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A guide by Damon Chen, a founder of Testimonial.so
Damon Chen started Testimonial.so in December 2020 after only 3 weeks of building an MVP (he used lots of code snippets from the previous projects and no-code where possible). In March 2021 hit $1K MRR and quit his job. In May 2021 raised around $100K from the Calm Fund. In September 2021 hit $100K ARR Main customer acquisition channels: Twitter (build in public), affiliate program and SEO
- You should share what you’re comfortable with. If people keep on asking you to share your code and you don’t what to — don’t do it. Don’t share your revenue if you feel that it’s something that you’re hesitant about.
- Make your story special and personal. Damon’s story was very special: an experienced talented engineer who taught how to do web development using $9.99 Udemy course. This was a very special story that appeals to many young developers. Also, Damon actively shared other aspects of his life: how he struggled to find a work-life balance when pandemic struck, how he failed, how he started looking for other opportunities to provide for his family. All these facts created a rapport with the audience.
- Don’t look at numbers — they will start going up as soon as you start. Damon started sharing his journey when he had <1000 followers on Twitter. In less than a year he grew his following to over 20K people.
- Use Github to create a public roadmap for your product and share it on Twitter.
- Actively support all other founders who use this concept. Build In public on Twitter is already a community — just by using the hashtag #buildinpublic you can find others who do it and join their journey.
- Build in Public is not only about “build”. It’s about sell, price, fail, quit — everything. Share how you go about your pricing, share your decision-making, share how and where you’re going to launch.
- Do AMA on Indie Hackers — block a day in your schedule to answer any questions your fellow founders might ask. It’s a very simple arrangement — post about your product, the facts and offer to ask you questions. Then reply to the comments — that’s it.
- Build In Public helps a lot with official product launches — like a launch on product Hunt. People who you’ve been sharing with, will come to support you. And Product Hunt launch, in its turn, is very good for SEO — you’ll be getting traffic from the product page for months after the launch. You hit many birds with just one stone this way.
- Build In Public might bring you investors as well. Damon believes that that’s what happened in his case. Anyway, the Calm Fund cold outreached him soon after the Product Hunt launch.
- Build in public will make you more insightful about the features you add to the product as people constantly share their feedback and request features from founders who Build in public on Twitter.