How I'd grow Fready

September 30, 2020

Fready is a word pacer Chrome extension that lets you read from screens just like you’d read a book with your finger.

You can adjust the pacer’s speed and it has autoscroll so once you get started, you can keep your hands off the keyboard and focus on what you’re reading.

I’m not sure that their positioning is the best possible. Is spending less time reading the best benefit users can get from using Fready?

I’d focus on the fact that the extension makes you stay laser focused and in turn helps you read with more comprehension.

I love the interactive demo example on their landing page. It instantly shows you what the product does.

I’d place it higher, instead of PH badges. The above the fold section is where most of the new visitors drop off, and you want to immediately capture their attention.

Another thing that I like is the About page. It’s exactly what I think every bootstrapped project should do.

It’s not faceless. It’s not generic. It shows who the founders are, and tells the personal story behind the project that establishes a connection.

What doesn’t convince me is the pricing strategy. The extension will mainly be used for sites and documents, not reading books on computers.

I’d introduce some limitations to the free version instead.

Pro tip: consider offering a limited lifetime deal to early adopters. This is important for bootstrapping - it gives you a cash reserve.

Urgency is one of the most potent levers you can use to make people take action. If the deal is good enough, it’ll work amazingly well.

It’s too early to know what the LTV of their users will be, but if we hypothesize that users will stay for 1 year on average, paid acquisition will be really difficult.

Fready needs a marketing strategy that gets them in front of potential users without spending money.

In the short term, they should go where their target audience is by researching relevant and popular websites and trying to appear there.

Look for sites that talked about similar products in the past. This improves your chances of being featured.

When they appear on a popular site, they can use it as an excuse to create a storytelling post in relevant communities.

This kind of content marketing tends to do well, and allows you to put your product in front of your target audience without being overly promotional.

Fready should repeat this process for as many websites as possible because this will give them additional benefits:

- Building relevant links that will increase their SEO domain authority
- Getting fresh content to use on their own social media channels

A good strategy for attracting potential customers for free when you can’t run ads is launching an interesting side project.

For example, Fready could create a content product hunt where registered users can discover interesting articles and upvote their favorites.

The same time spent creating a side project should be spent promoting it.

The good news is: it’s easier. Unlike your regular product, you’re not selling anything - you’re offering a useful resource.

This allows you to post it in communities that ban promotion.

A side project could also help Fready improve its search rankings by attracting more links to their domain.

To maximize their chances, they should research websites that could be a good fit to talk about Fready on their blog, and use outreach to contact them.

A side project could also help Fready make their social media stand out by having interesting content.

They could attract more followers by writing a short summary of the most popular articles as Twitter threads every week.

Finally, I’d find influencers and give them a lifetime free plan in exchange for talking about it to their audience.

I especially like YouTubers. Their content lasts for years in the search. Instagram shoutouts decay after a few days, but YT’s value compounds over time.

Learn marketing from case studies

Every month I pick a website and write a short case study explaining exactly how I’d grow it