Build Your SaaS – bootstrapping in 2019

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We both work full-time. Here's how we find time to work on

Show Notes

What’s been happening?

  • New iTunes review from Shane Smith in Australia: "Keep up the great work. Love hearing the behind-the-scenes part of setting up your SaaS."
  • T-shirt contest!  Leave a review you’ll be entered to win a limited edition Transistor t-shirt!
  • New features inside Transistor:
    • Embeddable players
    • Shareable links
    • Direct MP3 download URL
    • File uploader
  • We've closed early access. Official launch coming soon!
  • Marketing website is almost done
  • We're working on a secret new thing - stay tuned to hear more.

Main topic: organizing your time

  • This will be interesting because we’re coming at it from two different perspectives:
    • Jon works full-time
    • Justin runs his own business
  • What’s hard about it?
    • Jon: I’m other people’s boss. Running the tech team at CAH/Blackbox. So people are depending on me. Blackbox is also a startup that requires a good deal of product decisions day to day. Both are exciting so it’s hard to juggle sometimes!
    • Justin: I’m my own boss. I tell myself what to do. The hardest part right now is Transistor isn’t making money, but it’s the funnest thing to work on.
  • How do you overcome those obstacles?
    • Jon: Two separate Pivotal Trackers and Apple Reminders lists. if I can think of something for Transistor during work I just throw in the list for later. I have to smart about not doing Transistor during the work day and letting my team down. Transistor is mostly relegated to after hours and weekends. 
    • Justin: notepad, I split it into two sections: “MegaMaker” and “Transistor.” I have a Trello for MegaMaker that tracks what my contractors are doing.
  • What does your ideal day look like?
    • Jon: ideally I’m only working on Transistor  in reality, wake up a bit early and see if I missed anything overnight for Transistor. errors, support emails, etc. Go do the fulltime thing. take a break after work to work out or make dinner and then work on Transistor at night a couple of times of week. Ideally I deploy at least something to Transistor everyday.
    • Justin: I’ve realized I really get energy from interacting with people. I recently did this “Strengths finder” test and activities like doing sales, doing demos, interacting with customers, writing, making videos and podcasts, hacking on ideas, building prototypes… these all play to my strengths.
  • Tips for listeners:
    • Define the end result first:“what does your ideal day look like” is a really important question. 
    • Distinguish between big milestones and daily tasks.
    • Have a way of organizing tasks. Try a bunch!
    • Contextual zones. Have a different place to work on your side-hustle.

Show notes

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What is Build Your SaaS – bootstrapping in 2019?

Can you bootstrap a profitable startup in 2019? 37signals did it in 2004, and since then thousands of entrepreneurs, developers, designers, and product people have tried to launch their own web apps. But with so many venture-backed startups now, is it still possible? Follow Jon and Justin as they build & launch their new product: