MatthewOdette A blog

Day 3 - Zero to MVP in 30 Days - Product Hunt's Ship and Communities

Hey there! I'll be writing two posts tomorrow. In addition to the daily update, I’ll write up how I set up a slack channel to have a free feed of targeted content to prospect from and engage in. It pulls in updates from Reddit, Quora, Hacker News, Stackoverflow, and a handful of Google alerts.

This stream of content lets me jump into discussions to help build an early audience. And this helps prevent me from distracting myself on a bunch of tabs searching for new content!

Product Hunt’s Ship

I did pull the trigger on Product Hunt’s Ship. It’s not published yet, but you all can access it before I publish it if you like!

I’m holding off on promoting it because I’m far enough into scaffolding my app that I’ll be able to mock up some static screenshots for a landing page tomorrow. After looking at some of the more successful Ships, they all have landing pages available rather than using ship a tool to solve being at a pre-landing page stage.

I also pasted their widget on my personal website in case you’d like a look at how their embedded option looks.

More validation efforts!

And finally, I continued to message folks for validation in the two channels I was exploring yesterday.

But I also added on communities. An example of this is available on /r/userexperience. With communities jumping in with self promotion is definitely a no-no. I always message the community moderators before posting anything related to validating and idea. This is so crucial, as long as you explain the purpose of your post and make it within their guidelines, they’re usually happy to let you kick off a discussion!

As an example to work from, here’s the message I send to the mods of /r/userexperience:

Hey r/ux mod team!

I was wondering if a post asking the r/ux community about validating an idea would be within the subreddits rules?

I don’t want to share any external links or promotion. For context: I just started a “30 days to MVP” challenge, and I would love to have a discussion with the folks here just about ideas/needs.

A bit about the idea I’m looking at and my background, just in case that helps: I’m coming from a senior/lead support engineering position. In this role over the last few years I’ve seen a lot of pain coming from the visual user error experience (toasts, alerts, etc.) A trend is that errors get pushed for new features, and generally those error messages are abandoned until there’s a tipping point of friction from github issues and customers writing in needing a repeatable workaround.

I’m curious what folks strategy from different backgrounds are on tracking the user-visible error experience, and how they measure & iterate to make improvements.

Would asking about the above fit in ok? If not that’s totalllyyy fine! And thank you for reading :-) And I apologize for this running a bit long!

And with a positive response from that I fired off my post to the subreddit. Although this particular post, at the time I’m writing this, doesn’t have any replies yet. But it’s only a few hours old, and posts there do take a bit of time to get traction. Even if it dies off with zero responses, I would not have known that without trying!

Just do stuff, we need to find what works.

I’ve reached a few communities today, but tomorrow I’ll expand to Facebook groups and even give LinkedIn groups a shot.

Day 4 on deck

  • First iteration of a landing page on
  • Publish/promote the Ship page
  • More validation outreach
  • Publish an article on curating a list of content to a slack channel that you can use to engage your audience
  • Switching to some dev work when I need a change of pace, but I expect tomorrow will be light on the development side