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This is my third attempt at a micro-SaaS

Hey Indie Hackers. 👋

I'm on my third attempt at building a micro-SaaS. Here's why the first two didn't work out:

  • svgflipbook.com - got zero customers. People bought the standalone app for a one-time fee, but nobody wants this as a SaaS.

  • hostedgitea.com - got two customers. I mistook search volume on the term "gitea" as demand for this product. People prefer to self-host Gitea. Content marketing and ads both failed to get sufficient volume.

TweetFeast banner

My third attempt at a micro-SaaS is tweetfeast.com. It's a no-code tool for downloading Twitter data without API keys. I'm building in public and posting updates on this Twitter thread if you want to follow along:

This time around I am using what I learned from selling music apps and games and launching previous projects. Here's what I am doing differently:

  • Work on content as well as code.
  • Building in public from the outset.
  • Launch on multiple platforms, multiple times.
  • Dedicating fixed time each week to work on it like a job.
  • Careful research to work out the features people actually want.

I'm not ready to launch just yet, but I will let you know how it goes.

Thanks for reading 🙏 and shouts out to my ClojureScript folks!

  1. 7

    Why do you think "Building in public" will help you? I will buy your product if I need it, not because you built it in public.

    1. 3

      It’s a form of marketing

    2. 1

      Good question, and correct.

      The most basic reason is simple math. Let's say X is the number of people who buy it, and Y is the number of people who even see it. X is always a small percentage of Y. Building in public is one of many ways to increase Y. If a person who needs the thing never even sees the thing, they are not going to buy it.

      It's not only about the math. Marketing is extremely non-linear. This kind of marketing also has the following effects:

      • You build a reputation as somebody who ships. This gives your products credibility. An interested buyer can see you adding features etc. I didn't realize about this effect of building in public until I started to get feedback from people.

      https://twitter.com/_MattHill_/status/1322568737749229568

      • People will support your effort. For evidence look at the replies to this post. This is motivating and it holds you to account. That makes it easier to keep going. It also makes it more likely that somebody will recommend your thing to a friend who needs it, even if they don't need it themselves.

      • It builds the marketing habit. Incorporating updates into my workflow changed the importance and attention I give to marketing in general.

      I have tried both "building in public" and building in obscurity then doing "marketing" afterwards, and the second way never went anywhere.

      Building in public is not the only way to market of course. It makes sense for people to try different strategies that work for them and their project. For me personally it works with my current process.

    3. 1

      Hey, RadiKal I slightly agree with but here chris clearly highlighted that he is focusing more on SEO and exposing the weeker domain in public could be a biggest disaster for the business but on the other hand BIP may help the website to grow, Word of Mouth, Initial Customers, and some handful amount of backlinks!

  2. 2

    Nice job, Chris! Third times the charm! 🙌

  3. 2

    Love your efforts and consistency! Keep going!

  4. 2

    Good luck, keep going !

  5. 2

    awesome, third time's a charm as they say!

  6. 2

    Hey Chris , Good luck to you.

    I have been building multiple projects as well.

  7. 2

    How long did you try each of the ideas? I'm sitting on an idea I've been working on since March but having very little success as I also read the data wrong and "oh yeah, I'd use that" is not something to move off of.

    1. 1

      My failed SaaS projects have been online a year or more. I worked on each for a few months.

      Don't sit on your idea. Put it out as soon as possible. See if anybody will buy it. If it will take too long to build, put out mockups and posts explaining the idea and get sign ups.

      If nobody wants it, throw your idea away.

  8. 1

    Good luck, Chris! Really inspiring

  9. 1

    Nice to see you're using what you learned from previous failed ventures into your current business.

    Best wishes!

  10. 1

    Hey Chris , Good luck to you.

    I have been building multiple projects as well.

  11. 1

    Good luck with your new project!

  12. 1

    Hey @chr15m, kudos for the never say die attitude. I love the grit.

    Happy to check it out once it is officially launched!

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