Product Market fit, getting early adopters

Action: Trying to find that magical product, market fit and I am approaching people and Influencers in my market to engage them and ask questions to gather pain points and to ascertain that we are building a product that solves broader problems.
Now i am cold emailing, personalising the start and the finish engaging blah blah blah.

Issues: I believe i am mistaking early adopter and Influencer and this is mixing my message , I bad at this but i am learning

I do have others that are awesome early adopters great feed back and are more than willing to take a call and discuss pain points as well as put up with our buggy beta.

What are the general bootstrapper populace’s experience in contacting early adopters and people in the market?

Hi Edwin - I am a data point of one, so take that for what it’s worth, but I haven’t run into that, and I work with helping lawyers with their marketing. Not exactly the most receptive bunch. But it seems like it’s one of three things.

You have a few bad apples
In this case, don’t take it personally. See if there are common traits that might help you avoid similar folks in the future, then move on and focus on the people that are enthusiastic about helping.

Your niche has an over-representation of d-bags
Hard to tell given the context, but maybe this is the wrong market for you? Nothing is more demoralizing than banging your head against an unwilling market.

Your outreach is selecting for those d-bags
Maybe the market is fine but for whatever reason your ideal client profile is somehow selecting for that type of behavior. If that’s the case, see if you can change your criteria/copy/outreach methods to avoid selecting them.

I’d assume the first option, try tweaking the outreach as best you can, and if you’re still getting miserable SOBs then narrow your focus, or find a new market.

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Market wise, we are Building a Powershell DSC Application and we do have a few early adopters and we have been getting active and actionable feedback etc.

Ideal Client profile , that could be my mistake, as this the furthest I have gone with a product so far and i am thinking i am mixing my ideal client / Influencer profiles. Which maybe that i am sending wrong emails to influencers versus potential early adopters or people in our field.

Maybe I should stop and address what is exactly our Ideal customer profile is and create a list of Market Influencers, so we do not mix the two up .

At this point, I would just stop and look for something else. Even if your product is good, this sounds like a terrible market.

I would maybe take a good look at your own life - what problems have you encountered yourself that have been issues enough that you’re willing to pay for them?

Example - a buddy of mine was in dental school and really wanted an app to help study for their big certification test instead of having to spend like $300 on a massive stack of flash cards to study. He called test prep companies and pleaded with them for one, but they all refused. Eventually he created it himself (went on to found and is doing great).

Another idea - if you have an industry you want to work in. Then work in it. Figure out what the biggest problem is that can be solved with software and then solve it. It’s gotta be something folks are willing to pay for though. Ideally a meeting with an early adopter or potential customer will be like this - “oh my gosh, that is an amazing idea, we need it immediately, when will I be able to purchase it from you?” (this is rare, but if you can get here, you’re golden :)).

If you don’t mind my asking, would you mind sharing your idea?

I think I will be pushing harder as our early adopters are really great, I am thinking that these types of knocks are only small and talking with other people has reminded me that they are things to work through ( maybe i should write a blog post about it :slight_smile:)

The criticism, lack of response and generally not liking my marketing is a matter of working out what should be changed and finding better ways.
Our app is a Configuration Management System like Chef and Puppet but we use Powershell and Powershell DSC to engineer the Config.
Our beta needs work and looks pretty good (i think) and it is functional and we definitely didn’t wait to long to release. (I had to practically break my Co-Founders arm to convince him to release it to the wild)

Anyway I will continue to market, develop our product with the current early adopters and push hard.
Thanks for the replys

Is it that they feel used by you (for using their free advice to improve your product) or threatened by your product itself?

I am unsure could be either or both but it is better to try new approaches and keep working at it.