Feedback on a Business Idea

Hi folks, I’m working on an “add-on” for that allows you to quickly record and send voice messages to new signups within seconds of the signup. Its called

The idea is that people are more responsive to highly personal onboarding messages that say something entirely unexpected and unique ex: “Voice Message from Brennan Dunn…”… but the downside is that its hard to create these personal message without a bit of effort. So, I imagined a service that would let you pull out your phone (after you receive a push notification) and record a highly personal message to your new customer right then and there. To me, this is drop-dead-simple and fun, as well as effective.

Fast, timely, unique, and totally human messages. What’s not to love, right?

Of course, if this works, its only the start. The audio messages are a thin-edge-of-the-wedge to try to build a larger solution… but only if this works.

Am I crazy for trying this? Do you want to get early access and try it for yourself? Thoughts?


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Hi Barry,

it’s definitely an interesting idea and it would definitely make stuff more personal.

Though for me, I don’t think it would be so great, it’s not really that scalable and one thought would be: Would it really add value to the product? And what about cost-benefit?

And being an introvert, as a user I actually like being “left alone” in the beginning and letting me roam around and “kick the tires” of an app.

As a bootstrapper I do give my website a personal touch, e.g. when write the invoices, half the time it’s a generic email, but the other half it’s also something personal that I write. I run a niche jobboard and I’ve never really seen any of my clients, but with many of them I go by first names now (in Germany this is not THAT usual in a B2B relationship).

I write a weekly newsletter telling of my personal experiences of the week + new job listings. And though now it’s 8.000+ newsletter subscribers I still get the feedback, that the newsletters feel very personal and they really get value in reading it (some actually have found jobs but still stay subscribed because they said it adds value).

So I do think there’s a possibility your product can give value - the question is when / where?

One of my biggest struggles until now was actually the “thank you” part. When a client has been super-nice and stuff, I want to show my appreciation. But I never know how.



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Hey Barry!

Nice looking site - careful of the light text over the galaxy though, can be hard to read.

I’m not about your choice of customer segment.

You describe a person that is struggling to convert trials to customers, and can’t get in touch with them via email or phone calls. It seems like this person either:

  1. Hasn’t achieved problem-solution fit, and can’t convert anyone. You don’t want this person as a customer, because they don’t have a business yet.
  2. Has a highly tuned funnel and is already using email, in-app messages, etc and is looking to convert extra at the margin BUT doesn’t have a high enough LTV to justify medium touch interventions like phone calls.

This second customer profile is extremely specific, and you’ll be competing with a lot of other interventions that could result in a marginal improvement in conversions. I think given that recording personalised messages is still fairly involved, you’ll end up competing against phone calls, which could be tricky.

Do you have a customer zero as yet? If not, you should go find one. I’d recommend putting your focus into approaching people directly, preferably people already in your network. I had no luck ‘passively’ recruiting customer zero.

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Thank you very much Oliver for a thoughtful response.

I’ll address some of your great thoughts here in no particular order, albeit to expand on the underlying thinking rather than to stage some kind of rebuttal :smile:

Re: scalability, I think the current state of the personal-outreach game is segmentation based on certain criteria that can be mined from expensive APIs. Intercom passes a certain amount of this information back to us, but its not enough to give you an informed decision, so we do incorporate those APIs to get the extra info… and hopefully that means you can make a snap decision on if its worth your while to reach out to a particular customer or not. I think this is the default pressure-release valve for those times when you’re at those in-between revenue levels where its hard to justify the effort.

Re: ROI: The higher your CLTV the easier it is to justify trying these kinds of things to get some kind of edge, especially when you’re in a competitive space. But, you’re right to be wary of the ROI. As with all personal outreach, you can’t just assume it’s worth the investment. You do have to give it enough time to see if it improves your trial-to-conversion and hopefully boosts your CLTV, making experiments like this a worthwhile endeavor. Its a Virtuous Circle if it works :smile:.

Re: introverts. Heck yeah, me too man. Just leave me alone while I play a bit… except its nice to feel important enough to warrant a note from the guy who wrote this. Perks me up a bit and makes me feel a little special. Like they say “You won’t remember what they said, but you’ll remember how they made you feel”.

Thanks again Oliver. I know I have a ton of objections to consider.

Howdy Daniel,

I agree, this solution sits right smack in the middle of towering great alternatives. I think the uniqueness of the outreach makes it interesting. As for the time-investment from founders and “customer happiness” personnel, I’m currently working on make that the simplest possible experience… else the whole idea falls apart.

Re: finding customers that might actually care about this and be worth our while:
The fact that we’re focusing on Intercom (paying) customers means we’re trying to reach people who already care deeply about personal outreach. At least, that’s what we’re hoping to find. :smile: And yes, I’m trying to find people via personal connections. Fortunately most bootstrappers care about customers, but not all of them use Intercom.

Thanks so much Daniel!