The SaaS Podcast on ConversionAid - SaaS Startups, Growth Hacking & Entrepreneurship

Aaron Epstein is the co-founder of Creative Market, an online platform that lets you sell and buy handcrafted, mouse-made design content such as fonts and graphics. He launched his first software product called Color Schemer when he was still in college and went on to grow that into a 6-figures a year business. A few years later he met his co-founders and combined forces to work on an online creative community called COLORlovers and eventually went through Y-Combinator. COLORlovers grew into a community with over a million users. In 2011, they launched Creative Market and raised $2.3M dollars in funding and 3 years later, sold Creative Market to Autodesk for an undisclosed amount.

Direct download: 088-Aaron-Epstein-Creative-Market.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 10:00pm PST

Scott Klein is the co-founder of StatusPage, a Y-Combinator backed startup that lets you create a hosted status page for your app or website. You can use the status page to display downtime notifications, performance metrics or any other information that your customers might need to know. StatusPage launched in 2013 and has raised about $250,000 to date. Its customers include companies such as KISSmetrics, Vimeo and Kickstarter.

In this episode we talk about:

  • The pressure that the co-founders felt going through Y-Combinator, the pressure that co-founders felt and the unnecessary stress that Scott put on himself. And how he wishes it had been a more fun time.
  • A powerful lesson in challenging your assumptions. How a super simple idea an advisor gave them turned out to be an incredibly powerful way to build viral growth. The team had assumed that this wasn't going to work.
  • Why you should stop paying attention to what others are achieving and focus more of your time and energy on solving the right problems for your customers.
  • How it's so easy as an entrepreneur to feel stressed all the time, and why it's important to find balance in your life so you enjoy the journey, not just getting to the destination.
  • How Scott manages his own workload and priorities. And we talk about how he structures his day and week.
  • What's the difference between good quality content and great content and a great example of site outside of the tech industry that does an amazing job at that.
Direct download: 087-Scott-Klein-StatusPage.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 10:00pm PST

Scott Klein is the co-founder of StatusPage, a Y-Combinator backed startup that lets you create a hosted status page for your app or website. You can use the status page to display downtime notifications, performance metrics or any other information that your customers might need to know. StatusPage launched in 2013 and has raised about $250,000 to date. Its customers include companies such as KISSmetrics, Vimeo and Kickstarter.

 

In this episode we talk about:

 

  • The importance of finding balance in your life and how to avoid some of the pitfalls of Silicon Valley culture

  • How Scott got to site down with Mark Zuckerberg and learned the importance of knowing yourself to find inspiration

  • How people told them that they’d never pay for their product because they could built it themselves over a weekend

  • How the team overcame those challenges and their own doubts to get to over a million dollars in revenue Why the co-founders didn’t do customer interviews to validate their idea (and what they did instead)
Direct download: 086-Scott-Klein-StatusPage.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 10:00pm PST

Amir Salihefendic is the founder and CEO of Doist.io, the makers of Todoist, an online and mobile task management app. He started Todoist in 2007 when he was still a student with two programming jobs on the side. He needed a way to manage his own work and productivity but couldn’t find the right tool. So he decided to build his own tool. He didn’t see it as a startup and he didn’t have any big ambitions. It was just a tool. Today, the company has over 4 million of users and Todoist is also used by a number of Fortune 100 companies. And the tool that our guest built for himself has grown into a company with over 40 employees and several million dollars in annual revenue.

 

In this episode we talk about:

 

  • Importance of finding the right distribution channels to reach the right users/customers

  • Why Amir believes that building an minimum viable product (MVP) too quickly can be a bad idea

  • How he manages his team of 40 people who all work remotely and have very few meetings

  • How he manages his own day/priorities and some key lessons you can apply in your life
Direct download: 085-Amir-Salihefendic-Todoist.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 10:00pm PST

Amir Salihefendic is the founder and CEO of Doist.io, the makers of Todoist, an online and mobile task management app. He started Todoist in 2007 when he was still a student with two programming jobs on the side. He needed a way to manage his own work and productivity but couldn’t find the right tool. So he decided to build his own tool. He didn’t see it as a startup and he didn’t have any big ambitions. It was just a tool. Today, the company has over 4 million of users and Todoist is also used by a number of Fortune 100 companies. And the tool that our guest built for himself has grown into a company with over 40 employees and several million dollars in annual revenue. In this episode we talk about how Amir abandoned Todoist, which was still a side-project, when he accepted a full-time job with a startup. And how it took another 4 years before he recognized the opportunity to turn Todoist into a real business. He quit his job, started working on Todoist full-time and in 3 short years turned it into a 7-figure business with 40 employees.

Direct download: 084-Amir-Salihefendic-Todoist.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 10:00pm PST

Maria Dykstra is an entrepreneur, startup mentor & digital marketing strategist. After a 14 year career at Microsoft, she founded her own company, and in 3 years grew it from a 2 and person consulting firm to a digital agency with offices in 3 countries. She also runs the Seattle chapter of the Founder Institute, the world’s largest startup accelerator program. And she’s also on the board of Women in Wireless, a non profit that empowers and develops female leaders in mobile and digital media.

In this episode we talk about:

  • How you can build deeper insights about the problems that your customers have
  • What tools you should be using to better understand your customers needs and pains
  • How to do research the right way and prioritize your content marketing efforts
  • How becoming an authority in your industry might not be as hard as you think it is
  • How Kindle publishing can be a powerful way to get new customers and clients How to build an email list and the missing step between email marketing and closing the sale.
Direct download: 083-Maria-Dykstra-Tredigital.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 10:00pm PST

Maria Dykstra is an entrepreneur, startup mentor & digital marketing strategist. After a 14 year career at Microsoft, she founded her own company, and in 3 years grew it from a 2-person consulting firm to a digital agency with offices in 3 countries. She also runs the Seattle chapter of the Founder Institute, the world’s largest startup accelerator program. And she’s also on the board of Women in Wireless, a non-profit that empowers and develops female leaders in mobile and digital media.

In this episode we talk about:

  • How to use Twitter strategically in a way that gets you results

  • How to find customers for your SaaS product and/or consultant clients

  • The Twitter best practices and the rookie mistakes you should avoid

  • The essential tools you need to be successful with Twitter

  • How you can do all this in about 15 minutes a day
Direct download: 082-Maria-Dykstra-Tredigital.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 10:00pm PST

Syed Balkhi is an award-winning 24 year old entrepreneur with several 7-figure online businesses. He was recognized as one of the top 100 entrepreneurs under the age of 30 by the United Nations. His businesses include WPBeginner, which is the largest free WordPress resource on the planet and OptinMonster a popular lead generation SaaS product that you see on so many sites around the web.

Direct download: 081-Syed-Balkhi-OptinMonster.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 10:00pm PST

Bridget Harris is the co-founder and CEO of YouCanBookMe, a SaaS product that helps you schedule meetings. The product was launched in 2011 and today serves tens of thousands of users and handles almost half a million bookings each month. Bridget started her career in the film and television industry. She then moved into politics where she ended being an advisor to the UK Deputy Prime Minister. And then in 2012 she took on the role of CEO at YouCanBookMe. The company is based in the UK and has been bootstrapped from day one.

 

In this episode we talk about:

 

  • How Bridget and her husband Keith tried several times to build a SaaS business

  • How the first product that they launched had no customers and was killed off quickly

  • How their second product had lots of users but no one was paying them any money

  • How they finally got it right with YouCanBookMe and what they did differently this time

  • What YouCanBookMe did differently to it's competitors to get traction and grow

  • How the business is on track to do $1M in annual recurring revenue this year
Direct download: 080-Bridget-Harris-YouCanBookMe.mp3
Category:business -- posted at: 10:00pm PST

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