Saveliy Samoylov

Growth Hacker, Hobbyist



Washington D.C. Area Group

  1. What surveys should Firestarter run to their early users? What questions should they be asking in this survey?

    The initial surveys should focus more on defining the early users demographically, seeing which ones are well represented and which ones are lacking. The surveys should also focus on user experience in order to improve conversion rates.
  • What were your initial goals for joining Firestarter?
  • Did we fulfill your initial goals? If not, how?
  • What most interests you about using Firestarter?
  • Are you an Entrepreneur, or work for a Start-up? If not, what is your occupation?
  • Please give an estimate of your annual income?
  • If an investor? What’s your motivation? What fields are you interested in funding?
  • What’s your favorite aspect of our process?
  • Least favorite.
  • What is your favorite feature?
  • Least favorite?
  • How did you discover Firestarter?
  • How would you feel if you could no longer use Firestarter?
  • What would you likely use as an alternative if Firestarter were no longer available?
  • What is the primary benefit that you have received from Firestarter?
  • Have you recommended Firestarter to anyone?
  • What type of person do you think would benefit most from Firestarter?
  • How can we improve Firestarter to better meet your needs?
  • How can we better help raise awareness for your Start-up?
  • How do you promote your Firestarter page?
  • How likely are you to share the fact that you invested in something through social media?
  1. What are the metrics they should track to determine if they have product/market fit? What are the vanity metrics they should avoid?
    • Ratio of investors to registered users
    • Ratio of repeat investors to total investors
    • Average # of investments per investor
    • Monthly Active Users (MAU)
    • Investment Page Views by Users (Can be helpful in determining whether the interface or page presentation needs to be improved upon to increase conversion rates.)
    • Dates/Times of the month/year when the site gets most investor traffic. (In order to determine when to send out promotional newsletters to their users. Some middle-class investors might dedicate a portion of their paycheck to be invested on the days that they get it. Firestarter should always remind them to do it.)
    • Traffic from outside sources. (Helps define where and how these start-up projects are being promoted, what channels should your marketing dollars go through?)


    Vanity Metrics:

      • Total registered users (or any metric having to do with generic users who don’t invest)
      • Page views (Focus on conversion from visitor to member to investor.)
      1. How will Firestarter know when they’ve hit Product-Market fit? What should Firestarter do next within the next month to get there?

      Signs of PMF:

      • 40% of surveyed users would be “very disappointed” if they could no longer use the product.
      • Ratio of investors to registered users is increasing dramatically.
      • Investors are repeatedly investing.
      • A large chunk of traffic is driven through Social Media, and Traditional Online Media. People are excited to share the sites and investment pages.


      What to do within the next month.

      • Survey and talk with investors about why they invest.
      • Measure each step of the user process to see where they may be losing investors.
      • A/B test the site in order to improve conversion. Is it an issue with design or copywriting? Figure out how to make the investments seem more appealing.
      • Create a MSCW list of features. (Must have, Should Have, Could Have, Won’t have.)
      • Determine which additional features will A) Improve the overall experience, B) Attract a new demographic,  C) Are within the operational budget.
      1. (Optional) Is the market big enough? If so, how can Firestarter be differentiated in the marketplace?

      From Mike Chan:

      • It’s tough to say yet whether the market is big enough. With the changes in crowdfunding regulations, it certainly has momentum behind it.
      • If the market is large enough, Firestarter may be able to differentiate by focusing solely on the niche of startups. But then again, that might limit the size of the market for Firestarter, which may not be big enough to begin with.
      • Kickstarter and IndieGogo already have big leads in the market but most of the projects on those sites focus on hardware and physical items.


      From Saveliy Samoylov:


      • To add to Mike’s point, I fully agree that with the momentum created by the new JOBS Act regulations being early in the space is key and the fictional start-up doesn’t yet have too much competition. Firestarterand should target the amateur investors of the world. (Users of sites like Ameritrade, Scotttrade, etc.) This sort of investment process where they can potentially be in on something new and exciting, and to feel like they’re growing their portfolio, and adding equity while potentially improving the  world through start-up ingenuity has a definite appeal.



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