Angel established MetricSpot in 2013 with the goal of creating the first SEO Tool Kit in Spanish and Latin America. He has 2,618 people now active and brings in more than $3,000 each month. His background includes studying architecture and working remotely. He met Digital Nomads while on holiday in India in 2011, and started an online marketing firm in Spain with a friend in 2012. He wanted to leverage and raise costs as they grew.
Angel established MetricSpot with the goal of creating the first SEO Tool Kit in the Spanish and LATAM markets. The easy part was creating the product; the difficult part was selling it, but affiliates and influencers allowed him to grow his website. With 2,618 people now active, Angel brings in more than $3,000 each month.
What is your background and what are you concentrating on right now?
I am a peculiar kind of software entrepreneur. Although I studied architecture (yes, the kind of structures), I knew even before I received my degree that I would someday own my own firm.
Despite being 36 years old and headquartered in Madrid, where I grew up, I’ve spent the last several years traveling and working remotely on my company, MetricSpot.
In 2013, MetricSpot was established with the goal of being the first SEO toolkit available in Spanish and Latin America. Over 45,000 users have enrolled with our SaaS firm, which uses a freemium business model.
What is your background, and how did you come up with this idea?
Following graduation, I worked as an internationalization consultant for three years. Although it was a lovely experience, I thought something needed to change since it was getting too routine.
I had the chance to meet several Digital Nomads, young business owners who operated fully online and worked from home, while on holiday in India in 2011. I had read Tim Ferriss’ “The Four Hour Workweek” before, but seeing the people who had really made that ideal a reality had a huge impact on me.
I started an online marketing firm in Spain with a friend at the beginning of 2012. It started out really well, but after a few months I decided to sell my agency interest since we had different management standards for the business. Even though our income was much less than expected, my buddy wanted to spend as much as possible. As we grew, I wanted to leverage and raise our costs.
I discovered while working for the firm that the great majority of SEO tools were only offered in English (or were poorly translated) and were too expensive for smaller companies in Spain and Latin America to afford. Additionally, each tool at the time provided a particular capability out of the many that a daily SEO business needs (on-page research, backlinks analysis, tracking keyword placements in SERPs, client reporting, etc.).
The startup agency would not have been able to continue if each tool had cost between 50 and 150 euros per month because there was no entire suite available in Spanish. I started coding after becoming persuaded.
MetricSpot was created in what way?
I had never created apps, despite having attended a PHP programming course the year before. I had very little expertise with HTML and CSS, so I had to start from scratch learning how to code. At the time, learning to code was something I was looking forward to, because the best way to learn is by doing (working on a real project).
For the minimal viable product, I utilized Codeigniter as the Model-View-Controller framework, jQuery for front-end animations and logic, and MongoDB as the database. I wrote all the code myself (a.k.a., copied and pasted a lot of StackOverflow stuff), with the occasional help of my cousin Juan, an engineer who had started his own eco-grocery delivery business from scratch.
I launched the first version of MetricSpot in January 2013 after two months. It was sufficient and seemed to be acceptable. The Home page SEO analysis report was the sole tool at the MVP’s disposal.
MetricSpot started to acquire traction once I approached a few marketing blogs to post a review. In just a few weeks, I got 1000 views per day.
Most people only pay attention to you once you’ve accomplished something. The phrase “lucky guy” is used. They are overlooking the greater picture, though, which is that I had to work really hard to launch my business since I didn’t have any money. I freelanced for six months to cover my bills, then I got a job as a software engineer and worked nights and weekends on MetricSpot. By January 2015, MetricSpot had finally reached a point where I could quit my job and devote all of my attention to the company.
What marketing techniques did you use to grow your company?
Construction of the device was straightforward; the challenging part is sales. It is not something that is taught in schools: making something that people desire and asking them to pay for it.
I started by getting in touch with marketing influencers and asking them to blog about our software. It worked out really good, thank you. I then gave content marketing and drip email marketing campaigns top priority for user onboarding and activation. Automation works particularly effectively with drip programs. The intended customers have not been drawn in by content marketing very well.
In order to encourage our most important users and marketing influencers to promote our products, I also set up an affiliate scheme. This approach has proven successful, bringing in a steady stream of new customers each month.
I’ve tried every conceivable method, but I still haven’t seen the “exponential growth” that all marketers preach about. I find marketing to be rather ineffective; although it may be useful for B2C items, I’ve lately discovered that a CRM and plain sales are more efficient for B2B. I am now looking for a sales professional with whom to work in order to advance the company.
What were the biggest challenges you faced, and how did you get beyond them?
The biggest challenges I ran with at this time were of a personal character. I was in a relationship that was about to end when I started the venture. In addition, I had created a firm before that had failed, so I was on the point of bankruptcy. You can understand that it was not the best moment of my life when I had to deal with a breakup, move back in with my parents, and start working the dreaded 9-to-5 office job:)
But I worked toward a goal that I had in mind. I have always achieved freedom and independence through my business, and I will continue to do so. I made the decision to skip the traditional investment phases because you end up doing what venture capitalists tell you to do, and I didn’t want a boss, so I did. I preferred to expand my business manually, gradually, and only accept cash from my clients.
What are your biggest flaws, exactly?
My biggest drawback, in my opinion, is that I come from a society where going into business is frowned upon. Whether you like it or not, the environment in which you are raised has a big influence on your beliefs, concerns, and strategy for dealing with obstacles in life. All of this “subconscious programming” becomes apparent when you start a business, forcing you to face it and requiring substantial inner effort.
The market’s main drawback is its oversupply of marketing and website analyzing tools. The market was a blue ocean when I first began in 2013, but things have changed since then. MetricSpot was the first tool to be fully released in Spanish, therefore we were able to gain some market share.
Being a “indie” firm whose main objective is to give the team the lifestyle they want is our main disadvantage when compared to our rivals. We are a fully remote firm that wishes to expand gradually in order to avoid having to comply with VCs’ demands. If we funded 500,000 euros, set up shop, and put together a team, I think we’d be more successful. However, our customers love us for who we are and what we do, and for the time being, we want to maintain it that way.
What were your biggest mistakes when developing and expanding MetricSpot?
The three biggest mistakes I made were:
obtaining a full-time job. Consider freelancing if you need money to cover expenditures while your firm expands. Having control over one’s own schedule is ideal.
not looking for a sales co-founder right away. By the way, if you know of anyone who is curious, please have them get in touch with me.
excessive coding. More features won’t make your product better; taking out unnecessary ones would. I could have avoided spending months on pointless creations.
What actions would you do differently if you had the chance?
If I could have a conversation with the person I was in 2013, I would tell him to find a mentor and co-founder instead of accepting that job.
I would remind myself to sell more and code less from time to time. In fact, I would advertise that outside my window.
I also wish I had originally spent less time blogging and more time talking to my customers. Making the distinction between “users” and “customers” is necessary since the latter are the ones who pay for the service, whilst the former do not.
Once you start getting user and customer feedback, you’ll have enough information to start rolling out new features every month. As a Product Manager (one of the co-founders should take on this position), I became more aware of the fact that MetricSpot was being overloaded with features that users had requested but that customers were neither using nor ready to pay for. I wasn’t making medicines; I was making “nice to have” products.
What additional learning tools besides mistakes would you suggest for new business owners?
I would highly advise surrounding oneself with others who share your views. Jim Rohn once said, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” I totally concur. So, to meet other businesspeople, go to networking events. Join a mastermind group. Locate a mentor.
I’ve read a lot about entrepreneurship, business, and advertising over the last few years. I’ve read a ton of blogs, Medium articles, bulletins, and podcasts on all these cutting-edge metrics and techniques. They may become compulsive in nature.
For three main reasons, I no longer consume “entrepreneur & marketing media”:
Success is determined by several factors. It’s improbable that what worked for them will work for you.
Because everyone is using the SAME tactics, they are no longer effective.
You become distracted from doing what has to be done, which is the only thing that counts.
The most efficient way to learn is to establish an H2H (human-to-human) relationship with a potential customer over the phone or Skype and try to understand his or her needs. essentially leaving the premises.
For further information
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