Meeps

tl;dr: I'm working on a new SaaS project with Joshua Anderton.

Things at Transistor, the podcast hosting company I co-founded with Jon Buda, are going really well. We've built a truly calm company, and continue to enjoy the work. 

For the first time in a long time, I have the financial margin and energy to invest in something else.

Specifically, I'm investing in, and collaborating on a new project (called Meeps) with Joshua Anderton.

Joshua's story

I first heard of Josh in 2018. He'd launched Upscribe, which was the only way (at the time) to embed a newsletter signup form on Medium.

A year later, he joined the MegaMaker community. Here's the email he sent me:

I have a soft spot for young parents, who are also indie hackers.

Starting a business when you have kids (especially infants!), and very little capital, is a whole other level of difficulty.

It’s the “hardest hard mode;” especially for bootstrappers.

But, I also know how transformative a high-margin, profitable, indie-SaaS can be for family. For me personally, Transistor has changed everything. Specifically: having more money for my family has been empowering.

So from the beginning, Joshua's story resonated with me. I've been there. I know what it's like to be 27, with two kids, trying to make ends meet.

Over the years, I've kept up with Josh, and have tried helping him out whenever I can.

What happened next

Fast forward to 2021. For the first time in my life, I feel like I have enough money to start investing. I figured: "I can probably invest in one company this year."

But I don't want to be a passive investor; I want to invest in a person and really collaborate with them.

I instantly thought of Josh.

I reached out, and was initially going to invest in Upscribe (email newsletters).

But the more I thought about it, the more I felt like there was an adjacent opportunity where we could really shine.

There are a number of trends coalescing right now:

  • The overall creator economy
  • Paid subscriptions (email newsletters, private podcasts)
  • Community sites (Circle, Playgroup, Indie Hackers, Dev.to)
  • People adding community to their newsletter, SaaS, podcast, etc.

I've been swimming in these waters for awhile. I started MegaMaker in 2013 (before Indie Hackers, WIP, and Nomadlist existed). As a community, we've felt all the pain points that come with building a membership-driven site.

Most folks who run membership programs string together a bunch of different services to make it work:

  • WordPress, Squarespace (for the marketing site and member pages)
  • Memberful, Patreon, Gumroad (registration and payment)
  • Community Box (member directories, profiles)
  • MailChimp, Substack (member newsletters, email onboarding, content)
  • Discourse, Slack (for member posts and chat)

For Josh and I, building a better membership platform was a category where we felt we could shine.

In May, Josh began building a brand new app which we're calling Meeps.

Here's a demo video:

Want to help us? We'd love for you to:

You can also listen to our podcast.

🙏 Thanks for your support!

Justin Jackson
@mijustin

Published on June 29th, 2021
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