Episode 39: Your Product Business Is An Asset w/Glenn Stovall

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Consultant and freelance developer Glenn Stovall joins the show to talk about how he diversified into the product business. We cover the idea of products as a long-term play, the true nature of a launch, and shadow work!

Bootstrapped Product Talking Points

  • Why a product business launch is a process, not an event
  • Why products won’t earn like services – and that’s OK
  • Adjusting from service sales to product sales
  • How pulling back on scale can help you ship
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 Show Notes:
Dependable: Deliver Software on Time and On Budget – Glenn’s new book
Special deal on Dependable for Chasing Product listeners
Glenn on Twitter
Gumroad
Small Product Lab
30×500
Amy Hoy – creator of 30×500, previous Chasing Product guest
Spin Selling
Drip – Lightweight Marketing Automation That Doesn’t Suck
Marketing for Developers
Justin Jackson
Majestic SEO – Marketing Search Engine & Backlink Checker
Thrive Themes – Conversion-Focused WordPress themes
Editflow – editorial calendar for scheduling blog posts
Audience Ops – content marketing service & tools
Brian Casel – founder of AudienceOps, previous Chasing Product guest
Remarq – create stunning documents from Markdown in seconds
Stripe – oh, come on, you know what Stripe is!
War of Art – book about winning the inner creative battle, by Steven Pressfield
Do The Work – overcome Resistance and get out of your own way, by Steven Pressfield

Glenn didn’t start out in the product business.  Like many of us, he started out working in an agency.  After taking a 5-year long “semester off” from college, he found himself in an agency position, managing other developers.  After later making his way into his own business, Glenn spent 3 productive years freelancing before considering launching a product business.

Glenn learned about the importance of scope in the product business after participating in the Gumroad Small Product Lab.  His initial product was going to be a Saas app but he reduced the scope and launched a book instead. This product would serve as seed material when he launched Dependable a year later, providing more valuable experience and asset-building for Glenn’s product business.

We talk about the disconnect between the skills needed for service business sales and product business sales.  Glenn points out that product is a long-term game, and that it won’t earn the same money in an immediate time frame that services will.  We talk about how building a product business is like building an asset, and the fringe benefits that come from having product on the market.

Glenn shares his basic marketing stack with us, and talks about some of his go-to moves for growing his product business.  Then he caps off the interview by sharing 3 action items for his fellow founders.

One thought on “Episode 39: Your Product Business Is An Asset w/Glenn Stovall

  1. Was wondering how you keep a balance between the consulting work and product. What do you consider your highest priority.

    I’ve been somewhat conflicted between going hard after product and letting my freelancing business stagnate. While this has caused some drama in my life (also fighting cancer through the transition) I was wondering what your thoughts are on the “hard road” of product and not killing yourself along the way. Or at least, keeping your about you.

    I feel like I’m close to living off my product income (totally subscription) and I’m investing time in another one as well. However the road ahead is still going to be hard, treatments are expensive and bills need to be paid. In the mean time I’m considering getting a remote job (since I live in Mexico, originally from Calgary) or going after more contract work and investing more in growing my contracting business to get bigger deals. Been having this mid-product life crisis for a few years now and don’t know what path will lead me in the right direction.

    I’m party afraid that getting a job is going to distract me from product, but at the same time, contracting can be stressful when my network is somewhat crappy at the moment.

    Best,

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