Pawel Brzeminski — "How to Start a SaaS Business with No Idea, In Any Market, With No Connections, Using Only Excel, Email and Phone (or Conferences)"

(This article is part of the MicroConf 2015 Recap. Want to explore more talks from the event? Go back to the Recap Hub)

Main Concept

Pre-selling lets you immediately move from problem → solution and sell — in one 30-minute conversation

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Three Key Points

  • Pick a market
  • Interview the market, identify pain
  • Pre-sell the solution before you write a line of code

Talk Recap

How to Start a SaaS

  • Not a generalized recipe for success
    • May not work for you, your market
    • Will offer practical advice (“from the trenches”)

How to find a profitable business idea

  • Select target market
  • Contact the market
  • Select the problem
  • Pre-sell the solution
  • Develop the smallest solution

Selecting Your Market

  • Create a list of industries
  • Criteria
    • At least 2,000 – 5,000 industries
    • Affinity for the industry
    • Ideal markets => niche/obscure
    • Contactable

Contacting Your Market

  • Excel list of people to contact
  • Send emails to your customers and schedule phone calls to talk to them
  • Ask questions to find pain points (and shut up, let them talk)
  • Wave the magic wand question (magic question) — ask what they would fix if they could waive a magic wand

Selecting The Problem

  • List all problems that people are experiencing
  • Focus on the most painful, least complex problem

Pre-sell your solution

  • Schedule the call
  • Review the pain
  • Present the solution
  • Make an offer (ask to buy)
  • Rinse and repeat (minimum 3-5 people)
  • Start developing the product)

Next Level™ Tips

  • Use conferences to turbocharge this process
  • Incredible pace of learning
  • Rapid feedback from people
  • Meet early adopters
  • Follow up after the conference
  • Smaller is better than larger, more intimate settings are better

What Worked

  • Recording + reviewing the calls
  • Getting specific and personal on the call
  • Staying in touch after the fact

My Stats

  • 1 Market → 174 emails
  • 174 emails →  connected with 32 people
  • 32 people → 52 calls
  • 52 calls → 8 problems
  • 1 problem → $4,200

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Speaker’s Slides

Recommended Resources

  1. Thing — Link
  2. Thing — Link
  3. Thing — Link

Links to Speaker’s Websites

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(This article is part of the MicroConf 2015 Recap. Want to explore more talks from the event? Go back to the Recap Hub)