Brightpod was launched on April 16th. We did what we could — wrote about it, spread it on social networks and connected with bloggers. It has been around 2 months now and I wanted to sum up some stuff that I have learnt.
1. People in beta didn’t upgrade. It was folks whom came to our site organically are the ones most likely to upgrade. Don’t expect friends to upgrade. They just want to know what you are up to.
2. Automating analytics can save you a ton of time that otherwise would have gone in creating excel dashboards etc. We use Google Analytics, KISSMetrics and Intercom. They work wonders. This powers our marketing and product management plans.
3. Blogging helps. If you believe in something you need to write about it and align with people who think the same way. In the last few months we have built up our blog to have 58 articles. 20% of the traffic to the blog is now organic (almost all from Google searches). Around 8% of blog readers convert to a trial signup. The key is to have well written and researched posts that help people. No fluff. We consistently write 2 articles per week.
4. Going niche (collaboration for marketing teams) was a good decision and I still stick by it. I met skeptics along the way but I still believe that the future of SaaS apps is going niche. General-purpose apps have been built and there are plenty to choose from. Going niche is where you need to really think about how your app affects your chosen target audience. Today, 80% of our customers are marketing and creative agencies that use Brightpod with their clients on a daily basis.
5. Did someone say that software is eating the world? I think that should be changed to “free is eating the world”. Free apps and services are hard to compete with.
6. Customers want features. In reality, 37Signal’s “less is more” doesn’t hold true. Less is always less. More is great. Customers want more features for the same price or for free.
7. Low touch worked a few years back when there were fewer apps and online services. Today, the Internet is flooded with dozens of apps for every category. It is impossible to just compete on features, simplicity and a marketing website. Automatic inbound is great but still not enough. Customers want service. They want to know that there is a team out there who is taking care of them and who is also helping them grow their business.
8. Ultimately, it all boils down to value. Your app could be wonderfully designed, fast, speedy, clean and with cool real-time sh** built into it. But, if the customer does not see value for their business (growth, saved time etc.) then no matter what you do they are not going to be paying for it. Focus on delivering value through all these channels and nothing else.
Thanks for reading. If you have suggestions/comments please let me know below. Have a great week.