The Next 1000 Customers

Seth Godin wrote a thought-provoking article last week on how markets are overstimulated. Too many products chasing too many people trying to be all things to all people. And of course the press loves these kinds of apps and talks about them a lot. The best quote:

If you’re entering a market filled with loudness, it’s harder to be noticed, even if the incremental benefit you offer seems large to you. If you’re trying to delight existing customers, the more delighted they already are, the more new delight you need to offer to turn heads.

I’m guilty of forgetting this. In the pursuit of making a living wage it seems we have been constantly trying to attract more customers to powerOne. Of course this is what the App Store does to productivity apps because the opportunities for recurring income (whether upgrades or subscriptions or whatnot) is so limited. So we are constantly looking for the next 1000 customers to pay us $4.99.

This isn’t sustainable. We need to move to a model that supports us so we can focus on our core set of customers that care deeply about our products, use them every day, and need them to work effectively. I want to make our products better for those that care and are willing to pay for them, not worry about attracting more and more customers who really aren’t discerning about the true benefits of our software.