Growth October 17, 2020

I've launched tons of times. What next, marketing-wise?

Louis Barclay @lgwb89

Hey y'all,

My custom-domain-for-anything product, Cloakist has done OK so far. $300 MRR, 25 customers, 3 months in. Cloakist has been launched tons of times now, under various different versions - in all the places you'd expect (PH, HN, online threads of people complaining about the problem).

My question is: what next, marketing-wise?

Some options I'm considering:

  • Content marketing (although not sure which type exactly)
  • SEO
  • Paid ads (jeez, I really don't want to give Google and Facebook my hard-earned MRR)
  • Affiliate (seems a bit early)

My take on marketing is that I should experiment with all of these, see what works. But I'd love to hear from micro-SaaS people on what's worked for you to improve growth when you were roughly the size I'm at now.

  1. 2

    Looking at your landing page, I would replace the examples shown with the real examples on the example page. The Cloakist for Substack example with the large image showcases the product perfectly.

    I would go for content marketing. Write about DNS, Substack, domain names or other things that your service involves where you can demonstrate expertise. Your potential customers may know nothing about DNS in particular, so perhaps primers on that -- and how to change DNS settings at popular webhosts -- may be useful/popular.

    Your service is actually very interesting. Surely a lot of Substack users might find cloakist useful. A load of Substack users inhabit this site. You could always drop them a quick email via their Substack sites offering your service. I do think your pricing is a little steep, but that perhaps is another discussion.

    1. 1

      This is some fantastic feedback. Thanks a lot. Going to implement it and also use your ideas in my content marketing strategy. Out of interest: I'm tempted to do all the content marketing myself because I don't have much of a budget to play with, but do you think it's worth trying to hire someone?

      1. 2

        Thanks. Do the content marketing yourself. Nobody knows the product better than you. You do not need to write Shakespeare, just short-ish articles about the service, the tech involved etc. This guy is a good example: https://anchor.host/blog/ He is on IH somewhere, and has been interviewed. His articles are not salesy, but underline his credibility. He knows what he is doing, which is reassuring to the WP agencies that supply him the end customer.

        Then there is this guy: https://wpjohnny.com/wordpress-blogging/

        Writes a whole load of stuff about WordPress and blogging, including epic reads such as this: https://wpjohnny.com/ultimate-wordpress-speed-optimization-guide/

        After reading that guide, if I wanted my WP site sped up, then I would hand over my £££ and not even look elsewhere: https://wpjohnny.com/wordpress-speed-optimization-service/

        If you are an ace with DNS, say, then write about that. What questions do your customers ask (prospective and actual)? Use those to trigger blog articles to answer those questions.

        The beauty of content marketing is that all sorts of people can/will get into contact with you, which may lead to other ideas and opportunities. Those people will want to speak to you, the person with the skill and the knowledge, not the hired hand churning out dull copy that lacks passion about the service.

        Another point with your Substack service is finding a profitable/popular Substack newsletter can't be too hard. If you can find one willing to use your service (you say "have you considered cloakist, it makes your signup more professional"), then other Substackers may follow suit (because they see so-and-so uses cloakist and makes a lot of £££ from new signups...).

        I would try and get more real-life examples onto your website. Everyone with a Substack wants extra promotion, so perhaps cutting a deal for a high(ish)-profile Substacker testimonial on your site could be worth it.

        1. 1

          This is absolute gold. Thank you so much. Can't tell you how much I appreciate it!

    1. 1

      That's awesome, go for it!

  2. 1

    Another option that you can consider is offer a lifetime deal on platforms like AppsumoMarketplace. They are running a special deal till year end. See a fellow IH member talking about this in a different thread - https://www.indiehackers.com/post/did-you-consider-launching-on-appsumo-a4f0e060d1.
    Having said that running lifetime deals on Appsumo is more of a marketing & customer development investment than a sales and profit outcome. You can get full value of it if you are open to the lifetime community (in Appsumo and FB communities linked to it; audience consists of agencies and small business owners) suggestions. You satisfy them, they will be the flag bearers and amplify your business.

  3. 1

    Just recently joined this community which is kinda focused on helping people such as yourself and myself on how to grow with each other to tackle these audience problems http://viralwegrow.com/

  4. 1

    I need to speak with you to get a better understanding of 2 things:

    1. Why do you do what you do
    2. Why would someone pay you to do this for them

    Once I understand your motivation and what state of being/emotion you are looking to lead the user to, then we can spit out a story to help them see your vision of their future (with your product) and hopefully make them understand that they desperately need your service.

    If you are up for a chat,
    I look forward to spending 15 to 30 minutes with you on this!

  5. 1

    What are ur learning materials during this journey?

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