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NicholasCato

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Oct 31, 2018
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so long story short, after getting tired of the dead end gig to gig cycle I was trapped in as a freelancer last year, I decided to get a day job to help fund my first potential fastlane idea.

The business idea is a educational app that will work like a monthly subscription service.

It’s been 3 months and I’m tired of waiting. I have the bare bones idea but I’m stuck with how to get my test group to help me actually turn this into a real thing. Here’s the two options I’ve come to:

Option 1 - Make pitch video with mock images / video of potential product. Buy ads on Facebook and Instagram. Link to an email list and questionnaire to gauge the interest of this product

But the problem that brings is if I have Let’s say 100 people interested. I’d have no funds to actually get the first usable version of the app funded. So then there’s option 2

Option 2 - make a pitch video of potential product, go straight to Kickstarter to receive funding for the first version of the product.


Which option do you guys think would be best?
Thanks
 

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Jsoh

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May 16, 2019
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so long story short, after getting tired of the dead end gig to gig cycle I was trapped in as a freelancer last year, I decided to get a day job to help fund my first potential fastlane idea.

The business idea is a educational app that will work like a monthly subscription service.

It’s been 3 months and I’m tired of waiting. I have the bare bones idea but I’m stuck with how to get my test group to help me actually turn this into a real thing. Here’s the two options I’ve come to:

Option 1 - Make pitch video with mock images / video of potential product. Buy ads on Facebook and Instagram. Link to an email list and questionnaire to gauge the interest of this product

But the problem that brings is if I have Let’s say 100 people interested. I’d have no funds to actually get the first usable version of the app funded. So then there’s option 2

Option 2 - make a pitch video of potential product, go straight to Kickstarter to receive funding for the first version of the product.


Which option do you guys think would be best?
Thanks
Hey nicholas,

How long will it take to build your app? What type of investment funding do you need?

You can get market validation through paid ads by trying a "presell" Avenue.

I havent used kickstarter so I cant comment on how that would work for you
 
OP
OP
NicholasCato

NicholasCato

Contributor
Oct 31, 2018
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109
Apps don't do super well on Kickstarter, for the most part. You can always try, it doesn't hurt but just know you're hamstrung from the start.
Yes I’ve noticed physical products are the norm on kickstarter minus the video games which my app is somewhat similar too so that’s why I considered Kickstarter.
It’s not a barebones service app but more so it game-ifies learning
 
OP
OP
NicholasCato

NicholasCato

Contributor
Oct 31, 2018
65
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Hey nicholas,

How long will it take to build your app? What type of investment funding do you need?

You can get market validation through paid ads by trying a "presell" Avenue.

I havent used kickstarter so I cant comment on how that would work for you

I’m quoting prices with a few freelancers now. As for time? About 3 months for a minimum viable product.

The thing with presale is that it’s pretty much Kickstarter only with more work. Have you used this method?
 

SYK

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Option 2 - make a pitch video of potential product, go straight to Kickstarter to receive funding for the first version of the product.
You’re overlooking the 3-6 months you’ll need to spend building/executing a strong campaign, the need to spend 10-20% of your funding goal to reach it, and the fact you’ll have to generate ~90% of your own traffic.

Kickstarter democratizes funding but it’s not some utopian, kickback-and-watch-the-money-roll-in solution. And it’s definitely not a world kind to apps...

Here’s a quick second study I did: 4600 apps have been launched on Kickstarter. Only 302 were successful (6.5% vs KS avg of 37%). Of those, only 121 raised over $10,000, and just TWO brought in over $100,000.

Not saying it’s not possible. But go in with eyes open and data understood. I know what I’d be doing...
 
OP
OP
NicholasCato

NicholasCato

Contributor
Oct 31, 2018
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70
109
You’re overlooking the 3-6 months you’ll need to spend building/executing a strong campaign, the need to spend 10-20% of your funding goal to reach it, and the fact you’ll have to generate ~90% of your own traffic.

Kickstarter democratizes funding but it’s not some utopian, kickback-and-watch-the-money-roll-in solution. And it’s definitely not a world kind to apps...

Here’s a quick second study I did: 4600 apps have been launched on Kickstarter. Only 302 were successful (6.5% vs KS avg of 37%). Of those, only 121 raised over $10,000, and just TWO brought in over $100,000.

Not saying it’s not possible. But go in with eyes open and data understood. I know what I’d be doing...

I guess app was the wrong term to use. It’s more of an educational video game than an actual app. Video games do really well on Kickstarter I’m not sure but I think my idea might stand out.
But that what I’m really looking for to see if this idea will have any traction whatsoever.

I just need to find potential leads to see if the idea is worth pursuing so I guess video pitch + running targeted ads + email list is the right course of action?
 

Brewmacker

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Hey OP!

Do you see the philosophy in my profile photo? This is solid advice for any project, but I have applied it to engineering for many years. Keep this in mind when looking at your approach ;)


Have you thought about a kick starter route? The have a new game developer section.


Have a look at what people can there can deliver for you. Whilst saving up for to place a contract, work your a$$ off generating the specifications, art, storyboards, themes etc.

Alternatively
There is a long living debate here on FLF which you can look up, about learning to program. Is it fast lane is it not? (I am not here to argue about it further, this is what I am doing and remains untested in full).

I am learning to program an MVP (minimum viable product) to get it on the market ASAP both on the web and on app. Maybe you could generate a demo version/landing page and get it on to IOS and/or on the Web (avoid android for now) to test the concept, receive feed back and iterate etc.

You have to ask yourself:
  • What is more important to me right now? Time or Money?
  • Can I sacrifice time now, investing my energy in developing the product? Or
  • Do I want to spend a load of cash on a product that may not add value?
  • Do I want to be flexible enough to listen to the customer and iterate my product by myself to a certain point in the beginning to meet the customers needs?
  • When I go to hire someone to do the work do I want to be able to specify exactly what I want to minimize mistakes & lead time (therefore cost)?
  • Do I want to be confident with a sound offer rather than getting ripped off for a piece of unusable crap?
  • Can I rope in a friend how has IT knowledge to co-found this project with me? (again with no coding experience how will you know that he is good? This is a short term free service that could cost you a lot of money and time in the future)
I am aware that I am burning daylight in terms of executing fast (actually the candle light (actually the candle at both ends)) to study programming, something that is completely new and unknown to me. It is an investment in time, rather than an investment of money.

Three months later I am so much happier I did it this way. I can actually understand infinitely more about programming, the jargon and the potential and limitations of the Web. You havent mentioned your level of coding skills so I guess you are as wet behind the ears as I was.

There will come a point soon after 6 months of learning when I execute the MVP. And if it is a flop (i really hope not), I find a new idea, build an new MVP in weeks test it and so on. With every iteration I am building on my coding and execution knowledge.

There will come a time when I can write the specifications and will have a network from which I can draw upon to execute rapid fast lane ideas. But right now, investing in myself only costs all my free time, which before was mainly taken up with drinking beer, partying, women and watching TV haha.
No matter how I look at it I am winning here (okay okay haha the female interaction part, still kinda feels like i am losing out).


You need to get your idea tested out before you start shoveling money into it. Maybe get to grasps with understanding the risks of someone taking your app, stealing the code and copying your concepts (- think flappy bird).
If you do not want to learn to code then make sure your specifications are as close to water tight as possible, and have a programmer look over it before placing an order.

Try and think into the future, you get $20K from kickstarter and what next? How are you going to spend every precious dollar?


I am in no way saying that my approach is the right approach, it is just one of many paths you can take. Even now I am being challenged by certain people on this forum and they are way more successful than me in web development field and it is really really great.
But as I say this approach is an ongoing debate here, and within myself too.

Right now I have the time and the freedom to learn, and I am using it well with no regrets, whilst in parallel developing all the other aspects of the business.

Good luck for the future with what ever path you decide to take.
 
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