I've analyzed all 486 Indie Hackers interviews and identified 34 acquisition channels that work consistently for founders (see Zero to Users for more details). Today, I'll be reviewing an acquisition channel that was mentioned across 15 interviews: BetaList.
Like the name says, BetaList is a directory focusing on businesses that are about to launch a private beta. This can be great if you only have a landing page and want to validate demand, like NoCode ($400/mo):
Initially, as I was creating NoCode I built a quick landing page with an email capture form and a mocked up screenshot of the homepage using Canva.
I then managed to get featured on BetaList where I got about 35 signups. I later used those interested early adopters to test my initial prototypes of the site and get feedback on some of my ideas. This approach proved incredibly valuable information and helped validate some of my early assumptions.
This was my butt ugly landing page in 2016:
BetaList can be also useful if you have an initial MVP. This was the case for Standuply ($25k/mo), a Slack bot for team standup meetings:
It took us a couple months to build the first MVP which we launched on BetaList. In a few days, we got 300 teams signed up, having a landing page only.
BetaList (along with Product Hunt) are the "big two" product launch websites and founders often use them in tandem when launching. One of those people is Ross Rejek, the founder of AppToolkit.io ($1k/mo), a set of tools for mobile app creators. When asked which strategies he used to attract users and grow, here's what he said:
We also submitted to BetaList and a few other product sites, looking for early users of the SDK before releasing it to everyone else. But Product Hunt and BetaList are the two big ones in the early adopter field.
Setting up a simple "waiting list" page and getting to a 6-figure MRR? Sounds too good to be true? Not for Everhour (making $120,000/mo), which got started this way:
Taking the easy route, we created a very simple "coming soon" page. When the page was ready, we submitted it to Beta List and a couple more directories. This gave us roughly 1,500-2000 early adopters right after launch.
Do not underestimate the power of a simple "coming soon" page. Talk to you next week!