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Ess

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Jan 22, 2020
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Hi All,

So I recently started creating a SaaS application after noticing a gap in an emerging service industry. First I created a landing page with the value proposition, after which I began creating the actual application. Fast forward a few weeks and I now have a demo-able application to fully relay what I am building.

I decided to get some market feedback from reddit and ask for some early sign ups. Turns out, the folks there liked the idea and were up voting my post. Within a few hours, I had a few dozen registered to try the app with some additional encouraging emails. I also received an email from the founder of main competitor asking about the product. They are one of the few major competitors in this market doing what I intend to do (at least in part). It was a friendly exchange and it seems they just wanted to understand what I am building. I give them lots of credit for monitoring reddit at their stage. He wants to have a call to discuss the product.

Then it dawned on me. Did I tip off my competition to soon?

Do you think I made a mistake by reaching out publicly? Should I have PMed these reddit users directly instead?

Overall I am very pleased with the response. It seems like if I just stick to my plan and continue to execute, I will have paying customers by Q2/Q3.
 

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loop101

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Hi All,

So I recently started creating a SaaS application after noticing a gap in an emerging service industry. First I created a landing page with the value proposition, after which I began creating the actual application. Fast forward a few weeks and I now have a demo-able application to fully relay what I am building.

I decided to get some market feedback from reddit and ask for some early sign ups. Turns out, the folks there liked the idea and were up voting my post. Within a few hours, I had a few dozen registered to try the app with some additional encouraging emails. I also received an email from the founder of main competitor asking about the product. They are one of the few major competitors in this market doing what I intend to do (at least in part). It was a friendly exchange and it seems they just wanted to understand what I am building. I give them lots of credit for monitoring reddit at their stage. He wants to have a call to discuss the product.

Then it dawned on me. Did I tip off my competition to soon?

Do you think I made a mistake by reaching out publicly? Should I have PMed these reddit users directly instead?

Overall I am very pleased with the response. It seems like if I just stick to my plan and continue to execute, I will have paying customers by Q2/Q3.
He probably wants to hire you as an employee so you don't take 50% of his business. Just do your thing.
 

JG17

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Competition is both healthy and inevitable in any field. I take it the competitor is already well established and is just keeping tabs on the market. That's something you didn't know yesterday. You can probably gain as much as they can by this experience. You now have market validation from both target audience and competitors and also an opportunity to gain more knowledge of how your competitors operate. I'd take the call, keep your cards close to your chest and use it to figure out even more ways to make your product both different and better than theirs. Keep your friends close but enemies closer and all that. Good luck.
 
OP
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Ess

Ess

New Contributor
Jan 22, 2020
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11
14
Competition is both healthy and inevitable in any field. I take it the competitor is already well established and is just keeping tabs on the market. That's something you didn't know yesterday. You can probably gain as much as they can by this experience. You now have market validation from both target audience and competitors and also an opportunity to gain more knowledge of how your competitors operate. I'd take the call, keep your cards close to your chest and use it to figure out even more ways to make your product both different and better than theirs. Keep your friends close but enemies closer and all that. Good luck.
Thanks for the response. Yes, I believe you're correct. Judging by the roles they are hiring for, they are established and just keeping tabs. Keep your enemies closer is the first thing that came into mind. Thanks for the encouragement!
 
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Ess

Ess

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Jan 22, 2020
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He probably wants to hire you as an employee so you don't take 50% of his business. Just do your thing.
Haha, that'd be an interesting call for sure. I'll update once we chat but as of now I intend to keep going. Thanks for the reply!
 

Sebastya

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There's nothing to tip off. No idea is new. Someone else had the same idea you did but they probably didn't execute well (or at all).

Just build the best version of it.
 
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MJ DeMarco

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Can't hurt to talk, but I'd proceed cautiously.

Can you let us know how the call goes?

For some odd feeling, I'm thinking his motives aren't in your favor.
 
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Ess

Ess

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Jan 22, 2020
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Can't hurt to talk, but I'd proceed cautiously.

Can you let us know how the call goes?

For some odd feeling, I'm thinking his motives aren't in your favor.
Yeah I have the same feeling. I'm going to schedule the call for late next week so I have time to prepare.

I'll update this thread after the chat.
 

peterb0yd

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Why put it on Reddit? Why not reach out to prospects directly via cold-email sequences?
 
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Ess

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Jan 22, 2020
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Why put it on Reddit? Why not reach out to prospects directly via cold-email sequences?
I wasn't looking necessarily to sell the product. I just wanted to get market feedback. I could have done it with an email marketing campaign as well. Looking back, I should have done an email campaign first and then the reddit post second as a last resort. At any rate, I'm still happy with the outcome.
 

amp0193

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I was in this situation a few months ago.

Except I was the big competitor, and it was me calling the owner of the new fish within hours of his website being launched.

My purpose: To gain as much information as possible to use to my competitive advantage.

He spilled all the beans, while I revealed absolutely nothing about what we were up to.
 

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amp0193

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I wasn't looking necessarily to sell the product. I just wanted to get market feedback. I could have done it with an email marketing campaign as well. Looking back, I should have done an email campaign first and then the reddit post second as a last resort. At any rate, I'm still happy with the outcome.
You did nothing wrong with the reddit post.

Execution is all that matters.

You can't keep your idea under wraps forever.
 
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Ess

Ess

New Contributor
Jan 22, 2020
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I was in this situation a few months ago.

Except I was the big competitor, and it was me calling the owner of the new fish within hours of his website being launched.

My purpose: To gain as much information as possible to use to my competitive advantage.

He spilled all the beans, while I revealed absolutely nothing about what we were up to.
I get it, business is business. I don't see the reward being worth the risk for me. I may opt out.
 
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Ess

Ess

New Contributor
Jan 22, 2020
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You did nothing wrong with the reddit post.

Execution is all that matters.

You can't keep your idea under wraps forever.

Thanks, I'm glad I did it. It lit a fire under me for sure.
 

amp0193

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I get it, business is business. I don't see the reward being worth the risk for me. I may opt out.
I just shared that story as a word of caution. There is likely no good intentions from the other side.

But you can take the call... just beware that they are looking for you to let some things slip.

Or maybe they want something else entirely. Hard to know.
 

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