Welcome to the Project.co Our Journey series!
We’ve created this series to document and share every aspect of our drive to grow Project.co: the good, the bad and the ugly.
We’ll be laying out, in glorious technicolour detail, every tactic, technique, trial and tribulation – as well as all the results – as we try to grow the business.
This, in itself, is a fairly big, unusual – and risky! – decision.
So, where better to start, than by discussing why we’re doing it – and what we hope to achieve?
Why bare our soul?!
Ok, so we’re not the first company ever to share our story with warts-and-all transparency. I’ve followed other brand’s stories with great interest – GrooveHQ, ConvertKit and Buffer are a few that come to mind.
I think this type of content stands out because of how honest and transparent it is. That transparency is a breeding ground for real value. You know, and trust, that if something doesn’t work for them, they’ll tell you it didn’t work. It builds a sense of investment, and personal connection to those brands.
We live in a world where everyone has a platform – but so many people only use it to highlight the best bits. The big investment, the rebrand, the staff social night out. Nobody dares share anything other than total success stories.
This creates an illusion that growth is this tidy, binary thing that occurs along a neat and tidy straight line. Of course, this isn’t the case!
This approach means we all hide and bury our failures – and, at the risk of sounding cheesy, that denies everyone a real chance to learn and improve. I’d actually argue that failure, far from being something to be ashamed of, is necessary for genuine success.
Project.co is a totally new brand. We do have our first users on the system – around 4,000 accounts, gathered predominantly through a launch campaign we ran with AppSumo – but we’re very much at a standing start with our monthly recurring revenue (MRR).
Project.co is a totally new brand, and the chance to tell the story from ‘nothing’ to ‘something’ is a really appealing one. This is particularly true because I often wish I’d documented the growth of our other brand, Wyzowl. We could have added so much value – inspired people to try the things that worked for us, and maybe encourage them to think twice about pursuing the things that didn’t.
Overcoming the doubts…
Of course, for all the benefits I’ve outlined above, this hasn’t been a cut-and-dried decision.
Because of how airbrushed everybody’s brand story is these days, it does feel pretty uncomfortable when you start thinking about putting all your successes and failures out there for people to see.
Having had the idea, I brought it up with our internal marketing team, and there were some mixed opinions.
We all saw the value and felt a sense of excitement.
But we also shared the same concerns and anxieties; what if Project.co isn’t the success we want it to be? What if it is a success but growth is slow, and unremarkable, and uninteresting? Would that be embarrassing?
Ultimately, though, we agreed that – for better or worse – this is our story, and it’s better to share than to hide. I hope that being open and transparent will help us reach people who can comment, share their own advice and tips in return. It’s a two-way street.
I’m particularly excited about being able to share our story with some of the great communities out there, like Growth Hackers and Indie Hackers. We’re looking to help, inspire, add value – and also start a communication around the best ways to grow a SaaS business. This should be a great exercise for us and you, our audience.
What happens next?
So, going forward, we’re going to be releasing regular updates – starting bi-weekly – about what we’ve done, and what the results have been. You’ll find them right here on the Our Journey blog.
We’ll also be sharing a monthly round-up by email which will give an update as to where our customers have come from – to the best of our tracking ability – indicating the tactics that have been the most successful for us.
You can sign up and get that email straight to your inbox by filling in the form below…
So, that’s a bit about Our Journey. We hope you’ll join us for the ride!