I built an app for the Korean community of DC/MD/VA - it is a combination of Yelp and Angie's List where you can discover local Korean restaurants and other Korean businesses like accountants, attorneys, real estate agents, etc. The app has over 3,000 Korean businesses and over 1,000 reviews written by the Korean community of DC/MD/VA.
The app was built in Korean but we've recently localized the app so that non-Korean speaking people can use the app to discover local Korean businesses and also read reviews written by Koreans on Korean businesses (reviews are being manually translated from Korean to English by our staff).
Now, I know some Americans and Asian Americans like Korean food and frequent Korean restaurants and they will use Yelp for that. The only advantage of using our app is that our reviews are written by Koreans so you can discover good, authentic Korean restaurants highly reviewed by Koreans. Koreans don't usually write reviews on Yelp
I thought maybe professionals may want to use the app to connect with Korean counterpart like American attorneys wanting to connect with Korean attorneys for collaboration.
Any help with finding a market - however small or niche it would be - would be great. Our landing page is at https://www.getdcapp.com.
Agile development experts have argued for ages that the best leaders are ‘servant-leaders’; that’s because real leadership is not about power, but empathy and mutual respect. Trailblazing entrepreneurs discarded the old adage ‘your network is your net worth’ some time ago; that’s because your network is almost worthless without a sense of community and the mutual belief that more can be achieved in cooperation than in competition. HR leaders understand the very best teams are those that think of themselves as friends; that’s because friends swap skills fearlessly.
With that in mind, what's the advantage of 'hiring' someone?
As a founder, is your role to be the risktaker in chief, or is it the visionary in chief?
Does the dichotomy between 'co founder' and 'employee' need to be so stark? Is it not possible to associate with a range of professionals and set up unique arrangements depending on how deeply they want to be involved with your project?
If the legal considerations around ownership, intellectual property and employment were different, would that change the way you worked with people?
I am a software developer, and I hate being idle. After my working day I always try to find a project I can work on for one or two hours after I have done the daily chores or whatever I need to do. It helps me keep my skills and brain sharp and make my CV fatter if you may. My projects are not necessarily profit-oriented, since most of them have had absolutely no revenue, but at least they have to serve a purpose. Examples of these projects during the last two years are: A lightweight e-shop platform with Laravel/Ember.js, an 8 bit RPG-like interactive portfolio, a small node.js utility. Now I feel I need to find a project that has some purpose other than my own amusement, despite not necessarily being world-changing. I quit my job recently to spend some time figuring out what I want to do and traveling a bit, but I think I will have way too much free time. I tend to drift around indiehackers, angel.co startups and a little on reddit threads to look for potential ideas, and have also tried two or three brainstorming techniques featured in "look for your next business idea" entrepreneurship blogs.
I wonder how you people find inspiration or ideas to start new projects or businesses.
Doing software engineering and just got my first investment from a business competition in uni, where 15 startups got selected and mine was 5th position. I also managed to find a advisor, who got personally interested in my idea and decided to invest few thousand dollars in me so that's like $6k+. We're a group of 5 cofounders (including me), where I'm the most dedicated i.e: bunking classes, tests etc just to work on the startup. However, I've socially anxious and have am socially awkward most the times. I've still faith considering Elon Musk was at this stage once. How do I get out of this, how do I look and act like an CEO?
I have an idea for a vinyl figure business similar to the funko pops. However for my business I want to make vinyl figures of landmarks like the statue of liberity or the Trand Canyon. First off how do I get permission to make figures out of these iteams I don't plan on making figures for licensed content like the NFL or TV shows ect. just land marks. Also how do I get support, I know I could attract intrest from larger companys if my product does well, but I need to start by selling some iteams first. I cannot afford 5,000 orders of a product. The funko figures cost about 20$ so I could make a few products with packaging. Where do I go to get the packing and the model built? How do I sell it? My ideal place to have my product would be barns and noble or something of that sort. Also I am in the USA if that changes anything.
I'm building a web app offering something similar to Airbnb Experiences, but focusing on a particular niche. I have been talking to some prospects (hosts and travelers) and almost all has brought up a concern regarding reputation i.e. profile/listing reviews. Some of my prospect already have good reviews/ratings from apps like Airbnb and Uber, so I keep wonder if I could leverage their existing reputation points to ease/speed up the process.
Has anybody come across this and/or used Airbnb's API to retrieve a particular user's reviews/ratings before? I'd love to know your experience and advice. Also, if I was to grow this organically, what are some good strategies that this can be done? From my experience, bringing hosts from Airbnb over to my web app is hard because they are used with having reviews from both sides.
In this weekly series, I'm going to tell the story of everything my co-founder and I are doing as we dive into this adventure of starting a business online.
THE IDEA: We're starting a simple landing page service designed for bloggers called Convertpages.net. Our goal is to create an affordable, elegant, high-converting landing page service that goes way above and beyond our competitors. At the moment, we plan to charge $10/month for landing pages, popups, integrations, support, and an included domain and private hosting. We're considering adding additional services like copywriting/lead magnet formatting/design but that's all up in the air.
WHAT WE'RE DOING: We've basically split into two sections. My co-founder takes care of the design and technical stuff and I take care of the marketing and sales stuff (although our roles definitely overlap a good bit!)
Once we ventured upon this idea (mostly from personally wanting a service like this - both of us being bloggers), we needed a plan to start and market this business for as little money as possible.
We started trying to appeal generally to anyone who wanted a landing page for a one-time fee but decided that business model was essentially us just freelancing. We decided to narrow down - at the moment, we're building a subscription service for bloggers.
One of our biggest inspirations is Nathan Barry, the CEO of Convertkit (a really neat email marketing company). He bootstrapped it from scratch and did it through a lot of direct sales and building relationships with influencers.
We just set up a landing page and haven't done too much to promote it yet (pretty much just manually serving people and letting them know about it on facebook) and currently have 16 subscribers - which is definitely something we're trying to grow! But this does bring us a decent sense of confidence in our service idea because we're not offering anything to these people like a free course; just saying "Sign up to get notified when we launch". So in some ways that's been helpful to confirm that this might be something people are looking for. (And we have reached out to some influencers like Bryan from videofruit.com and he was interested in the idea...)
The main things we're working towards right now are: 1. Write a guest post for an established blog (in progress) 2. Get to 1000 subscribers on our pre-launch list (in progress) 3. Build 10 high-quality landing page templates (done!) 4. Create a customizable popup plugin (done!) 5. Get people to write testimonials (done!) 6. Get 5 websites for social proof (just starting...) 7. Once we launch, reach out to 25+ people a day via direct sales.
We haven't spent a dollar on ads and we haven't pitched guest posts yet; at the moment we're reaching out to people via email, facebook, twitter, etc and asking people what their frustrations are with leadpages etc and seeing if we would be able to solve them.
Right now I (Zapproximator) am writing an article and plan to send it to Hubspot - mainly for the social proof and also for the potential traffic/relationships that might build. I'm also regularly reaching out to influencers, trying to build relationships. I'm also doing a bunch of research for running ads (we plan to invest a good amount of our revenue back into fb ads, possibly PPC, gmail ads, and I'm just investigating reddit ads).
And my co-founder is working really hard on a bunch of integrations, pop-up software, additional landing pages, and helping out with the marketing side as well.
OUR BIGGEST TAKEAWAYS:
Getting traffic is really hard. We're still definitely working at it. Our biggest potential returns are probably in guest blogging and ads.
Serving people is powerful - really. If you just be generous, people will be interested in signing up for what you do, joining an email list etc
Direct sales is also powerful. A great article I read on this is nathanbarry.com/sales. We're looking into doing a good amount of this once we launch.
Starting a business is incredibly hard, painful, exhilerating, and fun all at the same time. It's truly quite an adventure and I'm so glad I'm part of it.
I'd love to hear what you thought of this, if you have any advice, suggestions, questions etc.
Someone recently lamented to me that try as they might, they can’t seem to instill a culture of non-manual testing in their team. This problem pervades startups, especially in those with a lot of newer developers. My theory:
To foster a culture where software engineers are internally motivated to write good tests, make it harder to run your app locally and easier to write and run tests.
To put it another way: rather than investing time in enabling people to run a standalone app on their laptops, invest time in making it easy to write tests. Lead people into the pit of success of effective software testing.
I appreciate that this seems backwards, especially the part about making running a local app worse. I observed that since I’ve started freelancing, I write significantly more tests than I ever did fulltime. My code usually has more test-coverage than the average in the codebase. This isn’t because I’m some hardcore TDDer or that I just believe more in the importance of tests than the other people I’m working with – far from it. The cause, I think, stems not from ideals, but from pragmatics: as a freelance software engineer, I rarely end up doing time-consuming or finicky developer onboarding steps like getting a local version of the app working. Tests are literally the only way I have to run my code locally. With no other options, I have no choice but to structure my code in a way I can test it and to write unit and integration tests that come as close as possible to simulating reality. Without meaning to, I lead myself into the pit of success.
If anyone has any stories about how something like this accidental or intentionally changed the way you write tests at your company, I’d love to hear them. If you think this idea is nonsense, I’m happy to hear that too.
I'm working IT & culture startup in Korea. (CTO, Started at 2014) My age is 22 and now I dropped out Seoul National University.
I am on 7-day vacation now and visit my aunt's house in America. This trip is my first time to visit America and I feel so impressed. Because In Korea, there are so many regulation and conservative culture. And all Koreans are forced to military service. (2+ years) Also, almost everything is no except few yes thing. To make matters worse, Korea's fertility rate is at its lowest, and its population is rapidly declining.
Three days after arriving in the United States, I decided to immigrate. But I heard immigrant to USA is too hard with Trump's immigration policy.
My startup is early stage startup. 6 employee, 0.1M annual sales. I have experience 1M funding by Korea's famous VCs.
I would like to hear from people who were in similar situations.
+) Thank you for reading although my poor English.