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

This Episode Sponsored By:
difficult-clientsConquering Client Conflict
Paying late, not responding to emails, arguing about art direction…enough is enough. Get more respect & make more money by resolving these conflicts in your favor – more details

 

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
Hi there! To help Chasing Product grow, please take a moment to visit iTunes and give the show a 5-star rating. Thanks!

 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.

Episode 38: Launch a Product From The Community Outward w/Nicole St. Germain

This Episode Sponsored By:
difficult-clientsConquering Client Conflict
Paying late, not responding to emails, arguing about art direction…enough is enough. Get more respect & make more money by resolving these conflicts in your favor – more details


In this episode, organizational expert and up-and-coming product badass Nicole St. Germain shares her story of learning to launch products based on community involvement, strategies for list-building, pricing psychology and more.

Bootstrapped Product Talking Points

  • Why you should connect with a community from day one
  • How “give help to get help” can drive sales
  • How to know if you’re being self-promotional enough
  • Go-to moves for audience discovery and cultivation
Hi there! To help Chasing Product grow, please take a moment to visit iTunes and give the show a 5-star rating. Thanks!

 Show Notes:

Digital Product Mastermind – Nicole’s Mastermind group on FB
Evernote for Product Creators – Nicole teaches you how to use Evernote to manage your product success
Mastermind Meeting Notes Template – Nicole’s product for mastermind groups
Get Your Shit Together – Nicole’s 7-day freemail course for online entrepreneurs
Digital Product Mastermind
Gumroad Small Product Lab
Convertkit
Nathan Barry
Justin Jackson
Conquering Client Conflict – Christopher’s free training course for freelancers

After relocating to a new state in 2015, Nicole felt like she was all over the place with her product aspirations. She immediately sought to get connected with a product community to help her. Feeling she needed a lot of help & feedback, she tried to offer the product community a lot of help & feedback. This led Nicole to various Facebook groups and, importantly, to the Gumroad Small Product Lab, where her product finished as an Honorable Mention.

The Small Product Lab turned into a product community of its own, and Nicole found that making connections & helping people aided her attempts to get sales later. Also, knowing that she had launched once with the help of a product community, she had the confidence of knowing that she could do it again.

Nicole learned lessons about going too fast, pricing psychology and list-building by starting out as part of a product community. It allowed her to design her launch process from the community outward from her very first product, a step that takes some founders a long time to come around to.

As many founders do, Nicole struggled with self-promotion and marketing, and made special efforts to counteract this, such as requesting help from friends and product communities. In addition to sharing this perspective, Nicole closes the show with her three action items for all of you aspiring founders to get busy with!

Episode 37: Startup Decision-Making and ROI w/Hiten Shah


In this episode, Quick Sprout and Kiss Metrics founder Hiten Shah talks about early SEO consulting, finding the ROI in a startup, and more.

Bootstrapped Product Talking Points

  • Why you need good distribution AND good product
  • Why innovation isn’t necessarily a priority
  • The importance of managing expectations
  • How patterns aid startup decision-making
Hi there! To help Chasing Product grow, please take a moment to visit iTunes and give the show a 5-star rating. Thanks!

 Show Notes:
Hiten.com – Hiten’s newletter
Quick Sprout – Make Better Content, co-founded by Hiten
KISS Metrics – Analytics Built to Optimize Marketing, co-founded by Hiten
Crazy Egg – Visualize where your visitors click, co-founded by Hiten
Neil Patel – Hiten’s co-founder & marketing badass
A Technique for Producing Ideas – book by James Webb Young
Conquering Client Conflict – Resolve conflicts, get more respect, make more money as a freelancer

Hiten Shah has made the transition from freelancing to products in a big way. Starting as an SEO consultant in the early 2000’s, Hiten has managed to hone his startup decision-making skills to a high degree, all while founding 3 companies, each offering a product not too far removed from the SEO consulting family tree.

“On a very high level, I’m just fascinated by the power of words & business”

In this episode, Hiten and I talk a but about keeping your freelancing business in order to better enable your product aspirations. We touch a bit on the importance of setting expectations and maintaining boundaries (which my free e-mail course happens to cover). In fact, Hiten cites his best freelancing skill that carried over into doing startups as his ability to manage expectations, calling it the most fundamental difference between success and failure. We also delve into his startup decision-making process by talking about some of the frameworks and patterns Hiten uses both when mentoring other founders and when making decisions of his own.

Hiten shares his insight on selecting the best marketing channel for your product, and why it’s necessary to have both a strong product and strong distribution rather than just one or the other. We also talk about the role of innovation in the startup decision-making process, and whether or not it’s as much of a factor now as it was 5+ years ago. He encourages founders to really think about the problem they’re solving and who has it. Hiten suggests that founders look for a direct path to ROI for their customers as early as possible.

And always, we finish the show with 3 action items that you can implement right away in your own business.

Episode 25.5: Gumroad Small Product Lab Winner, D.J. Coffman

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dj-coffman-small-product

DJ Coffman joins the show today. We talk about DJ winning the recent Gumroad Small Product Lab challenge. We also discuss his journey from being a young artist to becoming an experienced cartoonist. Currently, DJ has a best-of-both worlds work situation that includes both a stable job, and small product releases.

And of course, we’ll get into detail on what it took to conceive, create and launch a small product in just 10 days.

Small Product Talking Points

  • why a small product matters
  • how “reuse and recycle” is a hack to help you create a small product
  • how to leverage your background for product creation
  • how to deal with distractions

 Show Notes:
Comic Drawing Toolkit For Photoshop
Small Product Lab
Cash for Cartoonists
Hugh MacLeod
Chris Brogan
Steven Pressfield – The War of Art
RECORD & RELEASE – Learn How To Podcast In Just One Day

Episode 25: Build Something Small, Build Something Now w/Justin Jackson

Hi there! To help Chasing Product grow, please take a moment to visit iTunes and give the show a 5-star rating. Thanks!

mijustin-start-small
Justin Jackson joins the show today. From hacking on a Vic 20 to releasing multiple products and podcasts, Justin has done a lot! More importantly, he’s figured out a lot about how to make small products work.

In this episode, we talk about Justin’s experience with audience selection, message amplification, getting traction with small products, and more.

Bootstrapped Product Talking Points

  • why you should build something small, NOW
  • why you should hang out with your audience every day
  • how to look for patterns to tailor products around
  • how to start with info-products without jumping the gun

 Show Notes:
Marketing for Developers – A guide to marketing your software, apps, and digital products
Product People Club – Daily stand-ups and community for solopreneurs
Amplification – Creating great content isn’t enough; to get it seen by thousands, you need amplification.
Product Hunt Handbook – Learn how to effectively launch your own product on Product Hunt.
Build & Launch – Build and launch your own product
Product People Podcast – A podcast focused on great products and the people who make them
Justin Jackson on Twitter

James Altucher (remember the 1% rule!)
Getting Real, 37signals
Jason Fried
Designer news
Designer subreddit