Indie Swap August 6, 2020

How do you find leads? 🤔

Brayden 👋 @BraydenTW

Hey IH 👋,

I've been trying to figure out how to find good leads online. I've tried Indiehackers, Twitter, and Reddit so far.

Any suggestions? 🤔

  1. 8

    Try flipping that question around: who are the people that would buy your product, and what are they looking for?

    1. 1

      Developers who need their website made quick, freelancers, small startups.

      1. 3

        Sounds like you're thinking about a pretty wide range of potential customers. Can you try getting more specific?

        A few questions to unpack:

        • What do they need a website for? Why now?
        • What kind of customer do they serve? What do their customers care about?
        • What tools do they already use? What do they like and dislike about those tools?
        1. 1
          1. They need a simple, static HTML website. They need it now because they’ve been putting it off for a while because they think it takes too much effort to make. That’s not the case though with buuldfaster’s html themes 😉
          2. That their website is clean and easy to navigate. Most templates can give that, but they may be tougher to setup.
          3. Either other templates or a website builder. Might not be as easy to use and setup. Website builders are meant for you to move around things. Mine are already premade so there is no “extra” work needed.
          1. 3

            Cool!

            So I see two main angles to take here:

            • Is there something small, but valuable and solves a SUPER SPECIFIC problem, that you could create for this audience? Think: what things do they need before a template is useful that they also see as a problem.

            Eg. A content planning worksheet, or a decision matrix to help them choose between popular site hosting services.

            Offering things like this as a "lead magnet" gives you the ability to trade something they can use BEFORE they buy for an email address, where you can nurture them over time. Earn trust to make the sales.

            • Borrow traffic from other places where people are already looking for templates. Marketplaces like envato are HUGE so you're competing for attention and they take a pretty huge cut, but there are other smaller/indie marketplaces that you might be able to submit to.

            I'd also think about trying to sell to agencies that do lots of websites for their own clients. Fewer people to sell to for more template licenses, and more likely repeat customers.

            Broadly, your options are to go to them or get them to come to you. Each have tradeoffs. Use your advantages!!

            1. 1

              Thanks so much Alex! Your help has been phenomenal ⭐️

  2. 3

    After trying for months, I think this is what I learn

    1. Be SUPER clear on persona and pain point
    2. Test different channels quickly
    3. Pick 2-3 and be consistent

    This is really hard though, because

    • #1 is hard and could change in the beginning
    • #3 sometimes new ideas come up and you give up the old channels
    1. 1

      Got it. Thanks for your advice.

  3. 3

    There are a lot of ways to do this.

    @alexhillman has mentioned about segmentation, so I wont repeat that. However in terms of sources of traffic you have:

    SEO - can be a bit unpredictable but you can get results in a few weeks. Requires a lot of effort to learn the basics and apply. You need to do keyword research, so you need to know who you are targeting. You also need to write content, do technical SEO and find ways to get back links, although the main way is to write great content and share it. The least mentioned thing about SEO is that the title and meta description are really line 1 and line 2 of your ad on Google! So bear that in mind, I usually err on the side of making them better for Humans and ignore the Google bot.

    Blogging - write really good 2k word articles that really help people alot. Tailor the article to be loved by the audience you are sharing it with. For example a curious but not click bait title and a very useful and fresh perspective would go down well on Hacker News. On Reddit it varies but you can get away with something more run of the mill, but still needs to be useful. Dev.to is great if you want to write a more beginner-focused article I have found.

    Edit - 2k is a bit of silly threshold. Main thing is "is it useful?" but I find if it is 1k or less I am suspicious that I have not been useful enough!

    Paid Ads - I won't say much as I have never had much success with them, but you can advertise on lots of channels from Twitter to Reddit. Just make sure your audience is there and beware you might spend more than you make. Think of it as testing and losing money at the beginning.

    Twitter - see https://www.indiehackers.com/post/0-19k-email-subs-how-i-promote-my-content-83a2be1707 for some excellent ideas.

    And Etc. so many ways to market your stuff. None of it is free, you need to invest time and/or money. I like blogging as you can hit a few things at the same time - preselling / SEO / distribution and creating content that might be shared in the future.

    1. 1

      Got it. Thanks for your help! One question:

      I have a newsletter on Substack called The BuildFaster Update and when I release a new issue, it show up on my subdomain in the form of a blog post. Example here. Do you think I could use that for my blogging platform or should I go with Dev.to like you said?

      Thanks!

      1. 1

        That's a hard question to answer, but I like hosting stuff on my own domain for control (and any SEO effort is yours) but at the same time dev.to and substack are good places to write to build an audience. I would probably do both! You can copy past a blog article into dev.to, so that is something I do sometimes, but I sort of feel I am not an expert at deciding these things and would like similar advice for myself.

        1. 1

          Yeah I do the same stuff with my Substack newsletter on dev.to

          Thanks for the advice :)

  4. 2

    dev.to might be the place for you.

    1. 1

      Yeah I've heard that a lot. Guess I'll have to try it out. 😉

  5. 2

    This is a great question @BraydenTW. I wrote a short post about it here last week. Looks like you've gotten some good suggestions already, but I think early stage businesses and startups should leverage content as a means of lead acquisition.

    It seems like you are already doing this to an extent but we can break it down into a 3 step process as follows:

    1. Define Your Leads
      Creating your ideal customer persona is an exercise that will help you better define your leads.
    2. Find Your Leads
      Think of the 2 or 3 core platforms or communities that are relevant to your niche product or service.
    3. Create Content your Leads will love
      Immerse yourself in a community where your potential customers are hanging out and begin providing valuable content and insights in your business niche. Answer questions, share thoughts, provide your unique take on the conversations that are going on.
    1. 2

      Thanks! Based off what people have said here, I'll try Twitter, Reddit and post on Dev.to

  6. 2

    Hey Brayden! I think this is the right time for me to introduce you to my tool - LeadCruise.com! Finding leads is always a pain. Especially, tailored & targeted leads that have a high conversion rate.

    With LeadCruise, you can target your audience & get leads with just a few clicks! You can try our 7-day free trial! (No Card Required)!

    Have a great day, Brayden!
    Cheers.

    1. 1

      Very interesting! I'll try it out :)

  7. 1

    @BraydenTW
    Have you tried to post on the relative Facebook group which maybe including:
    -People who are relatively new, start learning build websites
    -People who are possibly looking for starting online service maybe would need your service?

    or start collecting and running email list?

  8. 1

    Hey Brayden, selling templates like this is not easy at all. I keep seeing you plugging here on IH and that's great, however, keep in mind that a majority of people here are Yourselfers. Why pay when I can do it better than everyone else?

    I think for templates to be a success you need to niche down and really nail some designs for that niche. Real estate? Saas? Auto Shops? Doctors? Lawyers? You're competing with generalists in a field where they do NOT care if they earn money on their templates because they already have success. Niche down and provide examples.

    Also, all the animations turned me off immediately. You have to think about your clients and your client's clients. Every page is excessive in my opinion

    1. 1

      i mentioned the animations once before too... too much, i think.

  9. 1

    Linked in works great man. I always use it. If you need further tips, message me.

    1. 1

      Ok thanks. I'll let you know if I will choose that. 👍

  10. 1

    Hey Brayden, you might like the article "The Psychology of Twitter" here: https://linktr.ee/Hustle_Smarter

    1. 1

      Interesting. I'll look more into it today. Thanks @MrAtiebatie!

  11. 1

    Different ways, different use cases. If your potential customer is from IndieHacers or from Sub reddits you should maximize your exposure there.

    There are also online tools and software that helps you find new leads, I run a lead generation business coupled with a marketing suite. With SD Marketing Suite you can find unlimited email leads based on the industry, size, job titles etc., verify them, reach out to them by sales cadence etc. We don't limit on anything, email sending is unlimited too! Only limit is your time to find and automate campaigns. And we only charge $99 for customers that get on a call with us.

    That said there are a ton of other tools as well like Hunter.io, Voila Norbert, Facebook Ads, Snov.io and so on. Except for ads these tools have similar pricing point so it's best you should try one of these tools to find what works for you. We offer a 7-day trial and the tools I mentioned offer similar trial periods as well.

    Cheers

    1. 1

      Okay thanks. I'll think about it :)

  12. 1

    I run a cold email company that helps creative studios get leads using a tool called Growbots. onrampdata.com

    1. 1

      Hey, you can give a shot to LeadCruise.com! It's a tool I have built specifically for this very purpose!

      1. 1

        Looks interesting! Where do you get your data?

        1. 1

          We are planning to get data from IG, FaceBook, LinkedIn & Google Businesses. We have our own algorithm which provides our customers with fresh leads every time! If you are looking for a long term or more leads per day plan to grow your business, shoot me a mail at [email protected] & we can make a deal!

          Cheers.
          Yugen.

    2. 1

      Cool, I’ll check it out soon. :)

  13. 1

    Keep trying! That's all I can say. Make a goal to reach out to 10 people a day. I did this with a previous business (now shut down) and it helped me increase conversions.

    1. 1

      Thanks for the tip @motion_f2! I'll work on that ;)

  14. 1

    Depends what for. Whats your business ?

    1. 1

      buildfaster.co

      I'm trying to find potential clients to use my pre-made HTML themes.

      1. 2

        What sets you apart from Themeforest? At a first glance they provide more options to choose from and overall the design quality seems to be better. To me they just feel more "designed" and complete. They also provide multiple pages, blocks, demos, color schemes, illustrations, ...

        And last but not least, most of the templates they offer are cheaper! So you have the better known competitor that offers cheaper and better alternatives. What sets you apart? I'd perhaps focus here and then snatch potential leads from websites like Themeforest.

        Me (as a potential customer) if I was looking for a full-blown site I'd pick Themeforest (or other alternatives) over your site. If I was looking for something quick to test the water I could go with something free like onepagelove. Why should a potential customer pick you over onepagelove? One simple google search and you'll find tons of free high quality templates.

        How did you come up with pricing?
        Take for example StarGaze it's a simple one pager and you're asking $20, compare it to unfold Lite which is a free page from onepagelove.

        You're loading your pages in iFrames with comments intact. As a malicious user I could simply open the source copy paste the code and save myself $20.

        Overall I think your website has potential but the value it offers (for the prices you're asking) is low compared to better known alternatives.

        Finding leads will be hard if you can't provide more value than other popular alternatives. Focus on your product and the leads will find you.

        I know this was supposed to be a topic where you ask tips on finding leads, but in my opinion you should work on your product before focusing on the leads.

        1. 2

          Sites like Themeforest, has wider options but knowing something already sold 50k times already kinda puts me off. Sites like buildfaster feels like the boutique version of those huge marketplaces. What you get from these boutiques feels a bit more exclusive. Otherwise nobody would dare to compete on any market.

          After reading your comment, I thought about the offered value. If I were doing this business. I would take a look at my customers. If they bought multiple items. If not I would consider bundling templates, putting one price for all. It also a good initiative for someone who already thinks about buying one. They'll end up with extras. It has downsides like valuation of your own product.

          1. 1

            It may be a turnoff for some, and it may be the trigger for others to buy the template. The best-selling templates come with many blocks and tons of pages that you can customize. You can also sort by newest to find "exclusive" templates.

            I think most people who buy simple templates don't keep them for a long time but rather do it to save time in the beginning and once they verify the product they get something custom made.

            I like the idea of ​​bundling templates, but as you mentioned, it has drawbacks like valuation of the product. It is a difficult, difficult market and I really only wish nothing bu the best to @BraydenTW .

            1. 1

              Thanks for the tips. You too @anilkilic!

              1. 1

                You could perhaps offer a service where you fully customize the templates you sell. Clients could have the choice of buying the template as is or making it fully custom by you. (You'd provide images, text, color schemes... whatever they desire).

                The market would be a little bit different you'd focus more on mom and pops sites,local stores,restaurants,barbers, ... since it's more likely they won't want to change the templates themselves. You could offer them a full blown custom site ready for production for $xxxx. Heck you could add maintenance and hosting for a monthly fee.

                You just have to find a unique twist that sets you apart and offers added value. The possibilities are endless 👌

                1. 1

                  Wow! I was thinking of the same thing yesterday!

                  😅

                  Glad to see that someone confirmed it :)

                  I'll try it out and work it into the main flow of things in a week or so.

        2. 1

          I think this makes absolute sense. I agree with this. Thanks for showing me One Page Love. I haven't seen that source before and that will help me better understand one of my competitors.

          Thanks again for the advice!

      2. 0

        Dude you're missing out on a huge market. Do you not have a marketing guru?
        I can talk you through it. Let's jump on a call tomorrow for 30 minutes or over the weekend, and I will show you/talk you through what we are doing. How does that sound? Where are you based? I am based in the UK

        1. 1

          That's to kind. But sorry, I'm not comfortable with that this quick. No, I don't have a marketing guru.

          Could you reply to this comment with some tips you have for me?

          1. 0

            Really? Why are you not comfortable with that. That's one thing you need to change, networking is key to opportunities, opening doors, and ideas.

            So talking in communities is good, sharing ideas getting the word our the support for your platform. Thats amazing, the real growth happens in targeting an audience exactly like the people using your site. How do you do that? Facebook Ads, Google Ads, Google Analytics, GTM lots on techniques how. But let me know if you want me to jump on a call now..

            1. 3

              Hey @carlosw, It's okay if he doesn't feel comfortable with jumping on a call with you right away. Keep in mind that you literally just made contact with him half an hour ago.

              Accept that, please. 🙃

              1. 1

                I did accept it. I explained what I recommended and questioned it out of my pure curiosity :)

              2. 1

                Agreed @webdev_man. Not everyone is ready to meet with a total stranger they don't necessarily need at the time.

                1. 1

                  Some do some don't everyone is different, I just questioned it that's all. Meant no qualms, just enthusiastic to help.

            2. 2

              Carlos, it is simply that you sound too pushy in both the original post you made and this one. Like this is one of the most pushy things I've seen in a comment since I have been on the internet that isn't plain trolling.

              Please reflect on that, and your intentions to make that call. If you want to help people on calls like this and your are genuinely not trying to sell something on the first call (OK to mention what you do etc.) then I suggest to do this in a more subtle way.

              One way is to help people "for free" by giving advice as regular replies, then people who want will look up what your side projects are, and there you can advertise your offer of networking or free first hour of advice, or whatever it is.

            3. 1

              Yeah not sure about now because I am busy because I have to double up my work this next week for personal reasons.

              Thanks anyway :)

              1. 1

                I didn't mean now in that way sorry haha, I meant after my explanation if you need further in-depth help just ping me a message on here and I will happily help further :) Do what you need to do :) Ill be here

                1. 1

                  Ok thanks. I’ll let you know :)

                  1. 1

                    Theres a bunch of tutorials on youtube which are really good, some will give you some insights to what you might be missing out on. However be warned FB business manager has very recently changed the style of the platform. Trust me its a headache if youre trying to figure it out from an old tutorial.

                    1. 1

                      Thanks for your help! I’ll look into it.

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    This comment was deleted 4 months ago.

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