The Indie Hackers Podcast May 17, 2017

Delivering More Value and Charging More Money with Brennan Dunn of

Episode #014

Brennan Dunn has earned $20k/week as a freelancer, grown an agency to millions in revenue, started and sold a SaaS product, and makes over $100k/mo from his online courses. Learn how he thinks about business.

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    Brennan, great interview! I had a question about niching down content. You mentioned during the podcast that you niche down the content between say the regular email course and the premium course. Some of information the customer has given you, but do you have to manually tune the content for their specific case each time, or how does it work?

    Best regards,


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      Hey Ty, nope so it's really just a bunch of switch cases :-) If someone tells me they're a developer (via a select field on opt-in), I'll tailor individual bits of copy or entire sections (like when I get into an example), each of which is tailored to the business_type supplied by the subscriber.

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        Brennan, thanks for the reply. I am hoping to do something like this for the onboarding of my side project.

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    My main takeaways:

    • He started off freelancing for 1 company at a time as if he was an employee, and once he began getting a lot of REFERRAL work he had options and could pick and choose

    • He wanted to have a lot of people paying him a little bit of money, rather than a few people paying him a lot of money, so he started an App called Plan Scope

    • He realised that it was difficult to run an agency and a product company so he stopped his agency and went full time in his product company (for Plan Scope)

    • At first he had a hard time selling his Plan Scope, so he read about content marketing and then began writing articles about freelancing (unrelated to project managing), and it ended up working really well, and helped the target demographic, from this he ended up writing an eBook and it ended up working really well too, he then started creating additional courses and workshops, and this grew and grew and grew into Double Your Freelancing

    • Double Your Freelancing started off as a content marketing attempt for app Plan Scope, but ended up succeeding wildly

    • The best way to avoid commoditisng your offer is to meet someone where they are now, and lead them / condition them, into the perfect customer (Basically influence people into seeing that your solution is perfect for their problem)

    • Most freelancers get their work from referrals from past clients

    • He did a presentation at a meetup, and collected signups onto mailchimp

    • Increase your "Luck Surface Area" by encouraging more refralls by having more volume over potential referral sources

    • Allen's best clients came from products that Allen put out for free, and people

    • Value selling -> Price yourself against the profit you will generate for the business NOT for your hours

    • There are plenty of opportunities in the B2B space, you just have to demonstrate how your product can increase revenue

    • Tailor call to actions based on your customers unique desires by analysing their engagement with your content

    • Brennan has a system where he analyses the users engagement, and once the users engagement hits a certain treshold, he then upsells them to a premium course using a personalised pitch based on everything the system knows about the user.

    • Niche. People want a personalised product. So what Brennan has done, is created a niche prsonalied funnel the leads to the same GENERAL product that can help ANYONE in pretty much ANY niche.

    • If you want to start your own online business, you need a lot of time in order to do that, so being a freelancer/contracting on the side will enable you to save time over a full time job

    • To get started freelancing/contracting, go to networking events, get to know people, listen, build up your network, understand their problems, just deliver value

    • Go after people with existing projects and offer your services to them, you may not get paid a lot at first, but its a start

    • Don't brand yourself as a "Web Developer", because that's just a commodity, can can be outsourced for cheap from a 3rd world country

    • Use your due diligence to find out what they really need, and use code to solve that "How can I use tech to achieve a result for my client"

    • You can get code written, but still fail to achieve the business result, focus on the business result!

    • Paid Discovery - Before trying to get someone on $10K-100K engagement have something that's less pricey, that's fixed scope. This way you can qualify people that can pay 10x more to go to the next step. Sell people something cheaper before to build the trust progressively. The less pricey product's deliverable can then be a proposal for the more pricey product.

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    Loved the episode :) Hope does great.

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    Courtland, the player is throwing a 404 because there's a redundant period on the requested file's extension. So "file..mp3" instead of "file.mp3".

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      Looking into it!