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Nice, what self-hosted email server stack do you use?
Thanks, forgot about them!
Thanks! My question was a bit unclear: by "startup domain email backend" I mean the place where your business email server is hosted, not the service you use to send marketing or transactional email.
What do you use for email server hosting?
Thanks, Andy. Looks $45 USD/mo, compulsory for all employees; do you have any discounts or anything?
Thanks for the details. Cheers!
Hi jb, thanks for getting me outside my USA bubble :) Looks like the first upgrade from free to paid Yandex email is ₽153 Russian Rubles, or about $2.10 USD; do you find any significant limitations in the free product you wish weren't there?
Another interesting point: pivots are an integral part of lean startup techniques, and in the original framework, they're not such a big deal as we as founders have made them seem since: http://theleanstartup.com/principles
I think part of that is perspective: it seems like a big thing to us to make a change, obsessed as we are with our ideas and up and down with every small bit of feedback early. However to our potential users, of whom maybe we have talked to like 0.00001% so far, it's either not a big deal or not even on their radar yet.
Platter just completed a pivot, focusing on the database part of what used to be one-click full-stack app creation and deployment. We did this because we talked to users a lot, and while they found the whole previous product to be really cool, it's a very infrequent moment to just start an entire new project from scratch, and very few of those projects progress to a place where they grow and need additional support. In business terms, a ton of interested users and excited fans, but very few conversions to paying customers: high CAC in a pretty low LTV business (site hosting, essentially).
Instead, we've chosen to take the most valuable and hard-to-manage part of that product, the database itself, and build tools to make that piece much easier to integrate and develop with in all sorts of application architectures.
Never would have had that first-time-founder insight without trying it the first way, though. Main lessons are process lessons: how could we have shown product v1 was unlikely to succeed faster? What early signs did we miss because we were more excited about building cool stuff than validating/invalidating our business hypothesis :) Where did we confuse general user enthusiasm at technically impressive work with actual desire to pay for a product that brought people abundant value?
Recommendations to others considering a pivot: start with a group of people you care about and know. Then your product is easier to pivot when you learn how it does/doesn't serve them. If you start in love with your idea or your product, that's a lot harder to discover and act on.
0) Marketing and selling developer tools seems different enough that "b2d" is one of the first additional categories people cite down to break down the b2b vs b2c dichotomy. Have you observed ways in which successful devtools marketing and sales are very different than for b2b or b2c companies, and if so, what are they?
1) What excites you to invest in one devtools company vs another? What excitements have been proved out vs. corrected for by results?
2) We just completed a long heads-down pivot at Platter (https://platter.dev – thanks for still being here, Pioneer!). What questions or thoughts do you have about the direction and product based on reading the landing page and docs?