Startups for the Rest of Us Based on Rob Wallings Book “Start Small, Stay Small” David N. Welton
Its full of good advice
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Who? You are a developer You dont want to/cant live in Silicon Valley You dont have investors lined up out your door You dont want to work 80 hour weeks
Market FirstIs there a group of people willing to pay for it?
Niche Markets Profitable for small businesses Uninteresting for Microsoft/Google/Valley startups Less risky, less exciting (no TechCrunch!) Stay far away from “the tech world” “I could build that in a weekend!” Niche marketing is more cost effective
The narrower you can make your product whilestill maintaining a large enough market, the more profit you will generate.
Finding a Niche Make something your friends or relatives would pay to use Use search data to look for niches Is there a magazine dedicated to it? Is it easy to sell to everyone in the niche? Try a landing page and Adsense to gauge interest There is no magic formula
As a self-funded startup you want a market that isalready looking for your product, even if it doesn’t exist.
Price Competitors Time value for customers 3 tiers Higher!
Some Numbers Hobby consumer products: $29 fixed-price or $14/month Consumer products - make or save money: $49 or $19/month Small businesses: $400 or $99/month Larger businesses: $1,000 or $199/month
Marketing Search engines Your niche should be an easy mark, if possible Mailing list Blog Adsense Use with discretion Social networks are probably not as important
Virtual Assistants Work on your business, not in your business Outsource what you can Philippines Odesk / eLance
Every hour spent writing code is wasted time ifthat code could be replaced by a human being doing the same task until your product proves itself
Built To Sell The market values profit and automation System should run itself – you should not be an integral part of it “Documenting repeatable processes for anything you will do more than once is essential to your sanity.”