Don't be afraid to ask for help - people are generally good.

Oeck

Member
Hi everyone,

As some of you may know I have spent the last two years building a new type of VPN service with my friend. This has taken a lot of work outside of our days jobs ( we have averaged 16h/day of work total over the last two years ). We also had to save up money and borrow money from the bank.

Around a year ago I asked one of our suppliers if he knew anyone who would be able to help us with marketing. Not just selling the product directly to the customer, but to network and get to meet new people within the industry. He said he knew a couple of people, but wanted to see what our product was all about first. At this point in time we were half-way through the build and didn't really want news getting out about our service. We weighed up our options and decided to take a chance and show him.

He said he was very impressed with what we had built and would get back to me within a few days promising to put us in touch with an "industry authority" that he knew. A few days passed and he shoots me a message. "Hi Peter, please find information attached". He did not give us anyone's details, nor had he spoken to anyone about our product...

Instead, we found an offer by him for a tiny, non-voting share of the company. The amount was enough to allow us to do things we were planning to once we were turning a decent profit and had a steady cash-flow. This was a game-changer for us, and every day we are very thankful for it!

A year later and here we are. We have launched into a beta service and are trying to get customers. I figured what the hell, reddit would be a good place to start. I scoped out every subreddit that allows you to advertise your website/service. Unfortunately, these sub reddits are all very small and only brought in around 100 visitors to the website, with a conversion rate of around 10%.

I decided to ask for help again. I approached a moderator of a subreddit and asked them if it would be okay for me to post about our VPN service since it would be free during our beta for the members. After a few days the mod got back to me saying that although it is usually not okay, they were willing to make an exception this one time because of my active posting history in that subreddit. 1 thread - none ever again. I thanked him very much and posted my thread.

Within 1 hour we had +200 upvotes. By the end of the day we had around 830 upvotes and 2,500 visits to our website. All in all, over 800 users signed up and are using service. This was in a 24 hour period! Every day our traffic is picking up, we are ironing out the last of the bugs in our apps and we are set for a stable release.

All in all, it has been extremely positive feedback! Happy customers!

I guess the moral of the story is ask for help. Don't be afraid and don't be shy. I have found that people are generally good and are willing to help if given a chance to do so. I should also say, this does not just go for businesses. Ask for help in life in general. You never know what may come of it :)

I should also add, offer help! I saw a guy post his website on Indiehackers. I complimented his site and I was so impressed with it that I told him I was going to link to him. He asked if I wanted anything in return and I said no. I said I just wanted to do this because he offered a good product and it was no big deal. I posted up the link and that was that. A few days later I received a message from him telling me he does not feel right not helping in return and he was going to blast out a paragraph about our service to his 1,000+ newsletter subscribers. His website can be found at https://www.colorsandfonts.com/

At the end of the day, this world is navigated differently by each of us. If we each do small things for each other, we will get through it.

Regards,
Peter @ Oeck.
 
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Oeck

Member
Glad to hear it Peter. Best of luck, I have no doubt you'll continue to see success.
Hi Mike,

Thank you so much!

your marketing must work as I was literally reading a reddit thread about you guys the other night...
Hi combatgamez,

That's awesome! We actually have not really done any marketing aside from a couple of tests on Facebook. All of the rest has been interacting with various communities and word of mouth.

Regards,
Peter @ Oeck.
 
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