I'm bootstrapping a Relationship Management platform, currently at $600/MRR. AMA.

Hey all,

Feel's a little strange doing one of these (as I still feel like a complete rookie at this stuff), but a promise is a promise!

Maybe there'll be something of value that comes out of it for someone!

My name's Chris, and I'm a solo, first-time, (originally) non-technical founder. My company is PoliTraQ - the all-in-one Advocacy Management Platform for government relations professionals.

As a lobbyist by trade - still working on behalf of a research university - I learned to code and built PoliTraQ to help keep on top of our engagements with government (for reporting and compliance purposes).

I spun it out as an evenings-and-weekends project in January 2020 and have been slowly growing it ever since. Currently sitting just under $600 MRR - thanks to some one-off income, TTM of approx. $14,000.

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    Where did you market your service? What worked best?

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      Thanks for the question! My primary channel has been cold email. In Canada, any individual or organization who lobbies more than a certain amount is required to register with a federal oversight body. It's not perfect (there's a lot of activity which doesn't qualify for registration) but it gives me a sense as to who I need to reach out to, as well as what issues they're active on - so I can tailor a tour or demo to that use case.

      As I mentioned in another reply, I've also used Twitter to build brand ID. Lobbyists are always looking for third-party proof that they're active (since there's so few quant metrics in use in the industry). I'll post a link to a committee webcast, tagging the orgs that'll be appearing. They get a post (with an image that includes my logo) that they can re-post and share with their audiences, while I get the benefit of word-of-mouth.

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        Very clever that strategy on Twitter.

        Thanks for the response!

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    Whats the process been like ranking for keywords related to Pubic Affairs Software given earlier you mentioned that most people in the industry are still "using business cards?"

    Also keen to know more about the"one-off" income, what acquisition channel did this customer/customers come from?


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      That's a process I'm still coming around to. I've had to take a bit of a different approach in gaining visibility - using twitter to promote committee appearances by advocacy groups. Lobbyists love twitter, and having something that they can re-share (that shows they're doing their job and representing their org's interests) gets me on their radar.

      The one-off income was a combination of a one-time, group-rate promotion for members of an advocacy organization, some reimbursement-based seed funding, and an instance where the customer only required use of the platform for a set period of time.

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    Hey Chris,

    Cool that you've built the platform to address your currently needs as a lobbyist - what types of tech are lobbyists using generally?

    Do you see the Advocacy Management space as similar to the CRM space just serving a different persona?

    Best of luck.

    1. 1

      Thanks for the Q's!

      To your second question - and @sethking 's as well - Advocacy Management is our take at branding "Public Affairs Software", which is the term some of our comparators use. Each is usually focused on a specific region - PoliTraQ for example is designed with the Canadian market in mind, but with integrations for the US as well.

      Broad strokes - its a CRM with some adjustments to the data models and how they connect with one another. In our case, we integrate legislative monitoring - so your entry for an elected official in our platform would also show, for example: what committees they're on (with webcast links), bills they've introduced, times they appear in the transcripts, and who else they've met with.

      Depending on the jurisdiction (some markets - the US being the obvious - are a bit more developed) there are a handful of similar platforms. In our market, the majority are still not using any platform - with email, calendars, and literally "stacks of business cards" being some of the alternatives I hear the most. From what I've heard from a past accelerator mentor, very similar to sales when CRM's were starting to roll out.

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    Cheers, Chris. Curious about the Advocacy Management Platform space in general, who are the other players in this space and is it nascent or am I just ignorant of it ;)

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