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We hit $2,000 MRR. 3 things fueling our growth.

Our little startup, Senja just crossed $2000 MRR.

It took:
→ 11 months to get to $1,000
→ 40 days to get to $2,000

For the most part, we're still using the strategies that took us from $0 → $250 MRR.

  • We're still building novel and extremely valuable features that differentiate us from the competition.
  • We're still refining on our kickass onboarding
  • We still constantly experiment with new marketing ideas.

But there are three things we've done in the last 3 months that have been the primary drivers of growth.

1. Building highly requested features

In December → January, we launched features that blocked dozens of users and had been requested over and over again in support conversations since we first got started.

By doing so we got

— More active users
— Less support conversations
— And of course, a thinner backlog 😅

So when someone unexpectedly launched us on Product hunt, and when we were mentioned by influencers and got a ton of traffic, we were able to convert more people than we would have if we never built these features.

2. Affiliates & Referrals

In December, we migrated from Rewardful to FirstPromoter for our affiliate program for a couple reasons.

  1. While Rewardful notified our affiliates about their sales, they didn't notify them about their signups, so they didn't get the motivation they needed to keep promoting.
  2. Rewardful doesn't have analytics, so we couldn't measure our progress with affiliates over time.
  3. We couldn't manually assign existing customers to affiliates, so if an affiliate reached out to us about a user they referred IRL, we couldn't attribute the sale them.

While FirstPromoter is a tad pricier, moving there has already helped us gain 5 new paying customers in January, so it's already paying for itself.

We also started reaching out to influencers in December.

Big Twitter influencers like Easlo and Pascio on Twitter caught wind of Senja in December.

Some of them found us organically, while we had longer conversations with others.

They even started including us in their tweets with roundups of tools. That brought in a decent amount of signups, and a few customers.

3. Pricing increase

Since we launched Senja, one of the most frequent comments we got was that it's underpriced.

There have been actual businesses that have chosen not to use us because our pricing seemed "to good to be true" and "desperate"

Here's what one of our customers said:

"When I first tried Senja it was the best option of all my choices but way way cheaper than the others and it definitely made me wonder 'why'"

It was clear that we had to improve our pricing.

So in January, we increased the price of our pro tier while simultaneously introducing a lower priced starter tier with all the essentials.

Once we announced the increase, many users who had been on the fence about paying for Senja upgraded their plan to lock in their early bird pricing.

The number of signups we're getting also hasn't reduced, and some people have already upgraded to our higher tier.


The recurring theme here though, is compounding growth.

→ More referrals & testimonials = more signups
→ More signups = more customers
→ More customers = more feature requests
→ More feedback = better product
→ Better product = more referrals

We wouldn't be growing as we are without the previous 11 months of work we put into refining and polishing the product.

Next big milestone, $5K MRR 💪

  1. 6

    Amazing to see the affiliate/referral program! It seems like it brought you great results, which just confirmed my theory of affiliate/referral marketing being so underrated and overlooked, especially in the software space.

    Btw, if you guys want some more exposure for your program, I would love to list it on my platform, Affistash. We list companies to help them get more people in their affiliate program, kinda how product hunt has paid placements on their site. You can use the code "indiehackers" at checkout to get 50% off if you want to apply here ;)

    We just hit 105$ MRR in our first month of existence, so this post was definitely inspiring!

    Cheers and good luck with hitting the 5k margin ✌️

    1. 1

      @VicDevelopmently I've been looking for a solution to get exposure for our affiliate program at https://www.stationdb.com/
      I'm very excited about Affistash and will definitely sign up!

      1. 1

        Awesome! If you decide to list It on our platform, shoot us an email at hello@affistash.com, and I will make sure to reply with some promo codes for you guys. ;)

        Or you can directly apply here

        Cheers and I'm looking forward to your mail!

  2. 5

    Amazing Wilson!
    I've been folowing your journey on Twitter for a while! Senja looks way better than your biggest competitor 😉

    Love your points on affiliate marketing, trying to solve everything with https://tolt.io 😅

    1. 1

      Hello @yxngdano! Do you have a community of affiliates at tolt.io that companies can reach out to? I have a SaaS product and I'm looking for a way to give exposure to our affiliate program :)

    2. 1

      Amazing software Daniel! I'm in the affiliate marketing space too with my SaaS, Affistash.com, so I love to see another indie hacker in the same niche ;)

      1. 2

        I've seen you a few times on Reddit 😅
        Keep it up!

        1. 1

          lol : )

          Thanks, and good luck with your saas too!

      2. 1

        Hey Vic

        If you click on your pricing you'll see "Deashboard Access" as one of the advertised features. You may want to fix the spelling there.

  3. 3

    Awesome article, Wilson! Your line about taking 11 months to get to $1000 MRR and then just 40 days to get to $2000 MRR is incredibly inspiring for us indie hackers just getting started. I hope it takes even less time for you to reach $5000 MRR!

  4. 2

    Building highly requested features

    I'm glad you mentioned this and put this as #1.

    Indie hackers have this weird reverence for marketing or "audience-building," but honestly for me, nothing moved me from $1k/mo to $5k/mo to $10k/mo and beyond more than actually improving the product and adding more value.

    And then cultivating good relationships with your users/customers, who will then naturally share the good word with their communities and friends.

    Jesus, I hit $10k/mo before I even hit 1,000 followers on Twitter, let's just put things into perspective here.

    I don't get the whole "1 week build/1 week market" routine either.

    You mean to say you'd be marketing now, just because it's "marketing week," even when the top priority now is to fix a crucial bug or add a highly-wanted feature?

    This is why I always take platitudinal advice on here with a pinch of salt.

    I'd rather do things my own way.

    "I decided long ago
    Never to walk in anyone's shadows
    If I fail, if I succeed
    At least I'll live as I believe
    "

    -- George Benson

  5. 2

    Congratulations! Best of luck for 5k

  6. 2

    Congratulations ❤️ "Desperate pricing" was the funniest thing I've ever read :D

  7. 2

    Thanks for your insights @euboid! Just gave me the boost I needed to start talking about my upcoming Saas project on Twitter! 🫶

  8. 2

    Delightful article, Wil' 🙌

    The only thing that's disturbing me is the "→ More feature requests = better product", i would have changed with "More feedback=better product" bc here it can sound like "more features = better"

    If that makes sense 🤷‍♂️

    1. 1

      I completely agree. Updated!

  9. 2

    amazing work wilson. Especially the move to first promoter. Risky but it paid off. Congrats 👏

  10. 2

    Thanks for sharing this Wilson, super insightful!
    From the importance of affiliates & referrals.
    Good luck with your next milestone mate.

  11. 1

    Do I understanding correct that you're tracking the success of Senja testimonials by measuring how many signups and sales customers are making from users forwarded by the testimonials?

    If so, can you please elaborate on how this is working exactly?

    1. 1

      @alexanderdavide Hey, co-founder here. I am not sure I understand your question, can you clarify it please?

      1. 1

        While Rewardful notified our affiliates about their sales, they didn't notify them about their signups [..]

        From this I understand that you're able to track conversion your customers make with their Senja testimonials. With this performance monitoring, you can convince customers that Senja helps increase sales and signups. Is that correct? If so, how's that working technically with Rewardful or other tools?

  12. 1

    The pricing observation is really an interesting one. I wonder our price point at $30 is too cheap too....

    1. 1

      Co-founder here. We decided to go higher than we were going to. We decided it would be easier to later decrease the price, than to increase it again soon after.

  13. 1

    Thanks for sharing, Wilson!

  14. 1

    Awesome man, will read more about affiliate marketing and how it can help my app !

  15. 1

    Hey Wilson, this is great :)
    Have you ever thought of running an LTD for your product?

    1. 1

      Co-founder here. @euboid did it before I joined him. We won't be doing it again for various reasons.

  16. 1

    Congratulations on reaching 2,000 MRR!

    Is your facing customer churn in your membership business? how much?

    One important factor in maintaining and growing your revenue is reducing customer churn. Our tool, Churnfree, can help you analyze customer behavior and target at-risk users with personalized retention strategies. This can ultimately lead to a decrease in churn and an increase in MRR. Let us know if you're interested in learning more about how Churnfree can benefit your business.

  17. 1

    Great read Wilson. Very excited to see your hyper growth Formula. Thanks for sharing!

  18. 1

    how much does the influencers cost if you don't mind sharing? and what's the roi with them? do they actually drive sign-ups or more for branding purposes?

    senja does look cool.

    1. 2

      They get a 30% recurring commission on their referred paying user. Nothing upfront.

  19. 1

    Impressive milestone! I can't wait for the next.

  20. 1

    Amazing progress! Congrats on hitting this milestone.

  21. 1

    Congrats! Onwards and upwards!

  22. 1

    Great! Congratulations! ;)

  23. 1

    Well done Wilson. Your story really shows how hard the first few months can be and how quickly growth happens after you stick it out. I mean, it took you 11 months to get to 1,000 MRR but just a month and some change to double it!

    Reminds me of exponential growth in physics (if you fold a piece of paper in half 45 times, it's high enough to reach the moon but just one more fold gets you back to earth).

    I'm a writer and I'd like to share your story on my socials (LinkedIn, Twitter and Substack) with credits to you. Let me know if that's ok. (My Twitter handle is @fueledbycopy).

  24. 1

    Congrats and good luck for the next milestone of 5K MRR.

    We are also close to hitting the first milestone for our 3rd SaaS usermaven.com - analytics tool for SaaS.

  25. 1

    Nice work! We are uncovering the same findings six months after our initial launch.

  26. 1

    Great work @euboid ! I really appreciate your down-to-earth story, it's very refreshing and full of good insights for those who are only getting started, like myself with StationDb!
    One question though, what worked best for you in finding affiliates? Thank you for sharing!

    1. 1

      Co-founder here. We used Twitter searching and lists.

  27. 1

    Great breakdown! Congrats on a great milestone. Onwards to 10,000!

  28. 1

    Great to see the flywheel working!

  29. 1

    wow 2000MRR! congrats!

  30. 1

    Congratulations! Great job 👏

  31. 1

    Great decision Wilson.
    It's the matter of right decision at right time :)

  32. 1

    Nice work Wilson 🙌

    We changed pricing this month too, for similar reasons to you guys, and had a similar result (well in our case a 25% increase in MRR in 10 days since the change was announced and implemented).

  33. 1

    Congratulations! Great achievement. But what is the ideal goal of yours to start this startup only not other like there is a trending market of clone apps

  34. 1

    These are very nice and interesting tips, congrats Wilson!
    The most requested features are usually a good plan but so are bugs I think :)

    I've seen quite a few products were bugs were causing the most issues and sometimes you can even be better than "that guy" by simply offering the same service with less bugs haha

    The pricing point is really interesting too, it kind of makes sense, if you see something that's more pricey you get better feeling about the overall product shrug human psychology is a weird thing

  35. 1

    Amazing!

    This may seem a little too base-level of a question, but how did you originally promote the affiliate program? What approach did you take for bringing on affiliates?

    1. 1

      Co-founder here, we did this on Twitter.

  36. 1

    Hi Wilson,

    I'm a young college student exploring the world of tech and startups. I love your story and love what you're doing, and want to be a part in any way I can. I sent over an email from my personal: phillip.y.fernandez@gmail if you could take a look that would be awesome!

    Best,
    Phillip

  37. 1

    Congratulations on your journey so far! its amazing to see. One thing I always struggle to understand is how a product can do well when there are already a lot of alternatives. Is it just the pen analogy? that just because there are 1000s of companies making pens it doesn't mean no one will buy yours?

  38. 1

    Thanks for sharing and huge congrats on the milestone!

    Been considering an affiliate program for my site and wondering how you got started. Where do you find the right influencers to start reaching out to?

  39. 1

    The project template you have created is impressive. Can it be customized to fit the needs of the https://inshotapps.com/ ? I have searched for similar templates but many of them are not customizable and not compatible with WordPress CMS

  40. 1

    Congrats, I just want to know, can "pricing increase" get more paying subscribers well? I mean relative to before the price increase

  41. 1

    Hey Wilson, what did you use for that scrolling line of testimonials? I have a discussion forum and want to do the same for forum posts on the homepage.

    Nice site, by the way.

    1. 2

      Heya! Using my own product: https://senja.io

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