Tiago Ferreira

Keep learning, ask questions and don’t be afraid to change direction

February 27, 2023

What made you quit your job and start your indie hacker adventure? Did you ever think of doing first as a side gig or was it never an option?

I quit my job at Trivago to focus full-time on my own businesses because I felt that I had reached a point in my life where I needed to take the leap and pursue my passion. I was already dabbling in entrepreneurship on the side while working at Trivago, but I eventually realized that it was something I wanted to do full-time. Doing it as a side gig was never an option for me because I wanted to give it my all and see where it could take me.

Why did you decide to start with a community and a podcast and not build a product?

I started with a community and a podcast because I was feeling anxious after quitting my job and I needed a way to express what was going on in my mind. The podcast became a therapeutic outlet for me and as my audience grew, I realized that the private Slack community I had created for my Patreon supporters could be a product on its own. From there, the WBE Community was born.

Your podcast is basically a free course on entrepreneurship and Indie hacker. Do you end up with each episode full of new ideas? How is your process to create new ideas for projects?

Yes, I often come away from each podcast episode with new ideas and inspiration. My process for creating new ideas is to stay curious and to constantly seek out new knowledge and insights. I also like to listen to my audience and see what they are interested in, and then find ways to create value for them through my work.

Can you talk a bit more about each one of your products?

Sure, I have several products. The WBE Community is a Slack community for indie makers and wannabe entrepreneurs. Change.it is a platform for creating and participating in social impact campaigns. Indie Lottery is a platform for indie makers to showcase their products and for users to discover new products through a weekly lottery. Podsqueeze is a tool for podcasters to optimize their podcast for search engines and to grow their audience.

What are the business models for all of your products?

The business model for the WBE Community is a subscription model where members pay a monthly fee to access the community and its resources. Change.it is a freemium model where users can create and participate in campaigns for free, but can purchase additional items from our store. Indie Lottery is a freemium model where users can participate in the lottery for free, but can sponsor it and be listed in the newsletter for a fee. Podsqueeze is a SaaS where users pay to get their podcast converted into written assets.

What about marketing strategies?

I use a variety of marketing strategies, including content marketing, social media marketing, email marketing, and community building. My main social media platform is Twitter.

In your journey what was the most difficult thing that you thought would be easier, and also the easier that you thought would be more difficult?

The most difficult thing that I thought would be easier was building a sustainable business model. I underestimated the time and effort that it would take to find the right balance between offering value to my customers and generating revenue. On the other hand, the easier thing that I thought would be more difficult was building an engaged community. I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly the WBE Community grew and how supportive and engaged the members were.

Do you have a next project coming on? Are the podcast and the community the ones you want to take forward always?

Yes, I am always working on new projects and exploring new opportunities, but the podcast and community will always remain a priority for me. I have still not found the product that is paying me the amount I need to live comfortably so my plan is to keep iterating until I find the one.

Change.it, indie lottery, podsqueeze are free products/services you create. Do you plan to monetize them at some point?

They are not free. Changeit has a inbuilt store for each I get a commission for each sell and the indie lottery has a sponsorship model. We get paid by sponsors that want to get their products featured.

You are also a music lover. Do you plan to create something in that area?

I have already made a music album  and I have also played with ideas in the music industry in the past. Is an industry that I am really passionate about and might do more in that area in the future.

Favorite tool and why?

One of my favorite tools is Trello. It helps me keep track of all my tasks, projects, and ideas in a visual and organized manner. I love being able to quickly see what needs to be done and prioritize my tasks.

Word of advice?

If I could only give one piece of advice for a starting indie hacker would be to keep an open and flexible mindset. Always keep learning, asking questions and don’t be afraid to change direction even if that means losing some of the previous work. For a more detailed, step by step guidance, I have actually written a guide where I summarize step by step everything I have learned from my journey and interviews

One book, one person to follow on Twitter, and one music?

One book I would recommend is "The Lean Startup" by Eric Ries. It changed the way I approach building and growing businesses. One person to follow on Twitter is @tdinh_me. He is a great source of knowledge and inspiration for the indie hacker community. One music I would recommend is Fix You, Cold Play. Hearing that song after being an entrepreneur for a few months will have a completely different meaning

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