Today, I wanted to publicly announce the end of a remarkable journey.
On June 19, 2016 a childhood friend of mine (who's a terrific designer) and I locked ourselves in a conference room in ATV for about 2 hours. We gathered to map out our journey from being a service agency (BICAD) over to the SaaS tech space. We had big ambitions and were ready to learn everything from scratch without much background in product startups. The idea we chose became ClosingPage. We wanted to challenge the conventional follow-ups with a design-minded perspective. We wanted to bring delight and experience to the traditionally process-centric B2B space.
What we didn't know was how much hard work building a startup ensues. The challenges were plenty. Not having a tech founder, not being to quit our full-time jobs due to bills and visa specifications, not knowing much about B2B sales cycles and on and on. However, we didn't flinch.
We hustled to first find an amazing mentor. Then we met with more than 200 people in the course of a year and did multiple rounds of problem discovery. 2 CTO candidates teased to join early on but no one was willing to code for free. After noodling for 4 months, we finally went ahead to hire an agency to get our beta. It emptied our pockets but got us our first ever product. The feeling was magical. Later, we found a great CTO and built a better version for free. Oh the irony! We've shipped 2 MVP versions since our beta. Got a deluge of initial users (not customers!) but they didn't stick. After much introspection, we've learned that we were building a nice-to-have product that didn't sustain customer passion. There was virality but not enough. We missed the benchmarks of product/market fit. It sucks to get to that realization but then we also recently realized that it liberated us.
The lesson is to not be attached to one idea and more importantly for this long. 2 years is too long and we feel we should have moved on quicker. Success is a staircase, it will take multiple steps to get there and you have to keep trying and shipping. Our focus now will be to keep shipping projects all year round until something becomes a true startup.
After such a rewarding journey, we'd like to say goodbye to ClosingPage. If you are somebody who has directly or indirectly supported us, thank you. It meant a lot!
Good news: The quest to our next adventure is on.