#1 Weekly Dan — The Pilot
Low prices, side-project marketing, winning the competition, and SEO.
This is the #1 Issue of Weekly Dan.
Welcome to all 53 early birds who have joined this week. You are nice.
Every Friday, I share five golden nuggets with you:
One personal insight
One marketing tactic
One product for inspiration
One thought-provoking question
One great resource
Let’s get straight to the business.
We are launching a new product in August — MakerBox Roasting. A productized service to get your landing page roasted in 48 hours.
I’ve told my buddy Stefan about it. His first question was — How will you compete with existing solutions?
I said that existing products are too expensive ($200-400), and this is too much for Indie Entrepreneurs. We can do it for $99.
He made a great point.
Price is a bad differentiator. Because one day someone will do it cheaper.
Thanks for the reality check, Stefan.
I understood that we should focus on increasing the perceived value instead.
In our case:
It’s faster. You can get the feedback in 48 hours instead of 72 hours (competitors’ average)
It’s more straightforward. Brutal Easter-European honesty is better than sugaring the pill.
It’s more valuable. We will send an additional “Landing page cheatsheet” to simplify implementing changes.
The takeaway for you — widen the gap between the price and the value.
Sometimes you can do it by lowering the price, but always try to increase the perceived value of using your product.
People are ready to pay more if you provide the right value for them.
You probably tried different marketing approaches to promote your product.
SEO, Audience building, Ads, Affiliate marketing. There are a lot of them.
Here is a new one — side-project marketing.
I love how Marc Lou is using this tactic with Habits Garden. A tool to beat procrastination with a gamified habit tracker.
Marc launches free side products to promote it monthly. They are simple (no offense, Marc) but effective.
He has already launched:
When people use these free products, they see CTA “Learn more about Habits Garden”. As a result, some of them convert to paying customers.
Two reasons you should try side-project marketing:
It’s easier to promote. People love 100% free tools. Marc generated 40K visitors from Reddit with 50 hacks. Getting the same traffic with the paid product is almost impossible.
It’s easier to build. You can build a free tool (or free content product) in one week. Then, launch it on Product Hunt, Reddit, and HackerNews and get visitors. Far more effective than waiting six months for SEO to hit.
The biggest issue is to convert visitors to paying customers. The majority of users come for a free product and don’t have the intention to buy anything.
Test your offer before launching a new side-project. Otherwise, your visitors will come and leave.
Product for inspiration
If Indie Entrepreneur doesn’t have a Twitter course, they probably have a screenshot tool.
This is a red ocean. Competition is brutal.
But one product stands off — Pika by Rishi Mohan.
This is a screenshot of Pika made in Pika.
Here are some insights from analyzing it:
Everyone hates watermarks. But almost every tool has them in the Free plan. Pika lets you remove it for free.
Find the pain point that competitors ignore and solve it for free. Then, users will be grateful to switch to your solution.
People have typical use cases — create a Product Hunt illustration or craft a Twitter post. Pika provides templates to save time.
Understand your everyday use cases. Then, let people use them with one click. Not every task requires customization.
Pika has tons of premium features. It highlights them everywhere.
Don’t show users only free features. Instead, mix them with premium features to create FOMO. Your paid plan should be accessible from everywhere.
By the way, Pika is an excellent tool itself. I use it every day.
What will your users remember about your product after the week?
Makers tend to overcomplicate value proposition. For example, they cover edge cases or mix different ideas in positioning.
But people will remember only the critical information about your product. You need to find what it is.
Find ten users (not customers) that engaged with your product a week ago.
Ask them three questions:
How would you describe my product in one sentence?
How is it different from other solutions?
What positive outcome can you achieve with my product?
Remove everything from your landing page that doesn’t align with the answers.
Watch the Conversion Rate going through the roof.
SEO was always a mystery to me. But not anymore.
I’ve found this ultimate SEO guide by Ahrefs. It’s too good to be free.
Every Indie Entrepreneur should read it to understand:
How does SEO work in 2022?
How to do keyword research?
How to optimize your content?
How to leverage technical SEO?
Now I feel x10 more confident about getting traffic for Google.
Thanks for reading my newsletter. Have a lovely weekend ❤️
More of me
1) Check MakerBox.
We create tools so you can build and grow your Indie Startup faster.
Trusted by 200+ Indie Entrepreneurs.
2) Follow me on Twitter.
I specialize in writing cool threads that don’t go viral.