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Ending the VC dream and pivoting to an indie company - David Kofoed Wind, Eduflow

Ending the VC dream and pivoting to an indie company - David Kofoed Wind, Eduflow

Indie Bites 30 August 2022

Episode Description

David Kofoed Wind is the co-founder and CEO of Eduflow an education platform started in 2015 as Peergrade, which was a peer to peer feedback tool. David is the definition of technical, having studied for a degree in applied math and computer science, then a Ph.D in machine learning. This is where the idea for Peergrade was born, as he started teach a course in data science and solved his own problem.

👉 Extended version of this episode.

What we covered in this episode:

  • How Peergrade started in 2015
  • Scratching your own itch
  • Selling to universities
  • Using your "unfair advantages"
  • Why David took a Ph.D
  • What it's like building a product with a Ph.D
  • Having a terrible product
  • Going for and ending the VC dream
  • Pivoting Peergrade to Eduflow
  • Why David resonates with Indie Hackers

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How to get to ramen profitability - Charlie Ward, Ramen Club

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Building a financial engine for your indie business - Justin Jackson

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Rob Walling on multiple projects, why building an audience is dumb and other SaaS wisdom

Rob Walling on multiple projects, why building an audience is dumb and other SaaS wisdom

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28 September 2023 15m and 30s


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Making $200k a year teaching Google Sheets - Andrew Kamphey

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21 September 2023 14m and 48s


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Bootstrapping Ticket Tailor to £6m ARR, selling and repurchasing the company, losing motivation and more - Jonny White

Jonny White is the founder of Ticket Tailor, a platform for selling tickets online doing over £6m ARR and growing. Jonny founded Ticket Tailor in 2011, grew it to £2k MRR and then sold it to a company called TimeOut a short while later. After a few stagnant years at TimeOut, Jonny then bought the company back to make the lifestyle business he’d always wanted. After hitting all his goals, Jonny made the decision to build out a team and bootstrap the company to profitability and beyond. Now with a team of 20+ people, Jonny has a whole new set of challenges he’s dealing with, which we dig into in this episode. Get the hour long episode here: https://indiebites.com/membership Timestamps 00:00 Intro 01:51 - Jonny's background 02:48 - The idea for Ticket Tailor 04:39 - Getting those first few customers 05:14 - Reaching £2k MRR and considering fundraising 06:34 - Selling the company 08:00 - Buying back Ticket Tailor 09:17 - Post buy back 11:13 - Hiring a team / going beyond a lifestyle biz 12:12 - COVID 13:59 - Losing motivation post-covid 15:45 - Recommendations Recommendations Book: Donut Economics Podcast: Missing Cryptoqueen Indie Hacker: Pietro Saccamani Follow Jonny Twitter My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - EmailOctopus 🐙 EmailOctopus is an independently owned email marketing platform, built to support other small growing businesses. With a focus on affordability and ease of use, EmailOctopus contains all of the features you need to reach and grow your audience. You can start today, with their industry leading free plan where you can contact up to 2,500 subscribers without paying a penny.

4 September 2023 16m and 33s


Carving a new life path with a newsletter about Workspaces - Ryan Gilbert, Workspaces

Carving a new life path with a newsletter about Workspaces - Ryan Gilbert, Workspaces

Ryan Gilbert is the creator of the Workspaces newsletter, which showcases the best workspaces in tech and beyond. He grew it to 6,000 subscribers and $2k per month with sponsors + affiliates, before being acquired by Loops (Founder Chris Frantz was on episode 61) and going on to be their first employee. In this episode we talk about how simplicity has been so important for growth of the newsletter, how he makes it appealing for guests to share and his reasoning for selling at such an early stage. Timestamps 00:00 Intro 01:26 Life before Workspaces 03:37 Did you have any side projects before workspaces? 04:47 Growth of the Workspaces newsletter 06:40 How long did each edition take? 07:45 The best workspaces 08:25 Monetizing the newsletter 10:22 Selling the newsletter 13:08 Imposter syndrome 13:57 Recommendations Recommendations Book - The Creative Act by Rick Rubin Podcast - Creator Science Indie Hacker - Brett Williams Sponsor - EmailOctopus 🐙 EmailOctopus is an independently owned email marketing platform, built to support other small growing businesses. With a focus on affordability and ease of use, EmailOctopus contains all of the features you need to reach and grow your audience. You can start today, with their industry leading free plan where you can contact up to 2,500 subscribers without paying a penny.

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Taking on Bit.ly bootstrapped - Tim Leland, T.LY

Taking on Bit.ly bootstrapped - Tim Leland, T.LY

Tim Leland is the founder of T.LY, a link shortener with almost half a million users that he recently quit his job to pursue full time. Tim started out building chrome extensions, including a weather extension that grew to 200k users at it’s peak. He then capitalised on Google closing down their link URL shortener and tried to build his own competitor, which is where T.LY was born. Tim has gone for the high volume, low price option for his product, which often isn’t recommended as a good route for Indie Hackers, but Tim has made it work. 00:00 Intro 05:15 Building a portfolio of extensions 07:45 Starting T.LY 10:06 Being the low price option 11:49 Getting users for T.LY 12:51 Quitting his job 15:13 Reccos Recommendations Book - Atomic Habits Podcast - My First Million Indie Hacker - Rob Walling Sponsor - EmailOctopus 🐙 EmailOctopus is an independently owned email marketing platform, built to support other small growing businesses. With a focus on affordability and ease of use, EmailOctopus contains all of the features you need to reach and grow your audience. You can start today, with their industry leading free plan where you can contact up to 2,500 subscribers without paying a penny.

21 July 2023 16m and 19s


Working towards life-changing outcomes as an indie hacker - Colleen Schnettler, HelloQuery

Working towards life-changing outcomes as an indie hacker - Colleen Schnettler, HelloQuery

In this episode I’m joined by Colleen Schnettler, which a lot of you would have heard from through her Software Social podcast she co-hosts with Michele Hansen. Colleen has been on quite the journey over the past few years, going from years of contracting to launching her first product, Simple File Upload, then getting a large contracting gig with Hammerstone, landing a separate full-time job to then quit 3 weeks later to rejoin that Hammerstone as a co-founder. Now Colleen is working on a product called HelloQuery, a reporting tool for SQL queries which has been accepted into a recent TinySeed batch. What we covered: 00:00 Intro 02:03 Why start the Software Social podcast? 02:59 Why start building products 04:04 Colleen's first product: Simple File Upload 05:07 Why they stopped the podcast 06:37 Joining Hammerstone 08:50 Being a solo founder 10:16 Hello Query 11:47 Closing down a successful product 13:50 Reccos Reccomendations Book: The Mom Test Podcast: Boostrapped Web Indie Hacker: Corey Haines Follow Colleen Twitter My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - EmailOctopus 🐙 EmailOctopus is an independently owned email marketing platform, built to support other small growing businesses. With a focus on affordability and ease of use, EmailOctopus contains all of the features you need to reach and grow your audience. You can start today, with their industry leading free plan where you can contact up to 2,500 subscribers without paying a penny.

4 July 2023 15m and 38s


Gamifying products, shipping quickly and knowing when to quit - Marc Louvion

Gamifying products, shipping quickly and knowing when to quit - Marc Louvion

Marc Louvion is an indie hacker with many many products. His tagline on his website is relatable for all “I was fired everywhere so I had to work for myself (even Tai Lopez fired me...)”. If you go to Marc’s Indie Page you can see all his projects, including Habits Garden, Gamify List, Visualise Habit, Make Landing & more. Marc is living in Bali and on his way to $5k MRR across his projects. You might have seen Marc on Twitter with his hilarious launch videos and candid build in public updates. Timestamps 00:00 Intro 01:32 Marc's indie hacker journey 03:07 Moving to Bali 03:39 Starting a glove business 05:52 Gamification 07:41 Challenges with gamification 08:29 Knowing when to quit a product 10:32 Portfolio of projects vs single focus 11:46 Marc's day to day 12:53 Building an AI product 14:00 Creative launch videos 15:14 Reccos Recommendations Book: Why We Sleep Podcast: Indie Hackers Indie Hacker: Danny Postma Follow Marc Twitter Explore Marc's products My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - EmailOctopus 🐙 EmailOctopus is an independently owned email marketing platform, built to support other small growing businesses. With a focus on affordability and ease of use, EmailOctopus contains all of the features you need to reach and grow your audience. You can start today, with their industry leading free plan where you can contact up to 2,500 subscribers without paying a penny.

14 June 2023 16m and 9s


Is indie hacking having an identity crisis? - Dominic Monn, MentorCruise

Is indie hacking having an identity crisis? - Dominic Monn, MentorCruise

In this episode I’m bringing back a previous guest, Dom Monn, who is the founder of MentorCruise, which he’s now working full time on with a small team. I brought Dom back on to discuss something that has been on my mind, and has come up in twitter conversations recently which Dom has been involved in. Is indie hacking having an identity crisis? Is the indie label and mentality limiting success and holding many founders back? I think it could be and so we discuss why this might be happening and what we can do about it. Jason's tweet which inspired this conversation Mike's response Dom's response Timestamps 00:00 Intro 01:56 Indie hacker identity crisis 03:42 How indie hacking has changed 06:32 Why the indie label can be a limiter 08:20 Accepting slow growth instead of fixing it 10:33 Should we set bigger goals? 12:10 We still love the indie hacker community 13:50 Recommendations Recommendations Book - Sprint Podcast - This Indie Life Indie Hacker - Ramen Club Follow Dom Twitter Hire him as a mentor Personal site My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - EmailOctopus 🐙 EmailOctopus is an independently owned email marketing platform, built to support other small growing businesses. With a focus on affordability and ease of use, EmailOctopus contains all of the features you need to reach and grow your audience. You can start today, with their industry leading free plan where you can contact up to 2,500 subscribers without paying a penny.

1 June 2023 15m and 47s


How to find and validate your ideas - Bram Kanstein, Startup Stash / No Code MVP

How to find and validate your ideas - Bram Kanstein, Startup Stash / No Code MVP

Today I’m joined by Bram Kanstein, who you might know from Startup Stash, which is the most upvoted product ever on Product Hunt. Bram also started the No Code MVP a course, which shows you how to launch an MVP without code. In this episode we focus a lot on how indie hackers can find ideas and launch them the right way. Timestamps 00:00 Intro 03:18 Startup Stash 05:56 No Code MVP 09:47 Finding ideas 12:22 Idea validation 15:00 Recommendations Recommendations Book - Untethered Soul by Michael Singer Podcast(s) - Joe Rogan, HIBT, MFM Indie Hacker - Danny Postma Follow Bram Twitter My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - EmailOctopus 🐙 EmailOctopus is an independently owned email marketing platform, built to support other small growing businesses. With a focus on affordability and ease of use, EmailOctopus contains all of the features you need to reach and grow your audience. You can start today, with their industry leading free plan where you can contact up to 2,500 subscribers without paying a penny.

27 May 2023 15m and 58s


Growing Frontend Mentor to 500k users and $30k MRR - Matt Studdert

Growing Frontend Mentor to 500k users and $30k MRR - Matt Studdert

Matt Studdert is the founder of Frontend Mentor, which helps people level up their front-end coding skills by building projects. They have over 500,000 users and are hovering around $30k MRR. Matt didn’t start out wanting to run a SaaS, starting out playing poker, then became a personal trainer, before changing his career and learning to code when he was 28. Timestamps: 00:00 Intro 02:16 Playing Poker full time 02:58 Becoming a personal trainer 04:24 Learning to code with General Assembly 06:33 Front End Mentor 08:33 Building a scrappy MVP 11:29 Growth for Front End Mentor 15:03 Reccos Recommendations Book - badass make users awesome Podcast - Acquired Indie Hacker - Arvid Kahl, Valentin Wallyn Follow Matt Twitter My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - EmailOctopus 🐙 EmailOctopus is an independently owned email marketing platform, built to support other small growing businesses. With a focus on affordability and ease of use, EmailOctopus contains all of the features you need to reach and grow your audience. You can start today, with their industry leading free plan where you can contact up to 2,500 subscribers without paying a penny.

30 April 2023 16m and 2s


Jordan O'Connor on running a $30k MRR SaaS and doing SEO consulting on the side

Jordan O'Connor on running a $30k MRR SaaS and doing SEO consulting on the side

Jordan O’Connor is the founder of Closet Tools, a bootstrapped app that helps people sell more stuff on Poshmark which has been in and around the $30-40k MRR mark. He’s found a lot of his growth through SEO, like many successful entrepreneurs, and now helps other founders do the same through his Rank to Sell power half hours. Listen to the full 90 minute chat with Jordan here -> Timestamps 00:00 Intro 03:29 Jordan being awful with money 04:30 Jordan's indie hacking journey 06:10 Launching and failing with different products 07:06 Choosing SaaS 08:31 Starting closet tools 11:38 Pricing for Closet Tools 12:35 Reverse stair stepping with Rank to Sell (consulting) 16:08 Reccos Recommendations Book - Deep Work Podcast - Deep Questions by Cal Newport Indie Hacker - Pat Walls Follow Jordan Twitter Personal website My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - EmailOctopus 🐙 EmailOctopus is an independently owned email marketing platform, built to support other small growing businesses. With a focus on affordability and ease of use, EmailOctopus contains all of the features you need to reach and grow your audience. You can start today, with their industry leading free plan where you can contact up to 2,500 subscribers without paying a penny.

19 April 2023 17m and 3s


Growing a $2m p/y indie business - Josh Ho, Referral Rock

Growing a $2m p/y indie business - Josh Ho, Referral Rock

Josh Ho is the founder and CEO of Referral Rock, a SaaS he founded in 2014 doing over $2m a year in revenue. Referral Rock helps businesses to design, launch and manage a customer referral program. Josh has had decades of experience as a founder, pouring his early entrepreneurship energy into a notes app that he ultimately couldn’t monetize. Timestamps 00:00 - Intro 01:24 - Josh's background 02:11 - Lessons from a failed startup 04:16 - Failed startup to new long term bet 05:41 - The idea for Referral Rock 06:59 - Pricing a B2C product 08:33 - Marketing advice for indie hackers 12:24 - Challenges along the way 14:01 - Raising 15:41 - Recommendations Recommendations Book - Extreme Entrepreneurship Podcast - Don't Say Content Indie Hacker - Monica Lent Follow Josh Twitter Josh's Substack My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - EmailOctopus 🐙 EmailOctopus is an independently owned email marketing platform, built to support other small growing businesses. With a focus on affordability and ease of use, EmailOctopus contains all of the features you need to reach and grow your audience. You can start today, with their industry leading free plan where you can contact up to 2,500 subscribers without paying a penny.

12 April 2023 16m and 30s


Building a 6-figure creator business - Jay Clouse, Creator Science

Building a 6-figure creator business - Jay Clouse, Creator Science

Jay Clouse is the founder of Creator Science, which is a membership, community, newsletter and podcast helping you become build a creator business, which he bootstrapped to over $40k a month towards the end of last year. His podcast is one of the best produced shows out there and it’s on my very short list of shows that I can listen to every episode and know it’s going to be killer. I think the creator business angle is interesting for indie hackers who haven’t quite found a product yet and want to build something. Creating content and speaking to people in your niche, can help you find pain points and problems, while also building extra income for yourself. Timestamps 01:55 The Creative Elements podcast (now Creator Science) 04:45 How to have a point of differentiation 06:11 Building a creator business 08:23 Making $40k in one month 11:03 Multiple projects and revenue streams 13:10 How Jay spends his time 14:02 How to start out as a creator 15:19 Recommendations Recommendations Book - How to Win Friends and Influence People Podcast - Bandsplain Indie hacker / entrepreneur - Justin Moore Follow Jay Twitter My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - EmailOctopus 🐙 EmailOctopus is an independently owned email marketing platform, built to support other small growing businesses. With a focus on affordability and ease of use, EmailOctopus contains all of the features you need to reach and grow your audience. You can start today, with their industry leading free plan where you can contact up to 2,500 subscribers without paying a penny.

5 April 2023 16m and 31s


Building a $15k MRR side project while working at Stripe - Justin Duke, Buttondown

Building a $15k MRR side project while working at Stripe - Justin Duke, Buttondown

Justin Duke is the founder of Buttondown, a simple email newsletter tool without all the bloat. In December 2022 Buttondown was around $15k MRR. He also runs Spoonbill, which is a way to stay updated on what people change on their social profiles. At the time of recording this Justin was an engineering manager at Stripe so you’ll hear references to that, but he’s since left to go all in on being a founder. 👉 Join the Indie Bites membership here. Timestamps 00:00 Intro 01:57 Origins of Buttondown 03:25 Buttondown launch 05:37 Keeping Buttondown as a side project 07:47 A pricing conundrum 09:26 Having a free plan 10:20 Finding balance 12:31 Are Stripe side-project friendly 13:56 Recommendations Recommendations Book - The Great Beanie Baby Bubble Podcast - Metamuse Indie Hacker - Amy Hoy Newsletter - Matt Levine Money Stuff Follow Justin Twitter Personal site My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/webmaster-tools

1 April 2023 15m and 12s


Breaking Convention: The Radical Thinking of Jack McDade and Statamic

Breaking Convention: The Radical Thinking of Jack McDade and Statamic

Jack McDade is the creator of Statamic, a content management system for Laravel. What I love about Jack is how he approaches all of his projects, including Statamic, to just be different. There is so much cookie cutter content out there and everything just ends up looking the same - but not if Jack has anything to do with it. Just take a look at his personal website, his Radical Design course and Icons and you’ll see what I mean. I love it. 👉 Join the Indie Bites membership here. Timestamps: 00:00 Intro 01:27 Why Jack started Statamic 02:58 Taking 6 years before going full time 04:20 What would Jack have done differently? 05:14 How to be different 07:40 The unfair indie hacker advantage 08:26 Radical Design Course 12:45 Learning with Jack 15:07 Recommendations Recommendations Book: Steal Like an Artist & Extreme Ownership Podcast: Friendship Onion & Darknet Diarys Indie Hacker: Adam Wathan Follow Jack Twitter My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/webmaster-tools

25 March 2023 16m and 25s


From $0 to $10k MRR in 2 years - Elston Baretto, Tiiny Host (Revisited)

From $0 to $10k MRR in 2 years - Elston Baretto, Tiiny Host (Revisited)

Elston Baretto was last on the pod in March 2021, when he’d just grown his tool, Tiiny.host, to $600 MRR and we recorded as part of my mission to share stories of unknown indie hackers with potential. Fast forward 2 years and Tiiny Host has grown to $10k MRR and Elston has just quit his job to become a full time indie hacker. 👉 My side project, Whitstable Craft Co. Topics covered: Hitting $10k MRR Why PDF hosting has been pivotal for growth Build what people search for Why SEO has been such a huge growth driver How to do SEO Going full time When is the right time to quit your job? How much to pay yourself Launching before it's perfect Pressure of growth How to keep indie hacking enjoyable Recommendations Book: The New New Thing Podcast: Postgres.fm Indie Hacker: Vetted Founders (tbc) Follow Elston Twitter Tiiny Host My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/webmaster-tools

19 March 2023 16m and 22s


Making $12k p/m with Wordpress plugins - Patrick Posner

Making $12k p/m with Wordpress plugins - Patrick Posner

Patrick Posner is the creator of a portfolio of Wordpress plugins which have been downloaded almost a million times collectively making him $12k p/m. Patrick went full time indie in 2020 and since then has both grown quickly and scaled back operations to build the best sort of life for him. I love these types of stories of relatively unknown indie hackers who are creating the dream life for themselves. What we covered in this episode: Building Wordpress plugins on the side of a day job Marketing for Wordpress plugins Getting 1m downloads Beating a domain reseller Finding SEO keywords to rank for Pricing yearly vs monthly Growing fast and scaling back Recommendations Book - Why We Sleep Podcast - The Bootstrapped Founder Indie Hacker - tbc Follow Patrick Twitter My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/webmaster-tools

15 March 2023 15m and 39s


From $50m VC-backed to $20k MRR notes app - Alex MacCaw, Reflect (prev. Clearbit)

From $50m VC-backed to $20k MRR notes app - Alex MacCaw, Reflect (prev. Clearbit)

Alex MacCaw is the founder of Reflect, a note taking app which he’s grown to $20k MRR with a team of 4. Previously, he was the co-founder of Clearbit, a VC-backed company that scaled to $50m in revenue. After stepping down as CEO of Clearbit, he decided to focus on doing the stuff he enjoys. So he’s sailing around the world building an app that gets him excited every day. 👉 My side project, Whitstable Craft Co. What we covered in this episode: Why Alex dropped out of school Coding without a CS degree Being unemployable Starting Clearbit Stepping down as CEO of Clearbit Boostrapping Reflect Why another note taking app? Building what you enjoy Growing to 20k MRR Getting the first users for your product Sailing around the world Recommendations Book: Isaac Asimov's Guide to Earth and Space Podcast: In Our Time Indie Hacker: Adam Wathan Follow Alex Twitter My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/webmaster-tools

10 March 2023 16m and 58s


Stair stepping to millions in SaaS revenue - Craig Hewitt, Castos

Stair stepping to millions in SaaS revenue - Craig Hewitt, Castos

Craig Hewitt is the Founder and CEO of Castos, a bootstrapped podcast hosting and analytics platform with a services arm for podcast production. He’s been in podcasting almost a decade, having started his own show, Rogue Startups and his production service Podcast Motor (which he folded into Castos). Craig not only shares his ponderings on his show, but he also writes a weekly newsletter called Founder Insights. What we covered in this episode: Craig's background in sales Launching a podcasting productized service in 2014 Stair stepping to SaaS What is Stair Stepping? Acquiring Seriously Simple Podcasting Product positioning Growth and marketing for Castos His approach to podcasting Castos Originals Bootstrapping vs raising Founder Insights newsletter Recommendations Book: Who Not How by Dan Sullivan Podcast: Startups for the Rest of Us Indie Hacker: Moritz Dausinger Follow Craig Twitter Personal website My links Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/webmaster-tools

8 March 2023 16m and 37s


Daniel Fayle: from commercial banker to making millions in software

Daniel Fayle: from commercial banker to making millions in software

Today I’m joined by Dan Fayle, who is the co-founder of Chekkit, a company that’s he bootstrapped to almost $2.5m ARR and 20 employees. There’s a few interesting things about Dan’s story I know you’re going to like. This is his first company and he quit his job to go all-in with 3 co-founders, he got his early customers through, and I’m not kidding, door to door sales and finally he’s not changed the price of the product since it’s launch 6 years ago. What we covered in this episode: Dan’s background Why he went all-in on Chekkit from the beginning How he got his early customers from door to door sales How to make cold email work at scale Biggest growth channels How an early pivot lead to more growth Why they stuck to their $99 p/m price for years What’s next for the business Recommendations Book: Shoe Dog Podcast: The Move Indie Hacker: Nathan Barry Follow Dan Twitter Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/webmaster-tools

3 March 2023 16m and 5s


How Ahrefs Built A Best-In-Class SEO Strategy - Tim Soulo, Ahrefs

How Ahrefs Built A Best-In-Class SEO Strategy - Tim Soulo, Ahrefs

Tim Soulo is the CMO at Ahrefs, one of the biggest and best SEO tools on the internet. Ahrefs are one of the clear success stories as a bootstrapped company, growing to be a an 8 figure brand over the past decade. Things really took off when Tim took over marketing for the company back in 2015, first focusing on growing the blog, before experimenting with different marketing channel to bring Ahrefs to its current size. In this episode Tim brings a mini SEO masterclass for SaaS founders, gives his thoughts on AI content and reveals if he has ambitions to start a indie project for himself. Join the Indie Bites membership 👈 What we covered in this episode The basics of SEO for a SaaS tool A mini SEO masterclass for indie SaaS tools Why credibility is important for SEO Tim’s thoughts on AI content How “original work” is essential What marketing channel is going to work in 2023 Tim’s favourite marketing experiments for Ahrefs Does Tim have any indie hacker ambitious to run his own company Recommendations Book: Perennial Seller by Ryan Holiday Podcast: The Prince Indie Hacker: Tim likes everyone Follow Tim Twitter Personal site Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Ramen Club My favourite community has just got a significant upgrade as it rebrands to Ramen Club, the best community to help you get to Ramen Profitability. Ramen club has 4 remote coworking sessions a week, masterminds, accountability calls, live AMAs, a fractional CFO, in-house VA, discounts and so much more. But most of all, the founder Charlie has done a wonderful job at cultivating a wonderfully friendly and supportive community. To join the world's most supportive community for bootstrapped founders to reach ramen profitable and beyond, head to ramenclub.so and use code "INDIEBITES" to let Charlie know I sent you and get 50% off your first month.

1 March 2023 15m and 54s


Bootstrapping a leather supply business to $50k in sales - Jared Maddern, Beamhouse Leather

Bootstrapping a leather supply business to $50k in sales - Jared Maddern, Beamhouse Leather

Today I’m joined by Jared Maddern, the founder of Beamhouse Leather, a leather supply business he’s grown to £45k in sales in the past 2 years. Some of you might know I run a handmade leather wallet business on the side, called Whitstable Craft Co, and so this is a little look into the other part of my life. Although Jared doesn’t run an indie SaaS, I wanted to bring slightly different perspective of being an indie entreprenuer. We discuss how building a business in a growing market has and selling pick axes to gold miners strategy has led to his growth, what it’s like working with physical goods and why he put £10k of his own money to take the business to the next level. 📹 Watch this episode on YouTube. What we discussed in this episode: Jared’s taco truck How he started leathercrafting Where he got his first leather from How to learn leathercrafting How Beamhouse leather started Starting on Etsy instead of his own website The effect of the pandemic on hobbies Investing £12k for leather machinery Investing personal money Wanting to keep the business as a side project Recommendations Book: How to Win Friends and Influence People Podcast: My First Million Indie Hacker: Chris Orraman Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/webmaster-tools

17 January 2023 16m and 58s


How to build a newsletter business - Louis Nicholls, SparkLoop

How to build a newsletter business - Louis Nicholls, SparkLoop

Louis Nicholls is the co-founder of SparkLoop, a product that helps newsletter operators grow through referral partnerships. Indie hackers might know Louis from his Sales for Founders course which he ran a few years ago, as well as his many other projects. What we covered in this episode: How Sparkloop Started How Louis met his cofounder Manuel Going Niche vs Broad Pursuing a growing market What is your unique competitive advantage? Avoiding shiny object syndrome Speaking to your customers How does a newsletter referral program work? Can you start a referral program from the beginning? What’s the value of a newsletter subscriber? Sparkloop calculator Sparkloop growth from day 1 How big is Sparkloop? How to start and grow a newsletter Louis’ favourite newsletters Lenny’s Newsletter Morning Brew Why We Buy Recommendations Book: Wuthering Heights Podcast: Default Alive Indie Hacker: Josh Ho Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Join the membership Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) This Indie Life Podcast Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/webmaster-tools

15 November 2022 16m and 32s


Near death VC experience to $25k p/m bootstrapped - Kyle Gawley, Gravity

Near death VC experience to $25k p/m bootstrapped - Kyle Gawley, Gravity

Kyle Gawley is the founder of Gravity, which he’s bootstrapped to over $25k p/m. In 2012, he scaled a vc-backed company, called Get Invited, to $5m in sales, before a near-death experience made him rethink how he lived his life. Now, Kyle is travelling the world building his bootstrapped SaaS. Let’s find out how he did it. Join the Indie Bites membership 👈 What we covered in this episode Starting out on the VC path What Kyle loved about working in VC Having a near death experience Listen to Kyle on Indie Hackers How he changed his life after Deciding to become a digital nomad Starting Gravity to solve his own problem What Gravity is for non-technical folks Pricing, should you go cheap or upstream? Using Twitter and SEO for customer acquisition Kyle’s thoughts on single focus vs small bets Kyle’s new AI project Recommendations Book: Zero to Sold by Arvid Kahl Podcast: Indie Bites (how meta) Indie Hacker: Pieter Levels Follow Kyle Twitter Personal site Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Indie Bites YouTube Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Ramen Club My favourite community has just got a significant upgrade as it rebrands to Ramen Club, the best community to help you get to Ramen Profitability. Ramen club has 4 remote coworking sessions a week, masterminds, accountability calls, live AMAs, a fractional CFO, in-house VA, discounts and so much more. But most of all, the founder Charlie has done a wonderful job at cultivating a wonderfully friendly and supportive community. To join the world's most supportive community for bootstrapped founders to reach ramen profitable and beyond, head to ramenclub.so and use code "INDIEBITES" to let Charlie know I sent you and get 50% off your first month.

8 November 2022 16m and 20s


Bootstrapping to $3.5m ARR from YouTuber to Founder - Sam King, Flick

Bootstrapping to $3.5m ARR from YouTuber to Founder - Sam King, Flick

Sam King is the founder of Flick, a tool for managing and growing your social media, doing over $3.5m ARR fully bootstrapped. Sam has taken a unique path into bootstrapping, first being a YouTuber, then running an agency before flipping it into a SaaS with Flick. There is an hour long extended version of this show available on the Indie Bites membership, head to indiebites.com/membership to sub. What we covered in this episode: Starting out as a YouTuber Pivoting from YouTuber to starting an agency Pivoting the agency to start a SaaS Marketing Sam used to grow Flick Affiliate marketing Building an MVP Hiring challenges Recommendations Book: Shoe Dog Podcast: Diary of a CEO Indie Hacker: Baretto Follow Sam on Twitter Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Figura Often great design makes products stand out in this day and age; stop trying to figure it out yourself. Figura offers vetted product designers for startups and fast-growing companies. Find your first designer or contractor, or land a helping hand for your product in less than 48hours. Save $199 and start your project for free, using code "INDIE199". Head to figura.digital to try it out.

2 November 2022 14m and 39s


A masterclass in customer research as a founder - Michele Hansen, Deploy Empathy

A masterclass in customer research as a founder - Michele Hansen, Deploy Empathy

Michele Hansen is the co-founder of Geocodio, a SaaS business that provides geocoding and data matching for addresses, co-host of the fantastic podcast Software Social and author of the book Deploy Empathy, which is all about how to do great customer interviews. We cover a lot of ground in this short episode, including how to write a book, building in public and mental health as a founder. Along with some concrete tips on how exactly you can do customer research. What we covered in this episode: Michele’s podcast tour Building in public Why context is important for Twitter debates The real reason Michele wrote her book Starting with a newsletter How to do customer research How to understand your customers Changing their podcast support model Mental health as a founder Being a founder with ADHD Recommendations Book: The Little Book that Builds Wealth; Charlie Wilson’s War Podcast: The Indicator Indie Hacker: Marie Ng Follow Michele Twitter Personal site Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Ramen Club My favourite community has just got a significant upgrade as it rebrands to Ramen Club, the best community to help you get to Ramen Profitability. Ramen club has 4 remote coworking sessions a week, masterminds, accountability calls, live AMAs, a fractional CFO, in-house VA, discounts and so much more. But most of all, the founder Charlie has done a wonderful job at cultivating a wonderfully friendly and supportive community. To join the world's most supportive community for bootstrapped founders to reach ramen profitable and beyond, head to ramenclub.so and use code "INDIEBITES" to let Charlie know I sent you and get 50% off your first month.

26 October 2022 16m and 6s


Bootstrapping, AppSumo deals and productivity tools - Macgill Davis / Will Goto, Rize.io

Bootstrapping, AppSumo deals and productivity tools - Macgill Davis / Will Goto, Rize.io

Macgill Davis and Will Goto are the founders of Rize, a time-tracking platform that helps you increase your productivity, started in August 2020. Will and Macgill met at a company called Peer, which then got acquired by Twitter, they then left Twitter and founded a company called Humble Dot, which they raised for but unfortunately had to shut down. Join the membership for extended conversations 👈 What we covered in this episode: Working on a side project while at Twitter Raising funding then leaving their jobs Co-founders with the same technical background A different approach to finding a co-founder Shutting down a business when it’s not doing well Searching for a new idea and solving your own problem Creating a landing page and running some ads Picking a market to focus on Time tracking for productivity Getting traction through AppSumo Cash up front with lifetime deals Raising vs bootstrapping How to be more productive Recommendations Book: Deep Work by Cal Newport, Atomic Habits by James Clear Podcast: The Rest is History/Revolutions, Masters of Scale Indie Hacker: Tony Dinh, Arvid Kahl Follow Macgill on Twitter Will on Twitter Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Figura Often great design makes products stand out in this day and age; stop trying to figure it out yourself. Figura offers vetted product designers for startups and fast-growing companies. Find your first designer or contractor, or land a helping hand for your product in less than 48hours. Save $199 and start your project for free, using code "INDIE199". Head to figura.digital to try it out.

4 October 2022 16m and 27s


Building a community of generalists on a remote island - Milly Tamati, Generalist World

Building a community of generalists on a remote island - Milly Tamati, Generalist World

Milly Tamati is not your usual founder. She lives on an remote island off Scotland with a population of just 170 people, previously co-owned a hostel in Thailand, co-founded a wine-tour in Australia and founded an illustration-agency in the UK. Now she’s working on a community called generalist.world, where’s she’s helping generalists like us indie hackers, find like minded individuals and jobs that fit us well. What we covered in this episode: Living on a remote island with 170 people Remote life vs city life Being isolated when not in a city Embracing communities Milly’s crazy career journey Getting a customer in 12 hours Testing your product before you launch Why generalists aren’t valued in the world Growing to 850 community members in a few months How to cultivate community Recommendations Book - Range by David Epstein Podcast - Lennys Podcast Indie Hacker - Molly Retter Follow Milly Twitter LinkedIn Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Ramen Club My favourite community has just got a significant upgrade as it rebrands to Ramen Club, the best community to help you get to Ramen Profitability. Ramen club has 4 remote coworking sessions a week, masterminds, accountability calls, live AMAs, a fractional CFO, in-house VA, discounts and so much more. But most of all, the founder Charlie has done a wonderful job at cultivating a wonderfully friendly and supportive community. To join the world's most supportive community for bootstrapped founders to reach ramen profitable and beyond, head to ramenclub.so and use code "INDIEBITES" to let Charlie know I sent you and get 50% off your first month.

27 September 2022 16m and 23s


Bootstrapping Helpkit to $4.5k MRR - Dominik Sobe, Helpkit

Bootstrapping Helpkit to $4.5k MRR - Dominik Sobe, Helpkit

Today I’m joined by Dominik Sobe, the founder of Helpkit, a product he started last year that turns Notion pages into a professional help center, doing $4.5k MRR. In this episode we talk about Dom’s many failed projects, how he finally found something that worked with Helpkit and how he went from wanting to be a management consultant to being an indie hacker. What we covered in this episode: Dom’s previous projects Wanting to become a management consultant Management consultant to indie hacker Making his first internet money Being embarrassed about your first product Overengineering your first product Building an MVP during a hackathon Validation before building a product Side projects as marketing Building in a growing market Investing in SEO Recommendations Book: Start Small, Stay Small by Rob Walling Podcast: Indie Hackers Indie Hacker: Minh-Phuc Tran Follow Dominik Twitter Personal Site Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Figura Often great design makes products stand out in this day and age; stop trying to figure it out yourself. Figura offers vetted product designers for startups and fast-growing companies. Find your first designer or contractor, or land a helping hand for your product in less than 48hours. Save $199 and start your project for free, using code "INDIE199". Head to figura.digital to try it out.

26 September 2022 15m and 5s


Solo founder grows reverse job board to $100k a year - Joe Masilotti, RailsDevs

Solo founder grows reverse job board to $100k a year - Joe Masilotti, RailsDevs

Joe Masilotti is the founder of RailsDevs a reverse job board for Ruby on Rails developers, which is over $4k MRR and on for $100k revenue. Joe also runs the monthly Hotwire Dev newsletter, which has over 2,000 subs. And then late last year, Joe sold his side-project Mugshot Bot, which he took from idea to sale in just 14 months. What we covered on this episode: How and why Joe sold Mugshot Bot at $200 MRR When to stop working on projects How RailsDevs started with a spreadsheet Solving a problem with a simple solution Why a reverse jobs board works A unique approach to a marketplace business Growing RailsDevs (from both sides) Being an embedded entrepreneur Why RailsDevs has a hiring fee and subscription Dealing with high churn Growing a newsletter to 2,300 subs Recommendations Book: Obviously Awesome by April Dunford Podcast: The Business of Authority Indie Hacker: Colleen Schnettler Follow Joe Twitter Read his blog Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Ramen Club My favourite community has just got a significant upgrade as it rebrands to Ramen Club, the best community to help you get to Ramen Profitability. Ramen club has 4 remote coworking sessions a week, masterminds, accountability calls, live AMAs, a fractional CFO, in-house VA, discounts and so much more. But most of all, the founder Charlie has done a wonderful job at cultivating a wonderfully friendly and supportive community. To join the world's most supportive community for bootstrapped founders to reach ramen profitable and beyond, head to ramenclub.so and use code "INDIEBITES" to let Charlie know I sent you and get 50% off your first month.

13 September 2022 16m and 18s


Focusing on one product in a strong market (for 15 years) - Geoff Roberts, Outseta

Focusing on one product in a strong market (for 15 years) - Geoff Roberts, Outseta

Geoff Roberts is the co-founder of Outseta, a bootstrapped all-in-one platform to help manage and grow your recurring revenue business. Before Outseta, Geoff was Head of Marketing for Buildium, a product that went through the phases of bootstrapping, raising and exiting, that was started by current co-founder Dimitris. What we covered in this episode: Taking a big 15 year bet on your business Going into an established, durable market Why not raise for the company? Single focus vs portfolio of small bets Why Outseta focused on brand building and not SEO Marketing trade-offs Why freemium doesn’t work for everyone Building a flat, self-managed organisation Recommendations Book: Reinventing Organistations; Life Profitability Podcast: Tim Ferris Show Indie Hacker: Anthony Castrio Follow Geoff Twitter Read the Outseta Blog Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Figura Often great design makes products stand out in this day and age; stop trying to figure it out yourself. Figura offers vetted product designers for startups and fast-growing companies. Find your first designer or contractor, or land a helping hand for your product in less than 48hours. Save $199 and start your project for free, using code "INDIE199". Head to figura.digital to try it out.

6 September 2022 16m and 22s


How to build in public - Kevon Cheung, Public Lab

How to build in public - Kevon Cheung, Public Lab

If you’re wanting to learn about building in public, Kevon Cheung is your guy. After not getting the fulfilment he desired from the VC funded startup dream, Kevon struck out on his own in 2020 to become an indie hacker. Since then he’s launched the Build in Public Mastery course, started a newsletter called Public Lab, wrote the Definitive Guide to Building in Public and then to top this all off, wrote a book called Find Joy in Chaos. What we covered in this episode: Building credibility Taking a 6 month bet Starting from scratch to learn a trend Choosing to build in public Anyone can learn any topic Is building in public just sharing MRR numbers? What is building in public? False positives of building an audience Building a creator business How to differentiate course content to blog content Info products vs SaaS Recommendations: Book: Life Is What You Make It by Peter Buffet, $100m Offers by Alex Hormozi Podcast: Socialette, The Bootstrapped Founder Indie Hacker: Monica Lent, Jay Clouse, Marie Ng Follow Kevon Twitter Personal website Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Ramen Club My favourite community has just got a significant upgrade as it rebrands to Ramen Club, the best community to help you get to Ramen Profitability. Ramen club has 4 remote coworking sessions a week, masterminds, accountability calls, live AMAs, a fractional CFO, in-house VA, discounts and so much more. But most of all, the founder Charlie has done a wonderful job at cultivating a wonderfully friendly and supportive community. To join the world's most supportive community for bootstrapped founders to reach ramen profitable and beyond, head to ramenclub.so and use code "INDIEBITES" to let Charlie know I sent you and get 50% off your first month.

22 August 2022 16m and 1s


How to build a brand for your indie product - Marie Ng, Llama Life

How to build a brand for your indie product - Marie Ng, Llama Life

Marie Ng is the founder of Llama Life, a to-do-list app that helps you focus. As someone who struggles with focus myself, Marie’s app looked to be the perfect thing. Having taught herself how to code 2 years ago, after a career in branding, Marie did what everyone does when they learn to code, build a to do list app. But with her branding background and new quirky angle on a productivity app, she’s made it work. From a solo indie project to now raising a $690k pre-seed round, Marie is making her entrepreneurial dream happen. 👉 Extended version of this episode. What we discussed in this episode: How Marie got into branding What is branding? Why indie hackers should consider their “brand” How to create a brand Building a product to help with ADHD Building to solve your own problem How to work with ADHD Llama Life’s brand impact Why Marie raised funding Recommendations Book: Honest Guide to Indie Making by Kyleigh Smith Podcast: The Best One Yet Indie Hacker: Carl Poppa Follow Marie Twitter Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Ramen Club My favourite community has just got a significant upgrade as it rebrands to Ramen Club, the best community to help you get to Ramen Profitability. Ramen club has 4 remote coworking sessions a week, masterminds, accountability calls, live AMAs, a fractional CFO, in-house VA, discounts and so much more. But most of all, the founder Charlie has done a wonderful job at cultivating a wonderfully friendly and supportive community. To join the world's most supportive community for bootstrapped founders to reach ramen profitable and beyond, head to ramenclub.so and use code "INDIEBITES" to let Charlie know I sent you and get 50% off your first month.

8 August 2022 15m and 6s


Why you need a single focus (and ditch your portfolio of projects) - Chris Frantz, Loops

Why you need a single focus (and ditch your portfolio of projects) - Chris Frantz, Loops

Chris Frantz is the co-founder of Loops, YC backed email tool for startups. Chris is one of those people who just knows how to run a SaaS business, having founded and sold Snazzy AI, acquired by Unbounce last year. Chris has been living rent free in my brain after a conversation we had a few weeks ago about my multiple projects. A lot of you are going to have multiple projects too, and wondering why you’re not getting anywhere with them. In this episode, Chris is going to explain why. What we cover in this episode Some of Chris previous bootstrapped projects PH profile How Chris started and sold Snazzy.ai Selling article Tackling email with Loops.so Making the chef’s knife of email Why you should have a single focus Why having a portfolio of small bets doesn’t work Doing the hard things Having hobby projects vs a business Recommendations Book: Atomic Habits Podcast: The Vergecast Indie Hacker: Sahil Bloom Follow Chris Twitter Personal site Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Ramen Club My favourite community has just got a significant upgrade as it rebrands to Ramen Club, the best community to help you get to Ramen Profitability. Ramen club has 4 remote coworking sessions a week, masterminds, accountability calls, live AMAs, a fractional CFO, in-house VA, discounts and so much more. But most of all, the founder Charlie has done a wonderful job at cultivating a wonderfully friendly and supportive community. To join the world's most supportive community for bootstrapped founders to reach ramen profitable and beyond, head to ramenclub.so and use code "INDIEBITES" to let Charlie know I sent you and get 50% off your first month.

28 May 2022 15m and 56s


Growing Dependabot to $14k MRR before selling to Github - Grey Baker, Dependabot

Growing Dependabot to $14k MRR before selling to Github - Grey Baker, Dependabot

Grey Baker is the co-founder of Dependabot, which is a bot that makes it easy for developers to keep the third party dependencies up to date, which grew to $14k MRR before being acquired by Github in 2019. Grey’s story is a long an interesting one, so there is an extended version of this podcast available on the indie feast membership. But the best bits are here about he started out at McKinsey, before being a pivotal early employee at London FinTech GoCardless, to then cycling around the world and then coming back to accidentally launch Dependabot. 👉 Extended version available on the Indie Feast membership here. What we covered in this episode Landing a gig at consulting firm, McKinsey Learning how to code in 6 months Joining VC-backed GoCardless as employee 6 Growing GoCardless to 100 employees Why Grey left after 4.5 years Cycling around the world Eating a petrol-ey snickers bar Starting Dependabot as a side project A failed launch Doing things that don't scale The growth inflection point - GitHub marketplace Advice for bootstrappers Recommendations Book: The Design of Everyday Things Podcast: N/A Indie Hacker: Pete Hamilton Follow Grey Twitter Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Tiiny Host Tiiny Host is the simplest way to host and share your web project online. It's loved by thousands of freelancers, agencies & developers across the world to quickly upload demos, landing pages or websites. Just drag & drop your web files or even a PDF to share it with the world in seconds.  👉 Try it here

14 May 2022 16m and 15s


r/SaaS moderator making $6k MRR with his own SaaS - CH Daniel, Simple.ink

r/SaaS moderator making $6k MRR with his own SaaS - CH Daniel, Simple.ink

Ch Daniel is the co-founder of Legit Check, an app that authenticates luxury items, that grew to $6k MRR in just a few weeks. He’s also building simple.ink, which is a simple way to make a website from Notion, it got #1 product of the day and got 1,300 users in the first month. He’s also got his finger in many SaaS pies, running the r/SaaS subreddit where he arranges AMAs and facilitates discussions with some of the biggest SaaS founders out there. As for podcasting, Daniel’s dipped in there too, with his show The Usual SaaSpects an extension of his brand. Most recently, Dan acquired Emojics.com What we covered in this episode: Making $200k with an authenticator business How does one fall into authenticating luxury items? How Legit Check became legit Turning a one-time purchase business to a subscription Taking over the r/SaaS community on Reddit Favourite AMA with Sabba and Tim from VEED The real reason he started his podcast, The Usual SaaSpects James interview on The Usual SaaSpects Does the world need another Notion web builder? Pre-launching to build a list of 5,000 Acuiring Emojics.com Should more indie hackers acquire businesses? Recommendations Book: Power of Now Podcast: Prof G Show, Succession Pod Indie Hacker: CH David Follow Daniel Twitter Personal site Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Tiiny Host Tiiny Host is the simplest way to host and share your web project online. It's loved by thousands of freelancers, agencies & developers across the world to quickly upload demos, landing pages or websites. Just drag & drop your web files or even a PDF to share it with the world in seconds.  👉 Try it here

7 May 2022 14m and 42s


Multiple successful exits to making lemonade - JR Farr, Lemon Squeezy

Multiple successful exits to making lemonade - JR Farr, Lemon Squeezy

JR Farr is the co-founder of Make Lemonade, a product studio behind Lemon Squeezy (a platform to sell digital products), Dunked (to showcase your portfolio) and Iconic (a set of cracking looking apps). But this isn’t JR’s first foray into entrepreneurship. Back in 2008 he sold his first startup, College Connecting, before starting and selling another, MOJO marketplace back in 2012. From here he worked at the acquiring company for 5 years, before starting ANOTHER startup, called Weav, a product to help with customer retention. I could list out JR’s CV in more detail, but you can tell that this chap a seasoned entrepreneur. What we covered in this episode: JR's entrepreneurship background Building Mojo (Wordpress marketplace) Mojo getting acquired in 2012 Why JR stayed for 5 years in a big company Getting a mini MBA Spending $75k on a domain for a failed company Meeting the Make Lemonade folks Orman Clark Gilbert Pellegrom Jason Schuller Should more founders band together? Building Lemon Squeezy Taking on the digital products space Going into a crowded market Advice for entreprenuers Recommendations Book: The Hard Thing About Hard Things Podcast: My First Million Indie Hacker: Jon Yonfook Follow JR Twitter Personal site Make Lemonade Podcast Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Ramen Club My favourite community has just got a significant upgrade as it rebrands to Ramen Club, the best community to help you get to Ramen Profitability. Ramen club has 4 remote coworking sessions a week, masterminds, accountability calls, live AMAs, a fractional CFO, in-house VA, discounts and so much more. But most of all, the founder Charlie has done a wonderful job at cultivating a wonderfully friendly and supportive community. To join the world's most supportive community for bootstrapped founders to reach ramen profitable and beyond, head to ramenclub.so and use code "INDIEBITES" to let Charlie know I sent you and get 50% off your first month.

3 May 2022 16m and 26s


Behind the success of Trends.vc - Dru Riley, Trends

Behind the success of Trends.vc - Dru Riley, Trends

Dru Riley is the founder of Trends.vc which at its core helps people discover new ideas and markets through expertly researched reports. Trends is a bootstrapped company that makes money through it’s Trends Pro reports and community. In 2017, Dru took on a mini-retirement, sold a second home and set out with 3-5 years of savings to strike out on his own. After launching various newsletters, products and even book he eventually landed on Trends, which didn’t actually make any money for the first few months. But just 6 short months later, he was at over $20k MRR and growing fast. Now, Dru is working through the challenges of scaling a rapidly growing business and even hiring people to take over that juicy core. The reports. Here's a link to the Indie Hackers episode he did where he talks more about what went into that growth. What we covered in this episode: Hiring for the core competency of the business, the reports What Dru’s day-to-day looks like Challenges with context switching Starting Trends for fun The idea behind framework based research The first Trends report on cloud kitchens How does Dru decide on topics for Trends Choosing to persevere with Trends Launching a community How comfort challenges led to Trends success When to stop projects What Dru does for fun Recommendations Book: Sapiens, Caste Podcast: Founders Indie Hacker: Pat Walls Follow Dru Twitter Personal site Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/awt.

29 April 2022 14m and 32s


Bootstrapped founder running 3 profitable businesses - Monica Lent, Affilimate

Bootstrapped founder running 3 profitable businesses - Monica Lent, Affilimate

Monica Lent is a founder running 3 profitable indie businesses after leaving her full time job 2 years ago. She runs Affilimate, a SaaS product which allows you to manage and track affiliate commissions, the Blogging for Devs newsletter and paid community for developers looking to grow an audience and finally, Not a Nomad, a travel blog that accounted for almost 50% of Monica’s revenue last year, as she grew her portfolio of projects from $30k to over $100k. What we covered in this episode: How Monica splits time between her projects Is it detrimental having split attention? Delegating and outsourcing as an indie hacker How content and SEO ties her projects together Benefits of a VA Starting a blog that makes thousands Having a travel blog during covid Starting a community for developers How to start your own successful blog The downsides of sharing revenue numbers Is Monica having fun? Recommendations Book: Founding Sales Podcast: Tropical MBA Indie Hacker: Josh Ho Follow Monica Twitter 2021 Retro on personal site SEO Course Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/awt.

26 April 2022 15m and 17s


Growing ScrapingBee to $1m ARR - Pierre De Wulf, ScrapingBee

Growing ScrapingBee to $1m ARR - Pierre De Wulf, ScrapingBee

Pierre De Wulf is the co-founder of ScrapingBee a web scraping API that grew to $1M ARR in 2 years. Before starting ScrapingBee, Pierre and his co-founder Kevin had quit their jobs to follow the indie dream. 9 months later, their product PricingBot couldn’t generate the traction they were hoping for so they sold the business and pivoted to ScrapingBee. What we covered in this episode: Pierre's background; inspiration from his father Running a business within World of Warcraft Meeting his co-founder, Kevin Starting a project for his girlfriend Leaving his job to work on something for 9 months Knowing when to stop and move on Starting and selling PricingBot How to sell a failed company Using SEO as a marketing channel How to write SEO content effectively Starting ScrapingBee How ScrapingBee grew so quickly Taking TinySeed funding Recommendations Book: Hello Startup Podcast: My First Million Indie Hacker: Matt Wensing Follow Pierre Twitter Personal site Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course PodPanda (hire me to edit your podcast) Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/awt.

22 April 2022 14m and 34s


Bootstrapping Testimonial to $13k MRR after many failed products - Damon Chen, Testimonial

Bootstrapping Testimonial to $13k MRR after many failed products - Damon Chen, Testimonial

Damon Chen, who is the founder of Testimonial, a product that collects video testimonials that he launched back in December 2020, and has grown it to $13k MRR since then. Damon quit his stable job of 8 years at Cisco to pursue his dream of building a better life for himself as an indie hacker. This didn’t come easily for Damon, as he launched several products which made 0 revenue before hitting big with Testimonial. He’s also built some other fantastic products, such as embed.so and channel.so, as well as acquiring Supportman off fellow Indie Hacker Noah Bragg. What we covered in this episode: Damon's failed startup attempts Why he builds for fun Quitting his job and pivoting to Testimonial Using code from other projects How he went from 0 to 3k in 3 days Damon's approach to validation Growth tactics used to get to $13k MRR Having other projects for fun (Embed and Channel) Acquiring Supportman Growing his Twitter to 30k Recommendations Book: Getting Acquired Podcast: My First Million Indie Hacker: Pieter Levels Follow Damon Twitter Damon's blog Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - PodQueue This podcast is brought to you by PodQueue. Don't you hate when you find something you just want to bookmark and listen to later as a podcast, but there's no easy way to do it? Try PodQueue, and you can save audio from anywhere around the web and easily listen to it later in the podcast app you already use. PodQueue works with links from YouTube, Soundcloud, Apple Podcasts, NPR, the BBC, and more! There’s a 15-day free trial, and it’s just $5 per month afterwards, with no credit card required at signup. Use promo code “INDIEBITES” at signup to get an extra month free! 👉 Try it here

19 April 2022 15m and 49s


Building a mentorship platform to $1m GMV - Dominic Monn, MentorCruise

Building a mentorship platform to $1m GMV - Dominic Monn, MentorCruise

Dominic Monn is the founder of MentorCruise, a marketplace that connect mentors and mentees in Tech, which is currently doing $15k in monthly revenue and processed over $1m through the platform. Previously, Domm was a Machine Learning engineer at Doist, a job that he left in Feb '22 to pursue MentorCruise full time. What we covered in this episode: Why Dom left his full-time job at Doist How going full-time has impacted MentorCruise What Dom’s day-to-day looks like Not feeling guilty about unproductive hobbies How Dom’s discovered mentorship through Udacity Taking 5 months to build an MVP Why validation wouldn’t work for MentorCruise How it took 3 months to get his first paying customer Why he decided to push through regardless How persistence pays off Why building a business is like building a muscle How programmatic SEO works Recommendations Book: Built to Sell Podcast: My First Million Indie Hacker: Julian Canlas Follow Dom Twitter Hire him as a mentor Personal site Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/awt.

15 April 2022 15m and 13s


Bootstrapping vs venture capital & lessons from a veteran - Spencer Fry, Podia

Bootstrapping vs venture capital & lessons from a veteran - Spencer Fry, Podia

Today I’m joined by Spencer Fry, founder of Podia, a platform helping creators make a living online through selling courses, digital downloads, webinars and more. 7 years in, they have a 35 person team and have an awesome product for creators. But this isn’t Spencer’s first rodeo, bootstrapping and exiting 3 businesses between 2003 and 2014, notably Carbonmade and TypeFrag. What’s interesting about Spencer is that he's actually raised funding for Podia, and I wanted to find out why a seasoned bootstrapper like Spencer went down this route, and if it’s a an option that more indie hackers should consider. 👉 50 minute version of this conversation. What we covered in this episode: Why Spencer raised funding for Podia Why you should look at funding as a tool Beer ≠ funding 3 interesting predictions on the creator economy Spencer’s article with those predictions Bonus: Spencer’s famous vodka pasta dish Opportunities to build in the creator economy Why entrepreneurs are different gravy Solo founder vs co-founder Recommendations Book: Ben Horowitz Book 1 / Book 2 Podcast: Axios Today / All In Pod Indie Hacker / entrepreneur: Tobi Lutke Follow Spencer Twitter Personal Blog Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/awt.

12 April 2022 15m and 17s


Why your product needs marketing - Dagobert Renouf, Logology

Why your product needs marketing - Dagobert Renouf, Logology

Dagobert Renouf is the founder of Logoloy, a logo and brand design service that he started with his wife, doing around $3k in monthly revenue. This is an awesome story. Dago started building Logoloy in September 2018, then completely failed the launch after building for almost 2 years. It wasn't until May 21 that Dago realised he actually needed to find a marketing channel that worked for him -which was Twitter. Dago went for 15 years chasing money, but then realised that wasn’t the course to happiness. So after a turbulent few years, he’s now in a place of fulfilment, with plenty of the journey to go. 👉 Extended episode here. What we covered in this episode: Making his first internet money in high school Getting a cease and desist at 15 years old The dangers of being focused on money Finding the idea for Logology Taking 1.5 years to launch his startup Having a failed launch after 1.5 years of building Marketing when you don’t want to do marketing Discovering a distribution channel that works - Twitter Growing to $3k per month Recommendations Book: Zero to One by Peter Thiel Podcast: Wannabe Entreprenuer Indie Hacker: Tony Dihn Follow Dago Twitter Logology Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/awt.

8 April 2022 15m and 35s


Bootstrapping a portfolio of SaaS products to $3k MRR - Jim Raptis, BrandBird

Bootstrapping a portfolio of SaaS products to $3k MRR - Jim Raptis, BrandBird

Jim Raptis, an indie hacker from Greece who is working full-time on his portfolio of projects, including BrandBird and Magic Pattern, which are both doing $1,500 MRR. If you’ve seen those cool screenshots on Twitter with the nice drop shadow and gradient background, those are made with Brand Bird. What we covered in this episode Quitting running a funded startup for indie hacking Earning that first dollar Learning design as an engineer Launching a product with less than 300 followers Choosing to do a portfolio of small bets Splitting time between multiple projects How Jim went grew from 300 to 9k Twitter followers What do to do when things aren’t going so well Recommendations Book: Traction by Gabriel Weinberg and Justin Mares Podcast: Flow State Indie Hacker: Peter Levels Follow Jim Twitter Personal Site Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Testimonial Testimonial allows you to easily collect testimonials from your customers and automatically embeds them on your landing page. You might have seen a wall of love with a bunch of supportive Tweets and videos on various products you’ve signed up for. That wall is created using Damon Chen’s product Testimonial. All you have to do is sign up, paste the nice things people have said about you and it will generate a beautiful set of testimonials that you can easily embed on your site or share online. Head to Testimonial.to o to create your Twitter wall of love for free. If you want to sign up for a paid plan, get a whopping 25% off for 12 months with the code “INDIEBITES” at checkout.

4 April 2022 15m and 30s


Candle dealer builds $5k MRR software to solve own problem - Dianna Allen & Jeremy Blalock, Inventora

Candle dealer builds $5k MRR software to solve own problem - Dianna Allen & Jeremy Blalock, Inventora

In this episode I’ve got my first ever returning guest with Dianna Allen and first ever double act as we’re joined by her fiance Jeremy Blalock. I spoke to Dianna about a year ago after growing her handmade candle business from $100 to $50k in that year. Since then Dianna is still running TERRA and doubled the revenue in 2021, but has also co-founded Inventora which has just hit $5k MRR. Inventora is inventory tracking system for handmade businesses, solving Dianna’s own problem with TERRA. 👉 Join the Indie Feast membership here. What we covered in this episode: How TERRA is going Handmade business vs SaaS business. Which is better? Solving her own problem with TERRA to build Inventora Spreadsheet to SaaS Asking Jeremy (Dianna’s partner) to build the product Growing without paying for ads Leveraging existing relationships Choosing to raise a small funding round Why raise money if you’re an indie hacker? Spending $25,000 on a domain Tactics for growing to $5k MRR Hiring a videographer to make a documentary Recommendations Books: The Innovation Stack, The Gardeners Almanack Podcasts: Acquired, The Product Boss Indie Hackers: Elon Musk, Jon Yongfook Follow Dianna & Jeremy Dianna's Twitter Jeremy's Twitter Inventora Instagram TERRA Instagram Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/awt.

27 March 2022 15m and 43s


Gumroad founder's framework for a bootstrapped business - Sahil Lavingia, Gumroad

Gumroad founder's framework for a bootstrapped business - Sahil Lavingia, Gumroad

Sahil Lavingia is the founder of Gumroad, the platform that allows creators to sell products online. The beating heart of the creator economy. You'll likely have heard Sahil's story about his failure to build a billion dollar company with an article that went viral, but let me summarise for those that haven't. Sahil founded Gumroad in 2011, aiming to build the next unicorn, leaving Pinterest where he was employee #2. He raised $1.1m from angels, then $7m more in 2012. Things started growing, then they didn't. Sahil laid off 75% of the company to keep the product alive, moved to Provo, Utah to figure where to take Gumroad from that point. Almost a decade later Gumroad is growing quicker than ever, making millions in revenue and helping creators make a living online. Sahil has just launched his book, The Minimalist Entrepreneur, where he shares a decade of learnings on how to build a profitable, sustainable business and how entrepreneurs can do more with less to make more impact on the world. 👉 I'm giving away 5 copies of Sahil's book on Twitter, enter here. What we covered on this episode: Sahil’s approach to funding Bootstrapping vs VC Why Gumroad runs so differently to most companies Why longevity has helped Gumroad Sahil’s book: The Minimalist Entrepreneur Building a project in a weekend: Verification Letters Livestream of building Verification Letters The framework for starting a business Why you should start and then learn Barriers people have to starting their business Fear of failure Importance of writing Recommendations Book: Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely Podcast: All-In Podcast Indie Hacker: Naval Follow Sahil Twitter Website Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - ilo Analytics Sahil has 280k followers on Twitter and he sure knows the tweets that will engage his audience. If you too want to get a deeper understanding of what engages your followers on Twitter, you should check out ilo Analytics. ilo helps you easily see which kind of tweets get more impressions, likes, profile clicks and more so you can get grow your Twitter audience. ilo's has beautiful graphs for the most important metrics for both tweets and threads will be sure to help you build your following. Head to ilo.so or hit the link in the show notes and use the code INDIEBITES to get 25% off your ilo subscription for life.

16 March 2022 15m and 7s


A solo $130k MRR productized design service - Brett Williams, Designjoy

A solo $130k MRR productized design service - Brett Williams, Designjoy

Brett Williams is the founder of Designjoy, a one-man productised design service that is doing over $130k MRR, charging clients up to $5k a month for unlimited design. You indeed hear that right, Brett is running a million dollar business solo with over 40 clients. What we covered in this episode: $50k per year with a Tumblr blog Dropping out of college and getting a regular job How Brett started Designjoy Being inspired by Design Pickle Launching Designjoy Taking 3 years to get to $10k MRR Non-traditional marketing and growth methods Launching Scribbles, a side project What does into a good landing page? Different routes to success Waiting till $80k to quit his job Should entrepreneurs be more risk-adverse? How run a successful 1-man productised service? Recommendations Book: Company of One Podcast: The Dave Ramsey Show Indie Hacker: Suhail Follow Brett Twitter Instagram Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/awt.

14 March 2022 15m and 36s


Growing an online card tool to $23k a month - Valentin Hinov, Thankbox

Growing an online card tool to $23k a month - Valentin Hinov, Thankbox

Val Hinov is the founder of Thankbox an online group card tool that grew to $20k p/m throughout lockdown. Now Val is facing the challenges of what to do when your product scales, what to do when the wave that brought you success starts to slow and when your product has one-time purchase pricing model. What we covered in this episode: Where the idea for Thankbox came from? Lessons learned from a failed startup How he built Thankbox in 2 months How he got his first users for Thankbox Building a virality model Using Google Ads to grow quickly Advice for people apprehensive of using ads Why social ads didn’t work The effect of a one-off purchase pricing model Having a big drop in users Indie Hackers Pod The seasonality of online cards Outsourcing vs solo When to go full-time Recommendations Book: Atomic Habits Podcast: The Revolutions Podcast Indie Hacker: Andrea Bosoni Follow Val Twitter PersonalSite Thankbox Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - 4dayweek.io As indie hackers we’re always trying to squeeze extra hours in our day to work on our side projects. What about if you had a whole extra day to work on your projects, while still getting a full-time salary? 4dayweek.io is the place to get a Software Job with a better work-life balance. All jobs have a 4 day work week contract and most are only 32 hours per week. Find the best remote tech jobs from companies with a great work-life balance at 4dayweek.io or hit the link in the show notes. 👉 Try it here.

7 March 2022 14m and 45s


Building a $15m GMV side-project at 15 years old - Che Sampat, SuperPay

Building a $15m GMV side-project at 15 years old - Che Sampat, SuperPay

Che Sampat is an 18 year old Indie Hacker who built SuperPay in 2019 when he was 15 years old, an app that lets you generate easy payment links through Stripe and Square. Since then he's grown it to 5k users, $6k in revenue and processed a whopping $15m in payments. Che has also been working at some cool companies since he was young, recently joining the payments startup Fast to focus on his career, therefore stepping back from SuperPay. What we covered in this episode How Che got into coding Building his first app in year 9 computer science How Che learnt to code with YouTube The story of building SuperPay Starting his first company at 15 Balancing indie hacking and school Success without idea validation Launching on Product Hunt with no plan How did Che get his first users Growing to $15m GMV Did Che buy himself anything nice? Getting in trouble with Stripe building SuperPortal Challenges of being an 18yr old indie hacker Why Che got himself an engineering job instead of pursuing SuperPay Recommendations Book: Clean Code Podcast: Software Engineering Daily Indie Hacker: Peter Grillet Follow Che Twitter Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Reel.so Reel lets you create these short teaser videos (called audiograms), with animated subtitles, waveforms and a ton of beautiful templates to choose from. Save time and set your podcast clips aside from the rest by creating these sharable snippets that grab your audience's attention as they scroll through their feed. even without sound. I've used Reel myself for Indie Bites and it's been a game changer for me. If you want to give it a go for yourself, head to reel.so or click the link in your show notes and use the code INDIEBITES for 20% off. 👉 Try it here.

25 February 2022 15m and 42s


Mental health as a founder and the importance of community - Tom Ross, Design Cuts

Mental health as a founder and the importance of community - Tom Ross, Design Cuts

In this episode we’re joined by Tom Ross, who is the founder of Design Cuts, a marketplace and community for creatives which he’s grown to a team of 20 over the past decade. Tom is also a seasoned podcaster, co-hosting The Honest Designer's Show and Biz Buds which have been downloaded millions of times. It's not all been plain sailing for Tom as he ran into severe burnout working 18 hour days, 7 days a week for 18 months, leading to him being hospitalised. In this episode we're going to find out more about Tom's story, some of his successes and failures in business, along advice he'd give to founders from his experiences. 👉 Get the extended version of this podcast on membership, available for £4 a month. What we covered in this episode: Tom’s backstory Link to pod episode Starting an Interpol forum Earning more money at home at 16 than in his job Growing a design blog to 15 million visitors Growing Design Cuts in the early days 10 years later, 20 employees, millions of revenue Mental health and burnout as a founder Link to Tom’s burnout story How to build good routines to avoid burnout How community can help with your mental health Why community is so important How to build a community Recommendations Book: Thank You Economy by Gary Vee Podcast: Diary of a CEO Indie Hacker: Rosie Sherry Follow Tom Twitter Instagram LinkedIn Website Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/awt.

8 February 2022 15m and 34s


Growing to $8.5k MRR in 1 year - Marie Martens, Tally.so

Growing to $8.5k MRR in 1 year - Marie Martens, Tally.so

Marie Martens the co-founder of Tally, an easy way to create forms online. She left her stable marketing job to start Tally with her partner in crime Filip and became an indie hacker. Since then they've grown Tally to over 16,000 users almost $10k MRR as they work towards becoming default alive. Through a mix of manual prospecting, a successful product hunt launch and product-led growth, they’ve turned Tally into an exceptional indie success story. -> Subscribe to my brand new podcast, No More Mondays, co-hosted with Dan Rowden here. What we covered in this episode: The origin story of Tally Indie Hackers episode A failed startup, Hotspot How COVID crushed their first startup How Tally got their first few users Doing things that don’t scale How I became Tally’s first paying customer Biggest source of sign ups for tally The benefits of product-led growth How to do an effective PH launch Going from 3,000 - 12,000 users without paid ads Why Marie quit her job to bootstrap Would she ever go back to a job What it’s like building your dream startup Recommendations Book: Intercom on Marketing Podcast: Indie Hackers Indie Hacker: Davis Baer Follow Marie Twitter Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/awt.

3 February 2022 14m and 46s


Growing to $4m+ despite Apple cloning their product - Matt Ronge, Astropad

Growing to $4m+ despite Apple cloning their product - Matt Ronge, Astropad

Matt Ronge is the co-founder and CEO at Astropad, a product that turns your iPad into a second screen both on Windows and Mac, started back in 2015. Back in 2019, their business was almost destroyed when Apple launched a feature that almost made Astropad defunct. What did this lead Matt and his team to do? Pivot and find a new idea? Lay off the team? Absolutely not. They doubled down on their product. Through challenges with big tech, raising kickstarter funding and building physical products, Matt has been on quite the journey with Astropad and we’re going to dive into all of that today, along with a mini-masterclass on PR. What we covered in this episode: Origins of Astropad Having two technical co-founders How they tackled marketing with no prior knowledge Most useful books to learn the basics 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing Burned Out Blogger's Guide to PR How Matt leveraged PR in the early days How indie hackers can use PR for their projects Size of Astropad in 2022 Why they built a hardware product How to get into building hardware The benefits of hardware products How Apple stole their product How they saved their business after being crushed by Apple Recommendations Book: Radical Candour, The Making of a Manager Podcast: Dithering Indie Hacker: Monica Lent Follow Matt Twitter Astropad Podcast Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Ahrefs Thank you to Ahrefs for sponsoring Indie Bites. Ahrefs is the most complete and valuable SEO tool on the market. Bootstrapped companies such as VEED and Transistor have used Ahrefs extensively to understand how to craft their SEO strategies, which have been such a pivotal part of their growth. If you want to get more traffic from Google on your side-project, I’d recommend first trying out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for free. You’ll see what keywords your pages are ranking for, understand how Google sees your content and discover what changes you need to improve your search ranking. You should also check out their YouTube channel to understand both the basics of SEO and some more advanced techniques. To try out Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, head to ahrefs.com/awt.

29 January 2022 16m and 49s


Bootstrapping a SaaS to millions in revenue - Ben Orenstein, Tuple

Bootstrapping a SaaS to millions in revenue - Ben Orenstein, Tuple

Ben Orenstein is the founder of Tuple, a tool for remote pair programmers that has been steadily growing for the past few years. Now, Ben runs Tuple with a small team and is delving into what happens when your SaaS starts to hit scale. You might have also heard Ben's voice on the Art of Product podcast, which he co-hosts with Derrick Reimer, founder of SavvyCal, talking about the behind the scenes of running their respective SaaS companies. What we covered in this episode: Why Tuple is the most successful product he’s made How Ben’s approach to enterprise sales has changed How much revenue comes from enterprise sales How the enterprise product is differentiated How indie hackers can sell to bigger companies Where Tuple gets it’s customers from What does Ben’s day-to-day look like? Has he just built himself a job? The benefits of making a podcast Some of Ben’s favourite previous products Recommendations Book: The Mom Test Podcast: Bootstrapped Web Indie Hacker: Adam Wathan Follow Ben Twitter Blog Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Fathom Analytics For the longest time, website analytics software was seriously bad. It was hard to understand, time-consuming to use, and worse, it exploited visitor data for big tech to profit. I've spent countless hours in Google Analytics dashboards trying to figure even out the most basic metrics. This is exactly why I signed up for Fathom as soon as I heard Paul Jarvis and Jack Ellis were building it. Fathom is simple website analytics that doesn't suck. It's easy to use and respectful of privacy laws, with no cookies following your users around the web. They're also a bootstrapped, sustainable business so I love supporting them. Yes, it might feel strange paying for analytics at first, but once you realise the real cost of free Google Analytics and realising how easy to use Fathom is, you won't go back. You can install the lightweight code on as many websites as you want and quickly see the performance of all your sites. Link → https://usefathom.com/bites

24 January 2022 15m and 43s


4 years of failed projects to full-time indie hacker - Kenneth Cassel, Pointer.gg

4 years of failed projects to full-time indie hacker - Kenneth Cassel, Pointer.gg

Today I’m joined by Kenneth Cassel the founder of Pointer.gg a product he pivoted from Slip.so, a course platform making it easy for developers to make high-quality interactive courses. He got inspiration for Slip when he built vim.so, a course made $10k in just one month with - his first internet money. It's not all been plain sailing for Kenneth, as he struggled with failing his way to eventual success, with 4 years building products with no revenue. Now with Slip, he's quit his job, been accepted to YC and gets to build a company he’s always wanted to have. What we covered in this episode: How buying a Raspberry Pi changed Kenneth's life Going from maintenance man for a gas station to software engineer The inspiration Kenneth took from his Dad How he learned programming Making $100 in 4 years of side projects How to stay motivated when things aren't going so well Going from 0-20k Twitter followers How building in public impacted Kenneth Earning $10k in one month with Vim.so Why he started Slip.so Dealing with imposter syndrome Recommendations Book: Hell Yeah or No by Derek Sivers Podcast: My First Million Indie Hacker: The Builder JR Follow Kenneth Twitter Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Fathom Analytics For the longest time, website analytics software was seriously bad. It was hard to understand, time-consuming to use, and worse, it exploited visitor data for big tech to profit. I've spent countless hours in Google Analytics dashboards trying to figure even out the most basic metrics. This is exactly why I signed up for Fathom as soon as I heard Paul Jarvis and Jack Ellis were building it. Fathom is simple website analytics that doesn't suck. It's easy to use and respectful of privacy laws, with no cookies following your users around the web. They're also a bootstrapped, sustainable business so I love supporting them. Yes, it might feel strange paying for analytics at first, but once you realise the real cost of free Google Analytics and realising how easy to use Fathom is, you won't go back. You can install the lightweight code on as many websites as you want and quickly see the performance of all your sites. Link → https://usefathom.com/bites

15 January 2022 15m and 58s


Nailing your marketing as a founder - Peter Suhm, Reform

Nailing your marketing as a founder - Peter Suhm, Reform

Peter Suhm is the co-founder of Reform, a tool that lets you easily create simple, brandable forms. Peter is also part of the Tiny Seed 1st batch, where he was working on a product called branch Branch. After that didn't work out, he went through a period of testing and validating ideas. One of those ideas was a investor update tool, where Peter discovered how convoluted creating a form with existing tools was. Using Twitter and a very early stage MVP, he validated the idea for Reform and got to work building. Since then he's had #1 Product of the Week on Product Hunt and is now working through the challenges of building features and growing revenue. You might have also heard Peter on the Out of Beta podcast, which he co-hosts with Matt Wensing. ➡️ Get the uncut, 30 minute conversation with Peter on the Indie Bites membership here. What we covered in this episode: Coming up with the idea for Reform Validating the idea for Reform Why build a product in such a competitive market Where form builders keep messing up Getting to #1 Product Hunt of the week When is the right time to launch on PH Marketing and growth tests for Reform going forward Continuing to try things that don't scale Where should founders start with marketing? Peter's approach to product development The feedback loop of Twitter The upsides of raising Tiny Seed money Recommendations Book: Traction by Gabriel Weinberg Podcast: Tropical MBA Indie Hacker: Derrick Reimer Follow Peter Twitter Personal Site Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Fathom Analytics For the longest time, website analytics software was seriously bad. It was hard to understand, time-consuming to use, and worse, it exploited visitor data for big tech to profit. I've spent countless hours in Google Analytics dashboards trying to figure even out the most basic metrics. This is exactly why I signed up for Fathom as soon as I heard Paul Jarvis and Jack Ellis were building it. Fathom is simple website analytics that doesn't suck. It's easy to use and respectful of privacy laws, with no cookies following your users around the web. They're also a bootstrapped, sustainable business so I love supporting them. Yes, it might feel strange paying for analytics at first, but once you realise the real cost of free Google Analytics and realising how easy to use Fathom is, you won't go back. You can install the lightweight code on as many websites as you want and quickly see the performance of all your sites. Link → https://usefathom.com/bites

18 November 2021 15m and 34s


From lifelong bootstrapper to raising calm funding - Brian Casel, ZipMessage

From lifelong bootstrapper to raising calm funding - Brian Casel, ZipMessage

Brian Casel is a veteran of the bootstrapping game, having left his full-time job back in 2008. You might have heard him on the Boostrapped Web podcast where he shares his journey starting and building software products. Over the years Brian has pretty much done it all, built software businesses, courses, productized services and even sold some along the way. Most recently, Brian has been working on ZipMessage, a new way to communicate asynchronously. ➡️ Get the uncut, 60 minute recording with Brian on the Indie Feast membership here. What we covered in this episode: Where did the idea of ZipMessage come from? How Brian validated ZipMessage Brian's unconventional approach to validation Why Brian raised funding from Calm Company Fund How can people go from freelancer to productized service The importance of building processes in productized services Why Brian didn't follow his passion for music Recommendations Book: Shoe Dog by Phil Knight Podcast: Smartless Indie Hacker: James McKinven (errm...) Follow Brian Twitter Personal Site Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Fathom Analytics For the longest time, website analytics software was seriously bad. It was hard to understand, time-consuming to use, and worse, it exploited visitor data for big tech to profit. I've spent countless hours in Google Analytics dashboards trying to figure even out the most basic metrics. This is exactly why I signed up for Fathom as soon as I heard Paul Jarvis and Jack Ellis were building it. Fathom is simple website analytics that doesn't suck. It's easy to use and respectful of privacy laws, with no cookies following your users around the web. They're also a bootstrapped, sustainable business so I love supporting them. Yes, it might feel strange paying for analytics at first, but once you realise the real cost of free Google Analytics and realising how easy to use Fathom is, you won't go back. You can install the lightweight code on as many websites as you want and quickly see the performance of all your sites. Link → https://usefathom.com/bites

13 November 2021 15m and 41s


Leaving a $500k job to build a portfolio of small bets - Daniel Vassallo

Leaving a $500k job to build a portfolio of small bets - Daniel Vassallo

In 2019 Daniel Vassallo left his $500k salaried job at Amazon to go indie. In the 2 years since he left Daniel has placed many small bets, something he's become known for. In particular Daniel has seen success from his Info Products and building his audience on Twitter, which has grown from 0 to 91k. He wrote a short book on the good parts of AWS, which has made $126,000, then following the Twitter growth, wrote a book called Everyone Can Build a Twitter Audience, which has made $244,000. He shares all of his revenue reports in his Profit and Loss community, which in itself has made over $30k in the past year. In total, and in just over 2 years, Daniel has made $570k in revenue and $306k in profit since leaving his job at Amazon. But he's gained something he didn't have while working for someone else, freedom. ➡️ Get the uncut, 80 minute recording with Daniel on the Indie Feast membership here. What we covered in this episode: Leaving a $500k job at Amazon to go Indie The trap of judging your life based on financial value Why the initial focusing on one product didn't work out for Daniel Where the small bets mindset originated How to deal with context switching with small bets Dealing with an uncertain income Why info products work well for a small bets strategy How book publishers work and how we can apply their methods The importance of the "small" in small bets How you can build a twitter audience like Daniel Why Daniel started making wooden cutting boards How he made $2,600 from one tweet Recommendations Book: Anti Fragile by Nassim Taleb Podcast: Indie Hackers Indie Hacker: Peter Askew More on Daniel Twitter On the IH pod His most popular articles Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course Sponsor - Fathom Analytics For the longest time, website analytics software was seriously bad. It was hard to understand, time-consuming to use, and worse, it exploited visitor data for big tech to profit. I've spent countless hours in Google Analytics dashboards trying to figure even out the most basic metrics. This is exactly why I signed up for Fathom as soon as I heard Paul Jarvis and Jack Ellis were building it. Fathom is simple website analytics that doesn't suck. It's easy to use and respectful of privacy laws, with no cookies following your users around the web. They're also a bootstrapped, sustainable business so I love supporting them. Yes, it might feel strange paying for analytics at first, but once you realise the real cost of free Google Analytics and realising how easy to use Fathom is, you won't go back. You can install the lightweight code on as many websites as you want and quickly see the performance of all your sites. Link → https://usefathom.com/bites

8 November 2021 16m and 24s


From $500k to $1m in 6 months with a podcast agency - Harry Morton, Lowerstreet

From $500k to $1m in 6 months with a podcast agency - Harry Morton, Lowerstreet

Harry Morton is the founder of Lower Street Media, a podcast production agency that specialises in premium podcasts for ambitious companies. Lower Street are the agency behind top shows such as Secret Leaders, Technology Untangled and WFH Daily. Harry's business has skyrocketed since COVID, doubling in size of revenue and headcount in the last 6-months as more companies start to realise how effective podcasting can be. Harry also runs Single Track Conf, a 3-day mountain-biking founder retreat. ➡️ Here's my course on starting a podcast in 2 hours or less (use "bites" for $10 off) What we covered in this episode: Why start an agency? it's not exactly a dream business to start. How Harry grew Lowerstreet through cold outreach 1st client, Ultimate Leadership Podcast Why the productising model didn't work out for Lowerstreet What Harry did in the early days for growth How losing 30% of revenue was a catalyst for growth Doubling the agency revenue in 6 months Quitting his job with no savings to start Lowersteet Not knowing what to do when starting the company Addressing shiny object syndrome Why focus vs portfolio of projects argument is BS The secret sauce for making a sh*t hot podcast How to make a show that stands out Starting a mountain bike community Recommendations Book: Out on The Wire by Jessica Abel Podcast: Startup Indie Hacker: Andrew Wilkinson Follow Harry Twitter LinkedIn Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Sponsor - 2 Hour Podcast Yes, that's right, I'm sponsoring my own show 🤯 After producing hundreds of podcasts for myself and clients, I've been pouring all of my knowledge into my new course, 2 Hour Podcast, which shows you how to start, grow and monetize a podcast that takes you less than 2 hours per week. I know lots of people who want to start a pod and reap the rewards, but struggle to find the time, which is exactly why I made this course. I've taken a three-pronged approach to making a podcast efficiently. The first is a step-by-step video guide to creating your show, covering everything from branding, to editing to hosting. The second part is a 90 minute tutorial where I make a my own podcast completely from scratch, recording the first episode with Arvid Kahl, using the tips from part 1. The final prong is my full Notion system for creating my show, including my episode CRM, guest and outreach templates, plus an episode briefing doc. Head to 2hourpodcast.com to get the full course and get $10 off with the code "bites" at checkout.

31 October 2021 16m and 31s


Taking on Google with Fathom Analytics and growing a course to $150k - Jack Ellis, Fathom

Taking on Google with Fathom Analytics and growing a course to $150k - Jack Ellis, Fathom

Jack Ellis is the co-founder of Fathom Analytics, started with Paul Jarvis in 2019. Jack handles the technical side of the business, but isn't afraid to get on the mic on their podcast, Above Board, or send out some spicy tweets. Jack also runs the Serverless Laravel course, which he launched back in 2020. After this conversation Jack has turned into a true friend, speaking with me for several hours after, a genuinely nice chap. You’re going to want the same thing after listening to this pod. Jack talks with great wisdom on how to approach bootstrapping a SaaS company and taking on a huge incumbent. ➡️ Here's my course on starting a podcast in 2 hours or less (use "bites" for $10 off) What we covered in this episode: What is Fathom Analytics Joining as a co-founder after the company was founded How Fathom started How did they know Fathom was going to work What growth tactics did Fathom use to grow? How did they convince people to pay for analytics? The trade-off of free software How do you compete in a market with a huge incumbent Starting a medium competitor, Pico Benefits of having a co-founder Quitting a job for Jack's first side-project Starting a course (Serverless Laravel) that made $150,000 Recommendations Book: 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Podcast: Huberman Lab Indie Hacker: N/A Follow Jack Spicy Tweets Personal Website Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Sponsor - Part Time Tech Jobs Thank you to my friend Charlie from Weekend Club for sponsoring this episode, with his new project Part Time Tech Jobs, which is a fantastic site for finding and posting, you guessed it, part time tech jobs  If you’re looking to transistion from a full-time role to indie hacking, finding a part time role might be just the thing for you to de-risk that transition. And on the other side, if you’re looking to hire great entrepreneurial talent without breaking the bank, this is where you should post. So if you’re looking for a part time tech job, head to parttimetechjobs.co or if you’re looking for tech talent, use the code INDIEBITES for 80% off all featured posts.

28 October 2021 15m and 22s


Building a portfolio of projects to $6k in one month - Pete Codes, No CS Degree

Building a portfolio of projects to $6k in one month - Pete Codes, No CS Degree

Pete runs No CS Degree, among other things, sharing stories of people who have made it as a developer, without going down the traditional route of getting a computer science degree, showing how it's possible to earn a nice salary without going to university. He has also started High Signal, a community for revenue verified entrepreneurs, a site for finding fully remote companies (sold) and finally made 2 courses where you'll learn how to both monetize and grow your newsletter. ➡️ Here's my course on starting a podcast in 2 hours or less. What we covered in this episode Pete's crazy backstory How he got into entreprenuership Most inspiring story from No CS Degree How does Pete get revenue Getting a sponsor for a course How do you grow a newsletter Launching a monetize your newsletter course Doing a bundle deal with other indie hackers Starting the High Signal community Why some paid communities are bad Pete's nifty pricing trick Launching a job board Recommendations Book: Mindset by Carol Dweck Podcast: Indie Hackers Indie Hacker: Lachlan Kirkwood Follow Pete Twitter Website Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Thanks to this episode's sponsor, Churnkey It can be a huge challenge to keep churn down when your SaaS product starts to see traction. The founders of Churnkey know exactly how much of a challenge this can be, having collectively grown three SaaS companies to over $4m in ARR. They realized that they were thinking about cancellations all wrong. A relationship with a customer doesn’t stop with the “Cancel” button. So they built Churnkey, which reduces churn by up to 42% with custom cancellation flows. For every customer who clicks “Cancel,” Churnkey offers up dynamic offers that encourage customers to stay subscribed. Just connect Stripe and plug in a small bit of code. In minutes, you’ll be reducing churn by immediately unlocking subscription pauses, dynamic offers, and cancellation insights.  See how much revenue Churnkey can recover for you. Visit churnkey.co to start your free trial.

20 October 2021 16m and 2s


Growing Upvoty to $17k MRR - Mike Slaats, Upvoty

Growing Upvoty to $17k MRR - Mike Slaats, Upvoty

Mike Slaats is the founder of Upvoty, an instant feedback software which has recently hit $17k MRR. Mike also runs the SaaS pirates community, where he talks all about running a SaaS company. Previously, he scaled Vindy, an only marketplace for home development to 1m ARR in 5 years. What we covered in this episode Why did you start Upvoty? Stopping a $1m business to start from scratch Why your work should be fulfilling Should you be passionate about your audience? How to validate your idea How Mike got his first customers for Upvoty The value of an MVP and a landing page Why you should build runway or have an alternative income source How you can make your own luck Why indie hackers should build a personal brand Mike's one bit of advice for founders; validate How to build an MVP with the BML framework Recommendations Book: Intercom on Marketing Podcast: How I Built This Indie Hacker: Arvid Kahl Follow Mike Twitter YouTube SaaS Pirates Upvoty Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites. ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month.

13 October 2021 15m and 47s


$250 to $3k MRR in 4 months with a Notion website builder - Noah Bragg, Potion

$250 to $3k MRR in 4 months with a Notion website builder - Noah Bragg, Potion

Noah Bragg is an indie hacker in its truest form. Building in public hacking away on his project, Potion, which is a a way to host your Notion pages as websites behind a custom domain. He's also the co-host of the Product Journey podcast, where he speaks with his co-host Ben about their progress on their respective side projects. What we covered: The goal of building a huge business Project: Coffee Pass When to decide to stop a project Failing after 2 years working on something First project as an indie hacker: Supportman Selling Supportman Starting Potion $250 to $3,000 MRR in 4 months How to do a successful product hunt launch How to get a product hunt maker grant Focusing on product instead of marketing Finding the right market / a growing market Dealing with competition Recommendations Book: ReWork Podcast: My First Million Indie Hacker: Kenneth Cassel Follow Noah Twitter Potion Website Product Journey Podcast Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Sponsor - Upvoty Do you want to build the best product possible? Then listening to user feedback is one of the best ways to do so. Because by listening to the problems of your users, you can build a real problem-solver that they'll love. Upvoty is a user feedback tool that gives your user's a voice and makes it really easy at the same time for you to prioritize what to build next. By installing Upvoty's feedback boards, you'll have all of your user feedback in one central place and it will really help you connect with your customers and understand their needs. On top of that, you can close the feedback loop by setting up your Changelog and Product Roadmap. Your users will be actively involved in building new features and will love you for that. Try Upvoty 14-days for free and with the code 'INDIEBITES' you'll get a 10% discount on any of their plans. Sign up here.

29 September 2021 15m and 6s


Bootstrapping two $3k MRR projects, selling one for $55k - Andy Cloke, Data Fetcher

Bootstrapping two $3k MRR projects, selling one for $55k - Andy Cloke, Data Fetcher

Andy Cloke is the founder of Data Fetcher, a platform for running API requests in Airtable, which is currently doing around $3k MRR. Andy has started many projects in the past, his most recent one, Influence Grid, was sold for $55k back in mid-2020, having only started it 7 months before. In this episode we talk about his framework for finding trending ideas, building a product and being successful with marketing as a developer. We also talk about the process of selling your product and how to make that go smoothly. What we covered Andy's background Kabooshi Why Andy started Influence Grid How to leverage Exploding Topics to find trending ideas Getting validation for your idea Using cold outreach to grow a platform Rocket Reach Doing SEO from the start How he grew Influence Grid to $3k MRR Why decide to sell Influence Grid? Should you go through a platform for an acquisition? How to best prepare for a small acquisition What Andy bought himself after selling for $55k What he did after the acquisition The process of finding a new idea Software Ideas by Kevin Conti Micro SaaS by Tyler Tringas Why Andy started Data Fetcher How Data Fetcher has grown to $3k MRR Andy's framework for finding a successful idea How to push through when things aren't going so well Recommendations Book: Blue Ocean Strategy Podcast: Startup to Last Indie Hacker: Jon Yongfook Follow Andy Twitter Data Fetcher Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Sponsor - Upvoty Do you want to build the best product possible? Then listening to user feedback is one of the best ways to do so. Because by listening to the problems of your users, you can build a real problem-solver that they'll love. Upvoty is a user feedback tool that gives your user's a voice and makes it really easy at the same time for you to prioritize what to build next. By installing Upvoty's feedback boards, you'll have all of your user feedback in one central place and it will really help you connect with your customers and understand their needs. On top of that, you can close the feedback loop by setting up your Changelog and Product Roadmap. Your users will be actively involved in building new features and will love you for that. Try Upvoty 14-days for free and with the code 'INDIEBITES' you'll get a 10% discount on any of their plans. Sign up here.

22 September 2021 16m and 47s


Bootstrapping to over $250k MRR - Baird Hall, Churnkey

Bootstrapping to over $250k MRR - Baird Hall, Churnkey

Baird is a 4x SaaS founder based in Charleston, SC. His background is in sales, marketing, and support. He bootstrapped and grew two SaaS companies to over $1M in ARR. When he isn't working on Churnkey's sales and marketing, he is on the water with his wife and daughter. What we covered in this episode: The big challenges faced when bootstrapping Did Baird always want to bootstrap Why leave a job to start a company Did he ever get funding from utalk How did Waave come about? How to avoid quitting when times get tough Getting early customers in for Waave What was different when they launched Zubtitle (108k MRR) Why they started a new business completely Why churn is such a difficult problem to solve Is it harder or easier to do B2C vs B2B How to manage context switching How to make time to run 3 huge businesses at once Recommendations Book: Range by David Epstien Podcast: Indie Hackers Indie Hacker: Nathan Barry Follow Baird Twitter Churnkey Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Sponsor - Upvoty Do you want to build the best product possible? Then listening to user feedback is one of the best ways to do so. Because by listening to the problems of your users, you can build a real problem-solver that they'll love. Upvoty is a user feedback tool that gives your user's a voice and makes it really easy at the same time for you to prioritize what to build next. By installing Upvoty's feedback boards, you'll have all of your user feedback in one central place and it will really help you connect with your customers and understand their needs. On top of that, you can close the feedback loop by setting up your Changelog and Product Roadmap. Your users will be actively involved in building new features and will love you for that. Try Upvoty 14-days for free and with the code 'INDIEBITES' you'll get a 10% discount on any of their plans. Sign up here.

15 September 2021 16m and 15s


Building Copy.ai in Public - Blake Emal (CMO), Copy.ai

Building Copy.ai in Public - Blake Emal (CMO), Copy.ai

Blake Emal is the CMO at Copy.ai, but it's not been a traditional route into that role. 8 years ago Blake was living in the South of France and when he moved back to the US, he had no idea what he wanted to do. As he spoke French, he landed a gig in the French team of an SEO firm. This was his first foray into marketing and he didn't intend to stay in marketing. Fast forward 7 years of working for agencies, freelancing and in-house, he stumbled across a little tool called Copy.ai. He was quite happy in his current role, but sent the Copy.ai founder a DM on Twitter, asking if he needed any help with marketing. After a few back and forths and a grand total of 3 Zoom calls, Blake became CMO at Copy.ai. In this episode we cover: What is copy.ai and how does it work? What does being a CMO in public mean? Where should founders start with marketing Why you should just "put a camera in front of you" when building Why is building in public so effective? Who is building in public well? How to get good at Twitter? Who is doing Twitter well? Are threads dead? Why do marketers ruin everything? Recommendations Book: Lord of the Flies Podcast: Creator Lab Indie Hacker: Bereket Follow Blake Twitter Luma Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Sponsor Thank you to Dan Rowden for sponsoring this episode with his product, ilo which helps you easily see which kind of tweets get more impressions, likes, profile clicks and more so you can get grow your Twitter audience. Use the code "INDIEBITES27" for 25% off your plan for life. Sign up here.

10 September 2021 15m and 26s


Founder Hot Seat - Overcoming mental health challenges [Bonus]

Founder Hot Seat - Overcoming mental health challenges [Bonus]

Listen to the full conversation here on Stefan's podcast. This is about 17 minutes of a recording with my friend Stefan on his Founder Hot Seat podcast, which is a show that explores the real challenges that founders have in their business and how to overcome them. I've had a ton of messages from people after listening to my previous bonus episode where I explained some of the challenges I've had with mental health over the past few months, and this episode was super helpful for me to navigate some of those challenges and set a path forward. From Stefan This episode is a twist on the normal format. James has publicly shared the challenges he's been going through with his mental health. We explore the journey James has been on over the past year, including when things began to change, what that felt like on a day-to-day basis, how James has worked on his recovery and how he plans to move forward. Follow Stefan Twitter Talk To Stefan Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet

5 August 2021 19m and 44s


Bootstrapping Transistor.fm to 13,000+ podcasts - Justin Jackson, Transistor.fm

Bootstrapping Transistor.fm to 13,000+ podcasts - Justin Jackson, Transistor.fm

Justin Jackson is the co-founder of Transistor.fm, a successful bootstrapped podcast hosting company. The journey building Transistor were documented on the Build Your SaaS podcast, which is a must listen. Justin is the founder of the MegaMaker community which he started in 2013, so if you're part of the maker sphere - you'll probably have heard of him. In this episode we cover: What is Transistor and why did they start it Why work in podcast hosting? Was it not already a solved problem? How did they get the first few customers? What's next for Transistor? What's it like having "made it" as an indie hacker? What challenges does Justin run into? Should you just get a job at a tech company or run your bootstrapped co? Why bootstrapping is not a level playing field When you should quit your job Addressing mental health as an entreprenuer Recommendations Book: Life Profitability Podcast: Software Social Indie Hacker: Derek Sivers Follow Justin Twitter Blog Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Sponsor Thank you to Dan Rowden for sponsoring this episode with his product, ilo which helps you easily see which kind of tweets get more impressions, likes, profile clicks and more so you can get grow your Twitter audience. Use the code "INDIEBITES27" for 25% off your plan for life. Sign up here.

25 July 2021 16m and 28s


Making $10k in a weekend selling emoji email addresses - Ben Stokes, Tiny Projects

Making $10k in a weekend selling emoji email addresses - Ben Stokes, Tiny Projects

Ben Stokes a full stack developer and entrepreneur based in Bristol in the UK, who's started an ice cream business and cookie dough business amongst other things. Ben, like many indie hackers, has a bunch of small side project ideas, but not enough time to do them. So he started Tiny Projects. Tiny Projects documents his progress with these small ideas, launching 6 projects since May last year, including One Item Store, which he sold, and his most recent, Mailoji, which has just crossed $10k in revenue. Sponsor Thank you to today's sponsor, VEED.io, who are hiring developers, designers, product people and more. So if you're looking to join a growing bootstrapper-friendly business, reach out to their CEO, Sabba (s@veed.io), or take a look at their published roles here. Get ad-free and extended conversations of the podcast with Indie Feast membership, for just £4 a month. What we covered in this episode: Why Ben started an ice cream business Buying an ice cream machine for £700 after a few pints Growing a cookie dough business to £13k a month Why Ben started Tiny Projects The six projects he's worked on How to sell a project for $5,000, that only made $2 Selling $10k of emoji domain names How to go viral on hacker news Recommendations Book: Shoe Dog Podcast: Product Journey Indie Hacker: Alex West Follow Ben Twitter Tiny Projects Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet

14 June 2021 16m and 49s


Struggling with my own mental health

Struggling with my own mental health

I've never really understood mental health, or those who have had these challenges in the past. So when I've had my own challenges, I've struggled to comprehend what has been happening to me. This episode is hopefully an interesting insight into how I've been feeling over the past few months to hopefully help others who might be going through a similar thing. Here's some things I talk about: Where I've been Overworking What went wrong Why I didn't notice a problem Why family and friends are so important The supportive indie hacker community YouTube videos are hard Burnout / depression are real shitty My future plans How I'm going to get out of this mess I mentioned in the pod I'd been making videos about my motorbike, here's a few links if you'd like to watch: Here's the YouTube channel, Monkeying Around The video I spent 5 hours on Most recent video and here's how to contact / support me: Twitter Email - james@mckinven.co Indie Feast Membership

15 May 2021 15m and 2s


Growing a podcast to 50k downloads in 6 months - Danny Miranda, The Danny Miranda Show

Growing a podcast to 50k downloads in 6 months - Danny Miranda, The Danny Miranda Show

Today I'm joined by Danny Miranda, who is the host of The Danny Miranda podcast, which has rapidly grown to over 50,000 downloads in less than 6 months. He publishes 3x a week and has had some awesome guests including Harry Dry, Gary Vee and David Perell. Danny is a walking case study of shooting your shot, making your own luck and having laser focus on one single thing. But this episode isn't going to be about podcasting specifically, we're going to talk about how consistency, compounding and execution can lead to you making progress in your personal projects or entrepreneurial ventures. I think you'll be inspired by Danny's story. What we covered: Who is Danny Miranda? Why Danny started out dropshipping? and what stopped him from pursuing that? How did the podcast come about? Why podcasting isn't that saturated Why Danny committed to 100 episodes when he started The unintended benefits of podcasts? Why laser focus and consistency is the key to Danny's growth How Danny switched from a starter to a finisher How to stop context switching Why accountability is the key to motivation Short term vs long term thinking Why the 75 hard program had so much of an impact on Danny Danny's plan to make money with the pod! Recommendations Book: Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends On It Podcast: Modern Wisdom Indie Hacker: Steph Smith Follow Danny Twitter Website Podcast Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Thanks to this episode's sponsor, Churnkey It can be a huge challenge to keep churn down when your SaaS product starts to see traction. The founders of Churnkey know exactly how much of a challenge this can be, having collectively grown three SaaS companies to over $4m in ARR. They realized that they were thinking about cancellations all wrong. A relationship with a customer doesn’t stop with the “Cancel” button. So they built Churnkey, which reduces churn by up to 42% with custom cancellation flows. For every customer who clicks “Cancel,” Churnkey offers up dynamic offers that encourage customers to stay subscribed. Just connect Stripe and plug in a small bit of code. In minutes, you’ll be reducing churn by immediately unlocking subscription pauses, dynamic offers, and cancellation insights.  See how much revenue Churnkey can recover for you. Visit churnkey.co to start your free trial.

7 April 2021 15m and 25s


Build in a competitive market, or go niche? - Derrick Reimer, SavvyCal

Build in a competitive market, or go niche? - Derrick Reimer, SavvyCal

Derrick Reimer is the founder of SavvyCal, a new approach to calendar scheduling and has grown to multiple thousands MRR since he launched it earlier in 2020. Derrick also co-founded Drip with Rob Walling in 2012, which was acquired by Leadpages in 2016. You might have heard Derrick on the Art of Product podcast with Tuple co-founder Ben Orenstein where they document their journey building their products. Get ad-free and extended conversations of the podcast with Indie Feast membership, for just £4 a month. What we covered in this episode: What is SavvyCal? What problem is it trying to solve? Why go into such a crowded market? A nice market or crowded one? The advantage of being a solo founder or small team vs larger competition How long did Derrick build before launching the MVP? How much growth has come from pre-existing audience? What goes into a good Product Hunt launch? When should Indie Hackers bring marketing support on? What marketing tactics can you employ? How does TinySeed funding work? Should other founders look for this type of funding? Art of Product podcast Recommendations Book: The Mom Test Podcast: Software Social Follow Derrick Twitter Website SavvyCal Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Thanks to this episode's sponsor, Churnkey It can be a huge challenge to keep churn down when your SaaS product starts to see traction. The founders of Churnkey know exactly how much of a challenge this can be, having collectively grown three SaaS companies to over $4m in ARR. They realized that they were thinking about cancellations all wrong. A relationship with a customer doesn’t stop with the “Cancel” button. So they built Churnkey, which reduces churn by up to 42% with custom cancellation flows. For every customer who clicks “Cancel,” Churnkey offers up dynamic offers that encourage customers to stay subscribed. Just connect Stripe and plug in a small bit of code. In minutes, you’ll be reducing churn by immediately unlocking subscription pauses, dynamic offers, and cancellation insights.  See how much revenue Churnkey can recover for you. Visit churnkey.co to start your free trial.

24 March 2021 15m and 51s


How to build a business you actually enjoy - Natalie Nagele, Wildbit

How to build a business you actually enjoy - Natalie Nagele, Wildbit

Natalie Nagele is the co-founder of Wildbit, the company behind Postmark, Beanstalk, People-First Jobs and more. Wildbit has just turned 20 years old, so Natalie knows exactly what it takes to grow and scale successful bootstrapped businesses. What makes Natalie so interesting to me is that she’s in the group of seriously successful indie hackers (over 100k customers, around for 20 years, pretty large team etc.) and they’re still indie very much living by their own rules. What we covered in this episode: What would you tell yourself 20 years ago before starting Wildbit? How do you find work that you enjoy and fulfils you? How much time should you spend on hobbies vs your business? At what point is a hobby a business and vice versa? How to get into deep work Cal Newport, Deep Work How many hours you can actually work in a day How much should you work on your business? Why you need to take time to step back and think How much is Natalie working now? How do you fit work in with the stuff you enjoy? Work life balance Recommendations Book: Anti-fragile Podcast: 99% Invisible Indie Hacker: Chris Savage + Brendan Schwartz Follow Natalie Twitter Wildbit Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Thanks to this episode's sponsor, Churnkey It can be a huge challenge to keep churn down when your SaaS product starts to see traction. The founders of Churnkey know exactly how much of a challenge this can be, having collectively grown three SaaS companies to over $4m in ARR. They realized that they were thinking about cancellations all wrong. A relationship with a customer doesn’t stop with the “Cancel” button. So they built Churnkey, which reduces churn by up to 42% with custom cancellation flows. For every customer who clicks “Cancel,” Churnkey offers up dynamic offers that encourage customers to stay subscribed. Just connect Stripe and plug in a small bit of code. In minutes, you’ll be reducing churn by immediately unlocking subscription pauses, dynamic offers, and cancellation insights.  See how much revenue Churnkey can recover for you. Visit churnkey.co to start your free trial.

20 March 2021 15m and 37s


$600 MRR and 150 new users per day with SEO and marketing - Elston Baretto, Tiiny Host

$600 MRR and 150 new users per day with SEO and marketing - Elston Baretto, Tiiny Host

Elston Baretto is the founder of Tiiny.host and is in a similar position to most indie hackers - working on his side-project alongside a full time job, but has had a career packed with learnings that we're going to talk through in this episode. Elston started out his career at JP Morgan, having reluctantly accepted a graduate job he planned to stay at for 6 months. 4 years later, he was still at the conglomerate bank, but he wasn't satisfied staying there for the rest of his career. While at JP Morgan, Elston launched a few side-projects, some of which still make revenue today, but decided to leave to chase the startup dream. Fast forward a year and the startup dream was over, a company with 14 employees but little traction - sound familiar? Elston went back to work full-time while he figured things out. In January 2020, he launched Tiiny.host, a super simple way to host your projects. After launching, he made $1,000 in just 3 days using lifetime deals and is now chugging away nicely as a side project. What we covered in this episode: What is Tiiny Host and why did Elston start it How he made lifetime deals work for his launch Why Elston has put marketing first for Tiiny Host Setting goals for your indie hacker business How Tiiny Host got 150 sites a day being created from free SEO pages How has he made marketing fun Doing side-project marketing Elston's plans to go full-time Recommendations Book: Traction Podcast: Tim Ferris Show Indie Hacker: Sabba Kenyejad Follow Elston Twitter Tiiny Host Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites. ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month.

17 March 2021 15m and 34s


Building a mid 6-figure Notion course in under a year, solo - Marie Poulin, Notion Mastery

Building a mid 6-figure Notion course in under a year, solo - Marie Poulin, Notion Mastery

Marie Poulin is the host of Notion Office Hours, creator of Notion Mastery, Run Your Learning Launch, Digital Strategy School, Think Like a Digital Strategist, and co-founded Oki Doki with her husband, where they help folks create, launch, and market online courses and training programs. What we covered in this episode: What is Notion Mastery and why did Marie start it? The impact YouTube had on growth How the course earned $10k in the first week Why Marie doubled down on the course as her main project Why it's important not to be a perfectionist Why niching is important How 80% of Marie's course revenue came from YouTube How to make the most out of Notion How to enjoy the work you do Making $10k extra a month with Gumroad templates Recommendations Book: Do More Great Work Podcast: This Is Uncomfortable Indie Hacker: Anne-Laure Le Cunff Follow Marie Twitter Notion Mastery Marie's YouTube Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Thank you to this episode's sponsor, ilo.so! You probably know that Twitter is an incredibly useful tool for us as indie hackers, but sometimes Twitter's in-built analytics tool doesn't quite give you the metrics that really matter. Dan Rowden, from Indie Bites episode 17, has created the most useful analytics tool for Twitter, giving you the metrics that actually help you understand your tweet performance and grow your audience. With one glance, ilo helps you easily see which kind of tweets get more impressions, likes, profile clicks and more so you can get grow your Twitter audience. Head to ilo.so and use the code INDIEBITES20 to get 25% off your ilo subscription for life. There are only 10 codes available so check it out before they all go!

4 March 2021 15m and 28s


Lessons learned bootstrapping and selling a $55k p/m SaaS - Arvid Kahl, TheBootstrappedFounder

Lessons learned bootstrapping and selling a $55k p/m SaaS - Arvid Kahl, TheBootstrappedFounder

Arvid Kahl is a software engineer turned entrepreneur. He co-founded and FeedbackPanda, an online teacher productivity SaaS company, with his partner Danielle Simpson. They sold the business for a life-changing amount of money in 2019, two years after founding the business. Arvid writes on TheBootstrappedFounder.com because bootstrapping is a desirable, value- and wealth-generating way of running a company. In over a decade of working in startup businesses of all sizes, Arvid has learned a thing or two about what works, what doesn't, and how to increase the chances of building a successful business. Get the full, 60 minute conversation with Arvid here with the Indie Feast membership. What we covered in this episode: The Feedback Panda story Was the ambition to sell the company from the start? Built to Sell, John Warrillow What Indie Hackers can learn from Zero to Sold What happens once you sell a business? Why settle on the format of a book? Why didn't Arvid make his book free? How to find a critical problem in a market that's willing to pay Tips for going into a crowded market How to to find your audience Recommendations Book: The Mom Test Podcast: Indie Hackers Indie Hacker: Sergio Mattei Follow Arvid Twitter The Embedded Entrepreneur Zero to Sold Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Today we have Embarque.io supporting the show! Embarque is run by a fellow indie hacker and has just crossed 6 figures in revenue. Embarque is an agency that offers productised SEO content that converts. It blew my mind when Julian told me about the growth their client MentorCruise had from the SEO content, resulting in 107% increase in MRR, 100% increase in monthly trials and a 114% increase SEO traffic. My word, wouldn't you want those kind of results for your indie business. Go and check out what Embarque are offering at Embarque.io and get $100 off your first package with the code 'INDIEBITES'.

23 February 2021 15m and 45s


Making $15k in 24 hours selling a book on Gumroad - Philip Kiely, Gumroad

Making $15k in 24 hours selling a book on Gumroad - Philip Kiely, Gumroad

Today we're joined by Philip Kiely, who is currently Head of Marketing at Gumroad. Philip also launched "Writing for Software Developers" last May, making $20,000 in sales in its first week without any pre-existing audience. Since then, Philip has been on a mission to help as many software developers as possible realize that they possess the skills they need to become great writers. What we covered in this episode: Why Philip wrote 'Writing for Software Developers' How Philip made $20k in 24 hours with no pre-existing audience Should you do pre-sales if you're selling an info product? How Philip got his job at Gumroad Why there has been a boom in the creator economy Why choose Gumroad as your selling platform Where a new creator should start when selling a product Who made the most money on Gumroad in 2020 Gumroad Stats 2020 Follow Philip Twitter Website Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites, which is launching in the US this week! ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month. Interested in ad-free episodes an exclusive content? Sign up to the Indie Feast membership.

23 January 2021 15m and 30s


Making over $5k/month from a portfolio of side projects - Dan Rowden, ilo

Making over $5k/month from a portfolio of side projects - Dan Rowden, ilo

Dan, like many other indie hackers, runs a bunch of projects alongside a full-time job which all compound to him making over $5k a month. In 2012 he started Magpile, a free online resource about magazines, which was followed by Subsail, a platform to help indie publishers sell magazine subscriptions. Earlier this year Dan started using the publishing platform Ghost, which he then started to build a suite of products around, now including: Gloat; a productised service for hosting and self hosting Cove; a commenting tool for Ghost blogs Substation; a theme for Ghost Dan also launched ilo, a better analytics platform for Twitter a few months ago, which has earned over $6k in revenue since launch. What we covered in this episode: Why Dan lives in Mauritius Why choose multiple projects over doing just one? How do you manage your time with 3 kids, a wife and a full-time job? Why Dan isn't too worried about 'growing' his side projects The pros and cons of working on your side project with a full-time job Not worrying about the money your side project earns - does it take the fun out of it? Why is Dan so bullish on Ghost? Why having a 'suite' of products is complimentary to each other Getting a 75k acquisition offer Awesome thread on the $75k offer What were the options? Being prepared to sell your projects Building an alternative to Twitter analytics Recommendations Magazine: Courier Newsletter: Dense Discovery Podcast: Startup Indie Hacker: Justin Jackson Follow Dan Twitter Website Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites, which is launching in the US this week! ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month. Interested in ad-free episodes an exclusive content? Sign up to the Indie Feast membership.

15 January 2021 15m and 36s


Turning $100 into $52,000 selling handmade candles DTC - Dianna Allen, TERRA

Turning $100 into $52,000 selling handmade candles DTC - Dianna Allen, TERRA

Dianna Allen is the founder of TERRA, a DTC candle brand, where she designs and hand pours a variety of candles. In October 2020, Dianna left her life as a freelancer behind to put her efforts into TERRA full-time, which as we all know, is a huge leap to make. What we covered: Should more indie hackers work on physical products? What happened with Budget Meal Planner? Should more indie hackers kill projects more often? Does turning a passion into a business take the enjoyment away? What was the breakthrough moment with Terra Making the leap going full-time with your business Why Dianna went straight into How do the economics of a physical product business work? How Terra was started with just $100 Using Instagram for 99% of growth The hardest part of running a physical product business How to balance one-term purchases vs MRR Why we should support more small businesses? Links Dianna's IH podcast episode Dianna's article on growing TERRA to 50k Recommendations Book: Shoe Dog Indie Hacker: AJ from Carrd Podcast: Doesn't listen Follow Dianna Twitter Instagram Terra Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites, which is launching in the US this week! ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month.

11 January 2021 15m and 25s


How Pat Walls made $20k in 2 weeks from his SEO course - Pat Walls, Starter Story

How Pat Walls made $20k in 2 weeks from his SEO course - Pat Walls, Starter Story

Pat Walls is the founder of Starter Story, a website dedicated to helping people start businesses. They interview entrepreneurs from around the world about how they started their business and how they grew it, including revenue figures for every business they interview. But in this episode, we’re going to be discussing the new SEO course that Pat launched this week, making over $20k in pre-sales. What we covered 20k in 2 weeks, how did you do it? How and why Pat started Starter Story? How he grew it to 500,000 monthly visitors Why Reddit can be a goldmine, but why Pat stopped using it How Starter Story allowed Pat to go full-time The most insane story out of 2,000 posts Brumate D*ck at Your Door Using Twitter to validate an idea Executing on that idea How to price a course The benefit of building in public How to execute so quickly How to build an audience Recommendations Book: Deep Work by Cal Newport Podcast: Indie Hackers Indie Hacker: Harry Dry Follow Pat Twitter Starter Story Pat's Building Thread Lean SEO Course Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites. ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month.

16 December 2020 15m and 32s


Choosing freedom over money - Rob Hope, One Page Love + Yo!

Choosing freedom over money - Rob Hope, One Page Love + Yo!

Today I’m joined by Rob Hope, who is a South African designer, developer and the host of one of my favorite podcasts out there for entrepreneurs Yo!. He's also the founder of One Page Love, Email Love, and has recently released an ebook with a hundred landing page tips. It's safe to say Rob knows his stuff. When it comes to building landing pages, having started One Page Love back in 2008. What we discussed in this episode: Have we lost the joy of simplicity? How to cut through the noise What makes a good landing page Rob's mammoth landing page Twitter thread How to write a good Twitter thread Have lots of projects at the same time Do you have to make money off a side project How do you achieve freedom Recommendations Landing Page: Muzzle Book: Anything You Want by Derek Sivers Podcast: Indie Hackers Indie Hacker: AJ (from Carrd) Follow Rob Twitter Landing Page Thread One Page Love Website Yo! Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites. ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month.

8 December 2020 15m and 39s


Why indie hackers should be podcasting - Mark Asquith, Rebel Base Media

Why indie hackers should be podcasting - Mark Asquith, Rebel Base Media

Mark Asquith (aka That British Podcast Guy) is the CEO of Rebel Base Media, the U.K. podcast tech company that makes Captivate.fm and so much more. What we discussed in this episode: What makes podcasting such a good medium Is the amount of investment in podcasting (from the likes of Spotify) a good thing? Is podcasting oversaturated? What does it take to grow a podcast? How to stay consistent with producing your show How Mark started out with his businesses Bootstrapping the next venture Recommendations Book: E-Myth Revisited Podcast: The Jordan Harbinger Show Indie Hacker: Corey Haines Follow Mark Twitter Rebel Base Media Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites. ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for a 30 day free trial.

1 December 2020 15m and 28s


Making a full-time income working just one day per week - Ramy Khuffash, Page Flows

Making a full-time income working just one day per week - Ramy Khuffash, Page Flows

Ramy Khuffash is the founder of Page Flows, a library of inspiration videos for product designers. Ramy started Page Flows after building a UI newsletter to thousands of subscribers, trying to improve his own skills as a developer who cares about design. Ramy is now a full-time indie hacker, with Page Flows making enough revenue to sustain him, alongside a few other side projects. What we discussed in this episode: Is the full-time indie hacker dream all it's made out to be Why Ramy tried six startups in six months, was it a success? Do founders work on things for too long? Ramy's journey working for a VC backed startup How it compares to bootstrapping What is Page Flows? How does it earn money? The trend of content / directory businesses Has he wasted his spare time? Why Ramy stopped sharing revenue numbers Recommendations Book: Hatching Twitter Podcast: Indie Hackers Indie Hacker: Pieter Levels Follow Ramy Twitter Page Flows Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites. ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month.

18 November 2020 15m and 23s


Paying off $250k in debt by starting a company making $1.5m ARR - Nick Fogle, Wavve

Paying off $250k in debt by starting a company making $1.5m ARR - Nick Fogle, Wavve

Nick Fogle is the co-founder of Wavve and ChurnKey, but there is a lot more to Nick than just that. Wavve is an audio to video platform which has now hit $1.5m in ARR, but Nick has only left his full time job 3 years after starting the company and 9 months after it had eclipsed his salary. Why? Well, Nick had $250,000 student loans to pay off. What we covered in this episode: How Nick got into $250,000 of debt How he felt in Christmas 2016 when he was looking at the massive number What steps he took to get out of debt (he wrote a book about this) What advice he'd give to others in the same position Why he started Wavve, a video to audio platform How the business grew to $1.5m ARR What it takes to work full time and run a business Why staying lean is so important for him Recommendations Book: Anti Fragile by Nassim Nicholas Taleb Podcast: Reply All Indie Hacker: Scott Hurff

31 October 2020 15m and 46s


Building the one of the most popular Slack apps of all time - Wilhelm Klopp, Simple Poll

Building the one of the most popular Slack apps of all time - Wilhelm Klopp, Simple Poll

Wilhelm Klopp is the founder of Simple Poll, a super simple (but powerful) poll Slack app that has over 600k active users. Wil now works on Simple Poll full time having left his job at GitHub in September 2019 (1 year ago 🎉). What we discussed in this episode: Hows the year been after leaving GitHub What is Simple Poll How Wil came up with the idea How he grew the app to 600k users What he did to start charging for a free app The danger of building for another platform (Slack) How he transitioned to work full-time on Simple Poll What it's like being a full-time indie hacker Why it's quite good having a job while working on side projects Quick fire answers Podcast: Art of Product Book: The Great CEO Within  Indie Hacker: Natalie Nagele Follow Wil Twitter Simple Poll Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Thanks to Mugshot Bot for sponsoring Indie Bites. Mugshot Bot automatically generates unique, beautifully designed images for every page on your website or blog so you don’t have to worry about them. This means you can focus on what matters: building your product and creating great content. Mugshot Bot is a tool that I use personally and made by another indie hacker, Joe Masilotti. To level up your link previews, go to mugshotbot.com/indiebites, link in the show notes, to create an image for your site, completely free.

24 October 2020 15m and 29s


Building a SaaS with just one hour every day - Mubashar Iqbal (Mubs)

Building a SaaS with just one hour every day - Mubashar Iqbal (Mubs)

Mubashar 'Mubs' Iqbal is a prolific maker who has started over 90 projects. Currently Mubs is building Founderpath with Nathan Latka, and on One Hour SaaS where he spends one hour every day working on SaaS businesses. In this episode we talked about: How Mubs got into starting side-projects How he comes up with ideas and decides what to work on Why some of his projects run on auto-pilot How much it costs to run those that are on auto-pilot How to sell side-projects How to build side-projects quickly What Mubs most successful project has been How did Founderpath come about Why Mubs started One Hour SaaS Recommendations Book: Built to Sell Podcast: Indie Hackers Indie Hacker: Ben Tossell Follow Mubs Twitter One Hour SaaS Mubs' projects portfolio Founderpath Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Thanks to Mugshot Bot for sponsoring Indie Bites. Mugshot Bot automatically generates unique, beautifully designed images for every page on your website or blog so you don’t have to worry about them. This means you can focus on what matters: building your product and creating great content. Mugshot Bot is a tool that I use personally and made by another indie hacker, Joe Masilotti. To level up your link previews, go to mugshotbot.com/indiebites, link in the show notes, to create an image for your site, completely free.

19 October 2020 15m and 10s


What it takes to build a community - Rosie Sherry, Indie Hackers

What it takes to build a community - Rosie Sherry, Indie Hackers

Rosie Sherry is a community builder, indie hacker and founder. She currently runs the Indie Hackers community and also a weekly newsletter where she talks about building communities. Previously, Rosie founded Ministry of Testing. In this episode we talked about: Rosie's background as an indie hacker Going full time on Ministry of Testing, growing that into a £1m+ business What it's like running the Indie Hackers community What makes a good Indie Hackers post How to make the most out of the platform Why Rosie started Rosieland, her paid newsletter What goes into building a community How we can be a more inclusive community Recommendations Book: Anything from Derek Sivers Podcast: Indie Hackers Indie Hacker: Monica Lent Follow Rosie Twitter Rosieland Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites. ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month.

15 October 2020 15m and 22s


Leaving a full-time head of growth role to be a full-time indie hacker - Corey Haines, Swipe Files and more

Leaving a full-time head of growth role to be a full-time indie hacker - Corey Haines, Swipe Files and more

Corey Haines is the founder of Swipe Files, he also runs refactoring growth, mental models for marketing, hey marketers and he was previously the head of growth at Baremetrics. I've been a follower of Corey for a while and impressed by the level and consistency of everything he produces. In this episode we talked about: What projects Corey is currently working on Why he left Baremetrics What it's like leaving a stable, full-time job to be an indie hacker How he manages his time between projects How much revenue he makes How to build things quickly Deciding on what ideas to focus on Advice for indie hackers wanting to live the dream Recommendations Book: Atomic Habits Podcast: Akimbo Indie Hacker: David Perrell Follow Corey Twitter Swipe Files Mental Models for Marketing Refactoring Growth Hey Marketers Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites. ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month. Full Transcript James: You've got a lot going on. Tell me a little bit more about your various side projects, where your main focus is right now. Corey: Yeah. So I don't know, maybe I just caught the entrepreneurial bug or have an itch to create stuff. But, about two years ago I started just making stuff on the side. I started with a newsletter actually that ended up shutting down later, but it was called the TLDR on SaaS marketing. And that was like my first entry point into creating something and sharing it online and it's actually the reason why I created my Twitter account in the first place. and then, yeah, it's just been through a little bit of. serendipity and connection between projects. um, you know,  I was talking with a Baremetrics customer, actually. And he's like, Hey, where do I find someone like you?  where would you post a job if you were hiring yourself? And I was like, actually, I don't know. There isn't really like a job board for marketers. So I went out and built it. Later on I was talking about different mental models and frameworks that I've found really helpful for my work at Baremetrics. Other people were asking for the Notion doc and you know where to learn more about it. So I figured out why don't I just package this up into a course, same thing with B2B SaaS marketing, with what we've done at Baremetrics is figuring out how to create this new course too. Now Swipe Files, I would swipe something and I would write some notes, some bullet points about here's, what I think is great about it and then I noticed this is actually pretty useful because there's a few sites out there, like swipefile.com and Swipe Worthy, or I think it's swiped.co, which are fantastic sources of inspiration, but you still have to do the work to figure out what you want to glean from it. So Swipe Files is my attempt to build a library of content where I will tell you and show you what it is you can take away from it instead of having to deduce it for yourself. And now I've got a bunch of other things I'll do in the future, but, yesterday went full time as a creator on my own stuff. James: Yeah. Tell me a little bit more about that. So previously you head of growth at Baremetrics. How long were you there for and, what went into making decision that now is the right time to leave? Corey: I was there for almost two years and had a fantastic time, experimented with a ton. We grew about 30% which was  great for a bootstrapped company. I really changed a lot and I was all over the place with, trying to find different channels and breakthroughs, and really what we came to was that company wasn't at the right spot to really support a growth role with the budget and the engineering time that was needed to really push the ball forward and so just decided to part ways. And I was already the place that I wanted to go full time and my own stuff anyways I think coincidentally, a little bit serendipitously was perfectly the timing for me to start working on my own stuff full time and, head on to this new chapter of my life. James: So with your various side projects, or they're not side projects now that you're full time projects, How do they each look in terms of revenue what's making the most for you?  Corey: Yeah  right now the breadwinner are the courses, refactoring growth and mental models for marketing and I've done about 36,000 in the last 10 months.  I couldn't do what I'm doing today without that revenue on the side, to be able to, fund myself into going full time as a creator. The other one, now that I'm trying to build into becoming the breadwinner is Swipe Files. And to date I actually, I couldn't tell you the revenue that has done, I think it's probably done a couple thousand in revenue because it's split between monthly annual in lifetimes. It's a little bit more difficult for me to... I didn't go through Stripe and do the math beforehand. but, um, it does about like the MRR today is about a thousand dollars.  and then, Hey Marketers, to be honest, I've started to neglected for the last year. I launched it and then I spent a good four or five months working really hard on it. And then figured I would outsource it to my nephew, who is a poor college student and, and needs some cheap, manual labor. It still does $100 to $300 a month, maybe. And it's a pay what you want model too. So sometimes I'll get a job posting for one dollar and sometimes I'll get a job posting for a hundred bucks. But it depends.  James: so you've got all of these projects so much going on now.  How do you squeeze it all in? And how did you manage your time before? I guess this week? Corey: The answer is I didn't, and I'm going to figure it out now. When I was with Baremetrics full time, I was very much working in these sprints. With Hey Marketers; I created the job for within three weekends and then I would just work here and there nights and weekends, especia...

7 October 2020 15m and 26s


How VEED grew to $1.7m ARR in less than 2 years - Sabba Keynejad, Veed.io

How VEED grew to $1.7m ARR in less than 2 years - Sabba Keynejad, Veed.io

Sabba Keynejad is the co-founder and CEO of VEED - an online video editing platform. VEED is a fully-fledged collaborative video editing product used by many influencers, coaches and businesses for adding subtitles, captions, text, merging videos, making meme videos, turning podcasts to videos and much more. What we covered in this episode: On Veed What is Veed? Where did you come up with the idea? What is your current revenue? Had you started and failed with anything before? What made Veed work out? Many indie hackers are solo. You have a co-founder split 50/50 on the business, do you think it's worth indie hackers going out to find a co-founder? There are many online video editing tools out there. Wavve, Headliner, Kapwing. What makes Veed different and how has that fed into your growth? On growth and marketing Veed has grown super quickly, but how did you get your first 100 users? Then how did you convert them to paying customers? Your marketing strategy. What did you do at the start for your growth? When you started generating revenue, you hired content creators. Why? What are your tips for marketing without budget? Biggest mistakes / advice you'd give to founders Recommendations Favourite indie hacker is Josh Pigford. Best book for indie hackers; Traction. Favourite podcast; How I Built This. Follow Sabba Twitter Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites. ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month. Full transcript coming soon.

24 September 2020 15m and


What's important for indie hackers in 2020 - Courtland Allen, Indie Hackers

What's important for indie hackers in 2020 - Courtland Allen, Indie Hackers

Courtland Allen founded Indie Hackers in 2016, grew the business $8k MRR with sponsors, and then sold to Stripe 9 months later. An inspirational story that doesn't end there. Courtland has now been working from within Stripe for the past 4 years, where he continues to build on the platform and produce the excellent Indie Hackers podcast. He's a fountain of knowledge and I think you'll love this episode. What we covered in this episode: On Indie Hackers: Why did Courtland start IH? What is an 'indie hacker'? What are the pros and cons of building within Stripe? Does he have goals for IH set by Stripe? Does he have any other side projects, aside from IH? On indie hacking: Where should new indie hackers start? How do you stay motivated as a one-person team? The growth of communities The growth of paid newsletters The current state of bootstrapping Quick fire Favourite indie hackers are; Lynne Tye, Rosie Sherry, Amy Hoy, Natalie Nagele. Best book for indie hackers; Thinking, Fast and Slow, Sapiens, Hooked. Favourite podcast; Conversations with Tyler. Follow Courtland Twitter Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites. ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month. Full Transcript James: Courtland has inspired so many of us to build our profitable internet businesses. Let's talk to him to find out what's important as an indie hacker in 2020. Courtland, welcome to the podcast. How are you? Courtland: Excellent James. Thanks for having me. James:  To set the scene and for those that might not know, tell me a little bit more about what Indie Hackers is and why you started the website? Courtland: Yeah. So I moved to the Bay Area when I was like 23. I wanted to start a very stereotypical high growth tech startup. I wanted to be a unicorn company. I wanted to make billions and be world famous. After seven or so years of that struggle, I was just tired of it. I got tired of the VC funded software world. And so I took time off work. I was doing a lot of contract development and I just started searching for other examples of people who've done the same thing. And it turns out there wasn't really a good way to learn how to do this. Everybody online was doing the same thing I was doing; just like looking for comments left by Pieter Levels or like tweets where some people would share some tidbit of their story, but like we couldn't find anything great. And so I kind of just solved my own problem and said, you know, I should build the thing that helps people do this. I was surprised it didn't exist. And here we are 4 years later, somewhat ironically, I decided that I wanted to be a bootstrapper. I decided that I wanted to get out of the high growth startup game. And within a year, starting Indie Hackers, it was acquired by Stripe and fulfilled one of the goals of a lot of people in the high growth startup game want to. So that's how we got to where we are today. James:  What is your definition of an indie hacker? Courtland: I think Tyler Tringas actually put it well recently. He said that "the new American dream is to build a profitable, sustainable, remote software business that you can run from home ". You can run from wherever you want work with wherever you want, that scales nicely, and that prints money for you. And I think an indie hacker is somebody who's trying to achieve that. Someone who doesn't like the status quo, someone who doesn't want to work for the man for the rest of their life. There's no problem with doing that. I think jobs provide a lot of stability for people, a lot of predictability, but if you're like me, you just don't want to have a boss. You don't want there to be a cap on your salary. You don't want somebody else telling you what to work on. You want to control your own life and you're an indie hacker. James:  What are the challenges and benefits of building Indie Hackers from within Stripe? Courtland: I don't have to get on the phone with advertisers anymore. Indie Hackers makes $0. It's a hundred percent just me focusing on making the community good and helping it grow. I think probably the one challenge is that I'm someone who puts a lot of pressure on my shoulders to, I think, perform well for others. And at Stripe, Patrick Collison is my boss. He went out on a limb and acquired Indie Hackers, and I feel a lot of pressure to make sure that any hackers, is a success. And at Stripe, like I'm extremely autonomous.  I talk to Patrick and the team there once every three months, once every six months, sometimes,  and it's almost always just check-ins; how are you doing? Do you need anything? What can we help with et cetera? It's like the ideal working situation. I can't imagine having a job under any other kind of framework. James: Are you tied to any goals within  Stripe? Do they set any targets for you that you have to reach, such as traffic numbers or engagement?  Courtland: There isn't any sort of like you have to reach X number or the axe will fall. I think what's cool about the fact that I joined Stripe is that my goals are very much aligned with theirs. And I think if you ever work with any sort of partner or you acquire anyone or you get acquired, you should always try to make sure your goals are aligned because if there's even a one degree difference between where you want to go and where they go, at first that's very small, but after a number of years, that gap has widened into something that's like very hard to fix.  And so I just want Indie Hackers to be like as big and as meaningful and useful as possible. I think about that religiously every single day. And that's what Stripe wants to ultimately they want more people starting companies...

21 September 2020 15m and 5s


$3k MRR with 600 paying members writing about mindful productivity - Anne-Laure Le Cunff, Ness Labs

$3k MRR with 600 paying members writing about mindful productivity - Anne-Laure Le Cunff, Ness Labs

Anne-Laure Le Cunff is the founder of Ness Labs, a learning platform dedicated to mindful productivity while also studying neuroscience part-time at King's College with her masters. Previously Anne-Laure worked at Google leaving that job in 2017. As part of Ness Labs, she creates some truly exceptional content that I've had shared with me time and time again, which is evidenced by her 19,000 strong email lists for her newsletter, Maker Mind. Here's what we covered in this episode: On Ness Labs Tell me a little about your back story and why you started Ness Labs? What is Ness Labs? When did you start generating revenue? What have you done to grow the membership & newsletter subscribers? Neuroscience at King's College on the side! How does that help you research and write articles? You're a proponent of building in public, what are the benefits of this for indie hackers? You have a sizeable audience, how do you cut through the noise / deal with the inbound? What advice would you give to aspiring female indie hackers navigating a male-dominated sector? On mindful productivity What is mindful productivity? You're a prolific writer, how do you get so much done?! Time management article It can be long and hard to grow a side-project / business, how do you stay motivated? As indie hackers, what are the best ways to stay on top of everything and not get overwhelmed? Taking care of yourself. Sleep, taking breaks, journaling. Why is it important and why do so many people neglect it? Quick fire Favourite book is 50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology Anne-Laure doesn't listen to podcasts 😱 Follow Marie Denis, Steph Smith and Rosie Sherry Follow Anne-Laure Twitter Ness Labs Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Full Transcript James: Anne-Laure, welcome to the podcast. How are you doing?  Anne-Laure: Great. Thanks for having me. James: Good to have you. Tell me a little bit more about Ness Labs for people who don't know? What's it all about? Anne-Laure: Ness Labs is a platform for ambitious makers, knowledge workers, creators who want to be their most productive and creative without sacrificing or mental health, and so it offers content, a community, and also coaching for people to achieve these goals.  James: Yeah. And where did you come up with the idea?  Anne-Laure: I both at Google and while working at startups, I went through burnout and I think lots of ambitious people have this experience at some point in their work life. And when I was looking for resources to help me go through this, there's actually wasn't much out there. So it started with this goal of helping people really taking care of their mental health at work. I've always been fascinated with how the mind works, how the brain works, how do we think, or where do ideas come from? How do we make decisions? So that's always been an area that I've been really curious about. James: Yeah, absolutely.   Where are you at now in terms of subscribers and revenue with Ness Labs? And was it always generating revenue? Anne-Laure: So  in the first six months of Ness Labs, most of the revenue was coming from sponsors. And I didn't really like this model because it meant having to chase them, a lot of back and forth. Also quite irregular revenue where some weeks, I have three sponsors reaching out and saying, "hey, can I start with the newsletter?" and some weeks there was no one. I figured that really wanted to have some recurring revenue that I could, even if it was growing slowly, sell something that is a bit more stable. And at this point I have about 600 members and the Ness Labs community generating about $3,000 a month. And that doesn't include all of the, one time revenue that nest labs leaking through books and other products that I'm selling. James: It's amazing how you've grown it and I think that there'll be a lot of indie hackers who are at that level where they're trying to build something up and deciding on a monetization model. Why at the start did you go for the sponsorship route and also, how did you start to build your newsletter list, which made it appealing for sponsors? Anne-Laure: At the very beginning, with the sponsors, I didn't really have any outbound process. I just grew the newsletter and I made it clear with the little inserts and signed it, that there was a spot here. So if any reader was also either an entrepreneur or working at a company that was relevant to the audience, I was reaching that they could just reply back and claim that spot for the next newsletter. There was no outbound work, but I think that making it very clear that this spot existed and also having a very niche topic made it appealing to sponsors because they could in one go reach a certain amount of people. The audience; I can really think Twitter, I think, for most of my subscribers.    James: How beneficial has that Twitter following been for you? Cause you have about 30,000 Twitter followers. And over how long was that built? Was there a specific time where you just started growing or was it quite linear? Anne-Laure: It was very linear and slow for years and I think up to  two years ago, I only have 3000 followers. It took off pretty recently. And I think it's because I really changed the way I used it. I used to just post whatever articles I was reading, not really contributing value. Whereas now I'm really trying to help people and I really use Twitter to work public. So I really show people my process. I show unfinished articles. Sometimes I ask questions. I do polls where I really ask the community, what do you think about this? Should I write about this or that? And I think the fact that I switched from just broadcasting content on Twitter, to working in public with the garage door open, has been one of the main reasons why my following has grown so fast in the past year.   I think lots of entrepreneurs make the mistake of falling prey to the planning fallacy. Where you spend so much time trying to figure out how am I going to go about this? What's the best framework to build this? And which library should I use? And how am I going to do this and that? And I think for me, building in public is a way to fight the planning fallacy, where instead of waiting until they have something absolutely perfect that I can put in the world, I just share little nuggets of my progress and I can get feedback much quicker. So it shortens the feedback loop too, which is especially I think...

18 September 2020 15m and 46s


Starting over 40 side-projects in 10 years - Helen Ryles

Starting over 40 side-projects in 10 years - Helen Ryles

Helen Ryles is a prolific indie hacker, having launched over 40 projects in the last 10 years, selling a few of them along the way. Helen is a proponent of the no code movement, advocating for the tools that allow non-technical folks, like me, create amazing projects. To tie in with this, she also runs the community at Makerpad, the no-code education and community platform. Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites. ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month. Here's what we covered in this episode On side projects How did you start indie hacking? What are you currently working on? Where do you come up with ideas? How do you define a side-project? Having launched so many, what is your process for getting an idea up and running, validated and then deciding how long you run with it before it gets sold / canned? You wrote a great thread on selling side projects. How do you know when it's time to sell? How do you sell a side project?! On no-code You joined Makerpad last month to help run their community. Tell me a little bit more about what Makerpad is and what your role will be there. What is no-code and why do you think it's important? What are some of the most exciting things you've seen people do with no-code? What are the non-obvious benefits of no-code? What are the best no-code tools? Recommendations Book: Authority Podcast: Side Hustle School Indie Hacker: Michael Gill Follow Helen Twitter Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website [Full transcription coming soon]

16 September 2020 15m and 7s


Building Marketing Examples to 30k email subscribers - Harry Dry, Marketing Examples

Building Marketing Examples to 30k email subscribers - Harry Dry, Marketing Examples

Harry Dry is the founder of Marketing Examples, a fast-growing showcase of successful startup marketing stories. When I first spoke to Harry on the Marketing Mashup about a year ago, he was on 5,000 subscribers and £1k revenue. Now, he has 6x that amount with 30,000 subscribers and 50,000 Twitter followers. An incredible growth story from a smart marketer. In 2022, Harry also created Copywriting Examples, the site for anyone writing new copy.  Here's what we covered in this episode: On Marketing Examples I've given a little summary of Marketing Examples, how would you describe it? Where did you come up with the idea? How is your revenue shaping up with the audience you have? If you could choose one case study as your favourite, which one would it be? On Audience Building When you first started Marketing Examples, how did you get your first 100 subscribers? You're an expert on Twitter, now with 50k followers. What did it take to grow a Twitter audience so large, so quickly? What's been the biggest struggle building Marketing Examples? What advice would you give to other indie hackers trying to build an audience? Talk me through your decision to add a new personal touch to Marketing Examples? Tell me the Kanye Story in 30 seconds Recommendations Book: Man's Search for Meaning Podcast: IFL TV Indie Hacker: Pat Walls Links Follow Harry on Twitter Marketing Examples Marketing Examples Twitter Follow Me Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Thanks to Weekend Club for sponsoring Indie Bites. ‘I absolutely love being part of Weekend Club.’ ‘Huge fan of Weekend Club and I love being part of it.’ ‘Absolutely love this community.’ These are real testimonials for Weekend Club - the internet’s most helpful community for bootstrappers. If you’ve ever struggled meeting other solo founders and staying accountable, then this is for you. We offer weekly Saturday deep working sessions with up to 30 bootstrappers, such as the founders of Simple Poll and VEED, an active Slack community and over 100 software discounts. Go to weekendclub.co and enter a very limited promo code ‘Indie Bites’ for 50% off your first month.

10 September 2020 15m and 27s


Growing a paid community to $800 MRR - Charlie Ward, Ramen Club (prev. Weekend Club)

Growing a paid community to $800 MRR - Charlie Ward, Ramen Club (prev. Weekend Club)

In this episode we discuss: On Ramen Club (formerly Weekend Club) How would you describe Ramen Club? Where did you come up with the idea for Ramen Club & IndieBeers? What was your initial plan for making revenue with Ramen Club? What's your revenue now? What have you done specifically to grow those first few users? On Community Building You've cultivated quite the community in London, why did you choose to build the community here? What does it take to build an active community? Is it as simple as just setting up a Slack and a Stripe account and away you go? What's been the biggest struggle building the community? What advice would you give to other indie hackers trying to build a community? Recommendations Book: Influence Podcast: The Knowledge Project Indie Hacker: Wilhelm Klopp Links Follow Charlie on Twitter Ramen Club (formerly Weekend Club) Indie London Indie Beers Follow Me 👉 Listen to my new podcast, No More Mondays. Twitter Indie Bites Twitter Personal Website Buy A Wallet 2 Hour Podcast Course

7 September 2020 13m and 37s


Indie Bites Trailer - what's it all about?

Indie Bites Trailer - what's it all about?

I'm your host James McKinven, I'm the founder of a podcasting company called Striqo and passionate indie hacker. Now I love long podcasts and what Courtland Allen has done with the Indie Hackers show, but this podcast will just supplement that. With less commuting, we now have less time to listen to podcasts and those long, albeit interesting, backstories. I'll aim to cut to the chase and find out what it really takes to build a sustainable, profitable business on the side. I'm James, I run a podcast company called Striqo and I love hearing about the ups and downs of what it takes to be an indie hacker. I'm a fellow indie hacker and side-project-starter and I love hearing the stories of other makers who have started their businesses while working a full-time job. Whether that's a small little earner on the side or something that has grown into tens of thousands of ££ income that means you could quit your job. Having started many of my own side-projects I know how hard it is to get it off the ground and generate revenue. I wouldn't have been able to make progress on any of my projects if it wasn't for the kindness and support I've received from everyone in the Indie Hackers community. Everyone has a story to tell, advice they can give and lessons to teach - I want to share them with as many people as I can. I hope you can join me for this podcast talking to our favourite indie hackers. If you like the sound of this, please subscribe to the podcast and tweet me which indie hacker you'd like me to feature.

4 September 2020 1m and 39s

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