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Episode 10 of Morning Maker Show: Sipping Gin, Chasing Dreams, and Launching Tools at almost 30,000 Feet

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Summary

Grab your passport and headphones as Dan and Sandra bring the indie vibes from an airport. They discuss indie wins, innovative banner generators, and the blurred lines between startups and businesses. Will Sandra make it on the plane on time? Tune in for gin-fueled wisdom and a surprise tool Product Hunt launch!

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Transcript

Dan: Good morning, Sandra.

Sandra: Good morning,

Dan: Dan. How are you? You have some nice vibes today. What's, what's the story?

Sandra: Um, I'm not in an elevator and it's not an elevator music, but it's an airport music.

Dan: So, so you decided to spice things up. It was too easy to do a live show. Read and moderate content at the same time, but you're also in an airport flying.

Sandra: Yes, it's, I, I felt like, um, we needed something new, you know, and I was checking, can I do the show in the airplane itself, you know? Um, but that's almost impossible because you have to pay for the internet and some airplanes don't even have internet

Dan: connection. Yeah, in Europe, we don't have that. Yeah, it's crazy everywhere else in the world.

They have

Sandra: that. Yeah. Live long and prosper, USA. As Miley Cyrus would say, and I only know that because that was a song before this

Dan: one. You know what the problem is that if you're already at the airport and we're not even episode 10, what are we going to do for episode 100? Do you need to join SpaceX?

Mars? Yeah,

Sandra: that seems like a logical solution at

Dan: this point. Also, episode 100 is going to be soon at the rate we're going. I mean, we're just doing episode after episode.

Sandra: I know. Honestly, I wanted to suggest to you if we could do this every single day. Yeah.

Dan: Could we just do this? And that's, that's what we do.

That's our our full time job.

Sandra: Imagine that. Just imagine.

Dan: Speaking of doing the job, do you want to take the first one by Dima?

Sandra: Yes, Dima. Dima. Hey, Dima.

Dima. Yes, we did it. First place. 1, 500 in revenue. 745 upvotes. Thank you so much. Hashtag built in public. Um, Dima and Matt launched their branding5 on Product Hunt this weekend and they did really, really well.

First place and 1, 500 in revenue, oh my god.

Dan: Congratulations, yeah. Isn't that quite amazing for, I think it was a Sunday, am I right? Either Sunday or Sunday.

Sandra: Yeah, and 745 upvotes. That's kind of like Wednesday, I would say. Maybe even Tuesday, third place.

Dan: I'm surprised that they got some, I mean, the product is very cool, nothing to say about it, but there's been so much discussion lately about product hunt, not really being worth it.

And a lot of people making alternate versions of product hunt and so on. But then you see this and it's kind of hard to imagine where else would you go? and make one and a half thousand dollars in a day. No chance. Yeah, no. Yeah. It's there is still something to it, even though, you know, the overall feeling, I also feel like.

There's a lot of negativity around it, and then people don't have this, um, this good attitude towards product hunt anymore. Do you feel the same?

Sandra: I do, I do, especially in the R community where you can see many products not being featured. Um, and I, I think that's the pain point when the product is not featured.

So the only ability to, um, have a product is to share the link. to the people. Um, and then them landing on your products. But then you see something like this, and then you realize there is no chance to have this kind of opportunity or value anywhere else. I hope you guys enjoy the music.

Dan: It's not, it's, it's very good.

It's a good mix, you know, it's, it's mostly your voice, which is great. And then just, uh, maybe we should always have some background music. That's how we innovate. Okay. But what. What does it take to make the next product hunt? What do you need to do?

Sandra: Ah, I mean we've seen in community. I think someone is also building and it's quite close of launching it The issue with that it will take time because also even though that we are Complaining about the big companies launching their products on product hunt.

I think that's actually the best part of the product hunt because somehow You are in the same line, in the same competition, in the same marathon with these big companies and you still have ability to win them over with the quality of your product, you know. So I don't know, I've launched, like the first launch I had with Clue was with the YC back company and Hunter was Michael itself and I was like, Oh my God.

This is going to be disaster. But then in the same time, um, you win them and you are like, Oh my God, I'm the best person with the best product today. Like, you know, it's such a good feeling. And that's kind of charm of Product Hunt at the same time. But I think Product Hunt still needs someone from our community that's going to be the voice of the indie makers as well.

Dan: Yeah. They, they lost touch with whatever they had in the community. Yeah. That's a very big

Sandra: problem. Especially the CEO of the Product Hunt right now is from the community, so he should know

Dan: the best. It's quite ironic. Yeah. Yeah. Things turned out. Yeah. Yeah. So yeah. The next, the next company that will succeed in doing a proper competitors deterrent needs to figure out how to bring the big companies.

That's essentially it.

Sandra: For sure. For sure. For sure. There needs to be also ability to make money on there. There needs to be ad space. There need, like Product Hunt is just the perfect version of what we need. And if they just listen to us just a little bit, I think there's so much space for improvements.

Dan: All right. Well, I hope this improves. It's, I still love it. I hope it gets better. And then if it doesn't, I hope that the next competitor will manage to make a better version that's connected to the community because it really needs that.

Sandra: I

Dan: agree. Alright, I'll take the next one by Igor.

He says, five questions to create a landing page that converts.

So, bit of a learning. Let's go. Let's go. Promise. What you can deliver and to, and for whom. Portfolio. List of your past projects. Testimonials. Reviews of your work. Vision. Your big long term goal. And call to action. Clear next steps and process. What do you think about this? Is that the, is that all the questions you need?

And then you got the landing page.

Sandra: Yes,

Dan: for sure. How much did you spend on your landing page, Sandra?

Sandra: Oh my god, I'm still spending time on my landing page and it's been a year. Um, promise what you can deliver for whom. That I agree, like that's the target audience. Understanding for who you are building this product is essential. And then understanding the language they are using.

For sure. Um, list of your past projects. So he's definitely talking about the certain niche here that doesn't fit for each product. Um, but definitely testimonials. Are the part of the story of the, you know, the landing page, the vision itself. I've never, never gotten the idea of the vision because the vision is something where you want to be, which means that the product is not still there.

Do I want to invest time in something that is still not there? It's always like a question mark. Um, call to action. I always have a problem with the colors with the right call to action. So I'm not the best person to talk

Dan: about this. Well, what was the. The time, what was, what, what took the most time for you when doing the landing page?

Was it the overall thing or was it details that you kept tweaking?

Sandra: Actually, not the copy itself, not the layout of the website, but the illustration and showcasing the app and the platform.

Dan: Yeah. That's what I'm missing here, but maybe I, I think portfolio, if you, if you put it in a different context is showing the product itself, because that's one of the hardest and most important parts to do on the landing page, show the product, show how it works, get people to understand what it is and.

Get them curious to try it, basically. And that's so hard to do, and you're probably gonna try many times before you make something that converts.

Sandra: Absolutely, absolutely. I had someone actually, um, a few days ago writing me on Twitter, actually, saying, Sandra, you talk so much, but I finally understand. I don't know if you understood how Clue works because I just shared the video of my workflow with Clue.

And I was like, wait a minute. Is that that easy? Like why no one told me this before?

Dan: Yeah. Live and learn. Live and learn. All right, Sandra. Do you want to take the next

Sandra: one? Yes, please. Zach.

Um. Learniverse is finally live. An app to create learning paths from your knowledge in minutes. Build learning paths of any topic in minutes. Turn your data into personalized learning models. Goal based projects and quizzes at your fingertips.

Wait a minute. An app to create a learning path from your knowledge in minutes. That sounds pretty

Dan: cool. So. It sounds like you have, you have a knowledge base for Clue, right? Yes. Yes. So it sounds like you, in a simple way, I don't know how you do it in a practical way, you point it to the knowledge base, whatever that means.

And then it's going to create sort of like a step by step guide or, or, you know, personalized learning guide. For your knowledge base? That's freaking awesome if that's how it works. I

Sandra: want to try it now. I want to try it too. We have been discovering such a cool products and all of these products like are so

Dan: cool.

Yeah. I've, I think this one is sort of a new take though, because what I've seen, I've, I've seen something similar. But to create the knowledge base itself, right? But this one's using the knowledge base and repurposing that content, probably in a way that's easier to understand. Because let's be honest, knowledge base, it's overwhelming.

No matter where you go, you have like a hundred different articles. And you go there, you're just starting. You have no idea what you even look for. And this could be an interesting add on to that. I could see myself trying it out. Make a note. Nice work, Zach.

Sandra: Nice work,

Dan: Zach. All right, Sandra, did you, just like a side note, did you prepare the, the sponsor for today?

Sandra: Yes, of course I have prepared the sponsors for today and I can't wait to, um, actually do it because it's going to be a surprise for

Dan: you too. Yeah, okay, good, good. Keep, keep it. We still, we can do one more and then we, yeah, and then we do it. All right, I can take, the next one by YW. I assume that's not the name.

Recording a new demo of zapanim.com using Screen Studio as recommended by other building public folks. Let me know what you think.

Um, I love Screen Studio. That's what I think.

Sandra: Screen Studio is one of the best products. I cannot believe that they have only one time payment. I think that's unfair.

Yeah. It's just brilliant shit. It's like so good. It's so simple. It's so smooth. Is this our, uh, sponsor for today?

Dan: I mean, you told me it's a surprise. It could be, it could be. Well, I'm really, really intrigued by the pricing model that they have because I understand it. Yeah, um It's doing very well also, and as far as I know they're, they even hired people and they're, they're making very good money on it, but it's a one time fee and it's, it used to be very low, I think they've increased it in the meantime.

Good! But it just, heh, good. It just goes to show, not everything needs to be a subscription. For it to be successful not necessarily and what do you think about that? If you if you start on a product, is it fine to start with a lifetime deal and then pivot?

Sandra: I mean, this is just a brilliant product. It's I would pay every single month for it Like what what is even the pricing?

I don't even remember how much I paid it and I use it every single day It's like a such a core product for me. I come back to it all the time. So I mean, you know me and you know, my stance on like subscription models and one time payments

Dan: and yeah, your first subscription. So it's 89. That's, that's still very, it's too low.

Sandra: It's too low. It's too low for this type of the product, for the smoothness of the product, for the execution of the product. It's just like, I don't know. It's, I, I mean, I'm going to DM the guy. I'm

Dan: Please increase your prices. Yeah, I'm just blown away that you can, as you say, if you have a very good product, you can be successful no matter the pricing model, but it still looks like they're leaving money on the table somehow.

But maybe that's part of the success to the story of, you know, being different from, from the others. I don't know. It works very well for them and I think it's becoming the de facto. So every video, demo video you see is more, most likely made with ScreenStudio and you can tell it by the way it zooms in that, yeah, yeah, this person has used it and you see that over and over again.

Sandra: Yeah. And I'm surprised. I, I don't know. I'm grateful. Thank you guys for, thank you ScreenStudio for like not. Doing the subscription model even though I love the subscription model and I would pay probably 20 euros a month To, to be able to use the video, but like, yeah, very

Dan: interesting. Yeah. Very interesting.

All right. Enough about ScreenStudio, great software. I'm going to use it later today, but let's take the next one. Do you want to take it? It's a, it's an easy name for you.

Sandra: Yeah, I hate you and I love you, but I hate you. Um, Terry

another day, another opportunity to chase your dreams. What are you working on Today? I will be implementing superb base. Let's go hashtag building public another day. Another opportunity to chase your dreams. I love that line. I woke up this morning full of like motivation and cold. And like feeling good and working hard and chasing your dreams.

So or it could be also gin that I took. I'm not sure.

Dan: Yeah. Do you always wake up like that? Because I think I have this feeling with you that there's, there's really nothing that can put you down. What can really make you sad? Is there anything?

Sandra: Sad, sad in the morning, not quite, um, mad in the morning, quite often, but that madness turns into why am I mad, what is the reason for my madness, and then I'm just still again happy person.

Yeah,

Dan: I love that. So I think that's, that's the reason why we do the show in the morning. That's it's the, it's your best time. All right. Do you want to do the sponsor for today?

Sandra: Oh, yes. Um, ladies and gentlemen, it's time for our first sponsor of the day. Um, it's a platform called Shipixen. It was supposed to be last time's sponsor, but Dan kind of stole the show and pushed me to do it.

But, um, Shipixen is a really interesting app. That works for you. You know what I mean? You can build your website in like seconds, and we already proved that. I think it was like, for our first show, when Shipixen managed to build our website in like five minutes, and we spent 45 minutes doing the copy. Um, It says that work on your idea, not on your boilerplate.

By the way, I hate this word, boilerplate. It reminds me of chicken, and I don't know why. It's a weird feeling.

Dan: It's, yeah, it is. When you boil the chicken and you put it on a plate, that's how this word came to be.

Sandra: But it's a great place to, whenever you have an idea, you want to build a website, you want to do something, Shipixen is the way to go.

For sure. And I highly, highly recommend it. Um, Dan has managed to bring more and more things to Shipixen. So, please people, check it out. Build your website there. Um, he even done, did this amazing thing with the blog. He will probably explain you better so you don't have to actually pay for the things. I mean, he's just brilliant and Shipixen is so cool.

Dan: Thank you, Sandra. And I'm really happy I found out the secret sponsor for today. It was a good surprise. Very well done with the copy too. Very well done. Thank you. Ten out of ten. All right. I can, uh, I can take the next one. By Just one thing.

Sandra: Yeah. This boilerplates. Yeah. Let's try to change that.

Dan: Yeah.

There is another word for it. It's just harder to to rank for it. They call them starters as well.

Sandra: Okay, that's uh, but that's again food Yeah,

Dan: we we can call it an appetizer also is that Yeah, um Let's work on the naming. Yeah, I agree. I think, but you need to convince all the developers to change also, and you know, developers,

Sandra: I think I'll take that pressure on myself.

I cannot be reminded of chicken anytime I read this, but like boiled chicken. I don't like that.

Dan: Okay. But Sandra, you know, you work with developers every day. Lots of them. How easy is it to convince them of something completely different? Tell me. A third of the time

Sandra: they tend to ignore me, but I can be very pushy.

Dan: All right. Do you want to take the next one? Please.

Sandra: Okay.

I'm excited to share that I'm launching my first ever Indie product, introducing SnapCover.app, a ridiculously simple banner generator for Excel. Zero design skills, absolutely free, your feedback means the world to me. Okay, I'm gonna try this because my banner on Twitter is from Prada can't launch for Clue, the first version, and I think it's time to change it.

Dan: Indeed. Yeah, I just went on it. Very nice and nice and simple app. You put some text. Looks pretty clean. And

Sandra: copy. And zero MRR is still MRR.

Dan: The default copy is very good. Also, um, congrats Hirad on the first product. I hope there's going to be many more to come. This is, uh, this is looking like a fantastic start.

Sandra: Yeah. Yeah. I love it.

Dan: Yeah. So the, the cover, I think we talked about it. I still don't know if it's. If it's that important, but there used to be this, this whole talk back, back in the day where people would say, you need to optimize your profile for conversions and this and that and so on. Um, I, I don't know, there's probably, there's probably something to it, but I don't change my banner that, that often.

Do you think there's, there's some value in that?

Sandra: As I said, my banner is the last Product Hunt Klu launch. And I, this reminded me maybe it's time to change it. Um, I don't know, like I don't quite care about it. I don't usually check the banners of people. Um, I do appreciate good banner, especially a creative one.

Um, so, you know. If, if it's a part of your story and you have somehow managed to build it creatively and interestingly, I'm, I'm a big fan of it, but you know, it doesn't matter much for me.

Dan: Yeah. I, I agree. I mean, you're not, maybe not the right person if you've never changed your body or anyway, but if someone, if someone listening, hi everyone, there's a lot of familiar faces.

Hi David, Dima, Stef, Kartik. Wow, There's even, there's even Aaron or sorry, Carl, Carl Poppa. Hi. Oh, and of course, Serhii. He, so if anyone has tried this banner thing and came up with some sort of, I don't know, template or whatever that works very well. I don't know what that means works very well.

Do you get more followers, more clicks? I don't know. It depends what you want. I even know there was one app. Yeah. That would do A B tests on your banner for conversion, that's crazy. But if anyone knows of a, you know, a good example, or if this matters at all, I would like to hear it in the comments. Okay, I can take the next one, Alex, by Alex V.

He's saying, I'm just curious, but when does a startup stop being a startup? Why don't we call a startup just a business? Is there a pure metric?

Sandra: Can you please open the comment section? Because you will find my response. No.

Dan: The first response and most liked response from Sandra. From what I understand or have been taught about startups, a startup is about innovation, introducing something new and unknown to the market with the potential to disrupt it.

Okay. Businesses can be anything that makes money. It doesn't necessarily need innovation. So you're thinking that there is a clear difference between a startup. He asked

Sandra: me a follow up question was actually pretty good. He asked me, so Amazon and Google are still startups. Um, I thought that that was actually a really good, like, kind of question.

How do you define the startup and what's the difference between then a startup and a scale up and a business itself? You know, um, so it, it was very interesting for me to think about it because in my eyes, when you say a startup, I don't consider a startup a company, you know, a big business company. I consider a startup as something new, as I wrote, as something new, innovative that.

Something is happening, you know, and then there is a scale up some, something that is moving from, you know, a business.

Dan: Oh no, I lost Sandra. Oh,

Sandra: you're back now.

Dan: I'm sorry. We'll fix this in post.

Sandra: I don't know what you heard last, but

Dan: Yeah, I think we got the overall idea. I wanted to actually put some more gas on the fire, which is Is an indie product that you've just made last week, is that a startup or is it a product?

Sandra: I hate you. Um, again, it depends, you know, like all the indie products in my head are innovating in some ways. So now you have to define what innovation means for you. I think we are innovating the ways that we are trying to get to the market as well. We are doing this alone. We are building these products alone.

There is always a twist to this product as well. Like, we were talking about Dima and Matt at the beginning of the product hunt. The branding is not something new. It's been around for a while, you know, and we all need the branding, but how they position their product and let us Through the branding is different and innovative for me.

Dan: Yeah, I agree. There was this very interesting discussion with, with Mark Lu that he's, he's calling all his product startups and people were saying, Oh, you know, these are not really startups because. They're not companies. Did you create a company for each of these and, uh, you know, register it and so on and so forth?

And I thought that's such a bad take because why is that even relevant if you have, yeah, just the technicalities, but, but that's also the, you know, the people that try to take you down. But I also think if you have. As a small product is a, is a generic word, the same as startup. If you have a very small thing that does one job more like a tool, right?

And then a product itself, it's a bit of a stretch to call it data startup sometimes, because it's just the scope of it is not big enough. That's, that's my definition. Sometimes that, okay, this is not really something that can grow the same way as a company can grow. It's gonna. It's going to have some sort of limitation and what it can do because it's, it's, it's basically done, right?

You cannot add more to it. Exactly. Yeah. All right. Interesting, uh, interesting topic. I, I think I like to call my, my things startups. Although,

Sandra: you know, it's, of course, innovation is super important and it's the core of everything. Cool. And now, I mean, being or calling something a business, it's a totally different vibe.

And I don't even want to go into that section of the world. You know what I mean? Yeah. Like indie products or startups or whatever you are building, it's something on your own. You're trying to find your ways. You are innovating whatever you are doing, you know. So there's no need to be like, um, this, this, not, I don't want to say fight, but kind of like, oh, how do we define what we are doing?

Let's just not define it. If it's a business, it's a business, sell it and go to the farm and make goat cheese. Yeah,

Dan: which is the goal for everyone. Which is the goal. Ultimately goal, yeah. All right, I'm not gonna make you miss your flight. So for some, for a lot of you have joined later on, there is some nice elevator music in the background, and that is because Sandra is in an air Airport drinking gin and tonic as you would on a Friday and she has a flight in how, how much?

Sandra: An hour and 30 minutes, hopefully.

Dan: Oh, so we can do a lot more questions.

All right. Do you want to take one more last one?

Sandra: Let's do one more last one and then we need to go. Okay. But Jerry Zung,

what are you building today? I'll go first. I'm fixing the bugs on the newly launched plugin hashtag building public. Well, dear Jerry, I'm drinking gin and tonic. A morning maker show.

And try trying to get to the plane with my, with my, um, stats. It's, it's going to be really hard, but I'm trying my best.

Dan: Oh, um, I would say I'm not jealous, but I'm super jealous. So you were going to be in just a few hours in a warmer place, right?

Sandra: Yes. I'm going to be, uh, at Tenerife.

Dan: Oh my God. Then this is.

This is exactly what I need right now. It's some sun and some warmth and I don't, I don't have it. So I'm, I'm quite jealous, but have, have fun. It's going to be a working trip. Yeah. So

Sandra: we are going there to work. Of course, there's no vacation anytime soon. That's why, um, we are not a company. Here's a prime example, what companies and what startup is, if someone is asking.

Um, so yeah, we are going there for two weeks to work, but it's going to be sunny and nice and I can drink.

Dan: So you're making this very, you're making it sound very glamorous and then everyone's going to be like, Oh yeah, I picked the right thing. This is what I want. I go work from the beach for two weeks, go with the team.

It's. I can be anywhere. This is the life.

Sandra: This is such a life. I have to tell you. But, um, uh, living in Finland it's, it's not, um, pleasurable, but that's it.

Dan: Yeah. Yeah. Uh, yeah. Well, what can I say? Next time take us with you. All of us all the all the build in public community.

Sandra: I'm trying. I'm trying to make that in the trip happen.

It's just the CEO of brother country keeps ignoring my messages.

Dan: He's ignoring all of our messages. Don't worry. Yeah, all right. Um. I have one more thing. Oh, yes. One more thing, but you know, I think the, the timing's not right. And actually. Timing is always right. Well, yeah, well, it's, it's product hunt again.

But do you remember when we talked, we were just like. Talking about this tool I made and then I said, well, let's just launch it. Remember that? I just launched it today. Like just, I, I don't know if you saw, I'm sharing my screen with Sandra, but at some point I, I switched and then I pushed some code and I actually launched it during the show.

Um, and then, and then Sandra broke off and I had to actually cover, um, but yeah, I just launched a tool on Product Hunt. It's not featured yet, but then again, nothing is, it's just four things that are featured right now. So, I hope it's going to be featured, let's see. Well, it

Sandra: would be nice if you

Dan: would share a link (narrator: the said link).

I mean, maybe. Yeah, I could share a link. Wow. Wow. Dan, the marketing is top notch. Yeah. So I've never tried this before. Um, I'll put the link in the, in the show comments. I usually do. You know, full product launches, and I've never launched sort of a tool as part of a product, so I have no idea. My expectations are very low, to be honest.

I don't know if I'm going to be in the top 10, even I don't know what's going to happen with the existing, um, people that have been subscribing to Shipixen, like have they received a notification when I launched this? I have no idea. It's the first time I try it and it's very little preparation too. So low expectations.

Let's see how it goes. Well,

Sandra: I'm so sorry, the airport, okay, um,

Dan: Are you getting arrested by the airport security?

Sandra: They're like enough drinking for you, Sandra, but then congratulations, and I bet you're gonna get into top five. For sure, um, and I can't believe you launched Prada Khan and without telling

Dan: me, like I launched it in the show in sort of stealth mode, so let's see how you beat that in the next show.

Sandra: Unbelievable,

Dan: unbelievable. And on that bombshell, thank you so much everyone for joining us. Did you like my surprise?

Sandra: I loved your surprise. Did you like my

Dan: sponsor? Yeah, great sponsor. Thank you so much, Sandra. Go and catch your, your flight and thank you everyone for tuning in. Remember, you can see past shows on Spotify, Apple podcasts, and on morningmakershow.com and sign up for our newsletter too. It's awesome. Yeah.

Sandra: Yeah. And see you in a hot, warm country where I'm going to be super happy.

Dan: Can't wait for next show. Bye.

Sandra: Bye.

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