8: Landing Page Learnings & Onboarding Observations

Alan talks about the difficulties of launching a product with lots of different use cases, onboarding ideas & subtle problems with microcopy, and Mario discusses the latest changes to fusioncast’s landing page.

Alan: So, Hey, how's it going?

Mario: Hey Alan, how's it going?

I know.

Alan: Where we call me?

Need more

practice at this,

Mario: yeah, I know

we need

to start recording


I should turn that on.


it starts recording from the
beginning and we don't have to worry

about it.

And so it captures, it,


everything from the beginning.

Alan: So yeah, last time you
were having issues with this this

session re auto recording right
off my recordings, at least anyway,

Mario: Yeah.

Unfortunately, I haven't been able

to spend any time working on this, on the

product itself because I've
been working on, you know,

Alan: doing the actual other

Mario: stuff.


So actually, that's one of the
things I want to talk to you about


So yeah, one of the things that I
wanted to talk to you about is this idea

that I have to force myself
to spend more time working on

marketing, you know, related items.


Alan: Yes.

Mario: so I'm thinking about splitting
my time somehow in, half the time

working on the product itself, and
half the time working on marketing

related stuff.

Alan: Yeah.

I know I know the feeling

well, it's, it's really difficult to


these, right.

Because it's a, you think, well, I

can't get my marketing stuff



I've sorted this for the
product, because then it's not


Or it's changing.

And then when you


too much time

on the marketing side,
you're like, oh my God,


product hasn't

changed in two weeks.

So you feel like, yeah, it's,
it's a tricky balance to get

Mario: yeah, yeah, exactly.

Alan: that'll change over time as


I mean, I think at least for the

stuff like landing

page and stuff, or at

least the basic marketing material, yet

once you've hit a certain point, you'll
be like, okay, I can step away from that.

Then I guess, bouncing
between the two, rather

than trying to

split your week, half And half

is going to be probably more
keep your sanity in the long run,


Mario: Yes.


And that's, that's the tricky part.

So considering that at least for
myself, Don't do well with, and

probably most people don't do well
with context switching, Right.

So it's a, it's a real productivity killer

to be switching context all the time.

So I, I'm more productive when I'm,
when I can focus large blocks of time,


know, working on, on something.

So even if it's a coding

session, right, I, I do better if I have


at least a couple of hours to dedicate
to coding as opposed to, you know,

just an hour or half an hour here and
there, I can't really get anywhere.

Alan: So hard to, yeah,
you can't get anywhere.

in that amount of time.

I mean, this is what makes it so hard.

This, you know, this idea of trying
to, you know, do client work, I'll

do other work, you know, working
on multiple projects and things.

It's, it's great.

In theory, it just, it's
really hard to do in real life.

you I think I'm the only
same way to do it is


make sure that.

Block out a certain amounts

of your time to say, okay, I am going to

be spending three hours
tomorrow evening to

work on a thing and not trying

to think, well, I'll


squeeze this in at the end of doing this.


just like, it's no good for you.

Productivity sucks.

And also I

think it just makes you feel

more anxious about it as well, because
you feel everything's like piling up

rather than being able to think I
made significant progress on this.


You feel that you're just constantly
fighting things as opposed to,


Mario: Yeah.


And so taking that into

account, I've been thinking about

maybe splitting my

time in a way that is like maybe


week, you know, a


week I dedicate to coding dedicated to

the product itself and then another week,
dedicated to marketing related stuff.

And so go

back and forth between
that, a week, coding a week


Alan: As I say, you'll probably find a

certain changes happen at certain
times of the product as well.


You'll hit a point where it's like,
okay, I need to spend the next two or

three weeks focusing on development
because marketing is looking after

itself an hour and I can shift focus.

But yeah, I think something like that

Mario: Yeah, because part of,
part of the marketing is also, you

know, social media, social media
posts and, and stuff like that.

That can be sort of automated.

If I, if I spend, let's

say a

week creating not the whole,
not the entire time doing that,

but as part of that week of
work on marketing, I could,

Create some, posts or,

you know, some Twitter,
posts that I can schedule


and, you know, stack

them up.

And so the following
week, when I'm working on


then, then those can be, you know,

Alan: Stuff still active, even though

you're not actively

Mario: yeah, exactly.


it's like dripping those those,

Alan: Not just disappeared off the
face of the planet for a few weeks.


Just cause you're

Mario: yeah.


So something like that find ways to
automate and still be doing something

in that front while focusing
on coding and focusing on

the product.

Alan: And of course,
then you've got the point

when you actually, when we actually
start having more customers

who are going to start having

more support requests, then.

That's another constant, which is

going to be in the

mix always.

I mean, that's not something
you can put off for a week.


Mario: Yes, exactly.

Alan: I think leaving

space in the future,

you know, shed your brain schedule for

that as well as it's.



Mario: Yeah.

So, yeah, regardless of

whether I'm working on
the product itself or the

other things that I need to work on

I would have

to be focusing

on, on support for sure.

Alan: No.

So far, so far you, with
the users that you've got

how's the support been ha as in how many
support requests have you been getting?

Is it like a few occasionally

Mario: far I haven't gotten
any, any support requests

I only got one for,

Backup recordings then they

Alan: Oh yeah.


Mario: Because

Alan: Cause it's manual at the


Isn't it?

You have to


Mario: yeah, they have to request
them from me And then, so I

can retrieve

them And

send them to them.

So I got one of those


early on

because it was an issue,
but that's been fixed.

So I haven't gotten any

more requests like that.

Alan: And that's something you

can at least to a point
automate in the future as well.


So that's, that's something that.

you can just tackle when it's, when
it becomes something that will take

up a significant part of your time.

It's like, okay, now
it's time to automate it.


Rather than wasting time

Mario: Yes.

And and then I got
another, it wasn't really a

support request.

One more,

more feedback or, you know,
just something that, happened

with the app you know, they submitted a, a

message, you know, just
indicating what had happened.

Kind of

a little, glitch

something I need to

look into.

So it kind of is a

support request, but

it's not it's

it was like a one-off kind of

Alan: it is a one at very,


It's not, not the type of thing.

So this is something that

again, I've only got, you know, this
handful of like beta users at the moment.

And this is, this actually comes into
something I was going to mention today

as well, is this the expectations
of my Japanese users are quite

different from the expectations.

I'll lose the the patterns I'm seeing from

all the first few Japanese users
of Japanese users versus non

Japanese users is quite different.

And there's, there's definitely this
aspect of like tell me what to do.

Versus, let me figure it out for myself.

So I'm kind of seeing this
repeatedly is rather than for

instance some of my BT users in
the UK like just give me a log in.

Let, let me poke around,
let me work it out.

And the difference here with the users
are like, what can we through it?

Show me how to use it.

Show me not just how to use it
perhaps, but how I should be using it.

And that's something that's, I guess it's
a change of mindset that I think I've got

to make is I think for the longest time.

And I think all of the products I've
built myself, as opposed to, for clients

who are part of another company, I like
this idea of, I guess something like the

original delicious or flicker or the,
the, the old school web applications

where they were like, we've built a thing.

It's does things, there's features,
there's things like tags and

things, and you figure it out.

It's the, there isn't a
prescribed way of doing it.

It's, it's just, it does things.

And then over time,
people will find patterns.

There's a lot of human hacking of
making it work the way they want it to.

And I guess my product design tendency
is to think of things like that as

well is to think things in that way.

It's like, okay, if I add this
feature, then it could be used in

these five different ways and I'll
let people figure it out and, you

know, work out what works best.

And the thing that's a difference of
most web applications that I'm finding

today, which are now as I've, I'm kind
of more aware of this and I'm looking

a little bit more critical about their
onboarding and the way the interfaces

are constructed and the word yeah.

The way they're designed
and the copy they use.

And say the onboarding particularly
they like use do this, use

this, like this, and that's it.

And that's really difficult for, I
guess, for me internally to feel like

I have the confidence to do that.


I mean, I have, in my mind, a, an ideal
usage pattern of how the application

would is used best, both from experience
and from designing it in a particular

way, but I've been very, very hesitant.

Telling people to use it like that,
just because I'm like, well, who am I?

Who am I to tell you how
to run your business?

You know, so I can advise, but I don't
feel that, you know, I, I'm not going

to storm in there and say, okay, you
need to do this and you need to do that.

And don't do that.

So the product is, is almost like
a light touch it onwards probably

too late to touch in telling
you what to do or how to use it.

And, and I'm now rethinking that just
because they, everybody I've spoke

to is using it in a different way.

All of the B2 users tend to be used
in a different, and that's fine.

That's good.

But at the same time, they're
also like, am I doing it wrong?

And I'm like, there is no wrong.

And they're like

that you're, you're using it differently.

And I'm like, yes, but that
doesn't mean it's wrong.

It's just that what fits with
your business and, and that's

causing anxiety for my users.

Because there feel like, ah, I,
I, I feel that I'm doing it wrong.

I don't know what you want me to do here,
so I'm not going to do anything because

I don't know what I should be doing.

And I'm like, okay, that's,
that's thrown me a little bit.

So with that in mind, I'm trying
to address it in both my marketing

onboarding of my marketing materials.

Just so it sets the tone for
why you should be using this,

not just what it does, but

this is the problem.

I guess this is a marketing and

product design thing to consider
right from a marketing aspect.

You know, we the almost like recommended,
you know, the, the, the known this

is how we should do it is stating
the problem that somebody has and

how this application will help make
your life better by doing these.

Rather than just saying
it does this have at it.

So I'm trying to rethink the like
the pitch as to make it clearer as

to what not just what the problem is.

It does that already, but how
that our product will solve it.

In what specific way it's like by doing
this, you will have this outcome be

much more clear about what I expect
you to do if you use this product.

I think that'll set the
expectations going in a little more.

But then as part of the onboarding be
very basically have a stronger hand

with telling people what to do next.

Like, you should do this at this time,
and this is when you'll do it next.

So be much more opinionated in
how I expect people to use it.


I, it makes me nervous.

It makes me kind of

makes me feel anxious because I'm like,
you know, They don't want to do It like

Mario: Yeah.


That's interesting.

It makes me wonder how other

products handle that and how

the Japanese culture

deals with other software.

Because if

you know, a

couple of products come
to mind, like notion, for


where you can do so much
and it's so, you know

Alan: The classic do everything's right.


And at least the, of the modern

Mario: yeah.

you can, do

everything and

anything in different ways.

However you

want, you know, it's
designed for you to, to,

to do it.

However you, However

works best for you

Alan: think what they do well is.

They address very specific
use cases within that though.

So, I mean, they have like a ton of
different landing pages depending

on where you're coming from.

So, you know, if you're, if they do a
promoted tweet for you know, project

managers, you end up at a landing page
that talks to project managers and says,

this is, this is how, what notion does.

And these are the things
you can do with it.

And I think I've done,
it used to another few.

I've been trying around lots of different
products like this and almost this like

template idea of

you're coming

in you,

know, what's your primary role?

Tweaks the onboarding to make it work
for you So It suggests use cases.

It suggests templates.

It almost is like a private, you,
know, onboarding service for your job.

So they have tons of use case
examples of, you know, if you're

a, a product designer, this is the
templates you might work for you.

If this, if you're a developer,
then these are the ways you

can use this.

Both in the, the images
they use, the language

they use it it's,

it's quite intimidating
when you think about, oh

my God,

Mario: well, yeah.


Alan: this?

Mario: and they have the

resources to do, to do that.

Alan: the resources to do

Mario: And as an indie maker, it's
not possible to compete at that level.

So you have to

figure out another way that you can do it,

you know, at a.

At a scale that works for you
or that works for us, you know?

Cause I may

come across the same problem too.

Alan: Well, I mean, it's almost like,

you know?

fusion cust as

well to the

point where it works great as a,

you know, two person

three person podcast.

If you then

think of people like in a business
context while I want to do a


business you


like a.

manager podcast is just me using it.

Well, I don't


guests that none of your,

All of your UI

is designed


a having more than one
people share, fueling a


doing a a recording and then

posting it,

to something else.

It's, it's very designed around

this aspect of like a guest having guests

on your podcast rate.

So you for you've already kind of,

Decided that's your, it's not a
niche, but that's your focus, right?

That's your, your audience.

And I guess that the, I
guess this is part of the.

Again, the recommended practices
of doings, a, an indie product rate

is picking a very targeted audience
and talking directly to them.


it's, you know, it's this thing that
will, who's your audience home, everybody.

And that's just impossible to cope with.


So I think


I guess I have to just be
more targeted with that right.

Be much more conscious of who I'm speaking
to, at least at this stage, it's like,

look at my list of people that are, that
are already on my waiting list that are

already Beta using the app and find that
common trait between them or at least

the majority bucket that I can put them
in and then start to talk towards that.


I mean, I've already made the
conscious decision of, you know,

looking at smaller companies.

So avoiding the, you know, the big mega
co-ops and even though, right, exactly.

Even though, as I said,

Like the bank advisor, the, a lot of
the people I've spoken to in Japan are

like, don't talk to small businesses.

They've got no time for this talk to
a bigger corporations who will have

got time and money to try things out.

But I'm,

I can't do that.

Mario: Yeah.

Alan: not at this stage.

I don't have the resources to be
able to cope with talking to Toyota.


Mario: Yeah,

Alan: That's going to take a
little bit of my time to do that.


So I think, you know, looking
at the small you know,

10 to 15 person companies makes much
more sense at this stage for me.

So I guess optimizing
my, copy that the way,

Yeah, just the entire experience
optimizing for that is something I need

to do a little bit more of, I guess,

a lot more of,

Mario: yeah,

yeah, yeah.

Alan: but I mean, you, you mentioned
Japanese companies versus others.

I mean, this is a problem, not a problem.

It's a difference between


generally software and how it's

used here, or at least not how it's used,
but how people use it and how they see

it as fitting into their, their job.

And it's very much this idea


it's it's this is, these are the
tasks, these are the instructions

for doing this, do that.

And that's it.

And also, I mean, Japan has
a, a much stronger history of

being mobile first as well.

So especially with
desktop software, I mean,

I, I, grew up with a computer since
the age of like seven or eight.


There were eight bit things
that didn't do anything.

But we've always had computers
in my house, everybody.

I know all of my friends.

Computers in their house.

And that's not a common thing
that, that, isn't a historically

strong thing in Japan.

People didn't have a home computer out.

Of course, that's very generalizing.

There's obviously a home computer market,
but it wasn't as widely commoditized

in the way it was in least in the UK.

and I think in the U S as well.

So the seems to be a little bit more
hesitancy about trying things in

software, as in, you know, you had a,
you open up a new application, you,

you just click on everything, right?

So it was this do, what does this do is
that there's no fear about breaking it.

There's more curiosity
about where's its limits.

What can I do with this?

What, what, how can I
use this for what I want.

Whereas here, it feels like, again,
I'm speaking very generally and

only from the BT users that I've
been talking with having used it and

watching them and talking to them is
like, what, what, what do I press?

And it's like, well, what, what
do you think you should practice?

And I like, tell me where to
press, you know, how do I use this?

Which button do I click on it?

It's it feels a lot more
like to tell me how to use

this tool as opposed to
give me a hammer and I'll

make it

Mario: Yeah.

Alan: So that needs to be part of my

onboarding experience

Mario: Yeah.

And I think we've talked about,

In the past, I think we talked

about the use of video

that you, I think you wanted to
implement more video and integrate it

into the app itself.

So it, it, it serves as,

On the spot

kind of help for

Alan: Right.

You know, what's really funny about this.

It's like, so, you know,
on my New check-in page.

I think it's called your
plans at the moment, which I'm

in the process of changing.

I'll mentioned that as well.

Th there's a normal, not a quarter of the
screen, but it's a big chunk of the bottom

right-hand corner of, the screen is like
a video box saying basically play here for

an intro.


I spoken to two people
who now who didn't see


It's on their

screen, but I think we've got so blind

to pop-ups and sidebars

and boxes

and inline things.

It's like, they almost, they
literally blank that out.

I'm like th there was two people and
they were using the same company in that,

like, and they're like, he's like, well,
I didn't know what to do here and there.

The lady's like, there's
a big video on the screen.

Did you watch that?

And it's like, what video?

It's the big box with a play button on it.

And he's like, I never noticed that.

And I'm like, whoa, hold on.

Mario: It's like video of the gorilla
in the middle of the room and no one's

Alan: Right, right, exactly.


I was like, hold on


Mario: wow, interesting.

Alan: I think this

idea of like, doing like a
modal based welcome is I need to

Mario: Yeah.

Blast it on, on their faces.

Alan: full screen.

Like watch this, I'll

skip it right.

As opposed to like I, you know, I
was like, well, if I just put it

there on the screen, they can hide

it and it's done, but if they want to play
it and they're like, I didn't notice that.

Mario: Yeah.

it's going to have to be a modal that
auto opens and auto plays the video.

So you don't have to click on anything.

Alan: Exactly.

Mario: yeah, those are
all interesting challenges

that we have to figure out.

Alan: Yes.

And th this as a side to that as
well I'm just realizing the, the,

language of some

of my,

Things like plans and check-ins
again, I know what they mean.

That doesn't mean my users



So I'm trying to


My language

make more consistent the language
throughout my application.

So I'm trying to, I I'm
re almost removing this.

I use plans

a lot and that

throws people just because everyone is

like, what's a plan.

And I

say, well, it's the plan?

Checking has

lots of plans.

And they're like, I thought I'd plan.

I thought a check-in was a plan

then I'm like,

Mario: Oh

Alan: So it's yeah,
I'm, I'm rewording that.

And I'm also

changing the New check-in


I'm not gonna use it.

So it's not my plans anymore.

It's then create new check-in page


Right now it opens multiple
form fields because the

expectation is it's like, well, you
went to your plans in there, and that is

throwing people because a I used the word
save as well next to each form field.

And the idea is, again, it

different people have different
experiences, but a save button

saves a page.

Doesn't save a

thing on a page.


So I'm changing that to add and they
won't auto open you click on add new

planned I forgot the trying different
textbooks and new plan click on that.

And it opens a form field to add it
hit return so rather than popping up

too many form fields, because again,
people think of a web form as being.

Still a thing that gets submitted as a
page rather than being an in-line thing.

And I think that's also

maybe a downside of using more traditional
form looking elements rather than

a more custom if you use a, an spa
SAS product, it, they don't tend to

style things in a traditional web way.

As in it doesn't have a, the, with slight
border shadow, a, you know, an inline

form field it'll have a, something that
looks more application as a form field.

And people disassociate
that from being a web.

Again, it depends on the user's
experience, but someone who's coming

from, you know, knowing what a web
application is and its limits, they

assume that it's like, well, if I click
save, that's going to save the page.

And it's like, no, it's
just adding that item.


And it's like, oh, well
it looks like a form.

It is, but

Mario: yeah, yeah,

Alan: this is me losing,
learning UX in real time.

Mario: yeah,

I can see that.

I can see that.

And it makes me think about my UI for
adding guests to a schedule session

where there's just an add button that,
adds a new row to add a new guest.

And there's just a one save button that

saves the whole thing.

Alan: And it's like, does that, by
adding that, does that save it or does,

do I need to click save after adding.

Mario: Yeah, yeah,

Alan: And this is where,

yeah, the copy I need to is on the page.

It's much more clearer about our it's
much more obvious what's happening.

Not like it doesn't leave any

ambiguity because again,
there's the, the main, it's been

interesting that it just

I've had some very good direct,

Feedback about, like, I don't
understand this, this isn't

clear to me, what does that.

button do and say, okay,
this is what I need.

This is the, and these aren't



These are like, you know, core users
who I expect to be selling to, you

know, it's so this is, is really,

Helping just make that experience much


So it's, it's

been super, but yeah, you can
see me learning how to do a


interface design in real time.

Mario: It's it's, it's
unbelievable how, how,

difficult It is


address all these different aspects

and, and make it

clear for everyone because
everyone has a different background

and a different perspective

and they see things differently and

it's, it's, it's, really


It's, it's, that's why it's

feel of its own, you know,
user experience, user

Alan: and that's why
there's usually a team

Mario: Yeah.

Alan: right?

Mario: And we're just
one person doing it all.

Alan: Yes.

Mario: So it is challenging, but

Alan: But I mean, it's
super, I mean, the, the

massive benefit of this
as, you know, just the it's

how I learn best, right.

Is by doing it and finding and failing.


it's I won't make that



You know, it's just every bit of


Just make sure

next time you do it better.

And it's funny now


I think I tweeted this the other day.

I been working on

this redesigned rework
of the new check-in.

and because that's what I'm using in



And so I'm used to seeing that now it's

constantly being tweaked.

It's just looking better

day by day.

And then I opened production with
the client and I'm like, oh my God.

It's like, it looks so like old now,
I guess that because I'm used to

it looking so much better seeing what

the production users are
using is, oh, that's you okay.

I need to get this done.

But at the same time, like two
weeks ago, three weeks ago, that

looked fine to me.


Mario: yeah, yeah.

Alan: It's

just this, you know, like it is a massive


Mario: that's it, that's the way it is.

That's the way it is.

You, you have something


you know, you come back

later and look at it and it's

like, ah, yeah, it's not,
it's not the most ideal maybe.

And and then you've gotten feedback And,

you, you

see things


Alan: Speaking of that yeah.

Saw your new landing page for Fusioncast

Mario: oh, thank you.

Yeah, you saw it.

Alan: That's very nice.

Yeah, No, it looks nice.



Mario: Yeah.

Thank you.

I don't know how I feel about It yet.

I didn't want to go the route

of training something that's you know

that, that looks just like
everything else out there.

I wanted to do something

unique and different and,
and that's why I had created



different before with

a landing page that was designed
based inspired by the 1950s, you know,

radio, radio era.

Alan: just looks awesome.

It really does

Mario: Thank you.

Alan: but I understand your yeah.

Needs to do something a little
bit more, more traditional.

Mario: yeah.


It was hard to carry, carry that design.

Yeah, It was hard to carry that design
through all the way, you know, it was

great for just that one page, but to do
it all like that, and maybe it is maybe

I can pull it off later on or, you know,
hire a designer to help me out to create

that brand and create that look and feel.

But I think.

You know, being honest

with myself, I think I hit a

limit there, you know, with my
creativity you know, my design skills are


that, that



So I,

you know, I, I'm like,

I'm just gonna stop there.

And I, I can't, you know,
one, I can't spend the time,

You know, doing that.

It takes me a lot longer
because it's not my, my core


And so I decided to kill that design
and go with something a little

more traditional keep it really
simple and not spend too much time,

you, know,

Alan: it's you, you can focus
on the actual content, much

easier with this right now.

I noticed the, even though the,
the other one looked wicked, you

almost skim the text because it is

it's designed heavy as
opposed to content heavy.


Whereas this is

just content.

I mean, it, I say simply

styled, but it it, it looks good,
but it's all about the content,

everything that the content

is you know what it

says, the features it does are

front and center.

There's no, no



so I think in that way, that can probably

help you, you know, get that, that
correct, because you'll focus on

that rather than making it look.

Mario: Yeah.


And I already got

some feedback from some

folks and it's good feedback.

So I'm going to go back and, you know

revisit certain things.

Plus there's a ton of stuff that is
not there that I'm planning to do.

I just want it to get

something simple out there and,

and just, you know, have decent,
good to go so that I can get back

to focusing on the product.

Cause I as of now, I

haven't been

working on the product
itself for about three

weeks now.

And so I I really need to get back to that

because I've been

focusing on, on the website and I just
wanted to create a strong foundation.

So it's built on Statamic
3 and Tailwind CSS.

And so I wanted to have
the blog, component.

I wanted to have

Way to edit and, and
you know, make changes

easily for myself.


Alan: the worst thing is,
you know, so I'm using,

It wasn't intended to
be a long-term thing,

but I'm

using Umso, which was, we used
to be called London which is

a, basically a launch page tool.

It's basically a website
editor plus it's got like email

lists and blogs and things like that.

And it's, I think it's like $30 a
month and you get like three sites



So as a pre,

Creation thing, it was like, okay,

you know,

No waiting list type thing.

They can integrate with
MailChimp And all the rest.

So I use that as a,

like a placeholder and

it, but

it's become more than that because,

So my wife's been working
on the Japanese side,

so she's been adding like guides for
these beauty users, how to use things.

Because we, we feel that we need that
like a bit more tutorial level led things.

And so just being able to
say, okay, go on, work on the

site and, and it looks good.

It makes a huge difference.

Not having to mess with
your tools all the time.


So I can appreciate that.

At least you've, now you've got

a thing that

works and you can edit
and you're not, don't

have to fiddle with it.


Mario: yeah.

Yeah, And it started me.

Statamic 3 is awesome.

I really

Alan: Is it.


Mario: Yeah.

I love Statamic.

It's, it's built for developers really,
you know, so it's super flexible.

You can do a lot of things with it.

and you can customize


Behave and work the way you

you know, wanted it the way it

works best for you.

So I wanted that



so I kept the design super simple.

I still need to

drop a video on top

of the homepage.

You know, I'm going to record

a quick


Just haven't had time to record it the

way I want it.

I want it to get?

a good


to capture really nice.

You know,

Alan: a good excuse anyway, right?

Mario: HD video and actually I just got it

today in the mail.

Alan: Nice.

What'd he get?

Mario: it's a logitech Brio.

it's a 4k

Alan: cool.

Mario: HD camera.

It's It's really


It's supposed to be good.

So I just got it in the mail today, so

I haven't really tried It
yet, but I haven't even

opened the box yet, but I want to

record this video and then
put her on the homepage and,

A ton of other stuff that I,
that I have in mind to add to the

website, but it will be little by


And so for now it's just

Alan: But so it can be
incremental improvements now.

It's not like you've, you've got the
baseline done and you can, you can now

start to focus on improving the content.

Mario: Yup.


Alan: I haven't, I've never used to
something because I don't have any

experience with like Laravel or any
like modern PHP, you know, my, my first

webapp was PHP, but that was a long

Mario: long time ago, the old days of a

obscure PHP.

Alan: like, well, It's like
the, a levels.io all of

my applications are

pretty much one PHP file when it works.

Mario: Yeah,

Alan: It's like, it was like, it was like,

it was

adventurous when you

had the second PHP file for you

Mario: yeah.


I remember those days That's that's
when I started that's the way

it was and it was all,
it was all procedural.

No object oriented.

Alan: No, I don't think he
even existed in PHP back then.

There was, he had no objects or,

Mario: Yeah.

So no modern

PHP development has come a long way.

Alan: I've heard so

many good things about it.


A lot of holes and yeah.

And, And, stomach as well.

I mean, I love

the documentation and the

homepage and it's just like, they really


that like spot on.

Mario: Oh yeah.

Alan: it's a,

it, I, I don't even know
anything about the product, but I

want to use this.

This is cool.

Mario: Jack McDade it he's one of
the co-founders he's the he's super

talented designer and he, has a really
good, way of designing and also,

Also has a good sense of humor.


you can see, you can see
that all throughout in


documentation and everything he creates.

There's a sense of humor.

Applied it to


And yeah, it's, I've met.

I met him

in person 2019 for

the Laravel conference Laracon

in the.

Alan: Yeah

Mario: and

so I met him and

Alan: conferences in person.

Mario: yeah, it's, you know,
right before the pandemic

Alan: days.

Mario: right before the

pandemic is the, it's the last one

that happened.

The 2020

got canceled.

Of course.

So yeah, I met him in
person and really cool




Yeah, so that's,

what's going on with the

Alan: Do you have a, do you have
plans for cause your email list is

probably reasonably large now or at

Mario: you know,

Alan: insignificant.

Mario: it, you know,
it's not, it's not that

large and that's one of the
reasons that I need to focus on

marketing and I'm planning
to do this, you know,

a split schedule kind of thing, because
they need to focus more on that.

I haven't been promoting it as much as I

should have.

So my, my mailing list is not that large.



That's and that's one of the reasons
I wanted, I wanted this website to

be, kind of like the way it is now, so
that I can feel more confident about

pointing people there
and promoting the product

Alan: I part of, part of this I'm

not going to say rebrand, but change to a


simpler style makes it easier

to maintain consistency going forward.


As well.

I think if you, your other

landing page, it looked great,
but that also is like, you

kind of almost have to commit

to that, right?

Full-time no.

So not just the landing

page, but you almost

need to start about how does
your application fit with that?

How do your emails,

You know, your welcome mails, you want to

try to make, look within that
same kind of branding, right?

So, so that's

a big commitment.

Mario: yeah, yeah, yeah.

And it's, it's too

much for me.


Alan: least at this stage.


for sure.

Mario: I've been, I've been
trying to think more in terms of,

You know, what's what.


works best for

me as an indie maker, solo


I have to,

Alan: He said just be realistic.

Mario: yeah, exactly.

Be realistic

with myself.

what can I

what are my limitations and,

and, and what can I do with
the resources that I have?

You know, I can't be designing
these extravagant website and

spending all that time.

I don't, I can't do that.


just keep it simple later on,
you know, that'll be time,

you know, the right time will

come later.


you know, once I have more resources
and I can hire a designer and

then, you know, it'll be a lot
easier to do that kind of stuff.

So for now, simplicity, minimalism

is what works.

Alan: Well, it just means that it's
sustainable and maintainable and right.

Mario: Yeah.

Alan: You're not just going
to spend all your time

tweaking emails because
they need to look right.

Mario: Yeah.



So that's about it, I

Alan: This is why all
my interfaces are like


Mario: yeah,

Alan: blue,

up level.

It's like, well, I can't choose a

wrong color there.


just shades of blue.

I'll tailwind, indigo.

Pretty much

Mario: yeah.

There you


Alan: like, well, how bad can I make it?


Mario: Yeah.


I think.

that's about

it on my end.

The only other

thing is

now we have,

We've successfully launched our


at least with the trailer,

Just the trailer,

Alan: Bye.

Mario: Folks listening to this later on,

Will be kind of

all news by



Alan: Yeah,

Mario: it is new

to us

right now.

Alan: Yeah.

Thank you for right.


Good, good work.

that out.

Mario: Yeah, I was able
to put that together and

publish it.

So it's, it's out there now.

Alan: Yeah, yeah.

Yeah, I think, I've picked
up by everything apart

from Google podcasts maybe.

Mario: Yeah,

I think, I think I'd already picked it up.

Alan: Oh really?


Mario: I think so.

I haven't checked, but

it's a good thing that we have
that now, so that when the first

actual episode is published you know,
it goes, goes straight through and

doesn't it doesn't we
don't have to wait for,

Alan: Right.

Cause otherwise you'd be like, it's
a new episode, but you can't listen

to it because it's not an apple yet.

So at least now everything's set up
and it'll just kind of flow through.


Mario: Yeah.

And I've been doing editing on the,
on, on the episodes that we recorded.

And that's one of the things I wanted to


to you about actually.

So I think that's the
last thing on my end.

It's it's the, the recording editing,



think there, there needs to be some
editing done in all the sessions that

we recorded my

goal, or I was hoping that we

wouldn't have to re

you know, do a lot of editing,
but because it takes so



At some point we'll

have to figure out

if there's a

way we

can outsource the editing,

you know,

Or, or

we get better at recording so that
we don't have to edit anything.

Alan: about to say, I hopefully
you'll find that the later

ones require less editing.


I think we've gotten a little bit better
about being aware of what we're doing.

Mario: yeah,

Alan: I hope

Mario: yeah,


And, and in the, in

the spirit of transparency, I wanted


talk about

this and let it be part of the
podcast and for others to listen.

Cause you know, it

could be

Alan: educational show.

Mario: educational thing.

Yeah, exactly.

So one

thing that I've noticed
as I'm doing editing is

that we tend to talk over each
other sometimes, you know?

and so when that happens, it
sounds really bad on the podcast.

So I'm having to edit things out
and kind of like choose which one

of us is saying the main thing.

So, So,

that way that stays.

And then if, if the other one
was trying to say, something and

then it stops, then that gets cut



going through that and so that's
something that we can improve, you

know try not to talk over each other.

And the other thing

is I've noticed with myself,

That I speak very slowly.

I'm like, oh man, like I sound

super slow.


cause I guess I tend to find the

right words, you know, before I speak.

And I kind of like maybe

overthink what I'm

saying and I don't want
to say the wrong thing.

So I

kind of take

pauses and, and especially the

first and maybe you're Right?

Maybe it's part of, part of it

is that it's the first episodes where,

you know, we don't know, what we're doing.


don't have,

we don't have that much experience.


I found myself pausing a


And so I'm trying to,

you know, edit

that out and and hopefully
as we progress, we


better and more comfortable
with talking and

Alan: Have you tried using a descript?

Mario: no, I haven't, no, I haven't.

I know that they have a lot of crazy
features for editing and stuff.

Alan: The biggest thing.

So when I did just a short video for
my presentation, I did adult plan just

being able to edit the audio as if it
was text, just being, looking at it and

thinking that paragraph, I can delete

that and just hitting, delete that word,

delete that it's like so


to do that

in, in, an audio editor
would have just been a


So yeah, it,

that might speed things up a little bit.

Obviously we've got

latency against us as well,

which doesn't help.

But so it's funny, you mentioned


speaking speed because you're when
I listened to the trailer like

I speak a lot quicker than Mario.

I was like, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

And you're like, blah, blah, blah.

like, okay, either we need to
meet somewhere in the middle.


Mario: Yeah, exactly.

So, I mean, one of the things they

say is that when, when you're I've

heard this in the context of
conference, speaking for example, right.

When you're

speaking to an audience one of the things
that happens is if you're nervous, you

speak faster because you're nervous.

So you speak a lot faster kind of
thing, or, you know, and so they always

say you know, speak slower than
what you normally do or what

you think you should be speaking,

Alan: Almost to the point
where it feels uncomfortable.

So when I did I've done public
speaking, like three or four times

now, reasonably large conferences.

I remember the one I enjoyed the most.

I got to the point where I was, I felt
completely wrong to be speaking this

slowly, but it was also the one which

people responded to the


People came up to me
after, as I said, it was

really good.

I'm like, did I not

like sound weird?

I was like, just to the point where

it feels like to myself, I'm
walking through mud or, something.

I guess

that's just the change from
my usual speaking pattern.

To me, it

felt like really,

but a bit it seemed to work.

So, yeah, I guess that's
just my, you know,

Mario: Yeah.

Alan: my problem,

Mario: So for me, it's the opposite.

I need to speed up a little, you
need to slow down a little and

we'll meet in the middle of somewhere.

Alan: As, although it's funny
because I listened to podcasts

with overcast to you, probably the

same rate.

And they use their smart speed plus
listen to things at about 1.3, 1.4 times


Mario: the same.

Alan: right.


I think one of the most

weirdest things for

me is John Gruber,

On, you know, daring fireball
guy if listening to his podcasts

on normal speed by accident.

Cause I, I

think I played in, on a

web sometime rather than

listening to it

in overcast.

And I'm like, is he okay?

Sounds like,

something's wrong.

Mario: it sounds so slow.

Alan: yeah, I was like

something, something, some problem
I'm like, oh no, it's just, I'm

used to listening to everything.

Kind of like



Mario: Oh yeah.

I totally experienced the same thing.




done that before and it's like, oh



Even the

music of

some podcasts you know,


if I listened to it and
then the sped up, you know,

way that I normally do

Alan: becomes normal, right?

Mario: that becomes
normal, It sounds great.

And then I

listened to it in


north, in the,

you know, normal

speed and it's like, whoa.

So slow.

Like, it sounds horrible.

Alan: Yep.

Mario: Yeah.

It's it's, it's weird.

Alan: But I, Yeah.

so I think if we just try to be a
little bit more conscious of again,

this is probably me mode of waiting
till everything's finished before.


Making my point.

It's like, yeah.

Try to just try to hold back Ellen,

Mario: Yeah, but it's,
not just, you it's me too.

It's not just you it's, it's both of
us, but it comes with practice, right.

With experience.

We'll get better at that.

You know, it's our first
recording, so we're, we're

still learning this thing and

Alan: a disclaimer at the beginning.

Cause say, w we're still figuring this


Mario: yeah.


Alan: But I think even


as we're speaking now,

Even for the last few episodes we've

recorded they, they do seem a little bit



and paste maybe.

So hopefully that's

something we can keep

improving on.

So hopefully people

will bear with us long enough that

Mario: Yeah.

Alan: very quits on.

the first episode

at the heels of this


Mario: We can only hope.



Alan: I guess it's just
one of those things of

just, yeah.


compounding experience and quality




You know, we're never gonna, you're
not going to get things right on the

first pass,

so just keep working

Mario: yup.


Let's just keep at it.

Practice makes perfect.

So we'll keep chipping away at it.


I think that's it on my end.

So anything else you want to share

Alan: yeah.

W one, one nice thing was,

I got approved for Paddle,



So they were, when I first spoke to
them a few months back, they're like,

yeah, come back when you're finished.

I'm like,


that's nice.

We're for products who have actually

been finished building,
I'm like, oh, okay.

Thanks that.

So it was, it was a slight burn,
but so I mailed them the other day.

I'm like, so I'm ready now.

Cause it's going to take
time to integrate that


And I just, I don't want to be at the
point where I'm like, okay, now I can go.

And now I've got to

go and way and build in


So I wanted to at least get that moving.


So they were like okay, can you
you know, explain your product.

So I did that.

And then that they.

Strange, strange to me worded email.

That was like, it sounds like your
product has human interaction.

Does it?

And I'm like, yeah, of
course it does everything.

I'm like everything requires
human interaction it's and they

were like, okay, so we can't use
it because you're not allowed

to have human based services

on Paddle.

There has to be

automated software.

Like we, I sell software and they use it.

They meant me.

Not them.

I read it as humans, as in my

users, they mean humans as in me.

So you're not allowed to sell like a


Mario: like a productized

service or, you know, something like that.

Alan: So it has to be software that
is like, self-service effectively



application or a subscription
service or something.

It has to be not involve me

to So I'm like, oh no, no, no, no.


because they were like, well,
in that case, you can't use it.

Here's a link to our,

Service policy.

And I'm like, oh no,

I there's.

No, there's no humans involved

in making this service.

Mario: yeah.



makes sense.

But that's a poorly worded


Sounds like the.

Alan: it's one of those things.

If you



terms of S if they read, if you read the


that they sent afterwards beforehand,


makes sense because it
literally use uses the same

words, you know, human led

interactions or


But when that's out of context, in

an email, it reads

completely differently.

And it's like, what do you mean you?

Of course it uses humans.

Mario: Yeah.

I mean,

it's not just some bot

Alan: Well, your reaction was

Mario: the

Alan: same.

Your reaction was the same as mine.

Of course it is right.

Mario: Yeah.


That makes no sense.


Alan: When we cleared that up, they said,

could you send through a a video
of your product being used?

So actually just sent them

a link to my onboarding,

like video that's embedded right now.

And three days later,

which was yesterday, they came back and

said, great, you're fine.

You can do it.

You need to send just legal stuff now.

So I'm like, so that's


Mario: Awesome.


Alan: now.

Thank you.

So I've got no excuse not
to charge people now, right?

I guess,

Mario: There you go.


Yeah, you gotta get up with that

payment page up.

Alan: well, at least I can write it now I


build the page.

So they have a

sun box thing.

So I'm going to just
play around with that.

And that also means I've got to
think about pricing, which is I've

been putting off for way too long as



Mario: Oh, nice.

So, they, they do have a
sandbox kind of like Stripe

as a sandbox.

Oh, okay.


Alan: So, I mean, I
chose pebble over cause I

noticed like Stripe now

have they're

launching attacks, Stripe tax and things.

The biggest thing for
me is the fact that I'm

selling immediately off
the bat to three countries.

At least that's,

you know, my, the beta users

and hopefully people who
will pay they're already in

three countries

and that means three different sets


sales tax and the, the U
S has particular you've

then got multiple states to deal with

So I'd be looking at like having
to do five sets of tax Filings,

even a sales tax filings, even
on day one, as long as all

the beta users end up paying.


Which is like

I don't want to deal with that.

That's not, and I don't want to get it

wrong either.

So a and Stripe also doesn't strike tax.

Doesn't want doesn't support Japan

in its initial version.

It will do.

I'm sure.

I'm sure it.


And plus they don't file for you.

They just tell you what to do.


Mario: They don't have
that component yet, but

apparently they're working on it.

Alan: yeah, yeah, yeah.

So this initial version will be like, you
need to file this document, click here

in order to go to the thing in order to

file it.

So whereas

Paddle is like, because
they're the merchant of record.

They effectively sell the product for you.

I think same as Outseta.



S I think

oh, no.

Cause that connects to Stripe.

Doesn't it?

Mario: it

connects a Stripe.


They don't they don't, it doesn't work
the same way they connect to Stripe.

And I think there's a way to
specify the tax that you want to

collect, but, you have to Do it



Alan: that was one thing that I'm
just that, especially since I'm

dealing with, you know, Japanese tax
authorities, which is not my area of

expertise, I'm like not messing around

Mario: Yeah.

Alan: or use somebody who
knows what they're doing.

Mario: Overall, how, how
was the process of getting

approved with, with paddle for you?

Alan: I mean, apart from that

slight misunderstanding, it

was, it was straightforward.

They would just like, explain what it


Why you why you need this effectively?

Why, what does your product do?


Yeah, they're basically just said

explain what your

product does And

how it's used.

So I just wrote a few paragraphs
about that, sent them the video and

it's all fine.

Mario: Oh, so you, you recorded a video

to like explaining your product.




I considered Paddle a way back before I
decided to go with Outseta, but I still,

I still don't know which way I want to go.

I haven't really integrated
Outseta yet fully into

my product.


only using a couple of their

couple of their services,

you know, cause they have they
cover billing payments and

you know, all the others some
other stuff and I haven't

fully integrated much really.

So I don't know because I suspect I'll
have a similar issue if, you know, given

the nature of the product, people can
be, you know, anywhere in the world.

Connecting and using fusion cast.

So I I don't know what I'm
going to do about that, cause

that that's a, that's a problem.

Alan: It's a concern, isn't it?

I mean, I know this, I'm sure a lot

of these early products don't handle
tax very well or at all right.

It's kind of almost

like brushed under the carpet
and I'm not going to do that

Mario: yeah,

Alan: out of all the
decisions I'm going to make.

that's not something I'm

going to do.

Especially since I,

say I'm, I'm

located in somewhere that I'm
not, you know, I don't know.

Well with regards to how these
things work, so I'm not going to get

that wrong.

Mario: yeah, yeah,

Alan: So one reason that

so Outseta requires

you have to use their authentication

stuff, right?

Oh, you have to link into
their CRM in order to build



Mario: I don't think you have to use their


Alan: Okay.

Mario: Because I have my own
authentication and I can still from what I

understand, I can still integrate billing



Alan: Right,

Mario: I still haven't done it like
I was saying, but I don't So I don't

know exactly,

but if I remember correctly,

One of the co-founders did



with me way back.

And I remember, I think I asked
that question, you know, if I

have my own authentication,

can I still use billing and payments?

And he said, yes.

So if I remember correctly, so but
again, I haven't gone full in with

Outseta so I'm still thinking about it.

The only thing that scared me
about Paddle is, is some posts

that I read of some horror stories
of them dropping the product

without notice and,

Alan: Yeah.


Mario: and.

Alan: I've read those two.

And those were, yeah, my immediate like,

Is this good?

This, this sounds

scary, but

In all of those cases, they do seem to
be, there seems to be an after story

as well.

It's not like that was it.

It's like they, they respond to
them after a few days and things

get fixed.

And they, they do seem pretty
quick at responding to even

the onboarding, the onboarding,

the application emails, they seem pretty
quick about responding to all those.

So I'm hoping

that there's no

problems, but yeah, that was my, my,


Hesitancy there

was, this seems to be some horror
stories, but there seems to be

horror stories, regarding every
single product on the internet.


Mario: Yeah,

Alan: I'm like


take everything with at

least a, an understanding that you're only

seeing one side of it.


Mario: yeah.


So if you're using paddle
then does that mean you don't

need to integrate with Stripe?

Does it work?


they have their own.

Alan: Yes.


So the other thing, as well as it

handles, I mean, I

guess like Stripe, it

handles invoicing.

The, you can have multiple price plans.

It does the tax based
on where the buyer is.

It just handles everything
for you like that.

They, the only differences.



not your merchant accounts.

So things come through on the
credit card with like Paddle and

then your name of your company.

Mario: Oh, I see.

Alan: so there is a,

I'm used to it cause I use

a few services that

use it.

So it it's, I'm kind
of used to using it as

a, an end user

and it's, it's absolutely fine.


I mean,

it's seems the API is pretty

straightforward and no
big surprises there, so

yeah, I think it should be okay.

Mario: nice, Maybe I'll give it a


I don't know.

Alan: So it did that, their fees,
their fees are a little bit higher


if you were just going
for straight Stripe.

Obviously because they're
offering more they're not just

taking the payment, but as I say for


it was just this peace of mind

that I know that the right sales
taxes are going to get taken and paid

Mario: Yeah.

Alan: by me.

That's just one thing I don't want to get

on the wrong side of,

Mario: Yeah.

And I guess it also depends on
how long it takes for Stripe to

catch up to that and offer that

service, you know?

Alan: I mean this w I mean,


can export from Paddle that doesn't
seem to be any limitations with

you moving,


know, exporting your customers.

Obviously, I think

they'd probably have to
resubmit their payment

information, I assume.

But you're not,

you know,

you're not tied into it forever.

You could just keep those as old users and

onboard new users into Stripe or
something if you wanted to change later.

So it's not like.

Not an impossible thing to undo.

But at this stage it just seemed

to be the thing which suited my

need the


Mario: Yeah.


All right.


Well, thanks for sharing that.

Alan: let you


how it goes when I onboard
it, when I've done three

a year, the sandbox


Mario: Yeah.

you'll be the Guinea pig.

Alan: Yeah,

Mario: All right.

Anything else

you want to share?

Alan: And that's me all


Mario: All right.

I think that's it for me too.

Should we wrap it up?

Alan: Let's wrap it up

Mario: All right.

Most for the show

have notes.

Alan: Were we supposed to like sell
a mattress or something as well?

Mario: I know, right?

we'll close it off with Justin Jackson's.

This podcast is hosted, not toasted on


Alan: I love the cause I was playing with

you know, you, you,

submit it to everything, just going
through the interface and things.

It's a really well thought out



Mario: It is.

Alan: very cool.

Mario: It is.



I love it.

Love it.

Alan: can't imagine doing it

any other way.

Just having seen

that it's like all the
analytics, they just



just managing the whole processes

like that.


really done.


It's very cool.

I'm really happy to see it


as well.

Mario: yeah,

and it's a pretty large
product, because it.

has so many different areas.

You know, it's got analytics,
the hosting side, the embeddable


the distribution, the websites, you
know, the custom websites for your, for

your podcast, that they host themselves,

All these different


It's, it's crazy.


Alan: It's surprising.


When you start going through it yellow.

Oh my God.

This is like really comprehensive,
really thought of everything.

Mario: Yeah.

And for a two people team is it's
just really incredible that all

they've been able to accomplish.

So, congrats to them


Props to them for achieving that.

It's it's great.

I love using it.

I love the product.

Alan: Yeah, absolutely.

Mario: I recommend that every, every time

I get an opportunity, someone

asks about hosting a podcast.

I always recommend transistor.

Alan: absolutely

Mario: So yeah, we didn't get
paid to say all this, by the way.



big fans,

Alan: absolutely

Mario: disclosure.

All right.

All right.


I'll see you

in two


and we'll, we'll,

be in touch online.

Alan: and upwards.

Talk to you later.

Mario: All right.

Take care.

Alan: Cheers, man.

8: Landing Page Learnings & Onboarding Observations
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