Now that I had some interest it was time to build. I went to Upwork and found developers from Ukraine, India, Mexico, and Pakistan.
Sidenote: If you want to go this route of hiring developers from different countries I would recommend that you are very clear in what you are asking for. To do this I suggest Slack for daily communication and Loom for video explanations for EVERYTHING.
I was able to build an MVP and get it looking good enough, working well enough, that people asked for more features, they wanted Cartfuel to do more and be more so I had to think about what I wanted to do.
I got a small investment from Family and Friends but it wasn't enough.
That is where AppSumo comes into play.
We knew that AppSumo could be a risky play because lifetime deals are not a sustainable business model, but we did it anyway haha (slightly because I wanted to fulfill my dream to be listed on there with my own software)
And, I am glad we did.
We launched on the AppSumo Marketplace (different from AppSumo main deals) in October and we had had 100s of conversations and so far made $11.5k in revenue. On a test.
Second side note: Here are some tips if you do decide to release your product on the marketplace:
Make sure you have a support team in place. You will get a lot of questions and you want to make sure you respond to them in a timely fashion. A support team can be just you, or you can find a VA and have them do it. Regardless, you need to make sure you are handing the support questions. Bonus tip: use something like Tidio to handle support questions via LiveChat (they have a free plan)
Have a marketing plan in place. In order to make the best out of the marketplace make sure that you have some type of marketing plan. For us, we use Facebook groups, Twitter, and community forums to find people who may be interested in our product. It worked great!
Listen. Listen to the community. Listen to all feedback regardless if it's good or bad. Understand why they are saying what they are saying so that you can make your product better.
Be kind. Not everyone is going to support you. You will find people who are just trolling or jealous. Be kind to them anyway and thank them for their feedback.
Have a product roadmap. People want to support you but they also want to make sure what they are buying will continue to be worked on after the deal is done. It's very important to sumo-lings!
It was a win-win. We got revenue AND were able to talk to our customers on how to make Cartfuel better.
That $11.5k will now go to building new features, improving UX/UI, and making sure that the foundation of the application is so solid that our churn is next to nothing.
The point of this post is to say that sometimes our ideas need a little push. Share your ideas with others because you'll never know who will inspire you to take the next step in your life that changes it forever.
Then once you have that little push, create a plan, and then execute.
After all, ideas are nothing without execution.
Last Sidenote: Surround yourself with like-minded people. It will change your life.
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Founder & CEO of Cartfuel, the software helping small and medium size business with their funnel and marketing strategy. Prior to Cartfuel, Jelani worked with one of the fastest growing startups, ClickFunnels, where he learned the ropes of marketing. In his spare time Jelani likes to make music, skateboard and kayak.