Like Pippin Williamson last week, Adii Pienarr stepped up the mic this week to answer your questions. Pienarr is the co-founder of WooThemes, which was recently acquired by Automattic, and is now working on Receiptful. Pienarr talked about everything from what it’s like to have your company acquired, to how to build your own business multiple times.
Here are five takeaways.
Failure Comes With Building A Business.
No one successful has gotten there without failing along the way, and Pienaar is no exception. Many people asked how to come back from a failure. The first thing Pienaar explained is that failing is all situational. There are things that you would consider a success and others would disagree and vice versa.
Pienaar offers his first company after WooThemes, Public Beta, up as an example, saying he was personally burnt-out when it was pre-revenue. He considers this a failure because he wasn’t able to make it a viable business option. The bottom line is, any company can encounter bumps along the way, but the biggest failure is not taking advantage of an opportunity to be successful.
Pienaar Misses A Lot About WooThemes, But Not Everything.
Pienaar left WooThemes in 2013 and created his new company a year later. Leaving a company you helped build is never easy, and Pienaar misses many of his coworkers. However, the change to Receiptful has been beneficial. Pienaar explained he has access to the source code, so developers have the freedom to change things and experiment, which is the whole mindset behind WordPress.
Another key benefit that Pienaar highlighted was the fact that he knows all of his users. Unlike WooThemes, which is used primarily by anonymous users around the web, Receiptful offers the ability to understand the reach and benefits of the product.
Tell Everyone You Know About Your Burgeoning Business.
As someone who has started a few companies in his day, many people asked Pienaar for tips on becoming an entrepreneur. After leaving WooThemes, Pienaar sought out a new challenge. He wanted to target eCommerce businesses with reoccurring revenue, and that’s how Receiptful was created.
The first step was getting funding from investors. Because the idea was new, it was important to get people talking about it and offering a freemium model was the best way to attract attention.
Prioritizing Is Key.
When starting a new project, there are a lot of moving pieces and it can be hard to focus on the most important thing at the moment. Pienaar uses Easy Digital Downloads (EDD) integration as an example. While EDD is important and still available, Pienaar has been putting his focus on WooCommerce, Shopify, and BigCommerce integrations for the meantime. Once that is squared away, the company will turn back to EDD.
Pienaar Uses Slack, Just Like The Rest Of Us.
It wasn’t all business, a couple people asked for recommendations on cool tools and apps he uses the most. The list includes Slack, Intercom, Hackpad, Trello, and Campaign Monitor. All of which make the day-to-day operations of running a company easier.
If you enjoyed this AMA, don’t forget to tune in next week for a talk with WP Engine founder, Jason Cohen. ManageWP intends to make this a weekly event with the biggest names in WordPress!