Here is the inception of Leak.
A week before starting.
That week was one of the most stressful week I’ve ever had. I won’t tell the whole story because it’s long, but basically I heard that all my revenues were going to stop in September. We had an atypical relationships with our investors from who we raised funds during college. No insurance, no benefit. The situation was complicated. I had to make the good move. Something quick and cool. I wanted it simple, my style. I wanted peace.
I heard about Secret and started to use it. I loved it and enjoyed the excitement of sharing for the first time my secret garden with everyone. But there is no Secret community in Paris, FR yet, so the experience was a bit frustrating. I wanted my friends to like and comment anonymously, but nothing happened.
There was a problem. I immediately thought about sending anonymous emails. I already tried them, there is a dozen of websites doing it. But man, it sucked.
No signups, and useful without users. Everyone knows sometimes it’s complicated to tell the truth.
I started working and make a living on the Internet since I am 18. I know some stuff about this. But not code. On my own, I had to get around the problem.
I love the idea behind Leak, and it seems like it could be a very popular product if you publicize it right. — Vlad Magdalin
That was my first feedback.
Alright, let’s do this.
Last friday I emailed Seb with the Leak idea, we quickly exchanged. He’s also an entrepreneur but he knows how to code. He told me he could get the job done over the weekend. So we set up a beer-meeting to talk.
We wanted Leak to be a really positive and exciting tool. It’s sure that people can send negative leaks, but that is really not what the product is about. It’s about saying the truth you’re ashamed to say. And if it’s getting negative you can block emails from Leak.
We scheduled another meeting on Saturday around 5:00pm to polish everything, wording, baseline… and mostly the leak email template so that it doesn’t look like a spam. We were on the same page. I met a few friends to have their opinion on everything we discussed on Sunday, and they got very excited! On Sunday evening I went to Seb’s to show him the last versions of the website and the email template. We agreed on everything. He finished to code at about 3:00am. It took only the weekend.
FYI, Seb and I met when he reached me to help me out on a side project I launched in march 2014 (also over a weekend): a no-ad online service called Le Video Club that let you receive (and download illegally) once a week in your inbox, 3 movies currently in theatre for free. But it has been obviously closed for legal matters 30 days and 10,000+ users after launch. There is not Netflix in France.
Well, what next?
Three of them answered me, I sent a few leaks, and Ryan sent a leak to himself.
I asked them what they thought about Leak, and if they were interested they could submit it to PH or just leave a nice tweet. We exchanged about 20 short emails with Jack. He offered me to post on Monday about 5-6 am PST time.
We used that time to improve the deliverability of the leaks, write this blog post, think about the next step, the vision.
Wow! Feedback was incredible on Twitter and Product Hunt. You guys really got the concept, that was something we weren’t sure before launching. People shared about 800+ tweets in a few hours and we got featured in Digg, The Next Web, Business Insider, Cosmopolitan, The Huffington Post, Daily Dot… That’s why we are now sending 10+ leaks every minute. Thank you folks. And thanks to the PH awesomeness!
FYI we’re from Paris, FR. The first leakers are mainly leaking from US. New York is the first city. SF the second. So we’re considering to go there some times.
It all started with PH, then we got a few tweets, then we got publications then a lot more people tweeted. That’s all we know.
Anyway, sounds like you enjoy leaking. This is cool, because it’s just the beginning. The current version of Leak is a tiny version of what could be Leak. There’s way more to come. Right now, we’re going to clear the backend of the current “app” and work hardly on deliverability to let our users send leaks to Gmail Business accounts.
Leak is kind of an open project for the moment, and we’re always looking for the best talent to grow our community. If you are a designer, developer, investor, entrepreneur, growth hacker, business developer, product manager… and would like to contribute by bringing in ideas/talent/$, send an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or mention us on Twitter. We’re only on Twitter.
I wrote this article while listening to my Soundcloud. I already have a few ideas for the next blog posts. I’ll keep you posted.