I thought to mark the occasion of getting interviewed on the Indiehackers podcast I would run through some of my favourite interviews so far. I've been reading and listening to Indiehackers for three years now. So I was really stoked to record an interview with Courtland Allen and talk about my journey into entrepreneurship. I'll do a post just about that later on but in the mean time you can listen to it here.
When I first got introduced to the website I was reading text interviews but I find the podcasts better as you can obviously get a better feel for what someone is saying when they are speaking over just reading text. In no particular order, here are my faves:
When I quit my terrible job last summer I was walking around Edinburgh and listening to this podcast telling myself everything would be ok. It really gave me the confidence to keep on going. Lynne taught herself to code and had no business training or experience when she set up Key Values.
She talks about lots of important topics like selling to businesses instead of consumers, how to set your pricing, how to get better at sales and there is tonnes of value in this episode. It's essential listening for any indie hacker. I still regularly listen to this episode, especially when I am having a bad day. Plus, the banter betwen her and Courtland (they are college friends) is really funny!
I believe this was the first episode I ever read. At first this was a text interview but it's fun to listen to the podcast as well. Scott was a big inspiration partly because of his background - he did a Politics degree just like myself. So I remember writing in my diary that if Scott could go into entrepreneurship without formal business training, so could I.
The story is really remarkable because for a long time there wasn't even a website called Scott's Cheap Flights - it was a sub page of his blog or something. Put it simply, it wasn't the slick operation it is now. But of course web busineses rarely are! It does seem to have grown organically and it's great to see that Scott was able to build it up gradually. You don't have to have everything arranged just so - in fact as the LinkedIn founder says, "if you aren't embarassed by the first version of your product you've launched too late".
I've definitely been inspired by Scott's approach to newsletters - he always has a friendly, conversational tone and it's not the dull, corporate tone that so many companies do. So that's also the approach I take for No CS Degree newsletters. He's also grown his company to millions of dollars which is pretty incredible! His podcast is really interesting and he talks about ways he grew his mailing list and his choices around pricing.
This episode has so many great tips for founders - talk to your customers face to face to gauge interest and get feedback, the 1-2-3 sales method I mention in my own podcast and don't be afraid of selling to big businesses as an indie founder.
Steli has a very cool backstory as well. He learned how to trade stocks when he was a teenager and arrived in America asking for a train to "Silicon Valley". He's done an amazing job with his Close business and he has lots of great tips for people who want to improve their sales technique. He also emphasises that you don't have to be this sleazy sales person to do sales. Everything in life is about persuasion aka sales. So persuading your friends what restaurant to go to is sales, for example. I learned loads from this episode and Steli is a really exciting speaker to listen to. I come back to this one a lot!
This was a big motivator for me. I saw Pat go from posting in telegram groups like WIP to building up Starter Story. So it was awesome to see him get on the Indie Hackers podcast! I even challenged myself to follow his example and get interviewed by Indie Hackers as well.
It's great to listen to Pat talk about building up an interviews site like Starter Story since obviously that is what I am making with No CS Degree as well. At the time Pat was making $4k a month so I figured if he could get up to that figure, I could make an interviews website that did the same. It's also cool to hear Pat and Courtland talk about the fact that makers so often are hostile to companies that are similar to each other. But of course you'd never hear an Italian restaurant owner object to another Italian restaurant opening in town.
Obviously there are lots more I could choose from and putting this list together was hard. I try to listen to a new Indiehackers podcast every day and there is so much useful information out there, all for free!
Be sure to listen to my own interview with Courtland here.