S2E5: Customer Development with the founder of Headliner.app

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In this week’s episode of Strike Gold, we speak with Oliver Wellington the Co-Founder of Headliner.app. 

Even though headliner.app is already a well known marketing tool for podcasters the company’s co-founder Oliver Wellington believes they aren’t at Product Market Fit yet. 

As some of the top products in the world, headliner.app was born as a side project. The team has been working together over a decade, sold the previous company they collaborated on and in the last two year, have been working on the best marketing tool suite for podcasters that now serves over 30k podcasters. 

The road to creating the online video creation tool to help podcaster promote their podcast online wasn’t easy from the start, the journey is filled with lessons every young company can learn from. 

Our key takeaways: 

Know when to pivot

Your original vision might not be the product your audience needs.

Oliver’s team’s original product was all about recording conversations (podcasts and more) using your phone.

While in theory, it was something everyone wanted, the adoption rate wasn’t great. 

Very similar to Instagram’s classic BURBN pivot story, looking into their data, unveiled that people were excited about a feature within the product. 

The ability to post a video of your audio. 

Which has become the foundation of what headlioner.app is today. 

The now pivoted product, indeed gain traction much faster. 

Focus on fast-feedback loops

Every moment that you don’t learn, is a moment wasted. 

To iterate fast, you need to understand what’s working as fast as possible. 

For that, you need to make sure you create fast feedback loops. 

These days, the Headliner team collects feedback from users using a “request Trello board”, their support chat and email and through a survey, they distribute using their newsletter. 

Because Headliner.app grew from the podcast community and they keep close relations with their users and community, they have a solid fan base that is always happy to give feedback and help. 

The better relationship you have with your users, the increased chances that they’ll be more responsive when you’ll need them. 

Non-marketing marketing:

The secret to headliner.app ’s close relationship with their community and ability to maintain such a great and intense relationship with their users is that the team members were community members first. 

They’ve been big fans of podcasts for a long time and have been giving tips on equipment and editing way before they had their product in the field. 

They were able to create fast growth with no funding or paid media by providing value to the community and creating a string WOM referral engine. 

Listening to your audience is key to building a product your audience wants to use.

By being a part of the community, they are able to not only be “marketers” in that field but also feel the need right off the ground.

We hope you enjoyed this episode!

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A big thank you to Elad Levy for joining me this week. Until next time!

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