Only What Is Needed: The Low Barrier To Entry

9 Mar 2024

Only What Is Needed: The Low Barrier To Entry

Embarking on January journey taught me the essence of focus and simplicity. Reflecting on months of learning and iteration, I've embraced a minimalist approach, stripping away the non-essential to truly serve user needs.

In September 2023, it was already nine months since I started, a novice entrepreneur. I learned a lot of disorganized, fragmented pieces about building a product, from problems that itch to sales demos.

After five months of a long-standing break, looking from far away, reflecting on what I did and the mistakes I’ve made, I’m genuinely impressed with the progress. Although it wasn’t productive, according to a few, it was an essential cornerstone in my problem solver establishment. The interviews, the task lists, the software, the connections, and all the learnings it is only degrading and pessimistic to call this a failure.

New Start

I told myself I would not continue unless I got a client because I didn’t want to build what doesn’t matter. I wanted to serve my customers’ needs and not bloat the app with unnecessary functions.

I reached out to a few acquaintances and got a few opportunities to work with them, but not all were suitable (most project scopes were too overwhelming and extended beyond what meant to have).

After about a time, I got in contact with someone already rushing to build a backend service for their product.

Does this matter?

My first thoughts weren’t what else the product was missing or what more I needed to add. On the contrary, I looked up the source code, and all I wanted was to remove any feature that could be done manually: anything that can be done quickly by hand is not worth having at this stage.

Going through each feature, I question, “Does this matter to have now?” I go with my instincts and remove it immediately. I ask, “Can this be done manually?” If my mind whispered yes, I drop it off without hesitation. To be clear, although I say remove, I was moving them away from my main project focus. For example, I hid the navigation menus that I’m not going to work on or actively working on.

I recall how I hated the empty look of the website over the past year, but nowadays, I can’t embrace it enough; that feeling of the minimalist look is surprisingly relaxing.

I look at the product now and say I didn’t need to do that; I could’ve just gone that way and gotten the work out there faster. Despite my initial naivety, I’m much better now at looking at things from getting the job-done perspective. I love and hate this. I hate that I couldn’t see things that way; all I did was perfect the small details that led me to stray while forgetting the bigger picture, and I love it because it’s a tremendous learning opportunity for me.

Another thing with too many features is that fixing bugs and integrating the internal part becomes much more complicated, eventually making the software a whole buggy. Instead, I should’ve focused on having a few solid features instead of making it a feature sink. although I'm not there yet but I highly recommend [Lower Your Cost of Change](

Selecting Persona

While looking for a client to work for in conjunction with working on, I noticed how difficult that is. A surprise, It looks. Sure now. But before, I was so eager, enthusiastic, and naive that I thought I could get to my customers no matter what.

I’m trying to say that I might have done better if I doubled down on the customers I could reach too. In other words, how accessible is the target audience to me?

The main issue was the wide array of customers that I was focusing on because I was building a general solution that did nothing but the opposite, distract me. If there were a reason why I didn’t continue, that would be it.

Nevertheless, there is a piece of good news: A friend and I were talking about someone they met who had been working on a low-code product to design web mobile apps. After a few minutes of talking, he told me that they were looking to expand into adding a backend layer to make their product an end-to-end building experience. It dawned on me that could be a perfect match for their expansion goals.

Okay, maybe I don’t know if that is a good thing; however, at least I have a persona that can help pave the way to reach the broader customer base. To push me forward. This customer segment is a relatively more approachable market for me to tap into.

Ask yourself, how accessible the target audience to you, how you can reach them, and where they are?