View this email in your browser

Basic Problem

👋 Hey all

Welcome back to my newsletter about product ideas, building side projects, indie hacking, and problems worth solving.

First up, a big "thank you!" to Harish for buying me coffee this week. (Notice that shiny red-ish button down below? 😄) Have a look at his project Myna, an AI-powered writing assistant.

This is "vacation edition" 3 of 4 and therefore slightly shorter/ different than usual. I originally intended to work on interviews and a market map for my project Birdspotter in the last couple of days/ weeks. These tasks never really gained traction and suddenly I realized something which made me think "what are you doing?!".

Let me explain.

Analysis Paralysis

If you haven't lived under a rock, you might have noticed that "building an audience" is currently quite the rage on Maker Twitter. The gist is that you build your personal audience and/ or immerse in an existing group first, then you find a problem, then you build a solution. This is a variation of the well-known "problem first, solution second" mantra. The good thing is that you already have a potential customer group to sell to.

Yet here's a thing: how do you add value to an audience? Depending on the niche you want to build for, you may already have the experience to share or insights to give. And what about a group/ field you are new to? Take the indie hacker space on Twitter as an example: how to contribute something really valuable if you haven't actually built something?

Okay then, let's just build something. Developing is way more fun anyway than pesky marketing, right? That's what another group is advocating. Build fast, ship fast. Get stuff out there. Sure, you are running danger that nobody needs your product, but then you just iterate and start new, don't you?

Both groups are right and both groups are wrong. Each group describes what works or worked for them. But this might not be the right way for you. Your personality is different, as is your skillset. You are better at one profession, you have most likely to get better at an other. Anyone trying to sell you best practices is selling you snake oil or should refresh about survivorship bias. Take any advice you can get, gather a pool of good practices, build from there. And the only right way is your own one.

That's quite an introduction to explain what happened to me. One of the reasons I build side projects is to learn. To put innovation theory into practice. Therefore I'm always at risk to try to do things too close to the book. That's what happened at the start of my Birdspotter journey. The landing page was a no-brainer. Then I tried to build the aforementioned market map and find people to interview. But why, actually? Birdspotter scratches my own itch and keyword monitoring is already a validated idea. I overthought too much. #LFMF. Time to build.

💬 Social Listening

Listen on social networks to find out what people are looking for.

Top "request for product" tweets on Twitter:

Selected "someone invent" tweets on Twitter:

📚 Worth Reading

Metaverse Ecosystem Infographic - An overview of the players in the "proto-metaverse" phase, highlighting the "growing importance of virtual worlds and digital persistence in unlocking alternative spaces and identities for shared human experiences."

A very brief history of every Google messaging app - Well, exactly that: an overview of the mess that is Google's product management.

Bring Back Menus! - About QR codes replacing physical menus in restaurants. It may sound Luddite first, yet highlights good arguments that "there is no good reason to add an exclusionary, risky, socially deadening digital step to an analog system that was working just fine before the pandemic hit." And I actually ran into a QR code just yesterday that my phone could not read.

Shorting Bitcoin - What really resonated with me: "While I’m an admirer of the technology, I’ve repeatedly criticized Bitcoin specifically and blockchain in general, on the grounds that I’ve seen no practical real-world applications." This personally sums up what I think after many years in and out of the crypto space, both professional and private. Maybe I should write some kind of "honest review" on this in a future edition. What do you think?

🦋 Life is Beautiful

Random things which stood out for me this week. Mostly unrelated to indie hacking. Just showing that we can still have nice things.

Operation Nightwatch - "The largest and most wide-ranging research and conservation project in the history of Rembrandt’s masterpiece." If you haven't been to the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam and stood in front of this stunning painting yet, add it to your bucket list.

The new Pinball Hall Of Fame on the Las Vegas strip had the grand opening. And it's huge. Though I personally prefer arcade over pinball machines, this is impressive and important to conserve this cultural heritage and make it tangible.

Want to support my work? Click here to Buy Me a Coffee ☕

Was this issue useful for you? Help me to improve!

With your feedback, I can make the newsletter better suit your needs. Simply click on a link to vote.

Build your own? 👉

Where else to find me

Some housekeeping

Was this email forwarded to you? Sign up here to get your own copy every week.

To make sure you keep getting this newsletter, add its email address to your address book, mark the email as 'not spam', or whitelist its email address.

If you can’t find the newsletter, check your spam folder or look in Gmail's Promotions tab.

Tweet Tweet
Share Share
Forward Forward
Share Share
Copyright © 2021 Marco Spoerl, All rights reserved.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp