We just hired another developer, starting later this week. The plan was to have the new developer work on TwoNeeds and solve the problem of the other developers being too busy with client projects. Naturally, this plan has lasted about three days before changing completely.
Again, we have a problem caused by good things happening. This time the issue is a new idea in the mobile social networking space - it looks like being easy to grow, not taking too much development time and is very much complementary to the other stuff we are doing. In other words, it’s to good an opportunity not to take.
On the other hand, it means the new developer will be busy with that and won’t be able to work on finishing what we already started, so we still don’t have the team we need and I’m back to the same problems I had last week.
Another issue that I need to think about is that this could end up changing the business model a bit. TwoNeeds as originally envisioned is a social network which is used to bring users to the part of the site which provides paid services. With that model I know exactly how we will make money. However, it is now looking like we may have the social network and the mobile component to bring users into the network ready well before the paid services part is ready. That gives us two options: grow the network and add the paid services later, or find a way to make money without the component that supported the original business model.
The first option is easier in some ways, but doesn’t really it with my plans to get revenue quickly rather than getting funding. That leaves us with a social network that can get plenty of users but isn’t connected to a profitable paid service and has to make its own money. I’ve always been a bit sceptical of advertising as a business model, but as long as the user base is more like LinkedIn than FaceBook it can probably work well enough.
Whatever we end up doing it’s more proof that plans don’t last very well in this business.