Concerns of a Seed Stage SaaS CEO

I just found this draft Word doc sitting in a Dropbox folder from December 2013 when I was CEO of Brandfolder, figured I’d post it. That way I can feel good about deleting the file.

I wrote this 5 months after we launched our product in beta. I find it interesting that I didn’t write in a more self-doubtful tone (maybe a defense mechanism). I lasted about 3 months more before being replaced as CEO, which was the right call for the business.

It was

11:22pm, I was lying in bed, and my mind was racing.

Now

It’s 11:44, I’m back at my laptop

And

It’s time for some therapy

So

Here’s what I’m thinking about:

Our runway and the tough prospect of getting more capital

Given

Our lack of traction

Due to

Our lack of product market fit

Is it because?

Our product is not differentiated enough

Or

It’s only a nice to have, need a MUST have

Or

Our messaging is missing the mark and we need better copywriting

Or

We just have no awareness and no clue how to generate it in any sustained fashion

Or because

Our existing users are all across the board without significant commonalities (software, CPG, healthcare, agencies, non-profits, individuals, many others)

With

Varying engagement with, understanding of and value derived from our product

Why do?

Our predecessors that have seemingly attempted what we’re attempting have static websites and dormant social profiles

And why have?

I waited months to reach out to them to ask why they’ve moved on

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