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Here’s what I learned hanging out with Jason Fried

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I went to meet Jason Fried so I could learn how to stop selling software by accident.

Since I started programming 10 years ago, I’ve made a fair amount of money online. But those sales were mostly coincidental.

By that I mean, I never thought deeply about how and why products were bought. I would build something, release it and drive traffic to it. Sales would almost always trickle in. But I never took the time to understand who was buying and why. I never worked on refining my sales copy, or understanding which forms of traffic brought the most customers.

Once I released a product I would do one of two things: start working on adding new features or start working on something else. I didn’t take time to understand what was working and what wasn’t. I wasn’t really interested in refining and simplifying – just seduced by the prospect of building something new.

You can learn things by doing this. I’ve learned a lot in the last 10 years. But I think getting from being good to being great requires something else. Building great products requires constant practice at the art of building understanding. It also requires getting rid of everything except what’s absolutely necessary.

With this in mind, what my co-founders and I have been working on over the past few months with Firefly is learning how to sell deliberately. When we make a sale, we want it to be because the copy addressed customer pain and offered a solution they could connect with on an emotional level. We don’t want to make a sale because a customer is smart enough to swim through a list of features he doesn’t care about, and come up with a reason to pay money on his own. Continue Reading

7 Jan 2013, 3:41pm | 24 comments


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