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I have finished my MVP. Should I make it public or try to find some specific beta users first?

Last month, we finished building the MVP for jogen.io, a platform that enables creators/influencers/makers to monetize their interactions with their followers.

So here is the thing, we don't know what to do next:

  • try to find a bunch of close friends / creators that are willing to test the product with their audience
  • or just release it, share it everywhere and see what it happens and if people are actually interested in it or not

First option sounds better, but maybe those creator are very picky, or just simply aren't a good fit and we loose the momentum/enthusiasm about it.

What do you guys think? Has anyone some experience with this dilemma?

  1. 8

    Congratulations on the MVP, Adrian! 🙌

    Unfortunately, "build it and they will come" rarely works, so I'll definitely focus on the first point. You need to talk to as many potential users as possible, gather feedback and iterate. Here's a few things you can start with:

    • find potential users on Twitter/Instagram and DM them asking for feedback
    • find people talking about similar/competing products on Twitter/Reddit/Quora and join the conversation
    • find people who upvoted similar/competing products on ProductHunt → visit their website/Twitter and ask for feedback

    Good luck,
    Filip @ tally.so

    1. 1

      Thanks Filip! Yeah, I do agree that the second approach rarely works but it can save you from spending too much time on something that is actually not really needed. We'll try the cold approach, maybe AB-testing different DMs or focusing on a niche first.

      Anyway, thanks for the feedback!

  2. 3

    Hey Adrian Congrats,

    I totally agree with @filipminev. Even if you just release your product, you have to do things that don't scale; like reaching your potential users one by one.

    Just go and recruit them personally, and vigorously responsive with your support :)

    Good luck with your product!

    Firat from Fluffzy

  3. 2

    Congrats on the MVP.

    To answer your question, I would say do both but manage things carefully. Use this early time to gather feedback, test your product and other products with your users, and make sure 100% that you truly understand the underlying "jobs" of the creators relating to monetisation.

    Monetising audiences has been a growing trend that Twitter and other platforms are now pushing our features for to enter this space.

    The point is, the market is there. What you need to test is whether Jogen.io serves any unmet needs for your potential audience.

    Here's what I would try:

    • Reach out to specific creators willing to take a look at your product. Do some basic qualitative user testing around their initial reactions. ~5 people would be good here.

    • Do a soft release first. Let a few people in and qualify them first - have them answer a few easy questions when they sign up for the beta. That way you can happily share it openly knowing you're not going to miss any chances - you control who gets in the front door.

    Make sure your landing page is super sharp first! You should post on IH asking for people to roast your landing page. On that note, read anything @olly has written on landing pages, including his recent Twitter thread that went viral. Once you've made any obvious changes, then invite the lovely people on IH to roast it.

    1. 1

      Thanks a lot typeofgraphic for those amazing recommendations.

      make sure 100% that you truly understand the underlying "jobs" of the creators relating to monetisation

      Completely agree. Monetisation is always a delicate topic and it needs to be ultra clear what it implies.

      Good point also on the landing page + roasting. One interesting thing that I've noticed is that even though a "test" or "demo" flow is offered, very few people actually try it, so there is some room for improvement there.

      Thanks again!

      1. 1

        great stuff :)

        I'm curious what the unmet needs and jobs-to-be-done actually would be with creators for this. If you ever post anything on this, I'll definitely read it.

  4. 2

    Congratulations on your MVP!

    Its better to get users and send it to your users and get a feedback, you can gauge how well you are doing and get the needed metrics from users and save time. I am waiting for my MVP to finish as well, let us know on what you decide maybe I can get some tips from you

  5. 2

    Congrats on the MVP! Based on my experience, I recommend you to do both. "Build it and they will come"? Maybe they do! I was surprised to put my product out there and a couple of days later seeing complete strangers actually paying for it. That will actually motivate you to make improvements faster.

    Make sure to add a feedback component in the early stages to collect as much input as you can.

    I agree with you, that your first option sounds better and will probably bring some specific type of feedback, but if you're calling it an MVP just put it out, you may be surprised.

    You may have heard: "If you're not embarrassed by the first version of your product, you've launched too late"

    1. 1

      Thanks qnk for the feedback!

      Make sure to add a feedback component in the early stages to collect as much input as you can.

      We do have a feedback widget. Was it not clear or not visible?

      And yes, a lot of iterations are ahead, that is for sure :)

  6. 1

    Hey @willylatorre, congrats on the MVP!

    Here is a quick thought.
    Don't forget to set the respective success criteria & CTA in advance. i.e. how many creators/influencers/makers do you need to reach out to? how many of them must show great interest in your product (in ratio)? (These ballpark numbers should be aligned with your desired traction model.) In this way, you will get a better sense of whether your product is desirable and your business model is viable.

    Anyway, it is all about learning at this point. Good luck!

    1. 1

      Thanks @ChiaBoon!

      how many of them must show great interest in your product (in ratio)?

      Good point but I suppose that at this point it doesn´t really matter. Maybe it is very appealing for an specific niche, but you have to find it. Anyway, there is a very negligent maintenance cost, so the business model is "viable" with very little.

  7. 1

    it's up to you!! share it, get some feedback! congrats on the launch!

  8. 1

    Your next job is to get a few people using the product repeatedly as an operational part of their business. Not once as a novelty, but using it over and over.

    You will get there fastest by starting with people you know, friends of friends, etc. Or via DM or email to likely customers. It's very hands-on and time-intensive to land the first customer and make them successful in using your product.

    Only after that would I market to "strangers", putting your product out on the places that new products are launched/shared.

  9. 1

    Looks good @willylatorre ! If you have the luxury of time, I would try a 30-day private beta to really clean up any potential bugs or even just getting user feedback on the UI/UX and what features are important. Maybe if you have time, even adding a feature you may not have thought about.

    I see some great feedback from other Indie Hackers below so I would try those suggestions on cold outreach and start talking to customers.

    As a content creator myself, I do see value in your product and the UI looks pretty sleek so far! Great job.

    As far as messaging, I'd try to really differentiate the product from the likes of Patreon / Cameo / OnlyFans / Buymeacoffee.

    I already know the difference, sort of a la carte on-demand service, but potential customers should be able to easily see why your product is better. It's rare for a creator to invest into all of the above platforms, so try to stand out and be the top product that is the best combination of all those.

    Cheers

  10. 1

    Nice! As most suggested, I would DM 100 influencers on Instagram with the goal of closing 3-5 of them. I would offer the platform for free and interviewing and asking them constantly about their problems and coming up with features to solve those.

    I would also niche down to specific influencers, like tech YouTubers/ food bloggers and so on

    if those are medium-big influencers they have huge networks and can get you other users easily once you provide them huge value and find a market fit

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