The team over at Everpix had build a great product, unfortunately they ran out of luck(cash) and will be shutting down. The founders shared the following in their lessons learned and I think we can learn something from it too.
The founders acknowledge they made mistakes along the way. They spent too much time on the product and not enough time on growth and distribution. The first pitch deck they put together for investors was mediocre. They began marketing too late. They failed to effectively position themselves against giants like Apple and Google, who offer fairly robust — and mostly free — Everpix alternatives.
If there is one thing I learn about starting up is the only advantage we have over big companies is SPEED. We can iterate faster as we gather feedback from the users. We make changes and we adapt. But we also cannot loosely use the word “iterate”, at the very least the very first product that you put forward to your users must be “decent” and “usable”.
The team at Everpix put in their very best for the product but they forgot about selling. And this is a very important lesson to all of us, because you can be building the best product, but if no one knows, what’s the use? At Intraix, we have been focusing on our product and Darrell has been leading the business development. Although we have several partnerships but we still lack speed in customer acquisitions, which explains why in our upcoming hiring we are looking for sales staff.
Even if you have lots of money to start with, you might not succeed.
Everpix raised a total of US$2.3M and the bulk of it goes to Salaries, Payroll and Personnel Costs (I still trying to understand what is the differences between Salaries and Payroll, but I’m sure it is all manpower cost). They ran the company for 2 years. That’s about US$1.15M per year of burn rate (they have a team of 7). Now, I understand that the standard of living is higher, so are the salaries for engineers over at Silicon Valley but still US$2.3M is a lot of money to start with in my opinion.
Imagine if we have this kind of seed funding available for Asia startups or rather Singapore startups, and you happen to run a similar service do you think the success rate might be higher? (given that you have proper cash-flow management.
Love to hear your thoughts, I’m @leetucksing on twitter