Digital Marketing Consultant Lucky As Napa Quake Rocks Home

As a digital marketing consultant, Andreas Mueller-Schubert knows a bit about the technology revolution.

But around 3 a.m. this past Sunday morning in his Napa, Calif. home, technology was no help. It was him, his wife and two children and Mother Earth.

Mueller-Schubert and family live just 10 miles outside of the epicenter of the magnitude 6.0 earthquake that rocked Northern California this past weekend, the largest in the Bay Area since 1989.

"Everyone was a little shocked. The kids haven't experienced anything like this," said Mueller-Schubert, a German-born digital marketing consultant for WSI Next Gen Marketing who lives with his wife Georgia, daughter, Annika, 20, and son Zachary, 19.

Everyone's OK -- but the family's home saw plenty of shattered glass and some damage in the garage.

'Quite a Ride'

For the record, the earthquake lasted about 15 to 20 seconds. Being in it, though, felt more like 30 seconds to one minute, according to Mueller-Schubert.

"You felt everything moving a couple of yards," he told CMSWire. "It was quite a ride."

The family lost power, too. That only lasted an hour or so, though.

A big challenge after the South Napa quake, Mueller-Schubert said, was checking for gas leaks. And, with all the shattered glass in their home, walking barefoot was naturally not an option. All this while waiting for after-shocks to come. The US Geological Survey has reported 65 aftershocks with more to come.

"You could feel everything," Mueller-Schubert said of the main quake. "This was the first big one for me. It was an intense feeling."

Napa's well-known wineries felt the effects, too. Some of the 450 or so wineries there are digital marketing clients of Mueller-Schubert. 

"You look around and a lot of the wineries were empty," he said. "Some areas were hit pretty hard. They lost quite a bit of wine. And with others not a single bottle fell."

When He's Not in Quakes...

Mueller-Schubert moved to Silicon Valley 10 years ago. Then, he was at Microsoft. He now represents one of about 1,500 franchises of Mississauga, Ontario-based WSI Digital Marketing. He's been in Napa for two years, and his office there didn't suffer too much damage from the South Napa quake.

His clients are mostly composed of wineries and hospitality. About 5 million tourists come to Napa Valley each year, and his clients have a "very important" task to "connect with people before they even come here."

"Is your website bringing you business?" Mueller-Schubert said referring to his clients' challenges. "Is it supporting your business goals? Are you mobile-ready? It's pretty high competition here. In one day, people will go to about three or four wineries."

Next Step

As for dealing with earthquake, that simply comes with the territory of being Californians like Mueller-Schubert and family. He's got survival kits. Buildings need to meet earthquake-ready structural codes.

He will have to find a different hangout outside of the Carpe Diem wine bar, which saw some significant damage from the South Napa quake. It's one of his favorites. Loves the mushroom flatbread.

Most of all, he's just happy no one from his family ended up in the hospital unlike others.

"Not everyone was hit so hard," Mueller-Schubert said. "Not sure why I was so lucky."