Monday, October 3, 2022

How to promote software startup

Build an army of superfans by diligently serving one client at a time

Suitable if: the client knows what he needs, is not actively looking for a solution, and requires a comprehensive, detailed solution for a unique case.


Substack - Hamish (co-founder) knew that Bill Bishop (famous writer and blogger) wanted to subscribe to his publications, and the Substack team worked closely with him to create their product.

Vanta - Christina (co-founder) found out that the Segment team is not being given an SOC-2 audit (cybersecurity certification). She sent them the solution on her own initiative.

Check - the idea came to the team from the first client, Homebase, who wanted to create a payroll, but could not due to the complexity and cost of the process. Together they created the first version of the product.

Top ways for startup to enter the market

 Today I want to talk about the variety of ways to enter the market. Each method answers two questions:

How do people find out about your product?

Why are they buying it?

The answers are interrelated. In the flowcharts below, I provide algorithms for choosing the most effective promotion channels in accordance with the reasons that motivate people to look for new products. My findings are based on a study of 120+ unicorns and public companies.

For clients with a generated request

If people have a conscious request for what you are doing.

#1 Produce content that is easy to find

Suitable if: the client knows what he needs, actively searches for a solution on the Internet and gets frustrated by its absence.


Zapier created landing pages for search queries like ([Company name 1] and [Company name 2]), thanks to which they quickly pumped up the SEO of their site and flooded it with traffic from search engines.

Door Dash - at the start, they did not bother with the name and registered the domain in order to appear in first place in Google results for the query "Palo Alto Delivery". Thus, they reduced the cost of promoting and testing the business hypothesis.

Wednesday, February 9, 2022

Flexible development modologies

It is one of the Agile methodologies. The method is based on the concept of lean production, based on the desire to eliminate all losses - temporary, production, logistics, quality.

A feature of Kanban is that tasks must be completed on time, the load between the team is distributed evenly.

In practice, it looks like this. Each project task is described in a separate card and added to the board - virtual or real. The card and board are essential elements of Kanban. All tasks that need to be done are collected in a special column, conditionally, it can be called “to do” / “to do”. The executor selects a task and moves it to the “in progress” / “in progress” column. When a task is done, it goes into the corresponding "done" / "done" column. In practice, there may be many more columns than three. For example, columns on a board might look like this: “discussed” (backlog), “agreed” (ready), “encoded” (coding), “tested” (testing), “confirmed” (approval) and “done” (done ).

There are many tools for building a Kanban team. You can read about some of them in the article “Tools for Teamwork on a Startup”.

Case "Toyota". The Kanban methodology was born in manufacturing at Toyota. Site masters listed the work to be done on paper and posted it in a conspicuous place - and the kanban board, one of the elements of the methodology, was born. At the heart of Toyota production is an annual plan for the production and sale of cars, on the basis of which monthly and operational plans for the average daily output at each site are drawn up, based on forecasting consumer demand. The methodology is based on the “just in time” principle, which, in addition to strict adherence to the timing for each task, makes it possible to reveal production defects on time. For example, daily inventory control of products and parts reveals faults or downtime.

Startup software development methodologies

RAD or rapid application development model

A kind of incremental model. Appeared in the late 80s and became one of the opportunities for creating an agile development process.

The consumer is involved in the process at the very stage of development of the pathogen - he participates in the development and evaluation of the state of the product. A mandatory requirement of this model is that the project should be easily broken down into small parts, which, if necessary, can be created by other numerous teams.

The advantage of this development model is speed. Cons: funding.


The agile development model that most IT projects work on today. The result is revealed after each iteration, which can lead to changes in the intended vision of the product at almost any point in the work - based on what functionality the users of your product like best.

The disadvantages of such models are that the finished product may never come out on the market, you will constantly be engaged in its improvements, additions, in the meantime the budget may run out. Pros - to start working on a product, you do not need to receive information about what you want to receive at the end. No needTake the entire budget and calculate all the risks.

Agile has many variations and frameworks. Among the most common: Scrum, Kanban, Extreme Programming (XP), Lean.

How to promote software startup

Build an army of superfans by diligently serving one client at a time Suitable if: the client knows what he needs, is not actively looking f...