Give your side project a long-term plan for user acquisition and growth that won't cost you a lot of time or money.
Side Project Marketing & Sales Checklists
What is This?
The side project checklists are comprehensive, chronologically ordered lists of marketing and sales tactics you can try with your next side project. They are free, open source, and designed to be customized to your project's needs.
I've been building software side projects for years, but I've always been terrible at marketing and selling them. I come up with some ideas, forget those ideas, do some random stuff, then lose interest. The goal of this project is to fix that by making marketing and sales as simple as a checklist.
Not sure how to use these checklists? Click here to learn more.
Latest Blog Posts
A couple days ago, I Tweeted a diagram of my social media and email automation strategy for Portable CTO/Side Project Checklist asking if anyone would like a writeup about how I do it. After a couple years playing around with different social media automation tools and about a year of running a pretty successful email list, I’ve come up with a workflow that works for me and I think is worth sharing. While the comprehensive diagram may look intimidating, don’t worry; I’ll walk you through each piece as well as the reasons I chose the tools I did, and some of the goals of my setup. Let’s get to it!
I started the Side Project Marketing Checklist over six months ago, and ever since the beginning, I’ve used that checklist to market the project itself. The whole idea of the checklist is that it gives you lots of ideas, but you have to try things out and by process of elimination, come up with a formula for marketing your project that works.
Linkedin gained users at a rate of 2 per second in 2017, and it has pretty much dominated the professional social profile space in most industries. That said, I think it’s quite underutilized for finding early customers to your product. If like most side project owners, you are looking for your first few customers, Linkedin might be a perfect outlet. Here’s how I’ve seen it used for early customer acquisition.
While free and low-cost marketing tactics might be able to take you pretty far, some industries with more established markets are best broached with advertising. The great thing about online advertising is that you can get really granular with your targeting and avoid spending money on users who aren’t converting well.
An invaluable component in any website owner’s quiver is the A/B test – an experiment in which the current website is compared with an alternate in order to guage the effectiveness of the site with respect to experiment objectives. This post will examine one common A/B testing pattern and its potential effectiveness for a side project owner’s purposes.