In the past week, I've facilitated two demos for the web site I'm building in partnership with a company here in Des Moines. We hope to launch in a couple of weeks, and we're getting close to the finish line. The demos? They were in front of people who actually intend to use the web site - clients - and the responses were terrific. Here are a couple comments after the demos:
"Very impressive and thought out."Heartening stuff. Coupled with these was a boatload of suggestions, and in the next few days, I'll mull those over and determine what might be in or out.
"The concept is cool and I think a lot more business may be driven our way."
"It looks like it is going to be a great tool."
It happens to be that by contract, I own the intellectual property for the web site. In effect, I'm leasing the web site to the company. This means that if it succeeds as hoped, I can trot it out to other companies and work to lease it to them also.
I had lunch with a friend of mine last week who has done enterprise sales in the past and he said that I have a problem: it's a cool tool that I've built, but I alone am the support department. If my aspiration is to get other companies to use this, why would they buy into partnering with lil' ol' me? I encounter the proverbial "What happens if you get hit by a truck?" scenario, in which case, how do I answer that? I'm pretty good at selling things, and it appears that I have a good thing to sell, but I'll have to be extra spiffy to sell a one-man operation.
So, after noodling through what Peter said - because he's right - I've determined that I'll need a business partner. And I think I've identified the perfect partner. A few months from now, I'll approach them and see how interested they might be.
In the meantime, my evenings are full of heads-down coding. I was up for over 40 hours straight two days ago... bug-fixing, testing, coding, bug-fixing, optimizing, testing, bug-fixing... go to my day job... then home - for bug-fixing, testing, coding, bug-fixing, optimizing, testing, bug-fixing...
I'm almost there.
By the way, if anyone who reads this wants to test drive it, just drop me a line and I'll send you a link to it.
Special thanks to my friend, Annette, who agreed to test-drive it and took time out of her hectic schedule to give me some great feedback. You rock, and it's mucho appreciated :)