

TemplateMonster: What IT events do you visit?

Aigars Silkalns: I'm entirely awkward in public, and I tend to keep away from conferences and other events.


TemplateMonster: They say content is king. Could you say a few words about current content trends?

Aigars Silkalns: Content is still the king. But not the number of pieces you write but the quality of every single sentence, paragraph, and article. It is not about publishing 10,000 articles but about ten that will be evergreen and shared with millions of people for years to come.

TemplateMonster: Content marketing & link building. Are there some tips you’d like to share with authors and bloggers looking for guest posting opportunities?

Aigars Silkalns: The more personal emails you send, the greater the success. If you send automated emails with nothing personal to them, you won't get any response. Also, never copy/paste and replace few words/phrases for your emails because they won't suddenly become more personal. You will be surprised by how many emails I receive where the sender has forgotten to replace important pieces such as mixing Colorlib with TemplateMonster or other company just because they sent the same email to TM a few seconds ago. Attention to detail and personal approach is the key.

TemplateMonster: You’re a successful blogger and entrepreneur. How do you plan your day to get everything done?

Aigars Silkalns: I plan my day around my training so that I won't spend 16 hours in front of different screens. I either do a workout in the morning, evening or both to keep FOMO (fear of missing out) and sanity in check. Otherwise, I can't stop working. It is great to work on your own business, but it is not great for your mental health and health in general.

TemplateMonster: Following you on Social media, we know that sports play a great role in your life. What other hobbies do you have? How do you prefer to relax?

Aigars Silkalns: I do long distance running (my main disciple is half-marathon), calisthenics, snowboarding, DH mountain biking and various other sports whenever I have a chance. I can ride any board there is, like a skateboard, longboard, wakeboard, water skate and so on. Have been involved in extreme sports for a very long time. Lately have found a passion in Autosport as well.

I never like to sit down and relax. I much better prefer to walk around or do some sports instead.

TemplateMonster: What gives you inspiration for keeping all those things up?

Aigars Silkalns: On a regular basis (8-10 trainings a week), I run and do calisthenics. Initially, I was looking to get away from my Mac, and those activities were the easiest to start. I keep on doing them because I still need to get away from screens, but since I'm very competitive, I want to become the best I can be in those sports. It is way too late to become a professional athlete while running a business full-time, but I want to see how far I can go. My competitiveness and willingness to test my limits keep me going.

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Katherine Crayon

copywriter reporting on tech news and all aspects of the web design industry. Anyone looking for more inspirational posts, tips and advice or simply the latest industry news, meet her in person on Quora and Twitter.

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2 responses to “An Interview with Aigars Silkalns for MonsterPost”

  1. Colorlib is one of my most visited website. Thanks for sharing the interview…(I know I am a late reader though ;-)). Now I came to know more about the person behind the website. Keep up the good work my friend.

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