Product Development October 13, 2020

Struggling to activate users into paid users.

Michael Aubry @storycreator

I just crossed 4.4k signups and am not happy with my MRR right now.

I believe I have a solid product but I feel like there are some blind spots. My focus this week is mainly traction and testing channels like paid ads.

Before investing heavily in that I would like a little transparency in my funnel to see where the holes are.

Would you be so kind to test my flow and report back with any turn offs, frustrations, and feedback?

This would be really helpful in optimizing my traction efforts to try and convert a higher percentage of the traffic I send.


  1. 4

    Hey Michael, congrats on crossing 4.4k signups. I would highly suggest you to speak with your users (e.g. 20-30 of them) and do an interview(not a survey) and ask them about the value that they get and do they see a big enough value to pay 15$/m. Once you understand that value and develop in that direction also conversion should go up.

    Also, I would highly recommend you not to go for paid ads for now, but rather find some kind of activities where you can develop a close relationship with your users (e.g. physical/online meetup for creators to teach them on a certain topic). The most important thing in the beginning is to have a very loyal user base, it doesn't have to be hundreds of them it's enough 10. But try to find that 10 and develop a strong relationship with them and tailor to their needs.

    Also, potentially how you can make it "viral" is for free users to implement a referral program (e.g. if you bring a friend you get 5 extra videos).

    1. 1

      Just to add on Aleksa's, if you need examples of how to implement a successful referral program, you can head over to and select "Referral" as the strategy type for a few case studies.

      If you're looking for something simple, Hodlbot's strategy is the one.

      If you're after something extensive, Morning Brew has got one of the best referral system set up.

  2. 3

    Firstly, 4.4k signups is great.

    You clearly don't have an issue converting people from landing page to signup (your landing page is actually very attractive!), so while some of the other advice in this thread related to your landing page is useful, it's not quite addressing the issue here.

    I also think talking to your customers / users goes without saying, so hopefully by now you have some idea what people are looking to achieve, what features they are looking for etc. You and I both know however that things are never as black and white as "build magic feature -> get more customers". It just doesn't work like that. I've even had potential users be very specific about features they supposedly want, and then not commit to upgrading when that feature is released. So take all user / customer feedback with a pinch of salt and view it all through a macro, long-term roadmap of where you want your product to go.

    With that said, here's two things I think will help you.

    Free Plan -> Free Trial

    Personally I would get rid of the free plan, but we follow each other on twitter so you probably have heard me say stuff like that already :) Free plans just attract the wrong type of user, maybe a fraction of them will end up upgrading to a paid plan eventually, but it will be a small percentage. Most likely when their needs outgrow your free plan, they will simply hop to another free service. I believe that "Free" is a mindset, it's not a stage of a funnel - meaning the users who want free, mostly want free forever.

    I also don't buy the argument that watermarking free videos is "free marketing" for products like this. Low quality free users have low quality audiences, all this does is market your product to more people looking for free tools...

    The Aha Moment

    This is what I found useful myself, in increasing the conversion of trial to paid users in my SaaS. Come up with a hypothesis (based on your intuition and some data about your paid users) as to what your user's "aha" moment is. The point where they go "ok this product is cool, I want to sign up". Most likely it's something related to "creating my first movie" or "creating 3 movies" etc.

    Then work backwards and plot waypoints in the user journey towards that aha moment. In order to get there, they are going to need to do things like (I'm making this part up):

    • choose a template
    • add some footage
    • type some text
    • export the video
    • duplicate the video and create a different one


    Your job is to then create UX signposts to nudge the user towards this goal. Track the conversion from one step to the next step and you'll see where people are dropping off. Each week, pick a part of the funnel and try to increase the amount of people getting to the next step. Over time, this all adds up into an increased sign up to paid conversion rate.

  3. 3

    Pretty cool design everything look good from outside.

    See if your customer have something better. Alternative or try forcing output (give watermaker)

    Because if your customer is getting what they need for free they wont pay

  4. 2

    As mentioned, speak to your customers (paid and free).

    Other thoughts from somebody with no knowledge of video editing :-)

    What does your editor do that can't be done for free?

    Free tier gives 5 videos a month -- equals 1 a week. Seems quite generous, when many users may wish to produce just a handful of videos because they use the same ones all the time.

    Your top menu has 'changelog' and 'about', which are not that interesting, while to get to the interesting product stuff, I have to click on 'blog' and 'product'.

    Some of your blog headlines (e.g. how to create video memes) are attractive. Why not bring these articles out from the shadows and put links to them on the home page? Why not change 'speed up production time' on the home page to something like 'create a video meme in 5 mins or less'

    Ah ha --
    "I am able to create an audiogram in under 5 minutes." --> 'Create an audiogram in 5 minutes'. That is your headline.

    And why is this podcast-to-video link hidden in the footer? Why does 'tools' at the top lead to just a trimmer? Add 'features' to the top menu to show off this page:

    "Create beautiful videos. etc" --> "Create beautiful videos ready to go viral. You don't have to be an expert. Get started now, no account required."

    Has any user had a video go viral? If so, tell us about it!

    And where is the showcase of user videos? Put those on the home page not just bland testimonials.

    (Edit -- ok, just noticed lots of good feedback from this earlier message:

    Also, the underlying sales pitch from the website seems to be from a tech point of view. Speed, ease-of-use etc. I guess users primarily want their videos to go viral. How can your service help me with that?? You probably need a customer with viral video expertise to market your product --> "this is how I got 1m views using storycreator...".

  5. 2

    I tried it, but I didn't register. Here is what I noticed so far.

    I feel like that the registration modal can be improved and it is a weak point in the current funnel. I would try the following treatments:

    1. Customize the message of the modal. It should be a continuation of the current user's scenario, i.e. trying out the tool and creating a video. For example, it can be something along these lines "Register now to get your video ..."

    2. At this point I wasn't aware about the pricing and plans. I was confused—is it free or not? It just says "Let's get your account set up". What do I get for free? In which case should I pay? What's the difference between the plans?

  6. 2

    Note : i am writing this without trying (i will try using)

    My suggestion :

    1. Try emailing them and ask for features they would love to pay or just ask why are they not paying

    2. Engage, create trust

    3. Try giving free trail

    4. Try something refer friend and give them free account

    5. Try reaching quality customer ( how are willing to pay) you can do this using SEO & Youtube collabration with creator

    There are alot of way to make this possible i will wish you get better MMR (fingercross:emoji) let me know if i can help you with f
    Digital marketing and seo stuff, Best of luck

  7. 2

    I would also like to know your impression on the copy. Who do you think this product is made for?

    1. 1

      My first impression is that this service is for SMM marketers who work on social media with stories like Instagram. I think the name of the service is pretty clear and the first message I see when I come to the landing page.

  8. 1

    I highly recommend reading Traction
    ( )

    It gives you a ton of options on how to gain traction and test different channels and optimize which work best for your business.

  9. 1

    Hi Michael,

    I wonder why you are asking for our help to check your funnel for leaks or weak spots. Ideally, you should have analytics set up to tell you that information. Are you not getting a clear enough picture there?

  10. 1

    I would go with this approach: Asking 4 questions in a survey:

    1. How would you feel if you could no longer use Story Creator? A) Very disappointed B) Somewhat disappointed C) Not disappointed
    2. What type of people do you think would most benefit from Story Creator?
    3. What is the main benefit you receive from Story Creator?
    4. How can we improve Story Creator for you?

    From this you should understand how good is your marketfit, where to focus and maybe also how to get the right features for free and paid version. Couldn't try it out myself though. :-)

    At the end it's about bringing a real value to the right customers, not increasing MRR (should be a side effect).

    1. 1

      I wanted to read but no, not even half a wheel spin I get asked to type in my mail to unlock the content. Ok, now he got a random 10minute mail. What's the point in collecting such emails? I hate when getting asked for email after 3 seconds time on site.

      1. 1

        Totally agree, somehow reloading the page once and I can fully read it. It's just too much to explain in a post.

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