94: TZ Interview – Amy Hoy / How to Build a Product Empire

Justin and Jason interview Amy Hoy, founder of Freckle, publisher of the Javascript Performance Rocks! eBook, and creator of the 30×500 Product Launch online startup course, about how she was able to free herself from the shackles of full-time employment and escape the stress of the freelancing hamster wheel by developing her own online product empire.

  1. Bopinder Abu Morpalinder Singh says:

    Oh, I’m totally listening to this during my workout tomorrow.

    Thanks J^2 for giving such awesome workout material.

    God I’m boring.

  2. soitgoes says:

    Just started listening to another great interview. BTW, Mono in the UK is called Glandular Fever (also the kissing disease). Had to postpone starting uni because of it.

  3. soitgoes says:

    I like how Jason structured the interview so more of the story unfolds with each question.

  4. Bopinder Abu Morpalinder Singh says:

    Amazing interview. I agree with @soitgoes about the structure but I think it is only possible because Amy was very honest. Most people will not be as honest as she is and so you are still left with a unicorn and rainbows story.

  5. Donovan says:

    It was a great interview, but I would disagree that it was simply Amy’s honesty that made it so lacking in unicorns, but rather a combination of that as well as Jason and Justin’s direct and considered questions.

    Something that occured to me while listening, on the point of setting goals (eg 1,000 listener downloads within a year) that I’ve noticed. When I’ve set similar goals in the past, it has on occasion worked. I’ve often found it hard to quantify just what I’ve done to reach that goal, but it seems that by stating a goal it gets the subconscious working on it, and things sometimes just *happen*.

    Anyway, not to go all the secret on it. I found this show particularly encouraging as I’m in the position of having a reasonable income from a website needing little work, but in the position where I can’t seem to think of how to move on and into new projects. Shows like this get me back into the mode of looking for new ideas, and one thing I’m going to try is writing down everything that annoys me about any product or service. Hopefully that might open up some ideas to pursue.

    Good show again lads. Go apply the 30×500 to Pluggio and A Pig Night!

  6. Nethy says:

    Towards the end Amy refers to adwords as a “Marry Angelina Jolie strategy.”

    Nothing could be further from the truth. Adwords is the Fortune 5m marketing platform. People often have a weird impression of adwords because of the early adopters that used it. These were the technically savy (eg software vendors), affiliate marketers, “digital products” sellers etc. Because they were first, they affected how we think about it. We think of their businesses as the basics use-case for adwords.

    The right way (in my experience) of elevator pitching adwords is yellow pages 2.0. If yellow pages would have worked for you ten years ago, adwords will work for you today. I would estimate that a substantial (perhaps even majority) of adwords’ revenue is a direct transfer from one to the other. Services are at the core and everything else is peripheral. These are the hundreds of thousands of small businesses that write Google Ireland a check every month. Electricians, Dentists, mechanics.

    Trying to sell conference tickets or a social network or anything that people don’t know they want using adwords is bending it to fit. Sometimes it bends, sometime it doesn’t.

  7. soitgoes says:

    Justin’s questions are great too 😉 However, I like how Jason tries to extract peoples stories in chronological order. Makes it easier for me to follow.

  8. Donovan says:

    @Nethy… I could be misremembering but wasnt that in relation to Adsense, as in putting adverts onto a site to generat income?

  9. That was a great interview with a lot of energy streaming out!
    I have been a huge fan of both Amy and Thomas for years because of their work on Rails, Prototype and Scriptaculous. They definitely are experts on maximizing their Luck Surface Area!

  10. William says:

    What was the name of the mailing list system Amy suggested ?

  11. Justin says:
  12. Neville says:

    reference to Adam Smith’s “Wealth of Nations” +1000

    I’m considering using Bingo Card Creator to make a Techzing axioms bingo card. “Existence proof” is going in the center square.

    My affiliate marketing idea of the day: “Techzing Top 100 Entrepreneurial Products” reviews of all products mentioned on Techzing.

  13. TK says:

    Awesome interview. I’m building my own product empire, and listening to Amy and hearing about her struggles and successes ran very true and was very inspiring. Well done.