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glongshadow

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This might sound a little odd, and may not be the best topic to post under (please let me know if there's a more appropriate topic for it).

I am developing a system to help save lives by enlisting a potent device almost all people carry with them 99% of the time. My current setup meets all 5 of the CENTS commandments, and has the potential for both reach and magnitude at the same time (I'd argue that saving someone's life is the highest magnitude possible).

The issue I have is this: the entire principle demands that the system is free to use. Whilst there is the option of partnering with other established brands in the sectors I'm targeting first, I can't see an easy way to establish any actual money flow. Advertising is one option, but the options for it are very minimal, and I will not surrender monetary control to another agent like Google.

Beyond the initial development, the production and maintenance overheads are very low, so there's not really any requirement for monetisation income to cover the growth of the money tree... but if it doesn't actually make any money, is it a money tree?

I'll be clear: I believe in what I'm doing whole-heartedly, and will continue with it regardless of whether I ever make money from it - but being able to build it into a money tree would be a rather lovely bonus.

What experiences have other people here had with successfully making a money tree from a free product?
 

woken

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There’s always the option of building to sell. Since you mentioned overhead it’s low, ask yourself if that figure will still be low if this service is mass adopted.

If you take it to mass adoption, you can be bleeding cash and still have a meaningful exit.
 

glongshadow

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This is largely my thought process at the moment.

I'm working to be aware of personal biases blinding me to income options, but realistically in order for enough people to take it up to achieve my goal of reducing unnecessary deaths, it must remain free to use so my options are limited.

Ultimately if it only ever saves one life and nothing else, it'll be a success to me but I am going to do everything in my power to save as many lives as possible worldwide.

I don't believe the overheads will increase dramatically regardless of takeup, although the initial cost is quite steep; so I suspect my best option is to keep one eye on building for an exit event.

Options I'm looking at, but are currently not available at this step of the process are largely focused around partnering with existing companies. That said, I will be in a place to start making approaches if I choose to in around a month's time
 

woken

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This is largely my thought process at the moment.

I'm working to be aware of personal biases blinding me to income options, but realistically in order for enough people to take it up to achieve my goal of reducing unnecessary deaths, it must remain free to use so my options are limited.

Ultimately if it only ever saves one life and nothing else, it'll be a success to me but I am going to do everything in my power to save as many lives as possible worldwide.

I don't believe the overheads will increase dramatically regardless of takeup, although the initial cost is quite steep; so I suspect my best option is to keep one eye on building for an exit event.

Options I'm looking at, but are currently not available at this step of the process are largely focused around partnering with existing companies. That said, I will be in a place to start making approaches if I choose to in around a month's time
Also, If it truly saves lives, governments will be interested too.

Take for example the companies making the C0VlD-19 vac
 

stantechie

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If it's free and saves lives, could you not do it as a voluntary donation system?

I know if something/someone saved my life or someone I cared about, I'd be happy to make a donation toward the effort that lead to it.
 

eramart

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You can upsell some other, optional product - either for its merits, or like a way to help you (like a donation)
 

glongshadow

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I feel it might be relevant to follow this up with current progress.

Having had a good look at what exactly is necessary on the software side, and learning enough to create a proof of concept, it's clear that while I could build a working model of my product myself it will take considerably longer than I'm willing to spend right now. I've approached a couple of reputable development agencies in the area, shared wireframes and an MVP specification with them and am in the process of comparing both quotes and areas of specialisation to make a decision on which one to use.

I've now partnered with another person (who I trust absolutely) to help me manage the process of outreach to relevant parties. For what I'm doing to work, I need to work closely with the emergency services, so have arranged a meeting with the local Fire Station officer to get contacts further up the tree. My business partner has managed to arrange a meeting with the national Health Minister and a handful of other quite powerful people, so we will be looking to build that relationship too.

I expect to have a working prototype within the next 3 weeks, at which point I will be arranging demonstrations with as many key players as possible. Whilst I could likely get my point across using just the wireframes, that feels like waving a business plan around; I'd much rather have an actual product to demonstrate.

There are many more challenges ahead, but I'm focusing on only addressing the immediate challenges as they arise. I don't want to waste time on things that may prove to be irrelevant later, since that time is better spent executing not action faking.

I'll likely be pretty quiet around here for a while, as there's a lot to get on top of (I'm still working a full-time job alongside this) but I'll post progress whenever I have any that's noteworthy.

I do however feel like I should say a massive thank you to @MJ DeMarco for giving me not just the fire under my arse to get going, but also the confidence to do so. Thank you sir!
 

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