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In my regular job I work as a Back-End developer. The job is good but I want more money. So I'm working on a software product which I want to develop and sell as a service. But I see several issues:

  • Lack of time
  • Lack of skills for marketing and selling it.
  • Lack of money to make an effective expensive marketing campaign.

What can you advise me what to do in order to continue to invest into my business product?

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  • What are you willing to sacrifice in order to achieve this goal? – Stephan Branczyk Jan 25 at 21:20
  • Everything in terms of social status, friends, free time. I'm not willing to sacrifice for example my income because, well the world we live in demands us to have and spend money. – Peter Penzov Jan 25 at 21:24
  • Welcome to the real world where "but i want more money" does not magically translate into the universe giving it to you. From what you say it looks like you are where you should be - and you now try to get more for which by your own list you lack any competence for. – TomTom Jan 25 at 22:14
  • And what can you recommend as a solution? – Peter Penzov Jan 25 at 22:46
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    "The job is good but I want more money" A predicament shared amongst a fare amount of people.. – iLuvLogix Jan 26 at 7:59
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If you're confident you have a saleable idea you commit or you just talk about it in the pub to impress your friends.

This means you find the time, you either learn about marketing or find funding. Leverage your professional network if you can, and keep working away until you make a breakthrough and get it sold.

If you don't commit, then you're wasting your time. I make a steady trickle of revenue from an idea I had a long time ago, there was no funding available so I had to become an expert in specific parts of several diverse fields. It was a long hard battle to get my foot in, but I was committed. Once you have a proven product it gets a bit easier, but no one is going to hold your hand in business, most people starting in business are viewed as victims.

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Your location is paramount. Depending on where you are located, there are several options

For example - in Canada there are startup accelerators / incubators

https://blog.salesflare.com/top-startup-accelerators-incubators-us-canada

If your idea is interesting, and most SaaS solutions are lately, you may receive lots of help

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  • I live in Eastern Europe. I doubt that Canadian fund will agree to invest into company outside Canada. But I may try to send a e-mail to some of them. – Peter Penzov Jan 25 at 22:29
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    @PeterPenzov I think the point Strader made was to find something similar where you live. It is somewhat likely that your governments makes some funds available for startups or the EU could help you with something similar (if you are in the EU of course). – Pampa Nello Jan 27 at 9:03
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The unfortunately realistic answer..

Can you work a regular job and start a company in parallel?

No.

You have to "go for it", quit, and apply yourself to nothing but the new product idea.

There have only ever been a handful of exceptions to this.

The "business journey" is as inevitable as the hero's journey in myth. There's no "half-way" option.

(Indeed, I suggest reading The Hero's Journey (Campbell) to anyone thinking of starting a product or business. Enjoy!)

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  • actually I don't know if there are any exceptions to this, really. – Fattie Jan 26 at 15:25
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    We learn a whole lot more when we are committed to the business. I've seen statements like "People who start their own company learn more the first year than they could ever have done in an MBA program." The emotional impact of decisions, lack of income, seeing the money go out and nothing coming in, etc. all make a huge difference when we go "all in". – David R Jan 26 at 15:46
  • all nicely put, @DavidR – Fattie Jan 26 at 16:00
  • right - you can keep working, if someone like Steve Jobs is your business partner! :) – Fattie Jan 26 at 17:50
  • While I agree that eventually the "go for it" time must happen, for anyone looking to start their own company, knowing when that time is an important step. Knowing when you have reached that movement, is one of those skills, that separates those that create their own company and those that do not. Until you reach that moment, you must decide, how much time you are willing to put into your goal. You can spend today to prepare for tomorrow. I have a MBA from a private college, many of the things we discussed, was geared towards setting business goals and how to achieve them – Donald Jan 27 at 21:23
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  1. Find a job which doesn't use 8 hours a day. I have worked in many such jobs. The average worker does 3 hours of work a day. Withdraw in meetings, don't propose things that will generate more work, and focus on your tasks and you can easily wrangle most of your time back. You won't get promoted, but the time investment between mediocre and excellent is often enormous.
  1. Find a business partner to help you with that.

  2. Marketing need not be an expensive ad on TV. If you found a decent marketing partner, this would be evident to you. Lots of companies started by winning one user at a time.

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  • For 1. I agree. I will be evaluated at the end of the year as "underperformer". But nowadays the only way to increase the salary is to change the job. For 2. I agree. The issue is that when you are around people with "worker" mindset it's very hard to find any. – Peter Penzov Jan 25 at 21:16
  • Well, that fices his "lack of time", or? – TomTom Jan 25 at 22:15
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    please don't do this.. starting a company is a full time thing, not a "gig economy" commitment. OP won't be able to get the company off the ground (it's a full time job to do that), and OP won't have time to do their day job ... – bharal Jan 26 at 3:18
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    Why would anyone vote this down ? – Fattie Jan 26 at 15:07
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    "please don't do this.. starting a company is a full time thing, not a "gig economy" commitment" - and yet there are plenty of people who started their own company on the side and then grew it. Seems reality does not agree with what you say. Particularly in the initial phases it is something you can easily do on the side and on weekends, as the initial phases are market research and business plan. – TomTom Jan 26 at 15:20
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I think you answered your own question, but I'll repeat your answer: Go to the library / bookstore and start learning about sales (and to a lesser degree marketing).

Without someone in the company having some idea of sales or marketing, odds are your company won't grow.

Sales generally takes more time to develop than most non-sales people think. Even if you know your field well, odds are you don't know how to develop a sales strategy, or how to implement one that's been planned. Consider hiring for the skills you lack; but, remember that your sales personnel can have undue influence over the company if you lack basic knowledge of your company's most important department (so you'll have to learn it anyway).

Lots of good products become bad products just as soon as it becomes apparent that they will be difficult, if not impossible, to sale. A product that won't sale is a good solution to a problem that people don't see the value in fixing.

Don't take the "Field of Dreams" approach, "If you build it, they will come." as odds are they'll never even hear about your product.

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