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From 0 to $1,000 MRR: How I Did It

I grew 🙂 Friendly from zero to 💰$1,000 MRR in 94 days building ethical marketing tools.

In the blog of Baremetrics I was invited to explain how exactly I did that.

Here is a summary:

1. Learn about alternatives to the traditional venture-backed start-up models.

Communities like this one or @sergiomattei' getmakerlog.com can be really helpful here.

2. Start with the audience, not the idea.

This tip from @arvidkahl has proven to be gold for me:

I found it in his free online guide about bootstrapping a business.

You should also check out is book! zerotosoldbook.com

3. Decide whether you want to do something for businesses or consumers.

Pieter @levelsio's advocacy for B2B helped me a lot.

4. Product Hunt is great for launching. But you should test your product before with a smaller audience.

I could have got more out of the launch of my first product if I had done that.

In this blog post here on Indie Hackers, @DannyPostma describes how to do it better.

5. In the beginning the % of customers who cancel will be higher because your product is not yet mature. Do not let this discourage you.

This table shows our customer development until reaching $1,000 MRR. Only about half of the customers stayed.

6. Think about making your numbers public and becoming an Open Startup.

This not only creates more trust with colleagues and customers, but is also great for marketing.

Baremetrics offers a curated list at openstartups.com.

We are proudly one of them! friendly.is/open

Want to know more?

Find out the whole story in this blog post:

https://baremetrics.com/blog/friendly-growth-study

  1. 2

    Thanks for sharing your story with us at Baremetrics!

  2. 2

    Congrats man! Not so easy to achieve but next 10K would take half of the time I believe 👊

  3. 2

    This is one of the most important post I have read in a long time. Thank you!!

  4. 2

    Congratulation on the milestone!

    Small feedback, reading your landing page it was not obvious to me what was so ethical with product besides your analytics being privacy friendly?

    Is there something else?

    If that's the case I would definitely put some highlight on it on your landing.

    1. 1

      Thanks Pierre!

      You are right, we should make the landing page more clear on the ethical aspects.

      You are right, at Friendly Analytics the focus is on privacy. We don't collect any personally identifiable information (PII).

      Friendly Automate as a marketing automation solution however requires a certain of personal tracking.

      We try to make this as ethical as possible. Our approach is that we store the tracking data on our own servers in Switzerland and the EU and not in the clouds of the tech giants in the USA.

      We are constantly thinking about how we can make the offer more ethical. If you have ideas, we'd love to hear them.

      1. 1

        "We try to make this as ethical as possible. Our approach is that we store the tracking data on our own servers in Switzerland and the EU and not in the clouds of the tech giants in the USA."

        Definitely something I would emphasize on my landing page 😉

        I think that every yes to the answers below could be marketed as "ethical"

        • are your datacenter carbon-free or working on reliable energy?
        • do you refuse to you use tracking pixels for marketing purpose?
        • do you refuse to you use tracking pixels on your email marketing tool?
        • are you GDPR compliant even for users outside of the EU

        There's probably more to it but I think that's all I can think of rn.

        1. 1

          This is very helpful, thanks Pierre! We will work on becoming more and more ethical, and also communicating it better.

          We will also donate a percentage of our revenue for charity. More on that soon.

  5. 2

    What customer acquisition channel is working out for you? and how are you planning on doubling down on it?

    1. 1

      So far our customers come about one third each from my network, affiliates and content marketing (including social media and SEO).

      I will double (or triple) down on content marketing because that seems to me to be the most sustainable strategy. It takes longer until it works, but you can benefit from it for a long time.

      1. 1

        Great! How are you recruiting affiliates? Affiliate networks (I have heard a lot about JVZoo) or signing them up by backlink outreach?

        1. 1

          So far I only asked a few persons I knew very well if they want recommend Friendly. And I have been approached by also just a few people who came across us via our website or on social media.

          For me the integrity of my affiliates are of highest importance. I think there is a lot that can go wrong with it otherwise.

          This is why I do things that don't scale here – and set up a call with every potential affiliate before working together (if I don't know them already).

  6. 1

    Great, thanks for sharing! Looking forward reading more on your journey.

  7. 1

    Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  8. 1

    Congrats on the milestone - Amazing read!

    1. 1

      Thank you so much Fernando! 😊

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