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Hi, I'm Tom, about to announce a new product!


#1

Hi everyone, hope you’re all enjoying your weekend, no doubt working hard on your bootstrapped ventures!

I’ve been a lurker around these parts for a while now (not in a weird way) and I’ve been an avid listener to the podcast (great work @ian and @andrey) since the beginning.

I run a web design and branding agency in the UK, and on Wednesday we’re dipping our toe into the world of bootstrapped SAAS products by announcing our new venture.

Anyway, this looks like a great place to meet some great people, so if you’ll have me, I’ll stick around. In fact I’ll post another message about our product soon.

Thanks for reading!

Tom


Where to announce a new product?
#2

Why don’t you tell us what the product is?..or even the general field…


#3

Hi Steve, nice to meet you.

I’ll be able to talk more about the actual product on Wednesday, but it’s basically a set of productivity tools for designers, developers and other creative industries working on their own or as small teams.

By productivity I mean project/client management, invoicing and financial reporting, task and team management. We’ve run our design agency for 12 years, and over that time have found a gap in the market. There’s a lot of individual tools that do the same type of tasks, but we’ve found most of them don’t work together, so that’s what we’re planning to fix.

We’ve built some tools already (for us to use), and are getting ready to take them to market, but first we’ll be announcing the product and building an email list. Hopefully this will help us validate the idea and build some interest.

We’ve got everything ready to go on Wednesday and have put together a list of blogs, news sites, feeds etc that we’ll try to get featured on. I was going to put up another post asking if people on here have had good experiences with announcing a product and getting some coverage. Any good advice?

Thanks for the reply!

Tom


#4

Hello Tom. I’m looking forward to seeing your product. Can you tell us what is special about your productivity tools?


#5

Hi @Layla, thanks for your reply.

Over the years we’ve found a couple of problems with the current choice of productivity tools. Firstly, they are all separate, so any data or information we enter into one has to be duplicated into any others. This isn’t a big problem when you’re working on your own, but with a team of 5-10, all inputting notes, time tracking, client updates etc this becomes difficult.

Also the costs can spiral as you use more tools. We use Basecamp, Harvest, Wunderlist and a custom built CRM/client management system. Those costs are running into the $100’s per month.

Our product will offer a modular approach. We’re building an individual version of each tool which can be used on their own, or connected together. This means any data entered into one tool is shared with the others. And we can keep the costs low as we’re planning to sell on a per app basis, not per user.

The thinking is that freelancers and partnerships don’t need every tool, but bigger teams can add them when needed.

I see that you’re a developer? Would you mind telling me what tools you use for this stuff, and if our product would be of interest? Any input would be really appreciated. Thanks!


#6

I actually don’t use a lot of those tools and now that I think of it, it’s partly for the reason you mentioned. Keeping track of so many tools is a pain in the neck. I consider Github, Pivotal Tracker and Toggl to be indispensable. I have recently started playing with Springpad and it’s pretty handy. If something could integrate Pivotal Tracker and Toggl’s functionality, that would be amazing.

I’m small and don’t have enough clients to need a CRM or something like Basecamp. But business is growing, so I may need it in the future.


#7

Zapier helps solve most if not all integration problems between different tools.

I use it as a developer to let the less technical people on the team know what I’m up too. Github issues get pushed to basecamp, code check ins appear as discussions so people know too test, emails get sent when people sign up. When people push files to Dropbox todo’s appear on basecamp.

Its pretty wild what I’m starting to do with Zapier. I even use it to download the bootstrapped podcast to my dropbox every time a new one comes out. :wink:


#8

@Layla that’s interesting to hear. Thanks for those names, I’ll check them out.

@johnf thanks, that does sound like a useful tool. I’ll check it out. Is doesn’t sound like it would solve the particular problems we found, as we’re focusing slightly more toward the ‘business’ side of productivity than process. Sounds like @Layla would certainly find a use for Zapier :smile:


#9

Awesome, sounds interesting. Looking forward to checking it out!