PaidSimply Progress Report - Aug. 3, 2012

Note to self: Begin writing these posts on Monday not 15 minutes before they’re due to be published.

Accomplishments

Our goals from last week’s update were to ensure Google Analytics were running on the landing page and get approval of the tentative budget including an additional AdWords campaign. We’re not committed to spending anything yet, except the initial AdWords campaign to drive traffic to the landing page. Unlike purely entrepreneurial endeavors, we’ll have to secure buy-in from the team or face shutting the project down. Not exactly aggressive but all these goals were accomplished.

Current Status

Fresh on the heals of Startup Weekend Cincinnati it seemed narrow-sighted to be building PaidSimply, even for internal use, without some external validation of interest in our solution. So we’ve published a market research survey and are seeking input.

We’ve launched the landing page despite the fact that we’re not very proud of it. Our disappointment is greater than the “if you’re not embarrassed by your initial release…” disappointment because we should know better, being fans of Formstack’s “The Anatomy of a Perfect Landing Page.” So we’ll be launching an improved landing page this week.

For the current week we set the goal to launch a Google AdWords campaign to drive traffic to our landing page. The goal being to recruit ten beta users. We ran into a snag when our initial ads were rejected due to our mentioning a trademark in the ad. Those issues were addressed but Google’s three business day turn around time for ad review cost us half of the week. Despite the final goal, our hope was that we’d have validated some interest in our solution before we pitched the idea to the team.

Concerns

Velocity. Maybe it’s my experience as an entrepreneur but I’m not accustomed to having to build consensus before I can act and the process seems to slow me uncomfortably. THere’s also some education that has to take place. Innovating within a larger organization requires the patience of a teacher. Every team member brings different levels of experience and familiarity with the tenets of lean especially when applied to startups.

Next Steps

The goals for the coming week are…

  • Gather results from the marketing research survey.
  • Launch improved landing page.
  • Complete cucumber specs for the MVP.
  • Run specs against existing code base to see what’s missing from the MVP.
  • Pitch project to the team.

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