How I Created My Company in 5 Days
On September 26th, Apple announced a new way for app developers to find public beta testers.
On October 5th, I launched publicbetas.com.
Within 24 hours, PublicBetas was on the front page of Product Hunt and had been included in a popular e-mail newsletter for developers by iOS Dev Weekly. Thousands of users from around the world were flooding my site — developers uploaded new betas while interested users downloaded new versions of their favorite apps.
It was simple, user-friendly and created in 5 days.
In my short career, I’ve never been traditionally trained for any job I’ve held. I’ve been everything from a sales manager to a creative director, but I went to school to be a PGA Golf Professional. I fully expected to teach golf to juniors and spend the majority of my time on driving ranges. Instead, I have taught myself how to build apps and design user interfaces. At each position, I’ve hacked my way to success, all along the way learning new skills and finding faster ways to get the job done.
PublicBetas is the manifestation of my experiences. I saw an opening and filled it in the span of a single work week.
When I’ve talked to friends about this project, everyone has the same reply.
“How did you launch so quickly?”
For those with the proper technical training, it may have taken longer. It may have been approached differently. But I’ve built countless websites in my spare time, so I knew exactly which layouts would work best for our audience. I was aggressive in reaching out to developer-focused news outlets and spent some late nights developing the site to function properly. I am used to learning on the go — work fast, make mistakes, fix the mistakes and keep going.
The best part is? Anyone can follow the same formula.
In 2018, you can learn whatever you need to learn online. If you’re interested in coding, teach yourself. If you want to learn to produce videos, start in iMovie. If you have a passion for apps, start building them. The barrier to entry for entrepreneurs and creatives like myself has never been lower.
The only thing holding you back is fear.
“This will take too long.” “This will cost too much money.” “I don’t have the skills.”
Publicbetas.com launched in five days with $60 of personal funding. That — mixed with a few late nights — is all it takes.
The initial response has been incredible. PublicBetas serves as the connector between developers and users. Both sides need each other.
As someone who works with developers on a daily basis at a growing startup, I know the value of beta testing before a big launch. No matter how many times you test internally, a fresh set of eyes will *always* find something that can be improved. Developers build products to provide utility to the end users. This functions at the highest level when releases are properly tested and vetted.
Take the popular app, Pocket. This simple product saves links for users to read at a later date — putting a story in your digital pocket, so to speak. It’s a widely popular app that works seamlessly, thanks in some small part due to the testing process. Pocket was recently featured on PublicBetas.com and 100’s of users downloaded their beta, which featured a massive rebrand and full redesign of their iOS app.
Bugs were found, reported and fixed. It’s the digital circle of life, and it is made seamless with PublicBetas.com.
And we’re just getting started.
In the future, PublicBetas will be the social platform for product development. Users can leave public feedback under specific releases, other users can comment if they experienced similar problems and developers can interact with these testers. Users who have a history of testing mail apps will be the first to receive the news of a new release for Microsoft Outlook. Developers who want to find certain demographics as their target audiences can easily do so.
Getting on the front page of Product Hunt is a huge deal for makers. In the future, getting on the front page of PublicBetas will be just as huge for developers.
Sometimes all you need is 5 days.