It is hard to make the first sales
It is hard to make the first sales as a small company, and we consider ourselves in the micro universe. Our past work experience span from start-ups to large companies, all having advantages or shortcomings but most interestingly the culture was different in any each of them.
It was the fad of the day to exult the agility of start-ups or to praise the benefits of advancing in a corporate environment. We like the development pace of a small company and the quick turn-around in adapting to challenges. On the other hand, having a blue name badge when presenting solutions is a half way victory run. Witnessing missed opportunities, failures, big wins and early exits made us hungry to try it on our own.
It is not easy, to say it mildly, the doors are not opening with ease, even when you have competitive advantages they don’t materialize in big points when you are compared with established incumbents of the market you are after. We have experienced many small companies crumbling after acquisition due to a difference in vision of the management/investors/big clients deciding what is more important. And many times there are no resources to even explore the leads. In a small company you are always in the triage section, the doubts are not creeping in.
How to generate revenue when growing
In this post I want to touch on the idea of generating revenue, for small companies, in the growing stage. Many of them are all out on acquiring a customer base at any price with the hope the ones who stick will want to become paying subscribers. The subscriber revenue is the eternal dream, then you can figure out where the growing is coming next.
One of the avenues of getting money but also providing free service is by collecting data about your users and selling it to third parties. Even more, you can embed in your application direct data collectors for third party and being paid by the amount of traffic you generate.
We do not sell the data. We collect part of it to understand what is not optimized on our applications and what presents interest to our users.
It is our conviction that it should be a clear benefit for our user in selecting one of our software solutions. It may be specialized service, saving resources, having a different view of their business and in the end, having people specialized in developing software to do the best job they can for our customers. When you use our software, there is an implicit feedback that it generates value for you. If the value is nil then you should not use it and not pay.
It is free on a trial basis
For that reason alone we decided to stop giving free perpetual access to any of our solutions. We will grant full temporary access for companies presenting interest and willing to give it a try.