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Shawn L
Builds stuff minimally
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Bootstrapping a SaaS Product to thousands of Users



The consensus:

desc enterprise consumer
revenue per customer massive tiny ($5 - 10)
price sensitivity low high
churn low or negative huge (>30%)
customer support sales opportunity overwhelming
barrier high none
victory couple key sales winner take all

Contrarian view:

  • Consumer SaaS is less crowded.
  • Consumer are more willing to subscribe.
  • No salesperson required.
  • User is the buyer. Fast feedback loop.
  • You’re building for human.


  • Need millions of users to attract VC. Best to start with niche.
  • Long, slow SaaS ramp of death (Gail Goodman of Constant Contact).
    • $10/mo takes a lot of customer to survive


  1. Product first approach.
  • you can’t afford sales and marketing
  • products gives organic reach
  1. Reduce friction
  2. Speed new users to magical moment.
  3. Use Superhuman PMF to steer ship (
  4. Develop fast to get feedback.
  5. Read company histories to see how to survive.
  6. Be aware of idea maze. (
  7. Be good at interviewing user.
  8. You need free users to iterate before charging.

Book recommendations:

  • Traction. You need to focus on growth and product at the same time.

Best marketing channels

  • SEO and content marketing.
  • Referral and affiliate marketing.
  • Social marketing wasn’t working for them.