I tried to address all the problems, reservations people had in the replies.
Also, when I launched that product, I setup another form for people to share their feedback. And those answers were even more powerful in improving the product.
But this strategy only works if you have an audience, or at least a presence in a community.
If you don’t have that, then the next strategy might be useful to you.
🤩 Ask your Heroes
Reach out via cold DMs.
One of my heroes, Derek Sivers has a great quote - “Call the destination, and ask for directions”
Whatever you want to achieve, there is someone else in the world who has already achieved some version of that.
Try reaching out to them via direct messages on Twitter/LinkedIn or even email.
Replying to someone’s newsletter is actually a great conversation starter. I’ve used that strategy myself and have seen many people use it extensively on me as well 😄
Let me tell you, it works!
If someone is creating content on Twitter/LinkedIn/Instagram, or writing a newsletter, or publishing a podcast, then they want to help their audience.
So unless they’re drowning in inbound requests, they will get back to you and answer your questions.
Just be mindful that you’re not in ‘ask’ mode immediately.
Warm up the relationship a bit by talking about their work, how you like it and then make your ask. Be genuine about the help you need, I’m sure you get valuable feedback.
Also, if your heroes are too far out of reach, then just reading their books, listening to their podcasts and watching their videos is a good option.
I’ve learned so much from Derek like this 🤩
Whenever I need feedback, I channel my inner Derek Sivers and ask him for feedback.
I imagine what would Derek think of this idea? and more often than not I get an interesting answer that I can work with.
Of course, for more hands on advice, you can pay an expert.
💪 Ask a Mentor
Hire a mentor.
This is different from a “hero” because here you’re actually paying for someone’s expertise and time.
There are plenty of platforms where you can pay for access to an expert and get their advice.
This works great, because you get help from someone who is experienced in a particular topic. And they’re accountable to deliver value because they’re being paid to help you and give you feedback.
2 things to keep in mind -
It can get expensive over the long term because these platforms charge a hefty fee.
You need to know exactly what you need help with, because these experts usually are categorized vertically. So the same person who guides you with idea validation may not be able to help you with conversion rate optimization and vice versa.
But if you don’t mind that, then you should definitely hire a mentor.
🫂 Ask your Peers
Reach out to communities you’re a part of - Free or Paid ones.
This can be a hit or a miss though.
Every community has a “get-feedback” channel where you can post your questions.
Free ones are too noisy most times and it’s hard to cut through to the signal.
Paid ones do have quality members who would go out of their way to give you feedback. Leverage that.
There are entrepreneurs from around the world, who are building businesses just like you, maybe a couple of steps ahead or behind you, network them and access their experience.
It’s way more valuable than consuming passive books and courses.
These are some of the ways that have worked well for me when it comes to getting feedback for my products and services.
Do try these methods and let me know how it goes.
I’m all of building solo, independent businesses, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need feedback. In fact, if you’re a solopreneur you need to go out of your way to get feedback on your work. Because in a traditional corporate job setup, there are always bosses and peers to tell you where you’re going wrong and how you can improve.
But when you work for yourself, it’s hard to find that kind of a feedback mechanism.
Eternally Curious. Writing, Learning, Building in Public. Writing about Ideas + Inspiration + Insights for creators, solopreneurs and indie hackers | Simple tips and frameworks to help you build a sustainable solo business