I recently hosted an Ask Me Anything (AMA) session on Twitter where I shared my experience bootstrapping a B2B SaaS tool beyond ramen profitability. Despite having no initial marketing experience and starting as a market outsider, I managed to strike multiple enterprise deals and even have my tool used by governments. Ramen profitability refers to the point where a business generates just enough revenue for its founder(s) to cover their basic living expenses. In this article, I’ll recap the AMA and provide a convenient resource for those who want to learn more about me and my journey.
What was your “A-ha” moment when you knew your SaaS tool was going to be valuable?
The moment came when I received my first payment notification for a paid feature I had just tweeted about. It was at this point that I realized this was more than just a side project; it was a viable business.
What had the most significant impact on your business’s growth?
Google and word of mouth were the most significant factors in our growth, although this may be specific to our industry.
How did you go about conducting research for your SaaS tool?
I saw a problem in the wild and created a minimum viable product (MVP) in a weekend. After receiving feedback and interest from Reddit, I built the most requested features and chose my target customer base. You can read more about the process on our blog: https://stagetimer.io/blog/building-stagetimerio/
What was the biggest challenge you faced while building your SaaS business?
Defining the right customer segment was difficult because of the many unknowns in the beginning. Additionally, finding the right marketing channel and dealing with technical challenges, such as ensuring sub-second response time across multiple servers, were significant hurdles.
How did you get your first 100 users?
I acquired my first 100 users through Reddit, Discord communities, and word of mouth.
Can you share your tech stack?
Our tech stack consists of Firebase (auth, firestore, functions), Netlify (hosting), Hetzner (cloud server), MongoDB, Redis, Node.js, Express, Vue, Tailwind, and Paddle (payments). We use a mixture of Firebase and our own server infrastructure.
Are there any courses or resources you can recommend for learning marketing?
I found Julian Shapiro’s playbooks to be the most useful and they’re free. You can access them at https://www.demandcurve.com/playbooks.
If you were to start over, what would you do differently?
I wouldn’t change anything with my current product. However, in the past, I made the wrong choices with partners.
What advice would you give to someone starting a new business?
Start building relationships with potential customers before your product is ready. Create an MVP, build a community, and gather testers. Always focus on providing value to your customers and be aware that bootstrapped products can grow at different speeds. Dedicate time to your business and make adjustments as needed.
This Twitter AMA offered a great opportunity to share my journey and insights with others who are interested in bootstrapping a B2B SaaS tool. I hope this article provided valuable information and inspiration for those considering a similar path. If you have any further questions or want to learn more about my story, feel free to reach out to me on Twitter or through my blog’s contact page.