Today’s blog post from Seth Godin highlights what for me, is the most significant benefits of bootstrapping a product.
You’re not a bootstrapper because you are thinking small. You’re a bootstrapper because it offers a chance to chart your own course and to serve your customers without conflict.
Innovation almost always comes from individuals who see a chance to make things better. Instead of waiting, they go first.
I really enjoyed my time freelancing. Working from home, setting my own hours, but most importantly, having more time to do meaningful work and being able to spend more time with family.
I’ve been trying to steer back towards this in the last year, and while I am making progress, I’m still not quite 100% there yet. I’m still in the early days of bootstrapping this product of mine, and I’m only now just starting to onboard the first few customers. Sure I’m spending some time at night and at weekends building this, but I’m in control of how much time I want to spend on it. It’s short-term pain for a long-term gain.
The product itself is hardly a game-changer, in fact, it is really just a content management system geared towards golf organisations. I choose this market after doing some research into current systems for this market and finding that most golf clubs and professionals are making do with poorly implemented websites. Also, some golf clubs are using a handful of third-party solutions to put together a working site. Hardly ideal.
There’s more to this than just delivering a product though. Through my product, I would like to see organisations in the golf industry prosper.
I would like to see more golf clubs attracting and retaining new members. I would like to see more golf unions promoting their junior development squads. I would like to see more local professionals succeeding as the preferred retail outlet for golfers as opposed to online outlets.
I can’t solve every problem for everyone. Still, by putting these organisations first and creating solutions for them, I hope that I can help these organisations succeed. By bootstrapping my own product, I can keep the focus on these organisations.
Bootstrapping my product will take time, energy and money. I hope that in the long term though, I will eventually have a business that will create value for organisations and in turn, allow me to create my own path.