183: TZ Interview – Jason Cohen / WP Engine

Justin and Jason talk with Jason Cohen about his latest startup, WP Engine.

  1. I like how Jason Cohen talked about his assumptions, how he wrote them down and tested them directly. The “Lean Startup” movement have jumped on that and have made it critical to their whole process. I’m recognising more and more that the lean startup thing is a pretty good collection of advice!

  2. Dan says:

    When it comes to choosing a Web hosting provider, one of the most important factors to consider is the level of customer service provided. While you should obviously make sure you get the features you need, and of course a great price, you also need to be assured that the company you select will partner with you for the long haul and be there whenever you have questions or concerns—be it midday or midnight.

  3. I really enjoyed the interview, with the focus on storytelling, peppered with probing questions (the usual quest to bust the “magic function”).
    I found the following segments quite interesting:
    – Jason Cohen’s approach to find people to talk to via LinkedIn and to solicit paid feedback to show he was really serious
    – The discovery of the unserved need
    – The comments on what a “business guy” should be doing
    – The benefit of having Automatic as an investor
    – Getting only 2 signups from a blog post even with 30,000 subscribers
    – When Freemium is beneficial:
    a) to increase network effect if the product requires network effect,
    b) when upgrading to a premium plan is obvious
    c) when the cost of adding customers is essentially free

  4. I only found Jason Cohen a few days ago on another podcast and was really impressed by his insight into startups. Was really excited when I saw you had him on the show!

    I have written up a quick blog post on the interview.

    The reason I wrote the post is because we like how Jason Cohen takes the startup concepts and tells you how he applied them. His whole approach to customer interviews is impressive – a customer willing to handover money before the product is even built is a strong sign you’re on to the right idea!

    Would fully support your philosophers panel show!

  5. Keith Alderman says:

    Great content, a lot of fun listening to Jason Cohen. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same about the other Jason on this podcast. I don’t know if you realize it, but you have a tendency to bully your way through an interview without giving Justin a chance to speak or ask questions. I can imagine it’d be quite overwhelming having to co-host an interview episode with you. Jason, you asked some really good questions, but please please please let Justin also participate. Even at the sign off, you essentially cut Justin off as he was thanking Jason for his time! It’s okay to sit back and listen and let others do the talking once in a while…yes, even if it is your co-host.

  6. Jason says:

    @Keith Alderman – It’s true, I talk too much and it’s unfair to Justin. We’ve actually discussed the issue in depth and have decided to take turns doing interview shows because it’s just too difficult to have both of us interviewing a guest at the same time.

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