Hello ! Who are you and what are you working on?
Hey! I'm Dennis and I am always working on a million side projects which I don't finish.. Nowadays I spent most of my time working on printmycity.com and printmijnstad.nl though.
Can you tell us the story of your business from idea to where you are now?
I had just moved into a new apartment and was looking to decorate it, but I couldn't find a poster of the small Dutch town I was from. So I decided to design my own custom poster, in the style that I liked. Then I found a printing company and was very impressed with the quality. My friends started asking me where I bought the poster, so, together with Mark, we decided to develop an editor where people can create their own unique posters.
In January 2017, Mark and I started printmijnstad.nl, where quality, personality, and ease of use come together. In August 2019, we started the international version, Printmycity.
What has been your biggest failure or struggle?
That's an easy question, definitely scaling internationally. We tried launching in Germany and the UK but ended up losing lots of money on ads because we didn't know the audience there. So now we're taking it slowly, learning as much as possible about the markets we're launching in.
And what has been your biggest achievement or success?
I think there are two. The day we launched in the Netherlands we didn't know anything about marketing and yet by just posting it on Facebook people started liking and sharing it and we got our first sale! And secondly, the Black Friday week of 2019 was really amazing for us. We tripled our monthly revenue record that month.
Since launch, what has worked to attract and retain customers?
Engaging with people on Instagram seems to work best for our product.
Describe the process of launching the business.
We kinda just started posting pictures on Instagram and engaging with people we thought were our target audience. We didn't do any market research 🙈
What’s your business model, and how have you grown your revenue?
Well, it's e-commerce. So we make profit from the sales :)
What are the biggest challenges you’ve faced and obstacles you’ve overcome? What are your goals for the future?
We're still trying to overcome our biggest challenge of scaling worldwide. We need reliable printers and great packaging, and of course, then we need to make actual sales as well, which appears to be harder than expected.
How are you doing today and what does the future look like?
I'm good! In 2019 I was able to quit my job to go freelancing and work on Printmijnstad, and since a couple of months I don't need the freelancing anymore. It's really awesome how far we have come. This is also when I started my digital nomad adventure.
Through starting the business, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?
I started doing Facebook ads, this is also where I found inspiration for a new product I'm working on, for automating your Facebook ads management. Sadly I don't have a launch date yet.
Who’s your most inspirational CEO or founder?
What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?
I really like the Indie Hackers podcast! I'm also part of a community of makers on wip.chat which is really helpful!
What’s your advice for fellow aspiring entrepreneur who are just starting out?
Don't be afraid to tell people what you are doing and ask for feedback!