A fresh perspective on the stages of building a SaaS business

May 5, 2021

EP11: Nate’s market-based approach to ideation [First 2 homework ideas turned in]

Looks like Nate’s ideation brain has been rewired a bit with this new approach to coming up with a new SaaS idea. Josh and Nate dive into the new process and assess 2 of out the 5 ideas Nate was challenged to come up with in 1 week
Searching For SaaS
Searching For SaaS
EP11: Nate's market-based approach to ideation [First 2 homework ideas turned in]


Nate: [00:00:30] Hey, Josh.
Josh: [00:00:31] How are you doing today, Nate?
Nate: [00:00:33] Doing good, how are you?
Josh: [00:00:36] better. I’ve had stressful yeah I’ve had a stressful few weeks but a lot of that has been alleviated yeah I think I talked to you earlier and had a couple of things going on from a business SEO a whole bunch of but, but, but. In a much better place. Now we don’t have to go into too much detail with that today, but yeah.
Nate: [00:01:01] well, I’m glad to hear you’re over it. That’s that’s good on the upswing.
Josh: [00:01:07] Did you, do you, you probably don’t watch the stats and numbers as much as I do.
Nate: [00:01:12] No, but I did see you shared some with me the other day.
Josh: [00:01:15] I did so well today is the 30th of April. And I would just quickly recap, like last week we thought we were at this nice. Peak of a high, which we had according to our simply simple stats, I believe as the WordPress plugin we use, but it’s a, we had 109 listens on release day on a Wednesday as of like roughly a week and a half ago, which that was a high that week.
And it was pretty exciting. And then this week we had a new episode drop as well on Wednesday and we hit 322. So.
Nate: [00:01:51] That’s crazy. I can’t believe people listen to us that much. It’s like, Oh man, I would have, I wish I could go back and you know, like say things a little better or something.
Josh: [00:02:00] Yeah. Who knows? I don’t know. Maybe a little word of mouth, maybe. Actually I did hack it a little bit, so I don’t, I don’t know if I told you, but so referral rock has a newsletter and we didn’t have much going on the past month in terms of. Like a lot of back-end dev a lot of bug fixes, but nothing like a headline part of our monthly newsletter.
And one of the ones we just had like an odd topic area, and I mentioned the podcast and put in a couple of links to download. So that’s what could attribute to the first
Nate: [00:02:31] Th there we go. So it’s, it’s Josh, you know, Josh padding the numbers there.
Josh: [00:02:36] Yeah, a little cheating, but I was actually really surprised how many people clicked. Cause in MailChimp you could see what links they clicked. And I actually put like the Spotify link, the Apple iTunes, like direct links in there. Just some like, Hey, make it one click easier than saying, go to the home page or whatnot.
So and maybe they returned. So maybe that’s a big boost to that. As some people will actually hit subscribe and. Who knows what these stats, if they actually ever listened. I know stats are really hard to do in podcasting, so,
Nate: [00:03:03] well, Hey, if you’re new here, welcome. We’re glad you’re with us.
Josh: [00:03:06] Yeah. But yeah, that definitely helps. I think, keep us a little bit motivating going that we’re not just speaking into our own echo chamber, but Hey, it’s it’s something so.
Nate: [00:03:16] Yeah. Yeah. And it’s with speaking of echo chamber, it’s always nice when we have a Twitter feed as well, searching for SAS, the number for SAS on Twitter. If you interact with us there, we’d love to chat about all things, SAS related. So head over there. If you’re interested in that.
Josh: [00:03:30] Yep, definitely. Let’s see. So why I thought we would segue a little bit into some of your homework that we gave. So last episode, just to quickly recap I think we went through just a little bit of different ways we evaluate Different niches how we find inspiration. I think a lot of it did end up alluding to talking a little bit about, well, know a fair amount about SEO and how that’s a good kind of fit for bootstrapping, and also is a good marker of like relative market size and things like that.
Does that sound about right?
Nate: [00:04:05] Yeah. And I think you, you shared a bit of your, your process and how you thought it should work. And I think that was really, really helpful in saying laying the ground fork for, Hey, here’s a, here’s a nice way to evaluate different ideas.
Josh: [00:04:17] so I’m already rewiring your brain. Is that what you’re saying?
Nate: [00:04:20] pretty much, yeah. Yep.
Josh: [00:04:23] Cool. All right. So I think, yeah, I gave you some homework and I threw down the gauntlet and said, come back with five ideas. By the next time we record. So I thought we’d start with, I know you essentially came up with a process.
And why don’t you describe a little bit how, how you organize the ideas? Cause I know you did come up with five and we may not cover them all today, but what, what’s the format?
Nate: [00:04:49] Yeah. So I kinda took the discussion that we had where you were kind of outlining some of the steps that you would take in the exploration process. And I kind of tried to formulate those into just like a one pager that I could come up with for each idea. So I kind of had like the, the market and its size.
And then I had other company so related to marketing the kind of the companies that are in that space and what positions they might hold. And then kind of try to come up with my own position, like related to those companies. How could I have a position in this market?
Josh: [00:05:20] so where do you find a niche or something like that after? Just so it’s like market sizing scope and then having a niche and you’re all putting it on one page. I love that. Trying to keep your constraints because it’s easy to kind of just rattle off, but having those constraints in this format seems pretty good.
And you had another section.
Nate: [00:05:40] And also a distribution, just like not all of them. SEO made sense. I think SEO is kind of the default mode, but sometimes there is other options as well. And so I figured it would be helpful to list that
Josh: [00:05:51] Right, right. Cool.
Nate: [00:05:52] And to be clear with it, like, it sounds simple. It’s a one pager you’re like, ah, big deal.
Right. But it, it probably took me like an hour and a half, two hours for each, each research item. So you get faster as you go, but it’s just because it sounds simple doesn’t mean it is simple.
Josh: [00:06:07] Right. Did you struggle coming up with five?
Nate: [00:06:09] At first I did the first two ideas took me like three days to come up with not three days of full-time work, but three days of like having it rolling around. But as I went, I kind of figured that I figured out different places that I could just go and cruise through blog content and whatever, and that would kind of help to trigger things for me.
Josh: [00:06:27] All right. So you start, I know you already had a way of like, listen, looking at news. Certain parts of the is kind of like, this is my ideation time, but did it just take on like a bit of a different light with this in mind?
Nate: [00:06:39] Yeah, it kind of took on new urgency and kind of helped me hone that actually. Typically my new sources have been newsletters and Twitter and this really drove me into blogs of like different groups like Saster and like indie hackers and some of those to just kind of like what, what startup ideas are people actually working on?
And you know, what can I make a off? How could I, how could I see something that relates to this.
Josh: [00:07:06] Yeah, I liked that. I liked that cause they had less on the news cause everyone’s kind of, that’s where everyone’s brains are at, but where, where is the stuff that other people aren’t looking and if you’re looking at other sources that just have a back catalog of a bunch of things, you can kind of just speed read through them and see if there’s anything.
Yeah. Interesting. And try to zone in on something.
Nate: [00:07:26] Yeah, exactly.
Josh: [00:07:28] Cool. All right. So I think we’ll want to get started. Maybe I will go by your format. And we’ll go for idea. Number one. I don’t know how you want to order them, but so we’ll start with the market. So I think that’s where your market and market sizing competitors.
So what’s the market.
Nate: [00:07:48] okay. So the market is digital asset management. And just for background, that’s like, I’m a big company. I have lots of advertising and like logos and all of that stuff. And I need a place to organize that. That’s what this is
Josh: [00:08:03] Okay. So is it specifically more marketing ish?
Nate: [00:08:06] specifically more marketing. Yeah. Yeah. And so I kind of looked for keywords and digital asset management seemed to be the most prominent one. And that had four 4,400 monthly searches. And the, the SEO difficulty on that is 64. So not, not terribly hard. There’s a decent amount of traffic coming in there.
Josh: [00:08:29] Hmm, that’s interesting. I don’t know if that would be the first term I would have searched for marketing assets. Like I would have been like, I think what my brain goes to is like brand assets or sometimes people do these PR one sheet or one page types of things. Like how do you store those? So to me, that first statement, and that’s why I asked for clarification was broad in terms of digital asset management.
So. That’s my first kind of take and I’m a little yeah, I’m not, I’m not sure. But go ahead.
Nate: [00:08:58] That that’s helpful. One thing I did look for with the search terms, as well as that the search terms brought up relevant companies and not just like blog articles that are unrelated to companies, like, for example, like the Wikipedia page and like the you know, maybe see net or something and did a write-up on it.
So this is like, this will get you, the companies is kind of what I was looking for.
Josh: [00:09:20] Okay. So who was that? Whoever who were, who were the competitors then?
Nate: [00:09:25] so do you have any idea, do you have any guesses
Josh: [00:09:27] Just digital asset management. See, since it’s so generic and I probably wouldn’t have put marketing in at first, but digital asset management. I don’t know. My gravitation would go towards like, CDNs and things like maybe ACA Kenai or like CloudFlare, those types of things. I don’t know.
Nate: [00:09:49] Yeah, so th those are more developer oriented, but you’re right. A lot of these do have CDNs built into them, whether or not they build on someone else. I don’t know. I’m kind of the top player in this market is a binder, a, B Y N D E R. So they’re at 48 million per year. And they’ve been around since 2013.
So they are, they’re doing pretty good. And I think this is one step in your process that I found really helpful was to to go for, like, what is the revenue that these companies are making? Like, not just like at the homepage, because I feel like you look at the homepage and you’re like, eh, okay. Big company.
Sure. Yeah. They’re probably doing a couple million and it’s like, well, 43 million. Okay. So this is, this is serious.
Josh: [00:10:34] Right. Yeah. You have a whole different lens on it now. And you’re like, Oh, there’s there’s cheese down this tunnel. Let me, let me, let me dive in a little bit more.
Nate: [00:10:43] Yeah, exactly.
Josh: [00:10:44] Hello? Who else did you find in there?
Nate: [00:10:46] okay. So I also had widen there at 26 million and they’d been around for forever, like 1948 was when they started the company. I’m guessing that it took some few turns to get to digital asset management.
Josh: [00:10:59] and these are, these are mostly marketing focused. Like the, the one line description for those two companies were in alignment with what you were looking for or, or the market.
Nate: [00:11:10] Yeah. So these ones are these ones were positioned as digital asset management. Like that’s their, that’s their tagline. That’s their main search terms that were coming to them.
Josh: [00:11:19] category, whatever we want to call it. Okay.
Nate: [00:11:21] sure. That would make sense.
Josh: [00:11:23] All right. Interesting. So yeah. So did you have an angle on these, if these are two kind of big ones that have that sort of blanket category what did you have a position or a niche or an idea to, to, to iterate off of this one?
Nate: [00:11:39] so maybe I’ll, maybe I’ll give you some hints and see what you come up with. So, A lot of these companies look very enterprising. Okay. They’re for big companies and they don’t have any pricing like that kind of idea. And a lot of them are quite generic. So how, how would you think to position against that?
Josh: [00:11:57] My first default is to go for a specific industry. So it could be like we even talked about for marketers. I don’t know if that’s for me, so it could be for marketers. It could be for social media. It could be for, you can probably go any different levels of Of a potential niche B2B of for lawyers.
I don’t know. That that’s where I would first gravitate is like, can I align with a persona?
Nate: [00:12:22] Yeah. Yeah. And that’s actually one of the, the kind of ideas that I had gone with as well, which was to kind of niche down into SMB territory. Not necessarily a single niche within SMB, but just SMB as cause that market didn’t seem to be covered very well. And basically the way you could differentiate really nicely is that it’s like we have self-serve we have pricing like public pricing come and get it.
Josh: [00:12:45] I liked that. I liked that. I, what, what strikes me first is you said some of these are older companies and they’ve been around for awhile, so likely. They never really looked at SMB once they had a product that we’re selling to fortune 500 or something like that, you know, they that’s essentially where their cheeses, where the money was made and, and that worked probably very well for them.
But most of those companies that they’re slower to kind of move down market down markets. I feel like much more challenging. And the other thing you have to look at though, is like, are, is the value add of the enterprise? There’s a massive value add with enterprise with certain types of features or thinking of asset management.
It’s mostly because there’s probably multiple people involved in trying to manage these, and this makes it easier as a single, probably source of truth, but then doesn’t SMB even need that. And does that like make sense where for them Dropbox. Or Google drive is their digital asset management and they don’t really need much.
So that would be my only question. There might be certain features that are going to be like, Oh yeah, this is great. But a SMB pretty much is too much small potatoes for these big companies. So why even bother? And that’s oftentimes older enterprise companies make those types of decisions.
Nate: [00:14:06] Yeah, no, I totally agree with you on that. I had a, another, another position which would be Basically to add some, some feature where you can make your rebrand really easy by flipping a switch. And so you’d get the you’d get the people who are in the middle of a rebrand because that’s when they might start thinking about digital asset management, because they’re like we have all these new files, they’re all getting lost.
You know, maybe we need to put them in a better spot. And a lot of the technology would be there, I think, to do that. And I think that a lot of these older companies might have trouble adopting that sort of positioning.
Josh: [00:14:40] Okay. I could be interesting. Have you ever done a rebrand?
Nate: [00:14:44] I have not.
Josh: [00:14:46] I’ll tell you at least from a shorthand experience, like in terms of us doing things like adding a new logo or, or refreshing our logo or turning over our website and actually doing a new look and feel. Even for a smaller company like us, it, it’s a very challenging, I’d say, so it is a big thing, but it often is.
It’s hard to make it like a flip of a switch type of stuff because you certainly prioritize. And then you’re like, ah, I can’t just have it all go on one switch. Cause I’m too worried about losing ABC or XYZ, which is already working. So, Anyway. So how excited are you about this? This idea slash market.
Nate: [00:15:31] I think it’s interesting. I’d probably give it like a, a seven, I think it’s, I think it’s got potential with the, especially with the SMB market. But I would want to, to calm some fears there about, like you said that maybe the value isn’t there for smaller companies
Josh: [00:15:46] Okay. So digging a little deeper, maybe just. Probing some SMBs or seeing who’s looking for this type of thing. Yeah, like dangerously, I assume you mean seven out of 10, not like seven out of a hundred. Okay. Or seven out of five, you know, all these review sites that everything is at a score of five. So it
Nate: [00:16:05] this true?
Josh: [00:16:08] it’s also hard to tell your excitement with your easygoing Canadian demeanor.
Nate: [00:16:12] Did you have any any other thoughts on further steps that I could take with us?
Josh: [00:16:16] Ah, I think that’s, I mean, next set of queries would be like, you know, digital asset management for SMBs, or if you knew some other SMBs and talk to them about how they, how they do that. Or if they thought about that, why is this a problem? You know, I think that would be good. And maybe some other niches to explore other than SMB, maybe like I said, some more.
Niches that are not necessarily based off of size, but ones that might have more interesting problems like maybe law offices or other ones, or maybe it’s marketing agencies that are managing it for on behalf of multiple customers. Like there could be other little tweaks in there that could be interesting to explore.
Other than SMB. I wouldn’t say SMB. My gut says it’s probably a challenging one, but there definitely could be other ways to slice it up.
Nate: [00:17:06] Yup. Yup. For sure.
Josh: [00:17:09] Cool.
Nate: [00:17:09] Cool.
Josh: [00:17:10] so let’s say that was number one. What is the next one? What do you have on market for number two?
Nate: [00:17:17] So the next step I’ve got customer success. So that’s pretty broad, but basically the idea is like generally, generally speaking, at least from what we’ve. I think we often talk about customer success is kind of like you have a software company or something like that. And you’re trying to, you’re trying to make sure that people get onboarded while you’re trying to make sure that they succeed in finding value in your product so that they stick around.
That’s kind of the overall overall idea.
Josh: [00:17:42] okay. Mind if I take a guess at the search term you used,
Nate: [00:17:48] All right. What do you got.
Josh: [00:17:51] I mean, I, given that you went a little broad, I would say you’re just generically did customer success, but my second one would be like customer success, software, or customer success services or things like that. So yeah. What did you, what did you end up with?
Nate: [00:18:05] I did. I ended up going abroad with just customer success because I found that if you search first, if you added software or service to it, you really went down the, the tail. Like it was, it was quite a bit less search traffic.
Josh: [00:18:16] that’s okay though. That’s okay. Cause it actually gets you a letter, a letter, a different lens of like, these are people that are lower in the funnel and actually are looking for a solution versus just what is customer success, which, you know, someone might Google right now after hearing customer success.
Since we haven’t. Talked a whole lot about what it is. So
Nate: [00:18:37] So a 4,400 monthly searches and SEO difficulty of 56 out of a hundred. So quite a bit of traffic and not too, too difficult to get in into that search ranking. And so one thing to kind of know on that SEO information too, is that a lot of the results in that search query were blog articles from companies who are in that space. And so that was kind of the, the suck you in kind of like you mentioned that it’s like higher in the funnel tight people in that position.
Josh: [00:19:06] So top player in the mind, if I throw, throw a guest in there,
Nate: [00:19:10] Yeah, sure. Make a guess.
Josh: [00:19:11] I would say Gainsight is the number one top player in there.
Nate: [00:19:17] And you’re right. Begging. Yes. So they’re at a hundred million. They’re funded and they just got acquired this year. But they’ve been around since 2009, the original company.
Josh: [00:19:27] I’m, I feel like I’m cheating in this space a bit because being in the SAS business customer success is a pretty common term that was popularized by Salesforce back. I don’t know, at least probably. I’d say at least 15 plus years ago.
Nate: [00:19:45] Yep. So interesting that the Salesforce would be the person introducing that, but not being in the, this list here.
Josh: [00:19:54] yeah, I think it was just what they internally called it in terms of, you know, if they’re, they are the, they are the pioneers of SAS, I would call them and having a person that was responsible for the subscription and managing the account. That’s what they ended up calling it, which is funny because I ha I’ve worked in other businesses even before like a SAS was kind of a thing and they used to just call them account managers or client services and things like that.
So I’m always a little weird by that term. I’m like, yeah, I know that’s the industry norm now, but it’s like, it’s no different than an account manager at a. Let’s say like an insurance broker that manages kind of a subscription and all these other things. It’s like, all these old industries had a name for it before, and then a software as a service decided to brand it and, and whatnot.
But anyway,
Nate: [00:20:47] So true. And it’s just like, when you look at it at a broad term, it’s just like, you’re just helping the customer. Right. Like everyone along the step on the phase is just trying to help the customer, right?
Josh: [00:20:56] I mean, I like the naming it’s aspirational. It’s better than like, what are you in account management? So it’s kind of tilts towards what their role is rather than like the account manager. I’m a babysitter for an account versus I am, I am in charge of making them happy and successful. So I like that tilt.
Nate: [00:21:14] Yup. Yup. I guess we got a few more players in this market. We’ve got turned zero at 10 million since 2015. And we’ve got at 900,000 since 2017.
Josh: [00:21:28] there’s definitely some more in here only because we’ve researched this software before, but I think Nataro, there’s, we’ve used a couple of other different things too internally with the referral rock. But, but yeah, so, so sorry, go ahead.
Nate: [00:21:43] I kind of at the list of the companies here that I chose, I was basically trying to rank them by their SEO ranking. Like how, how high did they come up and kind of take the top ones out of that.
Josh: [00:21:57] All right.
Nate: [00:21:58] Okay. So next up is positioned, right? So if I give you a couple ideas of what other people are positioned as, maybe you can make a guess. So Gainsight is kind of like give the experience that customers expect. Turns zeros, like reduce churn and customize kind of like we do everything. Reduce current, reduce, churn, and retain customers and help sell.
So where, where do you think in that market would be a good place to kind of hang yourself?
Josh: [00:22:29] I mean, without trying to think of the intricacies of building the software and just what you laid out, my. A hole I would see is who else on the bigger side player market is focused on the upsell. And maybe it starts out as a very much like I’m gonna kick myself for saying it, but like AI or machine learning type of thing that is going to be like uncovering opportunities for upsells or something like that.
Nate: [00:22:56] Interesting. Yeah. Yeah. They were like, a lot of these products were really heavily into data science and that sort of thing. Like, like, we’ll give you like the data science dashboard is kind of the often the way they would go about it. But you’re right. I think like the upsell for bigger companies. So you be kind of up against customer by a bit.
But if you really honed that, I think that might work. One of the positions that I came up with was That it’s about the it’s about your customer story. So trying to do a lot of path analysis and like making the, kind of having milestones for your, your customer’s journey and all the different ways that that might go,
Josh: [00:23:36] so would this be internal or external? Like would internal meaning the company using the software? Like the clients, I mean, the customer success agent essentially would be able to see this type of thing. Versus you mentioned seeing them on their journey that also bleeds into onboarding software. It bleeds into what are some of those other ones?
Like there’s some big ones in the onboarding areas, tools, you know, it starts out with tool tips and product tours and different things like that in, in, in app, in product. Cause these are all. SAS businesses that they’re selling to.
Nate: [00:24:10] Yeah. I think that, I think that it’s pretty, like that’s a pretty broad position that you could kind of go down a lot of those different rabbit holes. But I think to start, I think the initial thing is like for the, for the company internally, to be able to understand the personas that are working through their system and be able to track those specific personas and, and help them in different ways as opposed to.
Like the, I think a lot of the companies there now are saying, this is a data science problem. You need you know, someone that’s a really good analyst to use this software, whereas this is more like this is simple. Define the journey that your customer has, and we’re going to figure out all the personas and that’s going to make you successful.
Josh: [00:24:52] okay. Interesting. Yeah, I don’t know. I think, I think the, I understand why their positioning is the way it is. I’d probably I just, my head. Might be too far into this space. But I would say a lot of them do that because they’re trying to differentiate from each other. I think the real value that any of the customer success software pretty much has is they built all of them.
Are you sell per seat? For agents and then also them, they aggregate data to the top layer. So managers can see kind of what’s going on. A lot of them go by these like health scores for customers. So like on your dashboard, you’re seeing all this type of types of action items and health scores, and maybe there’s email sequences.
But for me, the challenge is it’s not very different technically then CRM software and that type of thing. What they’re really selling is. Software that is very much vertically integrated and specific for the CSM, which is a totally different role than, than someone in sales, which they’re trying to move a deal along.
Versus someone that is trying to help someone onboard, help someone get the most value out of the product. When should I sell them, send them a quarterly business review of how well we’re doing, how do I keep them on a subscription or upsell them into other subscriptions? So, yeah. Yeah, I don’t know.
Nate: [00:26:18] that kind of makes me think though, of a niche, because if, if you feel that these customer success softwares are very. Tailored towards a success manager, then maybe there’s place for smaller companies to have a extension to a existing CRM. Like for example, you make a as a, like a position you might make a customer success module for Salesforce or for whatever CRM is popular.
Josh: [00:26:43] right. I think a lot of them do plug into these things because the CRM these days are the system of record for the whole customer life cycle. But really these other softwares, I think have very tight integrations with all of the, these ones. They know they’re not the, the system of record. But they know they’re sort of second fiddle to the CRM at this point and that they, they tie those things in.
The other challenge I would have is like, we’ve gone the route of having our own customer success software, and honestly, it wasn’t great. And we alluded back to using like air table and spreadsheets at a certain point. Right. And then we actually do use, we use HubSpot CRM, and essentially we just give our CSMs, our customer success managers, like.
Rolls in there and we create dashboards for them. So we’ve kind of hacked it to use overlaying on the serum. So kind of like what you said. And that, that’s probably the challenge I see with with doing that is even from the bottoms up perspective until you really need very specialized analytics and other things on top, which that’s where turns zeros and the, and the gain sites really start to slice that one up.
So. My gut is my gut is to say, this one is going to be challenging because also SAS is so hot right now. And everyone is looking at this. A lot of people have like slice this apart. A lot of entrepreneurs are in the SAS space. Like it’s a very, you know, tech heavy area. And I think that there’s a lot of people that might be trying to look in this.
And I don’t know if there’s a lot because it’s very. Derivative off of some other things. Now SAS is rising. So as the market expands, there’s all these other use cases. But I do feel like it’d be hard to kind of really be a true niche thing of what those other ones are.
Nate: [00:28:39] No, I think you’re right. And like, I think the, none of the positions that we’ve come across so far have been particularly exciting. Like they seem, they don’t seem like they really have a lot of meat to them.
Josh: [00:28:51] Right. So your level of excitement for this one is.
Nate: [00:28:54] It’s fairly low. I’d give it like a three or four out of 10.
Josh: [00:28:58] okay. So yeah, my advice would probably be just maybe not pursue it. There might be other opportunities that already, even the earlier, when you mentioned on the digital asset management seemed more appealing. One thing I realized we didn’t go over was the third item on all of the. Market and idea analysis.
I don’t think we did. We talk about the distribution opportunity, what you chose with the digital asset management.
Nate: [00:29:24] No. So we haven’t talked about those. So I kind of chose to go with the LCO route for both of those. And that was basically because the SEO difficulty didn’t seem unsurmountable. Like it’s, it seemed reasonable. And there didn’t seem to be another channel that was easy to tap into for some of the other ideas that I have here.
There’s there’s You know, there’s different channels that might, that you could tell just from research and the other people were using, but not with these ones.
Josh: [00:29:51] What’s interesting. Made me think about a couple of different channels for both of those ideas as we were talking. And one would be, I know I mentioned the digital asset management, maybe there’s agencies or other things like that. And. That, that could be a different type of approach like that.
Some people will use partnerships working with marketing agencies. I know some people start out with like white label versions that other people can resell. I never really liked that. It always seems like a great bridge strapper idea. That’s like, Oh wait, I don’t like to sell. I’m going to get other people to sell for me.
And yeah. They can take a cut, but the flip side is you don’t end up really having much of a relationship with the end customer and you don’t really get a lot of tactile feedback about your, your software.
Nate: [00:30:41] Yeah. Yeah. I’m not too sure about white labeling that. Doesn’t it also doesn’t like, it doesn’t give you the benefit, right? Like the name Bret benefit or anything like
Josh: [00:30:49] Right? Right. I had some bud shoppers and entrepreneurs kind of want to just be behind the scenes and just. Build build a tool that just, you know, could give them a very good lifestyle. There’s nothing wrong with that. But I know we’ve talked before in the why’s and it seems like you are interested in that obviously to replace your income, but are also very interested in, in building a business and essentially making a brand for yourself, so to speak.
Nate: [00:31:16] yeah. I think one thing that was kind of interesting with this exercise too, is like the doing a whole bunch of business ideas at once kind of forced me to think more broadly rather than to just like keep going until there’s one I got excited about and then stop. Because it might be that, you know, you do five and then the sixth one is the good one.
Josh: [00:31:36] Right
Nate: [00:31:36] I think that was really helpful not to just settle on one.
Josh: [00:31:38] right. Like you could have spent a week on. This customer success and not, not ever found out about the digital asset one. And you got you weren’t as excited, but you’re like, ah, I’m down this channel. I’ve already done some research. I’m going to just keep going while I’m in here. And the realization is, you know, your, your comparison of a level of three might’ve changed once you see the other ones.
Like, I think you have that the, the hindsight to have done five ideas, and I’m asking you your rating now, so you can kind of. At least you’re kind of comparing them. It’s sort of on a scale of a grading scale or a like a bell curve of sorts based off of existing ideas.
Nate: [00:32:19] Yeah, totally. Yeah.
Josh: [00:32:21] So I did mention another distribution channel.
So the other one I thought about with the, with the customer success, one was marketplaces. Like you mentioned already things like could they just tie into an existing CRM? So.
Nate: [00:32:34] Yeah.
Josh: [00:32:35] There could be an idea in there on those where, like I said, it could be a lightweight thing. Like if, if someone wanted to pursue the idea of seeing what upsell opportunities and using signals into that, like there’s a lot of software that tie into those, like, That especially know people’s login like Intercom has a marketplace.
I know you have experience with the Heroku marketplace. Not sure if that one’s a great SAS fit, but there’s a lot of SAS platforms that maybe billing ones could be interesting too. Like what signals could you pull out? That could be an upsell opportunity, but that was the only other distribution one I could think of.
Nate: [00:33:13] Yep. No, that’s, that’s a great idea as well.
Josh: [00:33:17] okay. So we’ve covered two of your five ideas. This might be a good stopping point. I think we’re around 30, 35 minutes or so on our recording and not to let this get too long in the tooth for our listeners who are probably not listening and commutes anymore. So who knows? Nate, anything else you want to wrap up with?
And we can probably cover these ideas next week, the rest, the rest of the three or however many we get to on our next episode, but anything else you have?
Nate: [00:33:46] no, I think this was this was a lot of fun to do. It was, it was quite a bit more work than I was expecting, but I think that it was really helpful to do this. And if anyone’s out there searching for ideas, I think I’d really encourage you to try this out
Josh: [00:33:58] yeah, maybe after this, we’ll write a blog post kind of about this framework and this isn’t a framework that is out there. I believe it’s kind of something we’re just coming through organically a little bit. So it may be a little rough as we, as we go, but maybe in a few weeks, we’ll we’ll go back and kinda. Walkthrough and maybe write, write something about it. That could be a little more cohesive. So people actually did want to follow along instead of listening to four or five hours of podcast episodes, trying to figure out and seeing us contradict ourselves in the future could be pretty interesting.
Nate: [00:34:33] Yeah, that sounds good.
Josh: [00:34:34] Cool. All right. Yep. See you next week.
Nate: [00:34:37] Bye.