A few weeks back, I spoke about a new project that I’ve been working on called FlyerFalcon. I’d like to discuss how I’m thinking about product development these days, and how this new project fits into my overall business architecture.
Why I’m working on FlyerFalcon
So, FlyerFalcon is the first serious “web app” that I’ve built, rather beyond a traditional website. Part of the allure of this project is to learn some new tech (Elixir + Phoenix + LiveView is just so dang cool), and experiment with some things I’ve learned around SEO and capturing web traffic. It’s every bit a bootcamp in marketing as it is for learning Phoenix.
The other part of this project is that it’s not iOS. I’ve built and maintained so many iOS apps over the past 11 years that I just needed a break. I’m not leaving forever, on the contrary Swift Starter Kits just had its best month on record having finally ranked first on Google for the keyword “SwiftUI Starter Kit”. Taking a break from the project has been good I think. Around June of this year I just felt as if I was spinning my wheels on it, having built and rebuilt the kit into a totally different thing 3 times once I had user feedback.
I made a lot of mistakes working on Swift Starter Kits: building a product before validating the idea, thinking about marketing after building a product, etc. Once I started to think about how to actually market it (hot take: “building in public” isn’t an actual marketing strategy), I realized I built a thing that people weren’t really looking for. At least not in the volumes that are needed to be self-sustaining.
Swift Starter Kits Marketing Improvements
To reiterate, I’m not giving up on Swift Starter Kits, it has better sales now than it did 6 months ago, and I’ve learned a ton about marketing in the interim that I’d like to incorporate back into the existing marketing site. Things like:
- Slightly rework the landing page copy to tell a better story, and talk to the pain points it solves, rather than the unordered grab bag of features it currently upsells.
- Use the positive user feedback as testimonials.
- Adding a web page for every feature included with the kit to rank for new SEO terms.
- Bring back the Firebase authentication kit that was effectively version 0 and gave away for free (which I subsequently removed in a full pivot to SwiftUI). In hindsite, this kit was a terrific lead generator, and gained more emails in 1 month than I’ve gotten in the 8 months since removing it.
- Write an automated email nurturing and sales campaign, targetting users who downloaded the free kit, but haven’t upgraded to the licensed version.
A good week of work on it will pay dividends, I think.
FlyerFalcon’s Short term goals
But, in the meantime I’m not quite ready to shift gears away from FlyerFalcon. It’s up, it’s working, and I’ve spent the last few weeks chipping away at writing pages dedicated to marketing the product. To date, I’ve generated programmatic versions of landing pages for roughly 200 search terms, variants of the default landing page, but tailored to a specific long tail of keywords that show niche buying intent. Additionally, I published ~20 blog posts about “how to create a flyer”, specific to several industry verticals. These are a little “click-baity”, but I’m interested to see whether they result in traffic.
In a similar fashion, I have a pretty long list of articles to get through on my intended site map. These are my immediate focus:
- /features/* pages, detailing every individual thing that FlyerFalcon does that provides value.
- /alternative-to/* pages, detailing how FlyerFalcon is different than key competitors, and specializes in solving the single problem of “local advertisement using paper flyers”.
- /templates/* pages, which will have a dedicated page with images and descriptions for every template FlyerFalcon offers.
- /examples/* pages, which will aggregate example output of all generated templates, but for specific use cases.
- /how-it-works page, which will give a detailed walk through of how the product functions. Content from this page I’ll reuse on the main landing page.
- /flyer-marketing, will be a complete guide on how to effectively market with paper flyers, where to put them, what to avoid, etc.