Build Your SaaS

We answer listener questions about bootstrapping, SaaS, and partnerships

Show Notes

This week Jon and Justin discussed:

What should we talk about next?

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Creators & Guests

Host
Jon Buda
Co-founder of Transistor.fm
Host
Justin Jackson
Co-founder of Transistor.fm
Editor
Chris Enns
Owner of Lemon Productions

What is Build Your SaaS?

Interested in building your own SaaS company? Follow the journey of Transistor.fm as they bootstrap a podcast hosting startup.

Jon:

Are we live?

Justin:

We are. We're I hit the magic button.

Jon:

Alright.

Justin:

Hopefully, it works.

Jon:

Hey, everyone. Welcome to Build Your SaaS. This is the behind the scenes story of building a web app in 2021. I'm John Buda, a software engineer.

Justin:

And I'm Justin Jackson. I do product and marketing. Follow along as we build transistor dot f m.

Jon:

So, John. Yes, Justin.

Justin:

It's been it's been a while

Jon:

Yeah. It has.

Justin:

Since you and I have talked 1 on 1 on the phone.

Jon:

Yeah. We haven't really I feel like I haven't talked to you in a while.

Justin:

Yeah. I actually had I had that thing that happens. This happens in my relationship with with my wife as well where I get a a spidey sense of, like, oh, wait a second. I have not really connected with, in her case, her or your case, you in a while. And I I get that that feeling of, like, we better do something about that.

Justin:

So Yeah. That was part of the reason I I said we should talk about that.

Jon:

I've been feeling like that too. Like, you've been working on some other stuff, and I don't know how much of your day that takes up. But Mhmm. Yeah. It feels like we haven't talked in a while.

Justin:

Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Well, let's let's, let's connect and let's let's, touch base here.

Jon:

Let's let's hash some stuff out.

Justin:

Yeah. How are you feeling? What's, it we've had I think the last time we we recorded, Jason had just been hired.

Jon:

Yep.

Justin:

Or how long has it been now?

Jon:

Couple months. These are started at the beginning of August.

Justin:

Started the beginning of August.

Jon:

2 months.

Justin:

August. Yeah. August 3rd. So it's been 2 months. Yeah.

Justin:

And so how's that been for you, in terms of having someone else on the team?

Jon:

Good. I mean, I yeah. I've been I've been enjoying it a lot, and I feel like I've been, yeah, talking more to him than you because we've been working together. Yeah. Which has been fun.

Jon:

I think he's having fun still, which is good.

Justin:

Mhmm.

Jon:

It's been great to have, I don't know, someone else on the team to, I don't know, just work with day to day, throughout the day and then, you know, have someone tear my code apart and improve it. And I think there's there are times where he's excited about some different stuff than I am, which works out well. Yeah. But it yeah. It's been good to have, you know, code review and I think we've gotten some some stuff done a lot quicker than we would have or things that we would just wouldn't have done at all.

Justin:

Yeah. It's been nice to have because you would often, tag me as a reviewer in a poll request, but all I could really do is look at it, look at the screenshots.

Jon:

Yeah. And I

Justin:

couldn't I couldn't really make comments about your code. And it's been really, really encouraging to see. You know, you you have a poll request, and then all of a sudden there's, here's a few comments about code.

Jon:

Yeah. And there's a lot of poll requests that you probably didn't even see. Top probably most of them at this point, we don't tag you in because it's just something we're working on, that you know we're working on, but isn't quite the finished product. So

Justin:

It is interesting. I think there's always this tension between, like, again, like, how many people do you wanna bring on and what can you get done? And but one of the things I think we definitely noticed with both bringing Jason on and Helen is just having more people thinking about stuff, pushing back on stuff, somebody else who's contributing brain cycles to what we're doing

Jon:

Mhmm.

Justin:

It it does help. You know? It's like like, when I wake up in the shower or I wake up in the shower. When I

Jon:

wake up in

Justin:

the shower That's

Jon:

That's a problem if you wake up in the shower.

Justin:

I got some weird ass sleep habits. I've been trying some crazy drugs, dude. Yeah. Some days, I just wake up in the shower. I go, what am I doing here?

Jon:

This is the house. Yeah.

Justin:

Whose shower is this? When I wake up in the middle of the night or I'm in the shower, you know, most of the time, I'm thinking about something related to transistor or I mean, there's also other things too, like climate change and all that stuff. But Right. That just those those cycles of having someone contribute some of their brain energy to what should we do about this. Also, I think pushing back, a company kinda develops its own, myopia Yeah.

Justin:

And having other people that are like, well, what about this? And you and I could be saying, wow. Come on. We never we all know that that's not the way things work. But somebody who's new can go, well, I don't know about that.

Justin:

We might need to check that assumption.

Jon:

Yeah. I think it's also been good to sort of inject some new energy into it. Yeah. I mean, things have been going well and it you know, before we brought Jason on, it was it was still going well and things are kinda humming along nicely, and we could have left it at that. And I don't know if becoming complacent is the right word, but, like, being a little bit lazier with how we build things and run things.

Jon:

And it's I think it's been nice to have some some new energy Yeah. Into the team and and getting excited about features and

Justin:

Oh, yeah. I mean, even, like, so much for me is when I'm recording a video about something new that's come out. And being able to, like, record a video on dynamic audio insertion, which is this dream we had years ago and we discussed. And it was like, how I just remember always feeling like this is just too big of a too big of a slice of cake for us to eat. You know?

Justin:

It's just like, it's too much. We couldn't figure out how to do it. And just adding one more person, it just feels like, oh, wow. This is actually happening. And I just get so pumped up.

Justin:

Like, it's motivating for me. I think there's 2 things that motivate me. 1 is just customers and their stories. You know, having them use the product and then talk about it and enjoy it and share their stories. That gets me pumped up.

Justin:

And 2, seeing ideas come to fruition and just seeing, like, dynamic audio insertion. We've also got a an integration with Descript that's happening.

Jon:

Mhmm.

Justin:

There's yeah, there's just some really neat stuff that is motivating.

Jon:

That's very apparent, I think, when we sort of post an update and say this thing's deployed. It's like Justin goes immediately into marketing mode. Marketing mode Justin, he's, like, recording videos.

Justin:

Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Pumped up. Because, I mean, it is a lot of marketing is having something to talk about.

Justin:

Now there's still the other kind of slow grind stuff that I'm just always doing, like optimizing SEO and like, you know, I've I've been writing these customer case studies, which are exciting, but it's more of those are just more like you show up every day and you push the rock a little bit further up the hill. But, yeah, there's it's nice having those things that get kinda pump you up and, like, it's like, okay. I wanna, like I gotta talk about this. I gotta share this. You know?

Justin:

That stuff is that stuff is really fun.

Jon:

That's when I just retreat back into the shadows and and go, oh, I don't know if this is ready yet.

Justin:

Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. So that momentum's been great. I actually asked some people to, to give us some questions, on Twitter and then also in in the mega maker Slack.

Justin:

And, yeah. Let's let's answer a few of these here. So Tyler Tringus asks, how are you thinking about equity profit sharing now that you're building a team?

Jon:

We are thinking about it. We, yeah, We know we wanna do it equity. Right? Some sort of some sort of options or whatever you call it. We just have to figure it out.

Jon:

It's I mean, it's a I feel like a big undertaking for a small team, but it's something we wanna do.

Justin:

Yeah.

Jon:

And I and I don't I don't know if we're gonna build the team much bigger, but

Justin:

Yeah.

Jon:

We still wanna we still wanna offer something.

Justin:

Yeah. We wanna figure that out. Yeah. And it it's probably better to do it now, and just bite the bullet. Is that is that a that's a sing?

Jon:

Yeah. Bite the bullet.

Justin:

Bite the bullet. When you actually say that, that's a very, unpleasant thing to say. To accept the inevitable impending hardship and endure the resulting pain with fortitude. To decide to do something difficult or unpleasant that one has been putting off or hesitating over.

Jon:

Not unlike having a bullet explode in your mouth.

Justin:

Yeah. But where did it came it's a 1975 western film. Oh, wow. Anyway, it's probably better to do it now at this still relatively nascent stage.

Jon:

Yeah.

Justin:

And I think the way everyone ends up doing it is going through Carta and offering options.

Jon:

Mhmm.

Justin:

When we were bringing on Helen and Jason, we were talking about this, and we're asking other founders what they do. And we're like, well, can we just give people stock? Like, that just seems the easiest. But there's, like, massive tax implications around that.

Jon:

Yeah. We have to I think we have to value the company. And at that point, the stock is valued at something, and then they pay tax on something that they don't actually have, which is weird to me.

Justin:

Yes. Yeah. Yeah. And as a Canadian, it could even have impact on me too. Because right now, the stock is, you know, it's what worth what I paid for it.

Justin:

But the but once it becomes an actual, valued asset, then

Jon:

Yeah.

Justin:

I think I might have to pay capital gains on it. I don't know how it works.

Jon:

So I I don't know either. It's it's bizarre. But I think probably by the beginning of 2022, we'll have something in place. I think that's the goal.

Justin:

Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. It's it's just gonna mean you and I talking to people at Carta, talking to a lawyer Yep. Figuring it out.

Justin:

And once it's in place, I'm sure it's it's easy. You know? It's just however however we wanna do it. And if we do bring in end up bringing on 1 or 2 more people, it'll be in place.

Jon:

Yep.

Justin:

This is one thing that definitely comes up once you have other people is that when it was just the 2 of us, we could kind of like anything that was unpleasant, it was just like, well, you you know, we could we could put off the stuff that was unpleasant that we didn't have to deal with. And anything that was unpleasant that we had to deal with, like bookkeeping or whatever, we just had to do it, whatever. But when you have other people as a part of it, you wanna motivate them. You wanna give them a better life. And so that often means as the owner, you just have to do unpleasant things, like figure out the I Ohio state tax code.

Jon:

Yeah. And the Ohio the Ohio websites, which are not great.

Justin:

Yeah. So there's, like that's that's just part of it.

Jon:

Sometimes you just have to get a cup of coffee and sit down and grind through it.

Justin:

And just give her. Yeah. So that's what we're thinking about with that. K. Next question.

Justin:

Dustin asked, how does MEPs ramping up affect transistor Justin's time? So MEPs is a thing I'm investing in with Josh Anderson. I don't spend a ton of time on it. It's usually, like, outside of transistor time, maybe maybe a couple hours a week. And I'm trying to think of it as an investment slash mentorship.

Jon:

Yeah. From yeah. From the outside, I think you do talk about it a lot. And it seems I think it seems like to me and maybe other people that you work on it more than you are.

Justin:

Than I am.

Jon:

Yeah. But I don't really but I don't really know what I I don't really quite know what's going on with that either.

Justin:

Yeah. Yeah. It's just I mean, I the the one thing I can offer, Josh, is promotion. And so Yeah. To be able to promote it whenever there's something new is, part of the value I'm trying to bring.

Justin:

My initial thought with this, like, it was like testing this out. It was like, okay. If I investing in stuff, what's that like? Like, what's that like to be an investor? And and I do think it would be difficult to do very many of these.

Justin:

Because just even, like, doing the occasional call with him and promoting stuff when it's out is it's just like that's enough. I can't I don't think I don't know how other angels do that unless it was your full time thing. Because to give someone truly, like, a little bit of your time and, like, oh, hey. So, you know, he's at the early stage. Yeah.

Justin:

So it's been an interesting test. I don't know if I'll do it again. Yeah. Because it's it's just it is enough energy that I I, that energy I kinda had to myself where I could, like, you know, after transistor time, I was just, like, finally able to relax. That has been kinda taken up by

Jon:

Right. This

Justin:

this thing.

Jon:

Well, it seems like it's going pretty well though.

Justin:

Yeah. I mean, there's benefits too about it. I've I've been reading this book range, which is, kind of this the it's like a a book, that goes against Malcolm Gladwell's Outliers, and the 10000 Hour Rule. Meaning, it's challenging those assumptions that, you know, people need to just focus on one thing, that there's benefit to kind of working on different things because you get kind of this TikTok benefit. And I think there is a bit there is something about that, like the, seeing Josh work and then seeing these insights we're getting.

Justin:

And then Yep. We we opened this Discord group and then ended up getting some transistor customers from it. So a lot of these things can be cumulative and can build on each other. Yep. But Yeah.

Justin:

There's also just limits to what Right. What any one person can do.

Jon:

You only have so much time and energy in the day.

Justin:

Yeah. So continue to see how that goes. I'm cheering for him. I I'd really like the the other thing I felt like you know, once we'd gotten to a place of margin was, like, how can we share some of this with other people? And I remember when, like, we wrote a check or you wrote a check to this rainforest Yeah.

Justin:

Thing. And for us, it was like a year end decision. Let's do this. And she wrote us back, and it was just she was just so obviously, like, pleased that we'd done that. And I think at the time, you and I didn't really think about the impact that might have.

Justin:

But for her, it was really encouraging to for us to, contribute in that way. And I have been thinking about that. Like, how can we use more of our platform and our margin as a company, and then me individually? Mhmm.

Jon:

How

Justin:

can we, you know, help other people? Yeah. I'm cheering for Josh. It's it's it feels like he's like me, but 10 years younger. I think he is 10 years younger.

Justin:

You know, got a family and kids, and I'd I'd really like to see him succeed.

Jon:

Yeah.

Justin:

Okay. So next question is Noah. He's asking what is the most challenging at Transistor's current stage? I don't know how to I don't know how to answer that. Here's how I see it.

Justin:

I I don't know how how you see it, John, but the a lot of the challenge is in the beginning. In terms of, will this work? You're, you know, John's working full time, and he's putting in extra time outside of work in on this. And, you know, I'm getting stretched financially, and that's the hard time. You know, if you go back in in the episodes, that's when it's, like, that's when it's really tough.

Justin:

I think now I mean, complacency would be maybe 1. You mentioned that. I don't know if that's still, but

Jon:

Yeah. Yeah. I mean, yeah, the early days, I think it's it's more challenging, but you have a clear goal. The goal the goal is the goal line's clear, and now it's like Yeah. Well, kinda do whatever we want.

Jon:

Yeah. There's no there's no clear goal. Like, I mean, it's I don't know. I don't know how to answer that either. I mean, it's Yeah.

Jon:

I I think it's it is difficult to sometimes find motivation every day. There's also, you know, some tricky stuff that comes along with having a certain scale and everything you do in changing the system is gonna affect customers who are using it day to day. So you gotta keep that in mind. Yeah. As it grows, it's just more and more challenges of you know, you don't wanna make huge changes that would negatively impact people, but you wanna communicate those changes and hope people don't get mad at you.

Jon:

And also and also, like, how do you, yeah, how do you keep it growing at a reasonable clip? I mean, it's we've talked a bit about this, but it is growing when it has slowed, but it's at a good place. So even the slow growth is still good.

Justin:

I feel the same way. It it is a really odd place to be. And it in some way, maybe we are in our a lot of other SaaS businesses that I've watched grow, they always talk about the plateau. Like, you get to your 1st plateau.

Jon:

Mhmm.

Justin:

And usually it's talked about revenue wise, but it can also be motivation and emotional. I'm not sure if the reason I don't like cliches like that is because who knows? Like, we we had a plateau when emotional plateau when Trump got elected.

Jon:

Right.

Justin:

We we had an emotional plateau when things in our personal lives got shitty. We had an emotional plateau when, COVID happened. Yeah. And then so the the on that side of things, it's you know, and now we're in a in somewhat of a a relational plateau because you and I haven't hung out in, 3 years?

Jon:

2, I think.

Justin:

Well 2 just a 2 over 2 years.

Jon:

2 and 2 years in August, I think. It was just just weird to think about. But

Justin:

Yeah. And so, you know, there's that. And and I think it also relates to this other question, which we got in Slack, which is Ben asks, is it fun? What excites you about the business and daily work at this point in terms of just the right amount of challenging? I I think there was another question that was kind of like yeah.

Justin:

What does an ideal day look like once you've made it? There we go. What do you do that day? And I'll speak for myself. I mean, a lot since we hit probably about 2 years ago, maybe even 3 years ago, since we hit this number.

Justin:

There was part of the initial dream was you and I and you and I talked about this was, like, we wanna get to the point where we have margin, where we can have a good life, where we can like, if we want to, we can just take a whole day off. If we want to, we can, you know, work on this fun project over here. If if we want to, Justin can argue about climate change on the Internet all day. Like, those that there was this that was part of the dream.

Jon:

Yeah.

Justin:

And

Jon:

Let me ask you this. Do you do you think you've done that?

Justin:

I think

Jon:

because we got there.

Justin:

I we got there, and I think in a lot of ways I have because, for example, my parents came to visit. I was just able to go, you know what? I'm gonna spend a bunch of time with them and just enjoy them being here. I'm gonna be try to be as present as I can. And, I mean, present for me is still I'm checking Slack all the time.

Justin:

I'm, yesterday was my 20th anniversary, and I was still I couldn't stop myself. I'm still answering customer support tickets. But it I am definitely more grounded and more present. And I was on this long walk with my folks and just really enjoying it. And then I realized I had a meeting booked for that day, which doesn't happen very often.

Justin:

And I didn't have my phone, and I was like, I'm just gonna skip the meeting. And it was there there was this this feeling of, like, what's truly important in my life. And I just decided to make this decision that was, like, in my life, I'm I want I wanna be here right now. And so I'm gonna do this thing which I would never do before, which is I'm gonna skip a meeting.

Jon:

Right.

Justin:

And so I think in that sense, personally, I've hit a lot of that ideal. How do you feel about in that sense?

Jon:

Do you

Justin:

feel like you're there? Or do you

Jon:

I think so. Maybe not fully. But, yeah, I mean, there's there's days will have I'll have slow mornings or early evenings or take 2 hours during lunch to go for a run or go swimming or something. You know, it's definitely easier to take time off. Yeah.

Jon:

I yeah. To a certain extent, I, you know, I'm not working on other projects on the side, I guess, which is fine with me. I mean, at some point, maybe I wanted to do that, but I think this is enough for now. I mean, there's, you know, personal interest and things you can pursue, but Yeah. I don't I right now, I don't have any desire to start something else.

Justin:

Do you feel like starting another, like, in the past, you've done some big races and stuff like that? I guess, I mean, COVID really kinda limited our options.

Jon:

Yeah. I'd I'd love to get I'd love to do some more races and train for those. You know, it would take up more time. And I think if I did another race, like a marathon or an Ironman or something like that, I would actually get a trainer or have it, like, join a training group that would probably dedicate more time to it, which I, you know, would be much easier to do now.

Justin:

Yeah. I I one thing I will say is that, again, compared to the beginning and compared to I mean, you again, go back in the episodes. But when when you and I talked about, like, our freelancing days and the other business things we've done, And when we compare the current state to, like bad office politics or working for a toxic boss or whatever. For me, it's a 1000 10000% better.

Jon:

It is Abs absolutely. There's none of that none of that drama.

Justin:

So the dream, I think, is is, like, when people have that dream, it is a good dream. You know, whether it's it's obviously, it's not gonna be possible for everybody who tries it. But, I do think, part of the the thing we've tried to communicate is that these the attempting to build your own SaaS, it is really cumulative with, you know, everything if you keep trying, if it's something you keep thinking about. The fact that, you know, you have this full time job and you're still thinking about, like, back when you were working for cards.

Jon:

Mhmm.

Justin:

And you're still thinking about, like, I gotta build something. I gotta build something. You know? Like, if you are the kind of person that has that motivation, and you're just like, okay. I'm gonna get back on that horse even though that horse really hurt me last time or whatever.

Jon:

Yeah. Yeah. It is strange. I've been I've thought about this lately where it's you kind of look back you look back on all the work we've done in the progress you've made and you sort of, like, I don't know. I feel like I blacked out during some of it.

Jon:

It's like, how did we even do this? Like, so much stuff got done. I don't I don't remember how I did it. Yeah. Or we did it.

Jon:

It's just it's bizarre to think about it in that way. We're like, how did I even, I don't know, find the time to do that stuff or the or the energy or whatever.

Justin:

Yeah. Yeah. Like, where yeah. Like, how did we get here? Kinda like waking up one day in somebody else's shower.

Justin:

I was actually gonna say kinda like it's kinda like waking up one day on a mountain peak, and you have no idea how you climbed it. Like

Jon:

Right.

Justin:

How did I get here? You know? Like, what what is, what is this? So yeah. And and again, I think the flip side of that is is there's still some really exciting stuff to work on with Transistor.

Jon:

Yeah.

Justin:

And the the how do you like once you've hit a certain benchmark, how do you keep that going? And I think part of it is you invite more people in. You go back to some other things that initially motivated you. So if it was building product, you get back into product. If, you know, for me, it's connecting with customers.

Justin:

Connecting with customers is like, okay. I'm gonna, like, I DM'd one of our customers who got I noticed, she got, like, one of, like, top one of the top fitness podcasts on Spotify.

Jon:

Mhmm. And

Justin:

so I DM ed her. I said, how did you do this? Like, it was just like, what's going on here? And just the back and forth of hearing how it happened was really encouraging to me. And I was like, okay.

Justin:

I'm gonna write that up as a case study. Like that I gotta do that. Another thing that's been fun for me as a dad is I hired my daughter just with my own money to work on this case study and on Gen z and podcasting. And that was a surprising motivator for me. Just being like, she's just graduated.

Justin:

She has 1 year of college under her belt. But just, like, remember being 18 and you just your world is so small. And getting on the phone with her and, I mean, we had, like honestly, I don't know. Like, we just published this article that ended up doing really well. I can put in the show notes.

Justin:

Gen z, perspective on podcasting. But to get there, like, it was hours and hours and hours on the phone with her. It was, like, reviewing stuff, like, reviewing her writing, challenging her on her research. And to realize, like, wow, there is so much in, like, explaining RSS, explaining you know, she was like, well, what what's the problem with Spotify owning everything? Like, I don't get it.

Justin:

Yeah. And and going, oh, wow. Like I mean, one that's just challenging to hear that from somebody else. Like, okay. Wow.

Justin:

Like, gen z really doesn't have the same perspective as I do. So stuff like that, I think it's been interesting to find motivation in this new stage. But I do I do feel like one piece we're missing is that we used to have this, like, annual or even more more frequent, meeting up and, like, kind of coming back and, like, grounding and, like, going on some walks and

Jon:

Yeah. We, we're trying to find a way to do that. Yeah. Yeah. I think time and a a time and a place and making it safe and

Justin:

Yeah. And and maybe having our team join us too.

Jon:

Yep. Definitely.

Justin:

So, yeah, that's that's probably an answer to that. AJ asks how has asked John how competitive swimming shaped his work work ethic.

Jon:

Yeah. This is a good one.

Justin:

Do you know this guy?

Jon:

Yeah. I know AJ. So we we swam against each other in college, in Michigan. He was at he was at a different college than I was, but we swam together.

Justin:

Oh, he was a competition?

Jon:

Yeah. He was a competition. I haven't talked to AJ in a while, but I know I know he's in software. So, hey, AJ. Thanks for thanks for listening.

Jon:

Hope you're doing well.

Justin:

Does do you think does sports I'm I'm one of those those people who's, like, cynical about sports because I was never very good at them. And so when people say, well, it builds teamwork and it builds all that stuff. I'm always like, wow. I don't know. But do do you think

Jon:

it I I think so. I mean, it I don't think about it too often, but I I guarantee it had an impact on my life and how I approach work or how I approach working with people. There's something there. I'm trying to find an answer for it. I mean, there there is something to say for, like, there's some parallel to working really hard to get to a goal.

Jon:

Right? Which we did with Transistor. We had goals. You know, you're working, you're swimming twice a day, 6 days a week, basically. So Yeah.

Jon:

4 or 5 hours a day are dedicated to this thing, and you're with 20 to 30 other people. So you're gonna become close, and you're gonna figure out how to support each other and, you know, work through hard practices and hard times and Yeah. You know, you're you're tired and you're exhausted and you still have to go to practice even if you have to wake up at 5:30. And then you're working towards a goal as it, you know, individually and as a team, you're trying to you're basically working up to these large swim meets there. There's a couple during the year, And then you sort of work really hard, start resting, like, a week or so ahead of the meet, and then give it everything you have and then Yeah.

Jon:

It's over. And you've and you've worked incredibly hard to achieve this one thing. So, yeah, it absolutely has an effect. I it's hard to, like, really quantify it.

Justin:

Yeah. Do do you sometimes miss that? Like, that, you know, that that camaraderie of being in a a group like that.

Jon:

Yeah. Absolutely. I mean pretty I mean, I have amazing friends still from college and going back to middle school and high school who I swam with, and I'm still good friends to this day with, you know, maybe 15 or 20 of them. Like Wow. You just you spent so much time together that it's it's kinda hard to get away from that.

Jon:

Yeah. And there's Yeah. Inside jokes and just like you've been through so much together that, Yeah. I I definitely miss it. I don't necessarily miss the workout aspect of it.

Jon:

Like, there is

Justin:

Yeah.

Jon:

There are times where I'm like, yeah. It'd be great to have a coach who would, like, really kick my ass and, like, push me. Yeah. But I also really enjoy going for, like, a 45 minute swim once or twice a week instead of Yeah. 6 days a week for 4 hours.

Justin:

Maybe you can solve a a parenting dilemma I have. Which is sometimes I think back to that kind of stuff. Like, having to wake up really early to go and, you know, to go to practice or, you know, these these kind of discipline things that are disciplined, but they're also like, you know, let's just take the thing waking up early in the morning. And there's part of me that's, like, at this stage in my life, I'm, like, I really don't wanna get up early anymore. You know?

Jon:

No. Yeah.

Justin:

And and and there's part of me, I think, also that tells myself, like, that stuff's not worth it. You know? Like, all that all that rhetoric about pushing yourself and, you know, and and we hear a lot of this in business porn, like, get up at 5 AM and, you know, hustle and all that stuff.

Jon:

Yeah. I I think there is a part of me that thinks that the amount of training we did was actually overkill to some extent. Yeah. And it and it's just you do it because that's what's been done. Like, you can you can parallel to building a startup where, you know, you gotta work 16 hours a day and Mhmm.

Jon:

Crush crush yourself to build this thing, which I don't I don't think that's necessary either. So if I yeah. If I do come away with something from competitive swimming days, it's that I do not wanna wake up at 5:30.

Justin:

But if you had a son or a daughter, would you be pushing them to do this is that's the that's the I

Jon:

wouldn't push them. Question. No. I wouldn't push them.

Justin:

Okay.

Jon:

If they you know, I I started because my friends are doing it, and my parents never pushed me to do it. And then I just stuck with it, and I really enjoyed it, but I was also hanging out with my friends. Yeah. But it wasn't ever, like, you know, you have to do this. We're we're gonna make you do this.

Jon:

I mean, they made a huge sacrifice for the amount of time they spent, like, bringing me to practice in the morning and driving me to swim meets and, like, coming to swim meets and, like Yeah. But I wouldn't I wouldn't push them to do it. You know, if they're interested in something, then you can, like, provide support if they wanna do it. But if they quit, that's fine,

Justin:

I think. And and there's not something, like, intrinsic about the like, for example, waking up at 5:30 AM and kind of doing these hard things. Like, I wonder how much of that is necessary for our development.

Jon:

Yeah. I don't for me, personally, I don't think it was necessary at all because I didn't sleep great in college anyway. Yeah. And I probably would have swam better had I practiced once a day and gotten to sleep in.

Justin:

Got it.

Jon:

I honestly think that and, like but you can't when you're on a team with, like, 30 other people who are also waking up at 5:30, you can't be the one being like, I don't wanna go. I wanna sleep in. Yeah. But there's probably tons of research now that's like, yeah. You probably should just not wake up at 5:30.

Jon:

It's probably better for you to, like, get your sleep and, like, recover.

Justin:

How how are you sleeping these days, by the way?

Jon:

I sleep alright.

Justin:

You're sleeping okay?

Jon:

Yeah. I mean, I don't necessarily have a problem falling asleep. Usually, it's like I wake up early. Too early.

Justin:

Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. I'm just wondering because we've we've at various times on the podcast, we've talked about sleep. And sometimes you and I are both really struggling.

Justin:

Mhmm. But I I've been pretty good lately. It's not been, Yeah. That's it's just interesting thinking about that.

Jon:

Yeah.

Justin:

Yeah. I yeah. There's there's there's this it it seems that some amount of discomfort and struggle is necessary. Like, humans need that. And I'm I'm trying to discern in my own life and for my kids and even us talking about the show.

Justin:

How how much of that's necessary and in what form?

Jon:

Right.

Justin:

Because some of it can just be self flagulation. I think that's a word. You know, like flagulation? I don't know. Flagellation?

Jon:

Not flagellation. That's farting.

Justin:

Flagellation. You know, where you're you're kind of making things difficult, unnecessarily.

Jon:

Right. I don't know if it has to be, I mean, it has to be a challenge, I suppose, and there's gotta be a reward for that challenge, which is

Justin:

Yeah.

Jon:

I guess the challenge is, you know, in swimming terms, you're you're the challenge is, like, working really hard for these goals you wanna set for yourself of, like, you know, certain times you wanna swim. Yeah. So I think some of it's, I don't know, self self motivation, and I don't know how you I I don't know how you teach that.

Justin:

Yeah. How can you how can you impart it? Except maybe to allow yourself, if you're going through this yourself, or allow your kids or whoever you're trying to help, the freedom to explore and to try a bunch of things. And then when they get really into interested in swimming, just support them so that Yeah. You know, that they can do it.

Justin:

Because it it does seem we're we're willing to do hard things and go through hard things when we're motivated. There's a flip side to that too, which is sometimes we can unnecessarily go go make things difficult or go through unnecessarily difficult things in order to achieve something.

Jon:

Right.

Justin:

Yeah. I don't know the answer to any of that, but that's interesting to think about.

Jon:

Yeah.

Justin:

Okay. Any was there any other questions here that we should go talk about? Do you think growing slowly and steadily as a bootstrap company increases the risk of failure if you're not worried about runway? If well, if you're not worried about runway, no. Like, if you're if you can go slow and steady then

Jon:

Yeah.

Justin:

I think that's fine. It seems like the thing that affects most people is in the beginning, you know, until you get to some level of profitability and not just profitability, but, like, get to a level where you're making a good personal income. That's the hard part.

Jon:

Mhmm.

Justin:

But if you can grow slow and steady, then yeah. I think I think that's I think that's fine. Yeah.

Jon:

You'll grow slow and steady, and then at some point, you'll be at where you wanna be.

Justin:

Yeah. Yeah. Exactly. Okay.

Jon:

Alright. Yeah.

Justin:

So I think that's probably good for questions. That was that was good to have stuff to talk about.

Jon:

Yeah. Some rapid fire Internet questions.

Justin:

Yeah. I mean, some of them were we answered longer than others, but that's that's good. If you have follow-up questions for us, reach out, on Twitter or, by email. We've got some links in the show notes. Yeah.

Justin:

So why don't we just end by talking a little bit about what we're working on? We we mentioned some of this. Mhmm. I just published this case study. Well, my daughter published this case study on Gen z and podcasting.

Justin:

And, yeah, that's that's definitely worth checking out. Working on customer case studies. So if you go to transistor.fm/customers, you'll be able to see all of these case studies that, that of just customers and how they're using Transistor. Part of the idea there is to eventually and actually this this is one of the ideas that came from Jason, is he was like, you know, we should really have more, examples of, like, podcasts for churches, podcasts for fitness bloggers, things that people might be searching for that we could rank for. And I I was like, oh, you know what?

Justin:

This would be a good fit for something I've wanted to do for a while, which is creating individual case studies for our customers.

Jon:

Mhmm.

Justin:

And, it has this benefit of, like, if you search Ali Abdaal podcast, now maybe Transistor will show up, you know, in terms of his show, and we can also promote his show and point to what he's doing. But we could also do I could do a case study on how churches are using podcasting. And then we would start ranking for that as well. So

Jon:

Nice.

Justin:

Working on that. And we have a integration with Descript that's coming out. That's it's already live, which

Jon:

is It's out. Yeah.

Justin:

It's out.

Jon:

It's live in Descript. Yeah. We we built the integration part of it on our end a couple months ago that they had kinda tested in their app and and then finally released a version that links back to Transistor. So I don't know how many of our customers use the script, but it is pretty nifty. You know, it allows you to basically create an episode almost with one click that imports your audio and your transcript.

Justin:

Yeah. And and, they've actually been really fun to work with in terms of integrations. Because we've done other integrations, but this one, they wanted from the beginning to, like, have this as a partnership. So

Jon:

Mhmm.

Justin:

They have, they're gonna, you know, promote it on their side, and we're going to promote it on our side. And they even had, like, a document that we worked on together with, like, here are the things we're gonna talk about. Here's the, here's a video that Justin's gonna make. It should kinda cover this stuff. And I've actually done a series of videos now for Descript.

Jon:

Mhmm.

Justin:

So yeah. That was there's a a neat one. And now we're actually in, this desktop client Yeah. That they have. And that's fun.

Justin:

And it's also a tool I really like. So it feels like a perfect kind of partnership where Yeah.

Jon:

Absolutely.

Justin:

They handle the recording and editing. And now we've got this thing that goes straight to Transistor.

Jon:

Yeah. They they seem like good people.

Justin:

That's live right now, and we'll be talking about it soon. And then dynamic audio insertion keeps Yeah. Tracking along.

Jon:

This is the big one that, yeah, Jason and I have been working on. Pretty much done and ready for people to test, with pre roll and post roll audio and dynamic show notes. Yeah. It was, it was a fun project. Jason kinda rewrote our audio processing pipeline so that it's much more flexible and we can kinda piece together stuff pretty easily.

Jon:

Yeah. Yeah. I'm excited to get this into people's hands and see how they use it and how they can break it How we can fix it.

Justin:

Oh, man. That yeah. That's and one of the cool use cases for this and I've already made it one video on this, which is if you have an old podcast that you haven't touched in a while, you can create these updates that go, you know, go out. And, so I have this whole podcast called Build and Launch that I recorded a post a a pre roll and a post roll for saying, hey. It's Justin talking to you from the future.

Justin:

And now I'm doing Transistor. You should go check it out. And so it was cool to be able to use this old asset that I had that was sticking around that still has Yeah.

Jon:

That's cool.

Justin:

Episodes. And then I I saw your, you had you had deployed this idea of, dynamic content in show notes, and I got really excited about it. I'm like, oh, I should use this on product people, this old podcast I used to do. But then I spent this week, I spent 2 days going through all through my old show notes to kinda get it ready. Like, I wanted to, like, sanitize my show notes on Yeah.

Justin:

Product people and just end up spending way too much time on it. And I got I got through, like, 30 episodes. Because I was like, I wanna put this dynamic prefix and postfix, like, content before the show notes and after the show notes. But I really wanna clean up the show notes, you know, like, I

Jon:

Right.

Justin:

Imported them a long time ago. And and so and I also was like it feels like there's might be old links in there that are go to scammy sites and stuff. So I spent way too much time on that. But I'm gonna use it on, product people with the dynamic show notes. Because, yeah, it's cool way to go.

Justin:

Like, hey, if you're listening to this in 21 21 or 2022, this is, you know, things have changed since you've heard this. And, I I think a lot of people have old shows that, you know, that they haven't updated in a long time.

Jon:

Yeah. That's right.

Justin:

Such a great way. And I've already had people say, I'm I've been listening to old episodes. And they're like, what the heck? Like, how is Justin speaking to me from 2021? You know?

Justin:

This is weird.

Jon:

You're a time machine. Yeah. We do have quite a bit more more to work on, that's gonna come after retest. We you know, plans for mid rolls and, campaign scheduling and stuff like that.

Justin:

Yeah. And this is all a path to it's a path to a lot of things, but we will be competing with Megaphone, and products like that. But we are going to be the the simpler version of that. A lot of these tools are very complex, and they include ad marketplaces and, geographic targeting and time based targeting. We really wanna

Jon:

be simple. I hope we're yeah. I hope we're, like, a good a good product for, like, 90% of people or 95 or whatever.

Justin:

Even even 80%. I take 80.

Jon:

Yeah. Eighty's good.

Justin:

Oh, and another thing I've been thinking about is we've talked about this for a long time, but and I'll put the link in the show notes. But building a community for, podcasters. So a lot of our competitors have Facebook groups, which never felt like a good fit for us. In fact, we just had a customer come to us because they a competitor invited them to a Facebook group, and they're like, nah.

Jon:

Yeah.

Justin:

And they bounced that day. Wow. And gave to us. And so yeah, we have a little kind of beta group going. And right now, it just invites you to a, Discord group.

Jon:

Mhmm.

Justin:

And so, yeah, we're gonna test that out and, see if we can make that work. But that's something I've been thinking about. Community, I think has been very helpful for us. You know, we've tapped members of the XOXO community, members of the Chicago community, members of the mega maker community. And I think creating a place for podcasters that's kind of sponsored by Transistor might have some really good effects.

Justin:

So, but on the other hand, it's difficult. Like, it's not easy to foster that sense of community and actually have it be useful, you know. Right. So I'm I'm I'm trying to figure that out. And even having done it before, I think it's it's challenging to think, how can we get this right and actually make it like a place that's helpful?

Justin:

But, yeah. We're trying it out. So if you're interested in that, check out the link in the show notes. Anything else we should talk about?

Jon:

I don't know. I think that might be it.

Justin:

Do you do you do you wanna do the shout outs for the Patreons? We haven't done that in a while.

Jon:

I know. Let's do it. Yeah. Thanks thanks as always to everyone on Patreon for supporting us and letting us support other Creators? Other makers and builders and creators.

Jon:

And yeah.

Justin:

Yeah.

Jon:

So we have Mitch, Harris Kenny from the intro to CRM podcast, Oleg Tulick, Violette du Genevieve.

Justin:

Pretty good French there.

Jon:

Yeah. Not bad for someone who doesn't speak French. The the Take It EV podcast, Ethan Gunderson, Diogo, Chris Willow, Borja Solaire, Ward Sandler, Eric Lima, James Sours, Travis Fisher, Matt Buckley, Russell Brown, Evander Sasse, Pradey Umnis Schumacher, Noah Praill, Colin Gray, Josh Smith, Ivan Kerkovic, Shane Smith, Austin Loveless, Simon Bennett, Michael Sidber, Paul Jarvis, and Jack Ellis, my brother Dan Buddha. Hey, Dan. Darby Frey, Samori Augusto, Dave Young, Brad from Canada, Sammy Schubert, Mike Walker, Adam Devander, Dave Junta.

Justin:

Junta.

Jon:

And Kyle Fox from get rewardful.com.

Justin:

Thanks everyone. And we gotta do this more often. So Yeah.

Jon:

We probably should.

Justin:

We'll we'll be back. Stay tuned.