His objective for the book is to define:
A systematic process for iterating your web application from Plan A to a plan that works .
His intent is to synthesize customer development, agile development methodologies, and bootstrapping into a coherent whole. He is up front about what he has done and some key beliefs:
- If you’re ever going to charge for your service, charge from day 1.
- You should only build and keep features that get used.
- You should start building a significant path to customers from day 1.
He sketches out some intriguing chapters that he promises to deliver this fall:
- Customers Don’t Care About Your Solution: Decouple The Problem From The Solution
- Test Pricing Early: Pricing is Part of the Product
- Troubleshoot the Trial Period: Get Customers to Talk to You
I have been corresponding with Ash off and on for six years now. I remain impressed by the depth of his insights and his ability to articulate complex concepts and processes very clearly. I remember hearing someone from IBM talk about what’s it like early in a new field, “we are all driving around in the dark, navigating by what we can see in our headlights; at some point the sun comes up and things become clear.” Ash is attempting to shed more light on these kinds of startups:
- Software as a Service (SaaS) applications
- Web-based and desktop-based software
- B2C applications
- Freemium and Free Trial products
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