It’s nervewracking. I can see all the gaps and bugs. I see bugs that I know other people will see. But I have to ship V1 at some point to get that crucial customer feedback and, you know, money. Because a business isn’t > a business without revenue.
*A quote from one of my first posts on building software.
A year ago, I quit my sales job, moved home, and started building software that I wish I would have had in my sales career. I’m not at $10k MRR (yet) but here’s what I do have:
- Financial Backing from Calm Fund
- 2,500 users on Magic Sales Bot with more coming in every day
- Mentors and a community that help me build
- A cool house in Costa Rica that I’m going to build from for the next couple months
- The ability to code and develop product that I could have only dreamed about a year ago
Magic Sales Bot has been my everything for 7 months, after stumbling through a few product ideas and failing in my initial boostrapper months. Failed products include:
- Chatty, a wrapper for sales content that lets you message viewers from Slack
- SalesAdvice, a paid newsletter that imparts professional sales know-how to bootstrappers
- Sales & Startups, a job board tailored to salespeople
- GetEncore, a way of getting alerted if your customers have moved jobs, for companies with 50k+ customers
I’m full-in on Magic Sales Bot because people want a solution to their cold email woes, as evidenced by my daily signup rate.
Why hasn’t Magic Sales Bot taken off yet?
You might see 2,500 users and $900 MRR and think there’s an incompatibility with those numbers. You’re not wrong. I make it very easy to sign up and try Magic Sales Bot so that I can get feedback on what works and what doesn’t from my users.
I’m constantly running experiments based on user feedback. Right now, I’m testing out if users even care about GPT-3. With my daily 5-10 signups, I’m looking for signal that users are getting value out of the product. Those signals come in the shape of burning up their free trial credits and upgrading to a pro plan. Once I see that signal, I’ll know I’m that much closer to product/market fit.
But there’s a downside to changing the product every week. It never truly gets “finished,” and users end up putting up with rough edges that a more focused direction would polish off. Even still, product focus is everything for me right now. What product can I build that provides so much value that users will use it in spite of rough edges? What product will provide enough value that, when I start pouring on more marketing, won’t cause users to sign up and churn a month later?
That’s still a daily operation to find. I’ve had a lot of help from the Twitter community, the Calm Fund community, and my friends to get me to iterate in the right direction. Want to help me iterate? Give me your feedback on Twitter, then!
I wonder where Magic Sales Bot will be next year this time?
Tagged #Personal, #Projects.