I'm in an unhealthy relationship with my products
09 August 2019
It's hard to admit, but probably I am the bad actor in this situation.
Maintaining 5 products while building new ones isn't one of the easiest things and I can't say I'm "crushing it". I think the main problem is that I don’t let go of the ones that don’t seem to succeed. For example, these are the stats for CreativeDEVjobs from launch to the end of July:
Based on this, I had to let this site go at least at the end of June. So why I didn’t do that? Because I think, the main reason for this situation is that I didn’t spend enough time distributing it. Why? Because I spent my time working on other products.
The situation is the same with TWiS:
Working on your own products is like being in a relationship. Sometimes it's hard to take a step back to view the big picture because you are biased emotionally. It's even worse when you have to make hard decisions that could break this relationship.
The problem is, that if something does not go as planned, I feel like I always know the reason. (as you can see above, because, because, because...) Maybe if a product doesn’t get any traction is not because of bad distribution but because it’s not a great product. That’s all. But how should I know that this is the case if the only thing I do when launching a new product is to post it on Product Hunt, send it to a few other platforms, blogs, and magazines, tweet about it, and that’s it? It feels like I’m creating this situation to avoid or admit failure. It’s easy to say something didn’t work because I didn’t spend enough time to spread the word about it.
So how can I avoid this? Well, by doing my homework and not trying to find excuses.
What does it mean in practice?
I’m still keeping the one-month deadline for major releases but during that month, I’ll be as transparent about the things I’m working on as possible (by tweeting about it, setting up goals on PH Makers, publish more blog posts, etc). After the launch, I’ll spend at least one more month distributing the product as much as possible. It can’t be an excuse if I start to work on another tool at the same time. The distribution will be the main priority. I’ll spend much more time analyzing the stats of my products. At the moment, I don’t have any practice for that, I’m checking it on a random basis. I’ll check it at the end of each week and I have to write a short summary with my takeaways. If the product doesn’t take off by the end of the second month, I’ll let it go. Will this work? I don’t know, but what I’m doing now is definitely not, so I have to find out how to do it better.
When do I start? Today, of course 😄 The first month is gonna be challenging because I’m already working on multiple projects at the same time which makes it hard to find enough time for everything, but that can’t be an excuse.
I have to figure this out.