We spent a total of $169,864 in May (a bit less than in April). Here is our financial report for May:
You might be wondering why I don’t have an income column above; the reason is pretty straightforward: we didn’t have income in May. We’ve had a few orders from friends, but these don’t count, and they were just test trials.
What did we accomplish in May?
- We launched “Get a Free Print Experiment” in Portland, which I shared in a separate post.
- I believe I mentioned before that we are preparing to run a Kickstarter campaign. We’ve been working long and hard on it and are now 85 percent ready to launch it. I’ll write about this in detail in a different post closer to the launch.
- We modified, finalized, and began testing our new business model. My earlier post from this week talks about the what, why, and how behind this initiative. (I will warn you that it is a bit dated since I wrote it a few weeks ago.)
- We ran a Mother’s Day giveaway campaign in our hometown, where we asked Portland residents to upload a photo that they would like to give to their mom. We would print and hand deliver the canvas to their mom, all wrapped in a gorgeous package on Mother’s day. It didn’t take too much time or many resources on our end, but the 30 people who won the contest were very thankful and happy. Yay!
I realized something very critical this past month: we should stop building and start selling. It doesn’t mean we decided to stop building our product altogether. All it means is that our primary focus for the month of June and going forward will be to sell our existing MVP (minimum viable product).
We put together a rather aggressive goal for our sales; we started selling prints on June 1, 2015, and we plan to double our sales every month.
Here are the sales goals we want to hit:
Until now we had no sales people on our team, but we are grateful for Philipp, who came on board just a few days ago; he will lead our sales efforts.
Some of you might wonder how we plan to sell prints without a fully featured website for customers to pick and order prints. All we have is an MVP, and I think it’s plenty to start selling our product based on our new business model.
We deliberated whether to start selling to residential or commercial real-estate and settled on the commercial market for two reasons:
- We need to start earning money, and the profit margin for the commercial market is significantly larger than residential.
- The commercial market is much easier to target.
We are starting to work with local businesses here in Portland, Oregon, such as hotels, restaurants, cafes, offices, apartments, hospitals, art studios, stores, etc.
Our ideal clients are not these businesses but the real estate developers and managers behind the buildings that are occupied by these companies. There are two types of commercial real-estate firms:
- Construction firms that develop the buildings.
- Property firms that manage and rent space to businesses.
We decided to go after No. 2 because they are the ones directly responsible for decorating the interior of the buildings they operate.
In my next post, I’ll share our failures and maybe some successes (I hope). I’ll share how we target our prospective customers, how we sell our product, and how we deliver our service offerings.