900+ Newsletter Subscribers and 1k+ Podcast Dl's

My effort to deliver my content through multiple channels really seems to work out.

The Bootstrapped Founder Newsletter is now at over 900 subscribers, and my favorite part is that last week's edition had exactly one unsubscriber. The rest seems to be very happy with what I write, which is a MASSIVE validation for me.

The same seems to start with my podcast, where I read aloud my articles and then comment on them. Slowly, the download counts there have been ramping up, too.

I have been releasing one new episode per workday for a week now, and will continue until I have caught up with my previous writing. In a week or two, the release cadence will go back to weekly.

You can see the current stats and how they developed here.

The next milestone will be 1k newsletter subscribers. Really looking forward to that.

  1. 2

    Congrats Arvid! Im curious to know what has your experience been between developing and validating a free service (TBF podcast, blog, newsletter) vs. a paid product (Feedback Panda)?

    1. 3

      It was an interesting experience so far, and it's definitely different. Here are a few things I noticed:

      • People are more grateful for free content. I suspect that when you pay for a product, any "thankfulness" is included in your payment. I have received much more positive and encouraging feedback, and people regularly express their gratitude without asking for more.
      • People have lower expectations. Compared to selling a product, even at a low price point, I have not seen any comments that would have expressed that what I wrote was "not enough". On the contrary, people have expressed that I produce too much :)
      • People don't ask for "new features" as much. With the exception of Peter who encouraged me to turn my articles into podcast episodes, I have yet to receive any "feature requests". Those are a daily occurrence when you run a paid service.
      • Things still can still be monetized, but more passively. The funniest thing happened when I released Zero to Sold, my (then) 25k-word guide. People asked to be able to pay for it, wondering if I would ever release this as a for-purchase eBook. Additionally, the exposure from the blog, podcast, and newsletter has resulted in a number of consulting requests, so in a way, the free content resulted in a sort of compensation.

      Validation seems very hard at this time because the moment where I can truly validate if all of this was a good idea is when I publish my for-purchase eBook, and see if people actually purchase it. I will likely do some sort of pre-sale, but I am confident from the metrics that I have on the blog, podcast, and newsletter that my content is valuable already. A 99+% retention of newsletter subscribers suggests that very strongly.

      Developing content is also much less stressful. As I have only one deadline every week, which is 9 am EST every Friday for my newsletter to be sent out, all my content creation has to happen somewhere between two Fridays. All writing, researching, thinking, and reflecting can happen at any time, and there is no "customer service " in the traditional sense. All I need to do is to continue being interested in the bootstrapping world. And that's an amazing world to be interested in.

  2. 1

    Awesome. Have been listening to the podcast and liking the content around finding markets, pain and problems.

    Where are you getting newsletter subscribers from?

    1. 1

      100% from people reading my content or interacting with me on Twitter. They read my stuff, they see the signup form following each article, and some of them sign up. Reliably, every single day.

      1. 1

        That's an awesome organic "funnel" to have in place.

        I need to focus on my twitter game as I see it working really well for people.

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