The Complete Guide on Building in Public

The Complete Guide on Building in Public

There’s a new era of startups on the rise, and they’re doing things differently. They’re building their SaaS startups in public, sharing their progress, challenges, and learnings with the world.

This new era of startups is fueled by a belief that transparency breeds trust, builds community, and attracts talent.

If you’re a creator or founder seeking to build your personal brand this guide will paint a complete picture of building in public so you can make a decision if it’s right for you.

What is “Build in Public”?

The term “build in public” refers to the practice of startups sharing their progress, challenges, and lessons learned with their audiences.

This allows startups to get create a feedback loop and quickly get input from customers and fans and builds transparency and trust. It also allows startups to build a community of supporters who can help them with their startups.

The new era of startups is all about transparency. “Build in Public” is the new era of startups where everything is out in the open. No longer do startups have to hide their work in progress or their struggles.

Everything is out in the open for everyone to see. This new era of startups is all about building in public and being transparent with your work.

It’s a move away from the “secretive” stealth startup culture, and it can be a great way to build buzz and excitement around your product.

When you build in public, you’re sharing your process with the world and inviting people to participate in your journey. It’s a riskier way of doing business, but it can pay off big time if done well.

How did Building in Public Become Popular?

There are a number of factors that have contributed to the popularity of “building in public.” One of the most important is the rise of social media.

With more and more people sharing their work online, it’s become easier for people to find and connect with others who are doing similar things.

Additionally, the number of people who are working on side projects and sharing their work online has grown tremendously in recent years. This has created a community of like-minded individuals who are eager to help and support each other.

Finally, the “build in public” approach has been popularized by a number of successful people who have shared their stories and offered advice to others.

The Benefits of Building in Public

There are a number of benefits to building in public, but one of the most important is that it helps you find product-market fit.

It can be difficult to gauge whether or not people are actually interested in what you’re building, but if you’re openly sharing your progress and soliciting feedback, it becomes a lot easier. People are more likely to give you honest feedback if they know you’re open to hearing it, and that feedback can be invaluable in helping you fine-tune your product.

In addition, building in public can also help build interest and anticipation around your product, which can be helpful in generating buzz and attracting users when you’re ready to launch.

It can be difficult to generate revenue when you first start a business. You have to invest time and money into building your product or service, and it can be hard to get people to pay for something that’s not yet proven. When you build in public, you’re able to generate revenue from day one.

People are willing to pay for your product or service because they can see the value in it. They’re also more likely to spread the word about your business, which can help you grow even more.

Building in public often leads to a community-led growth strategy. By engaging with your audience and being transparent about your process, you can build a community of supporters who will help you to grow and scale your business.

This is a more sustainable way to grow a business, as it is not reliant on paid advertising or other marketing tactics. Instead, it relies on the support of a community of passionate people who believe in what you’re doing.

If you’re building something in public, you’re much more likely to be held accountable for your goals. People will be watching your progress and cheering you on (or, in some cases, calling you out), and that can be a great motivator to stay on track. You’ll also get feedback from your audience that can help you improve your product.

If you’re not already doing it, building in public is a great way to raise your profile and build your personal brand. When you’re transparent about your work, people can see your process and your progress, and that builds trust. People are also more likely to remember you when they see your name and face regularly. So if you’re looking for ways to stand out and get noticed, building in public is a great way to do it.

Examples of Startups Building in Public

The best way to learn and grow is to put yourself out there, and that means being open to criticism. It can be tough to hear people say negative things about your work, but it’s important to remember that not everyone is going to like everything you do. 

The important thing is to listen to criticism and use it to improve your work. If you’re afraid of criticism, you’ll never reach your full potential. So don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and embrace the criticism when it comes.

The Open Startup Initiative encourages startups to be more transparent with their customers, and many companies are embracing this philosophy. By being open about their plans, progress, and challenges, startups can build trust and loyalty with their customers. 

Customers appreciate knowing what’s going on behind the scenes, and they’re more likely to stick with a company that’s open and honest.

Some SaaS startups who build in public include:

  • Baremetrics
  • ConvertKit
  • Ecologi
  • Snipe-It
  • Hyperping
  • Scrumpy
  • Vera

Is Building in Public Suitable for Every Startup?

If you’re just starting out, it might be best to keep things private. This way, you can avoid any unnecessary criticism or judgment.

Additionally, you’ll be able to control the narrative around your product. Once you’ve launched and things are going well, you can start to build in public. This will help you attract more attention and users.

As you gain more traction, you may want to consider opening up and being more transparent with your customers. This can help build trust and create a stronger relationship with your customers. If you’re not sure if this is right for your startup, you can always talk to your customers and get their feedback.

They may be more receptive to this than you think. Ultimately, you want to do what’s best for your business and your customers. If you decide that building in public is the way to go, then go for it!

If you’re the kind of person who is comfortable being open and honest about your process, then building in public may be a good fit for you. It can be a great way to connect with potential customers and get feedback early on. 

However, it’s not for everyone. You need to be comfortable with the idea of people watching you work, and you need to be ok with the possibility of things not working out.

But if you’re up for it, building in public can be a great way to connect with your audience and create something special.

Risks when building in public

When you build in public, you lose some control over messaging and branding. You also expose your trade secrets, which could lead to copycats. These are all risks that you need to be aware of when you’re building in public.

There is a risk of oversharing and revealing too much when building in public. This can be damaging to your personal brand and reputation, and it can also discourage potential customers from doing business with you.

It’s important to be mindful of what you share and to remember that not everything needs to be shared publicly. Sometimes, it’s best to keep some things private.

No one likes to be told their baby is ugly, but it’s a risk you run when you put your work out there for the world to see. You might get negative feedback that can be hard to take, but it’s important to remember that not everyone is going to like what you’ve created.

If you can take the criticism in stride and use it to improve your work, then you’re on the right track. Keep your head up and keep moving forward.

How to Build in Public Successfully

Finding your tribe of 1,000 true fans is essential to your success. They will be the ones who help you grow and succeed.

A true fan is someone who will support you no matter what. They will buy your products, attend your events, and tell their friends about you.

They are the ones who keep you going when times are tough. 

If you want to build in public successfully, you need to be clear about your goals and what you’re trying to achieve. You need to be clear about what you’re trying to accomplish, and why you’re doing it. Being clear about your goals will help you stay focused and motivated, and it will also help you attract the right people to your project. 

People are more likely to support and engage with a project that has a clear purpose and direction. So if you want to build in public successfully, make sure you know what you’re trying to achieve, and be clear about it.

When you’re building in public, it’s important to be consistent with your updates and communication. This will help you maintain a good relationship with your audience, and it will also help you attract new people to your project.

Channels to use for communicating when Building in public

Stories are a powerful way to connect with an audience and build an emotional connection. When done well, stories can transport us to other times and places, make us laugh, or even make us cry.

They can also inspire us to action. Good stories have a beginning, middle, and end, and a strong emotional arc that engages the reader or listener.

As a startup founder, you can use stories to connect with your audience and communicate your brand’s values in a way that is relatable and memorable.

There are a few key channels you can use to share your story when you’re building in public:

  1. Your website or blog: This is usually the hub for all your other communication channels. Use it to share your progress, announcements, and thoughts on your build.
  2. Social media: Use social media to drive traffic to your website or blog, and to share quick updates and thoughts on your build.
  3. Forums and discussion boards: These can be great places to get feedback from other people who are interested in your build.
  4. Email list: If you have a mailing list for your build, use it to share announcements, progress updates, and thoughts on your build.

Storytelling techniques founders use when building in public

We’re in the midst of a new wave of creators and founders who are building their companies in public, from the ground up.

This new breed of entrepreneur is using social media and other online platforms to create and cultivate relationships with their customers, giving them a direct line of feedback that they can use to improve their products and services.

Building in public can be a great way to validate your idea, build a community, and get feedback.

These founders are also using public platforms to raise awareness and funds for their businesses. In many cases, they’re bypassing traditional VCs and going straight to the people.

This new way of building a business is more transparent, and it’s giving rise to a new generation of companies that are more responsive to their customers and more open to feedback.

The type of content founders share when building in public varies a lot. What I most frequently see is:

  • Business metrics and milestones.
  • Clever strategies.
  • Bug fixes and new features/projects.
  • Insights about unknown aspects of an industry or a company.
  • Obstacles they come across and how they overcame them.
  • Product or feature ideas and requests for feedback.
  • Quotes or screenshots of feedback from their users.
  • Updates on stuff they have shared in the past.
  • What they have done during the day or week and their pending tasks.

Hire a Content Marketer to help you build in public

If you’re feeling stuck or like you’re not reaching your target audience, it might be time to hire a content marketer

They can help you identify the right platforms and channels to build in public. They can also help you create content that resonates with your audience and helps you achieve your business goals. If you’re not sure where to start, a content marketer can be a valuable asset to your team.

If you don’t have the budget to hire a full-time content marketer, consider outsourcing the work to a freelancer. There are many talented content marketers out there who can help you produce high-quality content on a regular basis.

The key is to find someone who understands your brand and your audience and who can produce content that resonates with them. 

Once you find a good freelancer, you can develop a long-term relationship with them and continue to produce great content that will help you build your brand and grow your business.

If you’re thinking about starting a company, consider building it in public. By sharing your journey with the world, you’ll attract like-minded individuals who can help you on your way to success.

You’ll also build trust with your future customers and create a community of supporters who believe in your mission.


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