Hello ! Who are you and what are you working on?
Kaapi helps remote leaders build happy, high-performing remote teams
152 startup CXOs use Kaapi to get a pulse of their team, have fun together and get status updates remotely.
What motivated you to get started with? How did you come up with the idea?
I have worked in the HR domain for 6+ years now. As a leader too, some of my biggest mistakes at Localoye (250+ employees startup I founded) as a CEO were people related.
In 2019, I started working remotely, and then the 2020 lockdowns accelerated the remote work phenomena. So when I quit my job in December 2019, I knew the exact problem I wanted to solve
Can you tell us the story of your business from idea to where you are now?
- After quitting job, explored ideas for a while and decided on starting off in the HR space with a Slack app
- Started code in April 2020. Recruited a few early beta partners. Worked with them in May. Launched on Producthunt in June
- Launched another major feature on September 2020 (Icebreakers)
What has been your biggest failure or struggle?
Failure - Not able to grow / sustain Localoye after raising $5 Million, a team of 250+ employees and presence in 3 cities
How many hours a day do you work on average & can you describe/outline your typical day?
These days? Very less - Averaging 15 hours in a week
In January - plan to get back to 40 hour weeks
In the past - was very crazy - 80+ hours easily
And what has been your biggest achievement or success?
Success - I have finally learned how to learn things and get better 1% better everyday
I self learned to code when I turned 30
Last year, I self learned the Ukulele over the internet
Since launch, what has worked to attract and retain customers?
Social media mainly
Describe the process of launching the business.
Idea (spend time on this, it matters a lot!)
Validation of the idea (do bit of market research, quickly launch MVP in 2-3 weeks and test it out)
Polish the positioning (who is this for?)
Find scalable distribution channels (how will they find you while you sleep?)
Did you use Betalist or PH or other Startup Launching Platform for Launching ? How was that experience ?
PH - good traffic, but poor quality
What’s your business model, and how have you grown your revenue?
Grow revenue - organic installs from social media and word of mouth
What are the biggest challenges you’ve faced and obstacles you’ve overcome? What are your goals for the future?
Challenges - learning to balance personal with business. I suffer from Ankylosing Apondylitis which makes desk work difficult, and I have to take immunosupressant injections every few months to counter it
Goals - get to FIRE (financial independence, retire early)
Let’s talk about your marketing strategy -- how do you market Kaapi and grow the service?
Organic word of mouth + social media
Do you have a model to get product feedback? What’s your favorite way to get product feedback? Did product feedback help you get the results you hoped for ?
I reach out to all customers on social media + ask phone numbers and then add them on Whatsapp
Product feedback - is the only way you can go from idea to PMF
Through starting the business, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?
Running a business is like any other skill. You get better at it with practice
What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?
Books - It doesnt have to be crazy at home
What’s your advice for fellow aspiring entrepreneur who are just starting out?
Dont quit your job.
Learn to code. Launch a small project (max 2-3 weeks work)
Find 10 customers to sign up with you. Take feedback from them.
if you want to increase your chances of success (in b2b SaaS) -- try to stick to the boring markets. The more old, proven, crowded they are - the better because the problem is already validated.
You just have to do 1% better than others.