Poker Copilot 2013 Year in Review

Hi all,

I’ve been running Poker Copilot, my one-person software company since 2008. I wrote a detailed [“2013 in Review” post][1] which many of you could find useful.

I discuss how I tried advertising, outsourcing customer support, capturing customer surplus, starting a new product, and charging for upgrades. Feedback appreciated!

(I didn’t mention the real highlight of the year, which was meeting Patrick McKenzie in person :slight_smile: )

Hi Steve,

Great writeup. Totally agree on the difficulty of estimating effort required to finish a product.

I’m particularly interested in your experience delegating customer support. It’s something I trying to move to. Did you need to hire someone with domain knowledge? Or can all the questions be answered by the support person from documentation?


Hi Matt,

I recruited someone who had no domain knowledge, but has a technical mind, and could quickly learn. I also created a small document explaining what to do on a daily basis, how to respond, and explaining clearly what I expected. For the first few weeks I had to help quite a bit, but each time that happened add to the document on how to respond.

I dared to grant autonomy to the customer support person after a few weeks, saying that based on what I’ve seen I trust her judgement, and she only needs to check with me when really stuck.

Over time the amount of hand-holding I had to do continued to drop.

It certainly was not a case of “here, do this work. Now I’m free”